Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Techno-whine, Part 2

This is not a newsflash, but I must be losing my mind.  As I was writing today's post, I stopped myself mid-rant and thought, Wait a minute; I think I've bitched about this before.  And then sure enough, after digging through the archives, I found this post from July 2, 2009, that said almost exactly what I had just written. Here are some bits and pieces.
I’ll come right out and say it: I’m sick of learning shit.

Every new purchase—whether it’s a TV, cell phone, or coffee maker—comes with a 100-page user’s manual. No more simply plugging stuff in and turning it on. Part of the reason I don’t buy anything is because I dread the accompanying learning curve; it’s not good for my blood pressure. I have all the patience in the world for people, but I could take a friggin’ hammer to a machine that doesn’t do what I want it to do.

I don’t know about you, but I am really starting to feel overwhelmed by technology... Because I’m self-publishing my book, I have a ton to learn. There’s new software to understand, and now that I have my own publishing company, there are the nuts and bolts of setting up and maintaining a business. I also need to create a website I can sell books from and figure out how to get the thing in e-book and Kindle formats. I’ll also want to create an audio version. I don’t minding learning that stuff—that’s all aligned with my goal of getting my book out to you. But even so, I just want to learn it once and be done with it. Don't tell me the software I just spent two weeks learning is now antiquated.

I sound old, don’t I? I don’t care (as long as I don’t look old).
Sad to say, there hasn't been much growth in the past year and a half.  I've been living with Mike for two months now, and I still have to call for him to work the goddamn TV.  It's connected to an X-Box and I'm like Tommy the Pinball Wizard pushing every button until by some chance I've hit the right combo that will bring me to the E! channel or The Joy Behar Show.

I have NO songs on my iPhone. I never had an iPod or MP3 player. I know it's great to have all your music on there, but in case you haven't picked up on the theme of this post, I'm in no mood to learn new stuff. Mike's a techno-genius and would be happy to set me up; I just have to give him the word, and I haven't yet. Hell, I've had my Scion since April 2 and I have yet to figure out the cruise control.  I suck.

Maybe I'm still burned out because of all I had to learn to publish my book. But I need to get with it. I need to get my book on Kindle and other electronic formats, and damn, that means there's some learning to do. Yep, those are goals on my plan for 2011, and I want to accomplish them sooner rather than later.

What you resist will persist.

No more resisting.  Having an e-book available is important to me.  It's not going to happen without effort on my part.  Okay, I'm putting it in writing:  by next Thursday, I will have formatted Bastard Husband: A Love Story into an electronic product.  Somehow.

How about you?  Anything you've been putting off that you want to proclaim you'll finally get done?  Are you embracing technology any better?


Mellodee said...

Outside of the fact that I have no book to promote, this is pretty much exactly how I feel! The list of things that I either can't use at all, or only use in a very limited fashion grows longer every day! Currently, these are the things we own that I don't know how to use completely (or at all in some cases): TV, DVD player, CD player, home phone, digital camera, fax/copier/scanner, cell phone, and the newest addition, my brand new Kindle. The Big Guy knows more than I but even he only knows enough to make the things sort of functional.

I am angry that there are all these great things out there that are such a pain to use. Part of the problem is that the instructions included usually suck big time. If I can understand the instructions, I'm dead before I start! And if the stupid things are so damn complicated to figure out that you need Bill Gates or Steve Jobs to come and explain stuff, we shouldn't feel inadequate! It's not our fault that we don't have a Ph.D. in anything remotely related to "stuff". There are a whole lot of the population who are a) not smart enough, b) not intuitive enough, or c) just too damn old to understand this stuff. I am not a stupid woman, my IQ is 134, so why is this stuff so hard to learn??

What was wrong with simple and functional? Turn it on, use it, turn it off. Things did one thing....telephones - talk to people in other places, TVs - watch a broadcast; Oh, I could go on and on, but my comment is getting longer than your post! :)

Bottom line? If I can't make these things work, I am losing the ability to function in our world. And that is downright frightening, to say nothing of how annoying it is!

Liz said...

I want (need?) a router so I can use my (now useless) laptop in the living room. I've had the laptop for a couple of years and still don't have a router. I'm putting it off because I feel like setting up a wireless network at home will be PAIN IN THE AS*!!! And, I assume I'll screw it up. My goal is to get it done by the end of this month. Wish me luck cause I'll need it.

I'm not a techo geek but I do OK with other stuff (smart phone, iPod etc.). It's the wireless thing that's got me confused.

dle said...

... I am so glad to know that I am not alone!! After 4 years I still cannot operate boyfriends big screen TV...and why can't companies put a manual in their products? I hate it when they give you a CD I want to see the printed page and read it!!! Or even worse give instructions with stupid pictures...end of rant

Mimi said...

Ah, Linda, you are not alone!
Out tv is connected to something too, not quite sure what but it involves 2 remotes, and I too need to get hubby or kids to turn it on. It's a pain and I long for a simple tv.
iPhone, I'm getting used to, but I don't have music on it, if I want music I put on a cd. But that's cos I don't like things in my ears anyway!
Can't wait to see what other people write!!

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

I'M just the opposite -I love anything technical. Got an IPod for Christmas which I immediately fell in love with. Then, lo and behold, I won an IPad last week. I downloaded Kindle on it and they have so many free books, I'm in 7th heaven. I checked and realized I couldn't download "Bastard Husband". We'll be in Vegas in March and maybe this time we can get together.

gayle said...

Thank God I am not alone. I do know how to work our tv but most of the time I need help if I want to watch a dvd. The new camera my husband bought for me ...he knows how to use but I don't. Two years ago for Christmas he bought one of those things you put your picturs on...I don't even know what it's call...a frame and it plays the pictures. Well, I can't put more on it and he hasn't had time so we are just looking at the same ones over and over. It I have problems with my computer or anything related to it.....wireless etc. then I have to have my husband fix it. He was going to get me an iphone and in a way I am glad he didn't because who knows how long it would be before I could figure out how to use it. My Sony reader hasn't been used in a year because I am too lazy and scared to try to figure out how to put more books on it. I knew how with my old computer but not with my new one. I asked my husband what I would do if he died and he said "I guess you would be shit out of luck"

Jamie in PA said...

Oh thank the Lord! I thought I was the only techno challenged fool out there! Still cannot program my vcr. I love your book...will definitely Kindle it when I can do so! That's one thing I AM good at!

K A B L O O E Y said...

Not only am I terrible with anything computer-y, but when I'm overextended or stressed out, I kind of explode electronic equipment. I mean, weird, weird things happen, to the point that even kindly apple support folks say things like "wow, I'm really sorry; I have no idea why that happened." It's bad, so I feel your pain. And on llne help for computer issues drives me crazy! (If I knew how to properly use my computer, I wouldn't need the help.)