Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Technology: Friend or Foe?

I think I’m one of the few Millennials who really isn’t a fan of technology, especially when it comes to upgrades of current products.

For example, when it comes to smartphones, the first thought/feeling that comes to mind is “Ugh.” They are great and all and allow us to do so many things, but when it comes to trying to learn something new on my phone or GOD FORBID change the setting of an app, I would rather see if there’s a simpler way to do it on my laptop, or some other avoidant “solution.”

I like instructions. I like guidance. Whenever I try to figure out how to do something on my phone on my own, I tend to change something I had no intention of changing, and most of the time, the change is negative. I know that when there are upgrades or you use something new, it is usually accompanied by some kind of guide or tutorial, which is nice, but if I don’t have five minutes to dedicate to sitting through that tutorial and really absorbing the new information, I’m going to skip it. Then, when I do have the time to dedicate to the tutorial I can’t find it anywhere (even though when the tutorial was initially introduced I clicked the button/link saying something like “Remind Me Later”).

I’m really excited about the new Nokia 3310, a throwback to one of the original cell phones. Unfortunately, the one thing I care about on a phone, the camera, pretty much sucks. That’s the only thing I get excited about on a new phone model – better zoom capabilities, higher quality photos, etc. Having a phone constantly ready at your fingertips is awesome.

The fact that my dad is SUPER literate in technology and always knows about the new stuff coming out, probably doesn’t help me because whenever I’m having a problem, I just go to him. This eliminates the need for me to figure out things on my own because I pretty much always have him as a resource.

After graduating high school, I was gifted a Macbook. It was awesome, but from day 1, there were little bugs. I took it in a few times to the Apple Store to get it looked at by the “Geniuses,” but they couldn’t figure out what was going on. Basically, it would just randomly go to sleep or shut down whenever it felt like it. This wasn’t really a problem until I was working on my final paper for my English class at Cal. It was the first research paper I had ever written, at 15 pages the longest, and the first paper that required footnotes. It was quite daunting, especially considering that I got a D (I think) on the first submission of the previous major assignment (I think I’m going to write a post about that whole experience later). So, I’m on like page 7 of this paper, which is also the equivalent of my final, and of course I didn’t save my work since I had made about a page of progress and my lovely Macbook SHUTS DOWN. I’m freaking out. For all I know, this is the end of my Macbook and not only was the newly typed page lost but all the previous pages as well. Luckily, after some frantic moments I recovered my document, “only” missing a page of my work. I was not happy. I visited the flagship Mac store in SF to consult another “genius.” I was so fed up at this point, that the thought of “accidentally dropping” my Macbook from the second floor of the store crossed my mind. It would have been nice to make a grand statement like that amongst all the Apple cult members. My mom urged me to not follow this impulse. When I finally had the privilege of consulting with a “genius” he said I would need to send in my Macbook to have whatever work done to it, and it would take a week-a month to be fixed. I looked at him in horror and said, “I’m a college student. I can’t be without a computer that long.” I didn’t get any sympathy from him. I had listened to all these Mac lovers exalt Mac and spit on the thought of a PC. I was really regretting the fact that I got a Mac rather than a PC. Sometime later, I described the problems of my Macbook to a friend from high school who was well-known for loving all things Mac. He kind of shrugged and said, “I think you got a lemon.” Of course I did. I, of all people, would get the one screwed up Macbook. The end of my Macbook came four years after it was purchased, in 2014, when the hard drive crashed. I made another pilgrimage to an apple store. The “genius” there told me that the hard drive would have to be replaced but that it would cost less than buying a completely new laptop. She came back with a quote around $1,000. I’m pretty sure my eyes bugged out. No, I was not going to spend $1,000 on this piece of crap. I then became more upset when I walked out of the store, through the front, and the new Macbook Air was on display for around $800. Thanks, “genius,” for your thoroughly accurate diagnostic. I could have bought a new computer for a lower price.

HAHAHAHAHAHA I think my current Lenovo is reading this piece because Word started “Not Responding,” and of course, I had not saved this draft yet, but, unlike my Macbook my lovely PC laptop quickly recovered and no problems ensued. I did immediately save my document though.

*Deep sigh of irritation*

So yeah, if I can avoid using new technology, I do. I don’t get excited when new products come out. I still use a small paper calendar that I keep in my purse for all my appointments and reminders. I get made fun of for it often, but it works for me and makes me happy.

(I’m not lost on the irony that this piece was written on a laptop and published on an online blog.) I don’t detest all technology, it’s great for some things – like this. I’m certain that I will use Moleskines for the rest of my life. They’re pretty irresistible after discovering Hemingway used them. I feel like knowing this gives me the thought that by using them, I will write something extremely profound. Also, I have always learned information in class better when I write it down. I encountered a problem with this in an Anthropology class I took at Cal (that was a very interesting class) because the professor went through information rapidly. I began taking notes on my Macbook and then went back to my dorm and wrote them all down in a spiral notebook. One of my friends, who was also in the class, couldn’t believe this practice I developed, but it worked for me.

I guess the one thing I’m really looking forward to is having a car that can parallel park itself because lord knows I can’t do that to save my life. (Spatial Relations was the one area on the Math TAKS where I would occasionally get a question wrong. I had to explain this to one of the assistant managers when I worked at Barnes & Noble when he tried to explain that recovering the shelves after the store closed was like playing Tetris.)

If anyone can explain to me why the number of Pageviews today on here is significantly higher than the number of Daily Pageviews for the post I published yesterday, I would greatly appreciate it. When you enter the url for my blog, it automatically takes you to the latest post, so I really don’t understand how those numbers are different at all.

I have a long way to go with all of this technology business.

1 comment:

  1. UPDATE: My laptop can now only access certain websites. I have disconnected and reconnected my router, reset my router, "flushed my dns," and spent over 20 minutes with a Windows rep literally typing in code to do stuff to my computer AND IT STILL ISN'T WORKING. My phone is connected to the same wifi and it has no problem accessing any websites.