I read another story of a user who was working on a document, and saved it to the computer’s desktop. When he went to the computer to start working on the document again, he could not find it on the desktop, prompting a call to the tech. When the techs-pert asked the customer to walk through, exactly, how he had saved his document, it didn’t take long to figure out the problem. When the customer described how he had started his project at his work computer, stopped and then proceeded to finish working from his home computer, the tech knew right away what the problem was. Since the document was saved to the desktop and not two networked computers, the document was not able to be retrieved between computers.
Another posting tells of a user who misunderstood how to use a mouse. When she was told to use the mouse to point and click, the user was actually picking the mouse up and waving it around like a wand, pointing it at the computer and clicking on it while it was in the air.
Other favorite stories tell of people using the CD drive as a cup holder; customers pushing on the computer screen with their finger, in attempt to ‘double click’ on a link; and a customer who complained of an old jittery, ‘jumping’ monitor that was fixed once the monitor was moved away from a fan causing the screen to vibrate.
In sharing these stories, the intent is not to poke fun at the end user; rather, it’s to reinforce the fact that not everyone is a tech expert.
Like any foreign language, there is much that can be lost through interpretation and translation, and these stories are purely examples of how technology is its own language in its own right.