Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Tech Stuff

Though I invariably end up swooning over the latest software or technological gadgets it is equally true that precedent to that euphoria there is a uniformly predictable period of huge frustration and discontent. For example throughout my entire business career I couldn't get a new computer or other device without having to endure what seemed to be endless roadblocks to the use of them. There was always something!  And today - years after the introduction of computers and the internet and all the associated gizmos - I am still lurching my way through the launch of new technological components.

I can tell you that this morning when I awoke I hadn't any idea whatsoever that the day would end as it has, with me recovering as though from an assault, drinking coffee after coffee after coffee, without an appetite, exceedingly relieved that we have succeeded to quell the demons that appeared to contaminate every possible effort we made to use some new piece of technology.  But in keeping with my earlier observation regarding the rapture that inevitably accompanies this otherwise very painful process, I am now smugly relishing what I fashion to be an enormous accomplishment (though probably any child of 16 years could have done it without so much as a blink).

In the interest of avoiding being completely tedious (if indeed I am not already there) I shall spare my reader the grubby and admittedly uninteresting details of the battles I have been waging for the past five hours. I will however relate that the kernel of the issues revolved around the wireless connection of a scanner to my computer, the initiation of a personal weigh scale and coffee maker and the downloading of anti-virus software (a particularly annoying problem which mockingly has repeated many times over throughout my tech career).

The weigh scale was obviously the least problematic, mostly just a matter of glancing at the written manual that came with it, then trying it out (but without attempting to complete the array of discretionary complications available).  The coffee maker was of about the same character.  The killer was the anti-virus software which I ended having to cancel as on-line orders. There were two orders - the first for a PC rather than a Mac, that was my mistake; the second for the Mac - though neither could be downloaded.  I ended by sending a terse email to Avast saying I had no desire to purchase any of its products.

Somewhere in the middle realm of exasperation was the connection of the scanner to the computer. Things got really weird when I went as directed by the manual to what I thought was the Cannon site but ended talking to an East Indian woman who so-called "joined" my computer remotely to conduct the software installation process on my behalf. I watched and listened as her cursor bounced around the screen of my computer.  Apart from having difficulty following her English, the process became spooky as she began telling me there were innumerable problems with the apparent contamination of my computer which was prohibiting the installation of the software.  In hindsight I can say that her concerns were ill-founded because after I abruptly terminated her connection to my computer I reconnected with the correct Cannon site and was able (though not entirely with ease) to make the required connection and eventually (largely by luck I have to admit) get the mechanics organized to make the damn thing work!  Parenthetically I will add that I strongly suspect the East Indian was ultimately going to recommend - no doubt at a cost to me - some kind of service or software to de-clutter my computer.  I assume (perhaps gullibly) that she was neither trying to nor successful in gathering personal information from my computer.  My thinking is that if she were engaged in any nefarious activity I would have seen her cursor going to my personal files (which I did not).  I am also trusting my visceral sensitivity to her voice which sounded authentic (though I recall the adage that the best mask for a treacherous heart is an honest face).  Anyway it's too late to worry about regrettable consequences - but I did conduct a summary search of my computer and deleted what I found that seems to have related to that unfortunate communication.

The upshot of these formidable journeys is that 1) I weigh less than I thought; 2) the coffee is good; 3) the money has been refunded by Avast; and 4) the printer/scanner works better than we anticipated.  In the process of rounding out this exercise I have put away the boxes for the new purchases (to have them available upon return to Canada), I've tested the printer/scanner and it works, and I will hopefully not have to concern myself any futher with anti-virus software or anything associated with it.

I failed to mention that what started all this kerfuffle before noon today was the decision to do some shopping for mundane items for use in the apartment - kitchen dish cloths, a bath sheet, towel hook, cheap rugs for under our "office" chairs, plastic garbage bags, AA batteries, coffee maker and coffee pods.  We had anticipated having to go to both a grocery store and a hardware store to collect those items.  Our paramount project was the scanner which we thought to get at Staples.  When however we finally found the Staples store the clerk informed us that his outlet was one of the smallest and that he didn't have precisely what we were looking for.  On his recommendation we went in another direction whereupon we inadvertently passed a Target outlet.  We stopped there to see about getting at least some of what we wanted.  We ended getting everything and more on our list, including - to my complete surprise - the printer/scanner.  Coincidentally even though we were only looking for a dedicated scanner it turns out that having the printer facility was essential to complete a transaction which later arose with my lawyer (who asked me to print, sign, scan and return by email and regular mail a document in a new estate administration matter).

When we initially plotted our driving route to Staples we chose a route which avoided the Interstate 95.  As a result our venture took us through some quiet neighbourhoods on the west side of the Halifax River surrounding Daytona Beach in an area specifically called Orange County. Certain of the residential areas were reminiscent of Key West (though not quite so Bohemian or dilapidated). I believe we took a boulevard which was once the main thoroughfare prior to the construction of Interstate 95 (as the two routes were parallel to one another).

No comments:

Post a Comment