I use my computers for paying bills, writing, taking an online course, and even for ham radio.
My computers broke, as in all of them; as in all of them at pretty much the same time. All right, not exactly all of them – the ham radio/weather computer kept on working, but it’s not set up for anything else.
The desk top would shut down and refuse to respond to the on/off switch. The laptop, which was a hand-me-up informed me that I was trying to do more than its poor little CPU could tolerate, so, “bye-bye!”
So, here I am with a graded online class assignment hanging over my head, and did I mention that I pay my bills by computer? You know how cranky corporations get if you miss a payment by a nanosecond or a nanocent (as opposed to when they owe you a refund, which triggers an immediate megatrillion dollar government bailout since they’re “too big to do anything wrong.”)
I order a laptop to get me through; let’s just say that fiasco is an understatement. The bigbox company website says “order here and you can pick it up today at your local store.” Great! Perfect! Of course, once you place the order it changes and says that you will receive your order 5 days after that big assignment is due.
I also tried to order the parts to repair the desktop; I ordered them from the company I have worked with for years. However, after years of satisfaction, my last two or three transactions have been less than optimal—as in “an unmitigated failure.” I won’t name the company, but if you’re a comics fan, let’s just say that the company is not named after Calvin.
In any case, the pieces parts from “Large Striped Cat” don’t work.
So I start trying to do everything on the laptop—which is running Windows 8.blech. Windows 8.hurl and Windows 8.blech don’t allow you to do a files and settings transfer. In fact, as far as Microsoft (not a very manly name) is concerned, I can’t transfer anything because THEY have all my data in the cloud.
The cloud…yes the cloud…[Shift to 1968. Two guys in button fly, low-rise, bell-bottom jeans are sharing a funny looking cigarette. “I can see it, man, (cough, cough) a huge cloud (cough) with all your knowledge, and – wait – what was I saying? Hey, I’m really hungry; is there a White Castle nearby?”]
So I keep trying to access my Microsoft (not a very manly name) Cloud files and it asks me to prove my identity, which I do. Then the next time I turn the computer on, it goes through the same routine. To quote the music of my youth;
“Who are you? Who, who, who who?”
“I provided all the information and entered the code you sent me last time.”
“You did? Like wow, man! That’s like… Hey, how do I know who you are?
“Man if I were human I so could enjoy a big sack of sliders, ‘cause I’m really hungry!”
So, here I am with several twenty-first century computers reduced to the capability level of the Cosmac Elf RCA 1802 computer, circa 1978. What can I do?
I googled that question.
The answer was, “Oh, wow, man.”