A lot of what used to be high tech past time like the television and game-and-watch in the last few decades have now been taken by the internet. Parents used to worry about children spending too much time on the television because such an activity can greatly affect children's performance in schools.
The relative horror brought about by television on some parents pales in comparison to that brought about by the internet. While children spending too much time on the television can be easily monitored and taken immediate action, it can sometimes be a daunting task monitoring children's activities on the internet.
Good thing the new Windows Vista has incorporated some features into its operating system which can monitor children's activities and protect them from malicious attacks. The consumer launch of Windows Vista comes with parental controls that are very easy to use even with non technical parents.
Windows Vista can provide parents a list of websites which are being visited by their children so that they can review the list later and then take appropriate action. Windows Vista also has strengthened its partnerships with parental control websites like Contentwatch (www.contentwatch.com), Pix Alert (www.pixalert.com), Safe Eyes (www.safeeyes.com) and IMSafer (www.imsafer.com).
Like in the previous versions of Windows, there are the web filtering or restriction options which can be set to either low, medium or high depending on the kinds of content allowed by the parents for their children. These restrictions encompass which files are allowed for downloads and streaming media.
Even the games for the children can be strictly regulated by the parents. Parents can specific what types of games are allowed and they can even set a certain block of time during the day that the children can use the computer for games. This is a good feature because according to studies, more and more children and youth are losing their social skills and flunking in their studies because of the great amount of time they stay ensconced in their rooms playing games.
I have yet to look up if Windows Vista has also an online monitoring program that sort of spies in a positive way on the activities of their children and parents can monitor the activities remotely through a web browser.
With so many reports of children being sexually abused online or getting themselves to pornographic materials or online thieves targeting the young vulnerable minds, these parental control features should be strictly implemented by parents.
With proper security features and monitoring, these children will be guided to grow up to be good and useful technology citizens in the future. And with technology coming natural to them when they grow up, they will surely be an asset to the community in the future.
Of course these parental controls on computer use should be coupled with real caring and love within the family. When there is real open communication and love, no amount of outside media bombardment can shake the moral fiber of the child.