The winter term of OLLI, Osher Life Long Learning, ended in early March. Bob and I finished our Southern History class which started a couple years ago in the 1500’s and then slowly moved up to present day times. I learned so much and have a greater understanding of what made the south the way it is.
For Bonus Classes I coordinated a program on Winston Churchill – The Man of the 20th Century, another person I didn’t know a lot about. In three hours the speaker could only give us a small glimpse of this man’s life. Definitely a topic to go back and revisit.
Bob went to an all day class called Hear! Hear!, a program that covered types of hearing loss, features of hearing aids and cochlear implants, telecommunication equipment, smartphone applications and public accommodations. Bob is starting to have some hearing loss but not at the hearing aid point yet. Just something that happens with aging.
We went to an all day class put on by SCORE, Senior Core of Retired Executives, which Artist Alliance sent us to. A good review of all the resources they can provide to small business and organizations. My board members were glad to have the information.
I’m on a committee at OLLI to bring our OLLI artist’s works to a long wall display, maybe 30 feet so have met a few times to come up with a plan. This spring there is an exhibit of a couple dozen water color works of art. Very impressive what these relatively new artists can do. There are usually a couple watercolor classes a term, several photography classes as well as drawing and pen and ink. I am amazed when I see the works. Another example of “you are never to old to learn something new.”
Bob made a new friend named Reid and he is very interested in 3 D printing and wanted to work with Bob on getting some type of group going at OLLI. So far there has been one meeting with about 20 people at it. We went out to Reid’s home for dinner and met his lovely wife Laura and Reid walked us through what it was like to print something in 3 D with his printer. They applied for a grant from OLLI to buy a printer and have a class but that didn’t work out, at least not this year. I haven’t seen Bob so excited about something in awhile. He and Reid went to a 3 D manufacturer for a tour and yesterday we went to see a demonstration by a 17 year old student with the printer he built. That’s what Bob wants to do, build a 3 D Printer. There is a big 3 D printing company in Minnesota www.stratasys.com/
So all your life you are unaware of something like 3 D printing and now Bob has 4 activities and tours in the next couple weeks that he will be attending about printing and other technology. Funny how that works out. You can start learning more about this at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3D_printing It’s not as new as you might think, been around since the 1980’s and an early inventor was right here in Greenville http://3dprinterplans.info/first-3d-printer-created-by-greenville-inventor/ Isn’t that odd? One of the early companies, still in business, is 3D Systems, only about an hour away. Bob and Reid have plans to go there soon.
Wikipedia says this: A disruptive innovation is an innovation that helps create a new market and value network, and eventually disrupts an existing market and value network (over a few years or decades), displacing an earlier technology. The term is used in business and technology literature to describe innovations that improve a product or service in ways that the market does not expect, typically first by designing for a different set of consumers in a new market and later by lowering prices in the existing market. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disruptive_innovation
I have been doing some reading on it too and it is going to be a disruptive technology that changes the world, being referred to as the third technology revolution, like the industrial revolution.
We are half way through our Spring OLLI classes. I am taking Core Conditioning at 9 a.m. on Monday mornings. Struggling with that. Using those big bouncy balls to sit on is not easy. Class also has yoga and lots of stretching. I know that is all good for me but not easy. I had hoped my three days a week of water aerobics would make it easier. Hate to think how hard it would be if I wasn’t dong those exercises.
After that I have a class called Characters in History where a different presenter talks about someone. So far I have heard about Leonard Bernstein and Theodore Roosevelt and Howard Taft.
On Thursdays I have Dynamic Aging, a program to help us come up with strategies for this third part of our life. Outside the box thinking, which is exactly what we need to be doing. Here is the course description. I think you will be reading much more from me about this.
Dynamic Aging (DA) is much more than an exercise or nutrition program—it is the proactive and systemic process by which a motivated individual can significantly improve their own health, happiness, cognitive capabilities, ability to control stress and pain, develop new meaning in their lives, enhance relationships, become increasingly self-aware, have more energy, and flexibly adapt to rapidly changing life circumstances. This course will minimize formal presentations, maximize student interaction, and produce tangible improvements in life satisfaction/happiness levels for those students willing to apply the skills learned in class.
This is the first term Bob is taking two classes.
The first one is Successful Greenville Entrepreneurs where each week a successful business person comes in to talk to them. A wide variety of speakers and he is loving it. 3 D printing is coming up in at least one of his tours.
His other class is Science Research at Furman University there are presentations and tours of various science departments as biology, chemistry, environmental, physics and computer science. Of course 3D printing is coming up. A recent class with the Physics department was all about drones. He was pretty excited to tell me about these. I guess Furman has a pretty well respected physics program, think robotics – http://blogs.furman.edu/physicssteminitiative/2012/10/05/robotics-contest-its-official/ I did not know that.
Enjoy the photos of the drones:
For Friday Bonus Classes I coordinated a trip to West End Coffee Roasting. Roasting and brewing and tasting coffee is every bit as complicated as making wine! They gave a fantastic lecture and tour.
I also coordinate a tour of A.J. Whittenberg Elementary School for Engineering. Yes, you read that right, elementary school engineering.
Also doing Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah!”; God, Sex and Pop Rock. Sound like something you want to come to?
And the last one for me is facilitate a Tour of Greenville Hospital System and University of South Carolina School of Medicine. It is as new building with cutting edge technology. Wonder if they are using 3 D printing for medical purposes? That definitely already exists.
My next posts will be our Anniversary Celebration and what woodworking projects we are up to. Yes, somehow Bob still has time to keep at that.