Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Last week my computer crashed and two experts couldn’t fix it. After two days of lost programs, my genius hubby found a way to get most of my stuff back, but decided I needed a new operating system. Another two days of no computer access, and now I’m learning a new system. Ugh!

The new system decided I needed an e-mail junk file. I don’t want one, and who gets to decide what‘s junk? They do. How dare they make those decisions for me? Spam filters are a waste of time, my time. I had one once for four weeks and - when I remembered to check the Spam folder - discovered they had removed two important e-mails - one from a Harlequin editor! So I canceled the filter and decided for myself what I kept and what I could delete with a click, and not have to waste time going to a spam file first.

My hubby said there was no way to get rid of the Junk file option in the new operating system, but, genius that he is, he found a way to keep it from deciding what was junk.

Today I discovered that I can’t just print an article I found on Google, because - unless I hit ALT first - who knew? - the option didn’t come up. There are many more things that are different and driving me crazy, but at least my books have been restored, so I guess the damage done by the Trojan virus could have been worse.

But my frustration reminded me of the famous comment by Bill Gates (remember Microsoft, who ruled the world in 1999?). “If General Motors had kept up with technology, like the computer industry has, we would all be driving $25 cars that get 1000 miles to the gallon.”

To which GM’s president responded, “If GM had developed technology like Microsoft, we would be driving cars with the following characteristics:

1. For no reason, your car would crash twice a day.

2. Every time they repainted the lines on the road, you would have to buy a new car.

3. Occasionally, executing a maneuver like a left turn would cause your car to shut down and you would have to reinstall the engine.

7. Oil, water, temperature and alternator warning lights would be replaced by a single “car default” light.

9. The air bag would say “Are you sure?” before going off.

10. Occasionally, for no reason, the car would lock you out and not let you in unless you simultaneously lifted the door handle, turned the key and grabbed the radio antenna.

12. Every time GM introduced a new model, car buyers would have to learn how to drive all over again, because none of the new controls would operate the same as on the old car.

13. You would press the Start button to turn off the engine.
(Read the rest at

In spite of all that, I love my computer and the software that lets me correct errors only once and print a novel in two hours instead of four days. I won my first writing contest - in 1983 - because I could enter by the deadline. On the other hand, what other choice do we have these days?

I’d love to read your horror stories about computer glitches.

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