author: Shoshana Biro
You may be wondering why I created Scenic Framer. Being near trees is healing for me. I like to lie down underneath a tree and look up at all the branches with leaves. I like to touch it and leave my hand on the bark. I like walking slowly in the forest. I love the fall colors. I imagine I’m inside the crown of the tree. Its foliage surrounds me. I feel calmer and in touch with a sense of beauty and awe. In winter seeing all the small branches reminds me of the brain neural pathways. I just want to be near it and spend time either walking in the woods or sitting under a tree in the park. Often, I naturally take out my Lumia 920 phone and take multiple photos. After hiking a few hours amidst trees I feel uplifted and all my previous stresses and anxieties are gone and I feel uplifted and energetic. However, it was not always like this, so I would like to tell you my history with the outdoors.
My personal history through a lens made of trees and flowers.
I was born in April during surrounded by cherry blossoms in Shukugawa near Kobe Japan. Shukugawa is one of the most beautiful parks in Japan for viewing cherry blossoms. My late Hungarian born father Paul Biro wanted to call me Sakura which is Japanese for cherry blossom but my late Hungarian born mother Dr Edith Varga Biro said it would not be so popular in Israel so they named me Shoshana which means rose in Hebrew. I am so grateful to my parents who raised me in this beautiful place until I was 3 and they continued to choose houses with a lot of trees and beautiful outdoor nature spaces such as Karuizawa in Japan until age 5.
From age 5 to 16 we lived up on Mount Carmel in Haifa, Israel, surrounded by pine trees. Haifa is famous for Bahai Gardens I loved climbing on the pine trees take off pine cones and spend happy hours with my neighbors removing shells and eating the pines inside. My best memories until age 13 were of being active outdoors climbing trees, hopping between rocks, sports, swimming in the Mediterranean, hiking on the Carmel and learning about names of flowers and trees.
However, I was never aware that being outdoors was important for me. While I was growing up to an adult and until 12 years ago I was thoroughly a city person. In addition, I always felt stressed in team discussions as a software scientist at work. I never heard about personality types so I was not aware that it was normal for introverts to feel this way. I just felt anxious and was not sure how to handle it. About 12 years ago I met my late uncle Andrew and his wife Emoke in their home in the midst of woods outside Chicago. Emoke was really friendly and took me to the woods where she explained about the benefits of being outside the city and proceeded to hug a tree to my amazement. I had an epiphany that day and that was the beginning for my journey of self-discovery as an introvert and tree and flower lover.
Now, looking back I realize that from birth I was destined to become an engineer who connects people to the outdoors. I hope you now understand my motivation for creating Scenic and why I feel so strongly about sharing it. There are many other introverted people working with computers that would benefit from continuous exposure to outdoors, even if only by digital photos visualization. I am posting several excerpts of articles and blogs I found that confirm this concept. I have many more ideas about how to enhance the user’s immersive experience of nature when you are indoors by digital means. I’m inviting you to join me in this journey to help me to continue to build new features and new products. All is well!