I am sad to say I am well acquainted with the problems faced by technophobes. Considering I work on a computer all day every day, I really should be more tech-savvy than I am. I’ve learned enough to get by, but all too often I am struck by the problems faced by technophobes – let’s see if you’re on the same page.
This is one of the most common problems faced by technophobes. You and technology just don’t speak the same language. You furiously press the escape button on your laptop and plead with it, but it stays stuck. You cajole the printer to accept the new toner cartridge but it resolutely refuses to slot it into position. You shout at your smartphone asking it why it didn’t remind you of that important appointment, to no avail. The problem is, no amount of talking does any good. You have to command technology!
When you’re technologically challenged every remote control looks the same. Sure you can read the brand names which match the remote to the device, but every time you have to remember which corresponds to which, you get a strange foggy blindness. You long for the days you had one remote that turned on the TV and allowed you to change channels, rather than now where you need a whole row of the darned things to reach your favorite show.
You’ve just about managed to master Windows 7 and Microsoft announce they’re no longer selling/supporting it. All your friends are raving about how they can’t wait to switch to the iPhone 6 and iOS8 (at least you think that’s what all the fuss is about) while you’re still struggling with iPhone 3. You certainly won’t be in the queue that winds around the block waiting for the latest edition of the next best thing.
You know technology is meant to make life easier BUT why isn’t your life easier? You just about mastered adding an avatar to your online profile and they announce holograms. It took you 6 months to work out how to upload videos from your phone to your laptop and then another 3 months to work out how to upload them to YouTube. Or is that download, because you’re still not sure you know the correct terminology. While your friends are raving about hover boards and programmable home management systems, you’re ecstatic you got your first photo on Instagram.
Oh no – it wouldn’t do to be put in the same class as those people who struggle daily with technology. When someone complains of a techno disaster, you smile and nod knowingly as if you would have known how to prevent it happening and make noises that intimate you have the secret knowledge of how to fix it. But you can’t offer because your secret would be out when it’s seen you are clueless.
There’s an assumption that anyone of a certain age is comfortable with technology so you’re plonked in front of a computer at your job, or the salesman hands over your prized new gadget (that you had to shake off a cold sweat to buy) and no one bothers to ask if you need instruction. And you don’t want to ask, because you don’t want to appear stupid.
I’m talking a minefield here. With technology comes whole new rafts of etiquette you have to learn and be engaged with. You phone to talk when you’re meant to text. You friend everyone on Facebook and don’t know how to unfriend them. You favorite EVERYTHING. You can never, ever fit your tweets into the 140 characters. You send huge attachments on emails that take forever to download because you forget to zip files or don’t know how. And you still pay full price for everything because you can’t find your way around Google.
How many of these challenges do you recognize? Are you tech savvy or a technophobe?
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