Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Technolust /Technodisgust

A couple of years back, the now defunct TechTV had a commercial showing some guy in a cubicle farm loosing his mind on a computer in excellent "Hulk smash" fashion. Ah... it still makes me laugh.

Well, it did until yesterday morning when I was a hair's breadth away from becoming that person. All I needed to do was scan a sheet of paper. Simple, I thought. Instead I end up having a full blown foul-mouthed freakout for the better part of an hour. Remember the scene in Office Space where they take the printer out into an abandoned field and wail on it until it's an unrecognizable mess? That's what I dreamt about last night. I slept like a baby.

Now I'm the first to admit that I'm "a bit" curmudgeonly about technology. But I'm not too bad really. I, like most of us, respond in a positive manner to a fancy new device. "Oooo, it's so shiny and button-y," I've found myself whispering while looking at a new laptop. So it's not that I don't get the allure. I too want a new computer, camera, and/or phone with all the bells and whistles I can't even begin to understand but desperately need.

Being a part-time luddite though, I get easily frustrated. Take that scanner for instance. So long as it's functioning exactly as I need it to, we're just the bestest of friends. But if something goes wrong, I'm throwing its thrashed, chip-filled carcass in front of the new replacement as a warning.

Yes, reading a manual could help. Patience might be effective as well. But those things take time. And to be honest, putting some hurt on a malfunctioning computer does feel liberating... until you have to buy the next one.

posted by jw