Farewell Websites

hello world

I was trying to clean up an older iPad of mine and get rid of apps and junk so that it would be a bit faster. That led me to go into the bookmarks which were not syncing with any other devices. What a nostalgia trip!

Sifting through the sites that you once bookmarked as having some importance, you realize how many sites have vanished. I recall a feature in a browser past (Was it Netscape or an early Firefox?) that allowed me to check bookmarks in a keystroke and if they were valid. No more, so I started clicking old ones to see if they are still online.

Here are just a few I eliminated:

1.) AIM
2.) Yahoo Chat
3.) LiveJournal
4.) Orkut – you can make a whole list of all the Google properties gone, such as Google+
5.) Friendster
6.) Xanga
7.) Bebo
8.) Six Apart
9.) IRC

MySpace still exists in some form and some URLs were bought and repurposed but it is a reminder of how many of the mighty have fallen.

A Year of Being Unretired

In January 2016, I wrote about my retirement and about a conference presentation I was prepping on “The Disconnected” segment of the population. Those people are not disconnected in a detached or unengaged sense, but are disconnected from traditional modes and sources of information and learning. I had also discovered a short-lived podcast called Unretirement

In the past year, I have become a bit more disconnected, and I have moved more into unretirement. I read Chris Farrell’s book Unretirement and listened to all the podcast episodes about people rethinking and reimagining their retirement years and perhaps the entire second half of life when it comes to work.

I have become more involved in volunteer “work”  this past year. I started last year doing that with the Montclair Film group and their film festival and especially their education efforts with young people. I continue to work with the endangered species program in my state.

This past week, I was approached by a college to work part time the next six months.

In my definition of retirement or unretirement you work because you want to work and because you think that work benefits both yourself and others. It has purpose. Getting paid is not a real concern. My volunteer work doesn’t pay me anything, and I often spend money to volunteer (materials, travel, parking).

My wife isn’t a big fan of me getting too busy or even earning too much money. She likes the freedom of no commitments in planning trips and vacations. She is the house accountant and warns me that at a point earning money in addition to pensions, social security and investments will negatively affect our state and federal taxes. “You’re working for the government,” she tells me.

This college project involves designing courses that use OER, Open Educational Resources, which are free and openly licensed educational materials that can be used for teaching.  Using these materials can reduce student costs for textbooks and materials and allow faculty to really design their curriculum rather than follow what a textbook offers.

I have worked with OER before and I support its use.  The college is an urban community college and I know OER is of financial benefit to those students. If that wasn’t the situation, I would pass on the opportunity without hesitation. That is one of the best parts of unretirement.

I suppose that if unretirement means working again we could call it by the older term “semi-retirement.” But it is different. Making your full-time job a part-time job is semi-retired. Leaving your job to do whatever you want is unretirement. Plan for it.