Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Computers - You Can't Understand or Live Without Them

"I HATE TECHNOLOGY!" This was what the frantic and angry voice on the phone said to me the other morning.  Well, I think it was more of a desperate SOS and a declaration of defeat from a friend who was ready to throw her computer out the window.  It seems that her less than reliable computer (sorry to say, she is a PC) had decided of its own accord to disregard the fact that it was at least as far as it was concerned, supposed to be connected to the Internet.  I believe her exact words were, "this expletive computer says it's connecting but I can't get on!  What the blank!"  She of course had tried to reboot the computer.  She had tried freeing up space on her hard drive.  She had even unloaded and reloaded the possibly offending computer program.  To no avail.  The computer insisted it was connected and she could still not retrieve email.  Ugh!  Finally she broke down and called tech support.  Three days, several hours and of course about $100 dollars later - computer problem solved.  Naturally it had to do with "something" technical (no one ever really knows what that something is) that just didn't actually connect properly on her computer.  Huh?  What kind of answer is that?  Apparently the kind you pay the all-knowing computer geek for!  (Please - computer geeks of the world, no offense!)
Now, I consider myself fairly computer savvy.  Actually, I think it is my love of puzzles and somewhat linear thinking that makes me a good "computer problem fixer".  That, my seemingly infinite patience with everything technical and my tenacity to solve problems.  However, I have to admit being rattled to the brink of lunacy on the odd occasion when everything on the computer insisted it was connecting to the internet and yet, I could not surf, check email or quite frankly do any of the day-to-day things we now rely on the computer for.  I wonder what in the world did we do before these wonderous machines?  How did we get that instant information fix?  The simple answer is we didn't.  The better answer is it didn't matter.  In truth we have become a society completely and totally dependent on machines - especially the personal computer.  Forget Big Brother.  Say hello to your little buddy.  Oh, and please stop threatening to throw it out the window - you know you'll just go out and buy another.

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