Sixteen years as a librarian groomed Risa Robinson as a troubleshooter. Her fascination with handheld electronics began along the way.
“From the first time I read Jane Austen on my iPhone, I have loved gadgets,” she says. “The ease of continuing with a book from the last time I read it, regardless of the gadget, is amazing, especially since the stack on my bedside table is now non-existent.”
In January, after a couple years toying with the idea, Robinson put the two together and created Gilbert Gadget Girl. The one-person business offers “gadget-tutoring services” for $25 per hour.
Many of Robinson’s growing clientele are seniors tired of seeking help from their children or grandchildren — or vice versa — but she has plenty of others seeking help as well, from the most simple tasks to the advanced.
“I’m a lot friendlier than any IT person I’ve ever met,” says Robinson, who formerly worked at Arizona State University’s on-campus library. “But I’m not a fixer; I can’t fix gadgets.”
Her specialty is helping you learn how to use them, though; she owns most phones, e-readers and mp3 players — or has experience with those she doesn’t own.
“I’m a good teacher,” says Robinson, who posted the following Steve Jobs quote to Gadget Girl’s website:
“Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end, because once you get there, you can move mountains.”
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