Modern Man

IT'S not been a good week for technology.

Come to think of it, it hasn't been a good month.

A lot of time has been spent on the phone to faceless IT men (and yes, they're all men - maybe women are too smart to get into IT?) telling them calmly what's wrong with my computer this time.

Large chunks of my working day have been spent without access to email, or the publishing software I need to produce the paper, or the digital library where all the photos live…

My favourite bit is when you get a recorded message from the help desk telling you all of the tech support crew are busy and could I please email them with a description of the problem.

Well, no. If I could email somebody, there wouldn't be a problem!

The main culprit this week was that Microsoft updates were happening "in the background", using up all of my computer's processing power and making it so slow as to be unworkable.

Some software I didn't need was installed and the IT guy thought he'd do some updates while he was there.

He blamed "bloody Vista" for my problems, an antiquated and inferior operating system that only I and a few other dinosaurs are still running, apparently.

I blame bad technology juju.

When things were going badly, I thought I'd take a break and have something to eat.

I'd brought along some home-made soup and put it in the microwave (another device that is supposed to save us humans time and energy).

But as it heated, the plastic lid vacuum-sealed on to the glass container, making it impossible for me to open.

Aarrgh!! More bad technology juju.

But using both of my opposable thumbs, several thousand years of evolution and a flat blunt instrument, I managed to pry it off and get to the soup.

Tech support man agrees that bad technology juju is a real phenomenon, and not just some hocus-pocus made up by frustrated users.

He said our new reporter Dominic Feain has got it bad.

Uh-oh. I've just put him in charge of our web page.

So if you receive a paper next week and some of it appears online, you will know the spell has been broken.

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