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panteragstk 07-18-2017 04:29 PM

People can't use Computers
Though you guys would like this.

EnterNoEscape 07-18-2017 06:59 PM

I have experiences this kind of condescension when I worked as a contractor for my now employer as onsite support. Admittedly it was only a handful of people every time I moved to a new building, so it wasn't everyone, but it was pervasive enough that when I got a well earned promotion 3 years ago to a much better position in the company still as a contractor, a few people in IS that I have worked with before looked at me like why did they promote him. Those people now talk to me like a peer, but it's hard to forget someone whom you have to work with from time to time thinks like that.

I have never felt like a victim, but it's just unnecessary, especially when you don't know someone. I am now in an employee position where I am respected and I am working on not letting it go to my head and becoming one of those condescending people.

I think this article is more the result of IS always just taking over the keyboard and waving a magic wand. That's probably the most efficient short term approach for IS, but the user learns nothing. Also sometimes the user just doesn't want to learn anything. After that happens to you for a while, you figure you know the drill. In this case the help just doesn't like the drill that the one being helped has learned to expect.

graywolf 07-19-2017 07:27 AM

Quite an interesting read. I'm probably guilty of being the "fix it " person at home and work. Will try to work on that

Opus4 07-19-2017 08:12 AM

But doesn't this apply to anything? He somewhat acknowledges that at the end by admitting he doesn't know much about car maintenance (unless I misread). I know a group of people who can't believe that most people don't know how to sharpen their own knives... and if they do, they just use some tool that you pull the knife through instead of using a real wet stone. Most people don't have the time to really learn the full details of how to become an expert at every type of tool or machine they use, and computers really are just tools to most people.

If you don't want to become the family/neighborhood/office computer fixer, don't be available. It sounds to me like the author doesn't know how to say "no" (unless it is his job to help set things up for everyone where he works) and it bothers him.

... on the other hand, something like setting up wifi connections should probably be something to learn and everyone in my house has been shown how to do it instead of having it done for them. He says he's just been doing it for people & doesn't like the fact they they still can't do it and end up coming back to him.


Taddeusz 07-19-2017 08:13 AM

Yeah, I want to raise my kids to be competent in using computers. Try not to be the fix-it dad.

It's too easy to get frustrated and just take over. Then you're in that role of fix-it dad again.

graywolf 07-19-2017 10:50 AM

My main problem is time. Faster to fix so I can get back to my work.
Used to ask where they checked in the manual and send them away if they hadn't or explain it if they had. Need to get back to that model of teaching them how to fish instead of handing them the fish. Just takes so much time.

gopher 07-21-2017 11:36 AM

It seems to me that his overarching point is, if you are ignorant of how you got there, don't be surprised that you are lost. Reliance on "technology" can result in a dependence upon that technology, including the ability for that technology to guide/control your behaviors. It's also a frequent theme in sci-fi thriller/horror stories.

* Don't have a clue about where your food comes from = Soylent Green.
* Don't have a clue about how the predictive crimes technology works = Minority Report
* AI and/or predictive intelligence = I, Robot or Terminator or The Matrix

And real-world examples as well:
* Don't have a clue about how Facebook (and other advertising-based or freemium offerings) curates your feeds = Fake News
* Don't have a clue about what the moneyed interests (owners, advertisers, sponsors) behind your favorites news feeds think/believe = skewed/unbalanced coverage that may just conveniently align with your beliefs and slowly curate them as it builds trust
* Don't have a clue what is in that 1,000 page bill signed by congress = everything you hate about government (knowing that we don't all have the same viewpoints, but have all been annoyed at one point)

I don't have a strong point except:
* Be skeptical, but try not to be paranoid. (I believe that some very small percentage of conspiracies are true, but you will almost never know which ones are true.)
* If you didn't pay for it, what did the person offering it get from you to justify their cost/effort. Same applies to deals/discounts/subsidies.
* If you don't know how it works, try to find someone who does that you feel reasonably certainty does (remembering the above point in regards to "expert" opinions).

panteragstk 07-22-2017 03:51 PM

This took a bit of a different direction that I thought, but I agree with you guys.

I'm of the mind that if you use a tool (good word to describe many things we use) you should have a basic understanding of it's inner workings.

I have always tried to have a basic knowledge of everything I can. Can't learn everything obviously, but I try to learn as much as I can about as many things as I can.

I think that's what I took from this article. I did support for PCs and smartphones (kinda sorta still do, but my job is WAY above that now) and it astonished me that people refused or flat didn't think to try the simplest of things to try and fix an issue.

I've asked people if they restarted their PC. Yes. I remote in and it has 50 (literally) people logged and has been up for 6 months. I ask them how they restarted and they point to log off. I tell them that is log off, not restart. Restart is restart. It is literal. They are amazed. I'm shocked (well, not anymore. Been through this too many times).

When I first started in the IT field (I was 20) I made a list of things to do before they were allowed to call the support line. I got fewer calls. I've always tried to educate the users so they can help themselves. Self help. I can't stand when people just say move so they can fix it. Those types are usually annoyed with getting a call in the first place so why not educate?

I think this is along the lines of Idiocracy. When enough people forget how technology works, then nobody will be able to fix it. I've heard kids ask why they need to learn history when they can just look it up online. I ask how they think it got to be online? They get confused. I know this sort of thing isn't new, but the older I get the more I notice how much a lot of society doesn't really want to learn anything at all.

All I know is if my kids want to use something (tech or otherwise) they get to learn how and why it works. Nothing fancy, but a basic understanding helps. People still can't wash their own clothes and change a tire. Don't want my kids in that crowd.:hi:

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