Nothing – and I mean NOTHING – makes me more crazy frustrated than computer problems. I HATE computers. No, strike that, I hate computers when they don’t work. I’m not computer literate. I can accomplish wonderful things with the limited amount of knowledge I possess. But, when things go wrong, I am totally lost and immediately frustrated. And that’s putting it mildly. Very mildly. Very, very mildly.
This all started when my printer went on the fritz. Stopped printing. Not fixable. My husband purchased a new printer from e-bay and it was delivered free of charge. Yay! That was last Friday. It took me 3 days of constant sitting at the computer alternating between swearing and crying to determine that there was no way in hell my current laptop was going to communicate with this awesome new printer. The wireless connection continued to fail, the USB cord connection required more modern software than I was currently using on my laptop. Yeah, apparently Windows Vista is obsolete. Yay me. I loved Windows Vista.
After 3 days of sheer and utter exhaustion from fighting this losing battle, we decided to get a new computer, since mine is almost 10 years old. I wasn’t keen on this idea. You see, my existing laptop had been a gift from my father, shortly after my mother passed away and he wanted me to have a new computer as I pursued my writing career. It holds sentimental value even though it is essentially worthless at this point. That laptop is symbolic of losing my mother. Now it’s a goner, too.
Anyway, after purchasing a new computer you’d think my technology frustration would decrease. Wrong. So very wrong. It got worse. I am not familiar with this new Windows 10 operating system or the latest version of Word processing. I was able to copy over some of my documents, but everything about the documents looks different and still does play well with my new computer, not to mention transferring data to the printer. Another wasted day accomplishing nothing that needs to get done.
I wish I wouldn’t keep encountering things like, “you must first register this device.” Okay, so I register. Then I try to complete that task and I get a message that says “invalid id,” or “we do not recognize this devise, or blah, blah, blah.” Or the dreaded “error” message. Say what? I’m doing what YOU, on-line help center, tell me to do.
And then there’s all the questions that I don’t understand how to answer. There needs to be an “I don’t know,” button or a “what is that?” button because I truly have no idea how to answer the questions. “Do you want to upload this app?” Um . . . probably not, but if I need it I guess I have to. Do I need it? “Do you want to make changes to this device?” I don’t think so, I just bought it, it shouldn’t need changing. “Do you want to add this plug-in?” Plug-in? What? There’s no place to plug anything in. “We recommend you download x, y, z.” Download something? Is that absolutely necessary? I don’t think I want to download anything. Isn’t that how computers get infected with viruses and spyware and malware and cookies and other nasty things, although cookies don’t sounds so bad right about now. And milk. Lots of cookies and milk.
These notifications are accompanied by all kinds of fabulous promises like, “by downloading this your computer will run faster, smoother, fewer pop-ups, no cookies, blah, blah, blah.” It’s a brand new computer, shouldn’t it already be faster, smoother, cookie-free? It’s all so confusing, I just don’t know. I hope I choose correctly.
I wanted to transfer some photos from my old laptop to my new one via flashdrive to my “pictures,” folder on my new computer. I couldn’t do that. Computer kept saying – sorry, no can do. So, I had to put all the photos on my desktop first, then transfer them into the “pictures,” folder. That’s 3 steps when only 2 should have been required. The first step – transferring from old computer to flashdrive took about 13 minutes. The second, transferring to my desktop took about 40 minutes. Shouldn’t it have been faster to the new computer? The third, another 5 or 6 minutes. Almost one hour for some pictures?
Whatever. The photos have been transferred. (I’m sure there’s an easier way, but I’m not familiar with how to use short-cuts and stuff on this new computer. I just want it to work.)
Then I started on other downloads and documents and stuff. Took for-ev-er. The most frustrating and exhausting 3 days of my life. I’d rather pay someone $1,000 to transfer, download, upload, add apps, plug in whatevers so that my new computer looks and functions like my old one. Only better. Would have saved me 3 days of headaches and red puffy eyes. My husband thinks it’s all very funny. He truly has no idea how utterly much I HATE this crap. Combine all of this with the mounting fear that I am now 3 days behind schedule on other projects. Will I ever catch up? People are counting on me and I can’t get things done. (Insert scream here.)
Oh sure I read the instructions but every – single – time, they don’t work. It says, “click on the yadda, yadda, yadda button.” Guess what? There is no yadda, yadda, yadda button. I never get that option or see that button. EVER. I’m not an idiot. I can read, write and understand English with ease. This kind of aggravation makes me feel like a complete imbecile. Customer service is no help because they ask me things like, “are you running x, y, z? What’s your ip address? How much ram, gigs, megagigs do you have?” I have no idea. You might as well as me a question in Old World Celtic, because I do not understand this language you are speaking to me. This could have been me last weekend.
Once things got functioning – I think – for the time being anyway – I encounter the problem of trying to access any of my accounts on line. If – and that’s a big IF – I manage to remember every single account username I must match – exactly – the appropriate password. Yes, that means correct capital letters, slashes, dashes, dots and other symbols in the exact order. I was lucky here in all but 1 instance. Those proper match-ups were followed by messages saying such things as: “please enter the security code we sent to your phone,” or “please verify that you are you by clicking on the e-mail we sent you,” and so forth. Every – single – account, a new security process complete with answering a multitude of security questions, e-mail cutting and pasting, and telephone clicks. Another good 2 hours of wasted time. Sheesh. I’m exhausted as I write this blog just reliving this nightmarish hell I’ve suffered. Can you all feel my pain?
Anyway, I now have a new computer and printer, which seem willing to work when I want them to. I can’t say this will go on for an extended period of time, but I know now why it’s been 10 years since I’ve acquired a new computer. And, guess what? It’ll be another 10 or 12 before I do this again.
How was your past week? Do you fight with technology or does it come naturally to you? Do you have a loving relationship with your computer?
Word of the day: Defilade
Fun fact about me: I found a good sushi place in Vicksburg. (That’s the good from last week.)
Original post by Jansen Schmidt, March 2017. Photos courtesy Google Images.