Friday, February 05, 2010

Helping with a tune

Different sort of tune to what you were expecting.

There was a time when I would offer my help to friends, acquaintances and workmates who were starting out with these mysterious computer machines and the information super highway. Along with it being difficult because no two computers are set up in the same way, and the lack of effort on who was being helped to try, I have struck that off the list. I will judge that everyone who is ever going to use a computer now has one. So, that is probably something I won't get asked to do again, and nor feel obliged to offer. Having said that, I would love to help an old person get online, but the same problem is there, different system set up.

There was a at time stretching back even earlier when I would offer help when someone bought a new tv. Present tvs are marvellous in the way they automatically tune. But you often need to find the manual to know how to get to the menu. Actually, now, you probably don't. They all seem reasonably standard, like mobile phone menus are, but weren't in the past.

Again, with tvs, it was the same. People would not help themselves. Manual? 'Not sure. Around somewhere. Maybe I threw it out with the packaging. Perhaps it is in this drawer, nay, maybe the cupboard. It is somewhere. I will find it.' You struggle on, learning about a very different menu to what you know.

Words of gratitude are expressed for your help. Please, I would love to help you more, but you just aren't trying to help yourself.

Lol, probably much worse if who you are helping has had a drink or five.

6 comments:

  1. Gah, I am having problems with comments here, blogger keeps on swallowing them up! Help, ahhahaha.
    I have a friend who is always helping others with such technology. He lives in America now but it does not stop people calling on him to help out with setting up their new appliances. When he returned from America for a few weeks prior to Christmas, there were already appointments set for him to "visit", yet also to set up those Universal remotes or plasma TVs or computers.
    Sad, because his visits are always enjoyable and well, visiting without expectations would be much nicer.'
    I laughed when I read your friend's story :)

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  2. I'm rather proud I managed to set up my broadband router with minimal assistance from the techie line and can swear on a stack of Gideons that while not even a sip of spirits passed my lips the curse words were very spirited :P

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  3. Anonymous11:18 am

    Its the pace of change, its accelerating. And as we age, our brains are slowing down, less able to cope with new information, not helped by badly written instructions...Sony and Panasonic in domestic gear made an enlightened decision to write clear manuals and make their device menus a bit easier to cope with... I still do some work for my older clients, I curse their "thoughtful" children who get them a brand new big TV or PVR, complete with a remote with (seemingly) 200 buttons on it. Usually have to go back at least once as there was just so much information to absorb. I re-write the instructions to 1 page, and leave out anything more than the basic on/off/change channel/wheres the DVD functions..
    Michael.
    PS - my son-in-law does the computer stuff for the family, he is so much better atit than I am.

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  4. Cazzie, I have had problems in the past with comments on blogs. I started copying what I had written before hitting send. At least you don't have retype. Your friend sounds like he is very worthwhile to know.

    Jayne has a router! Jayne has a router! Clever lass. I will know who to call when we need on set up.

    Michael, some manuals are quite good now. But sometimes they are not. Sometimes detailed stuff is only online. Bah! Perhaps stripped down manuals and remotes are needed for some people. After a couple of years of pvrs, I am still finding things they do, but then I will forget because I don't need to use the function

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  5. My Mum kept asking me to help her mend her telly a couple of years back. She said the picture quality was terrible, and the sound incomprehensible. In the end I took a look and explained to her that she was just watching an episode of Friends and that it was always like that because it's basically crap. The poor quality sound was created by an imbecilic audience laughing at cliched, unfunny scripts and the picture quality marred by the extreme ugliness of all the characters, in particular the bird who plays Pheobe. As soon as the adverts came on she realised her error and was happy again.

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  6. It has been screened here Brian. I have never seen it but I can guess. Mind you, the UK is a dab hand at canned laughter, or used to be.

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