There is a common saying about boats, “The happiest day of your life is when you get a boat. The second happiest day is when you get rid of it”. This can also be true of computers.
Don’t get me wrong, I love computers and everything related to this age of information and communication. Right from my first Commodore 64 to the current, PC, laptop, iPhone, iPad. They have each in turn romanced me, won me. In return, I have given them my all.
I’ve made every attempt to learn what makes them tick, to understand the nuance of the workings. As recompense, oft-times, I am met with nothing but confusing signals. Will they be with me for any length of time? Does it pay to pamper an older model, or dump it for something more flashy and up to date? Should I stay involved at all? Like any intense love affair there are times when you wish to trash the whole thing and go back to a simpler way of life.
I have a few of the grown up toys. All of them incompatible. A Blackberry phone, an Apple iPod, a well working Dell PC, that is currently running on Windows XP Pro, a mini Toshiba netbook running on Windows 7, and my iPad, which is another Apple product. Is it no wonder I can’t get these vain, self-centered, prima donnas to gel?
Now I have been seduced by something called, ‘the cloud’. I was so excited when first hearing about it. I downloaded it immediately on the iPad. As I understand it, the purpose of the cloud is to dump your work from any of your systems into this five gig storage center. The magic – you are able to retrieve it from another of your computers, iPad, phone. Oh the joy!!
Having downloaded the app on the iPad, I was informed, by ‘the cloud’ that it must also be downloaded on my PC. No problem———- Attempting this I am informed I must download OS5 on my comp. I tried for quite a while.
The OS5 crawled around my comp for about an hour before telling me, ‘Oh no you have Windows XP, you must have Vista or Windows 7 to install OS5 before you can download ‘the cloud’. “What the F—–”
Being me I immediately ordered Windows 7 online, to upgrade. The cost $217.45, in order for me to be able to use ‘the cloud’.
For three hours it analyzed, it questioned, it processed, it hummed and groaned. My PC sounded like an antiquated, washing machine. I was getting sick to my stomach. Then an innocent looking sign came on the screen. “Sorry you cannot automatically install windows 7 when your operating system is older than Vista. You must download the instructions to custom install.”
I went to the site for the instructions. It informed me I should print them out. I did. It was seventeen pages. The first page said, ‘back up your computer onto an external hard drive because you are bound to lose information and some of your programs won’t be compatible with Windows 7.’ I paraphrase.
Well first, I wondered, do a lot of people keep an external hard drive hanging around just for kicks? By this time I was about six hours into the project, and my blood pressure would have shocked my cardiologist.
I’m not a quitter, and I have worked on my own computer many times, but seventeen pages of instructions made me throw up. The next day I called Microsoft and got my money back. Then I called Best Buy. I spoke to a kind, knowledgable geek.
I’ll cut to the chase, the cost to upgrade would eventually end up being about $500.00. I could buy a new comp for about $900.00. All this for a free app called ‘the cloud’.
My conclusion, I didn’t have ‘the cloud’ yesterday and I won’t have ‘the cloud’ tomorrow.