Friday, February 26, 2010

Adventure for the Technologically Impaired

You never realize just how advanced and complicated technology is nowadays until you have to "upgrade" or change the technology you use. Believe me.

I thought getting my laptop would be easy-peasy lemon squeezy. I'd be able to hook it up and boom- I'd be typing out more novels like a crazed mad woman of words...Flitting from couch to kitchen and bedroom---Not stopping for anything but nourishment and baths---and maybe some interaction with others...

Nope- uh-uh.... I'm not nearly as educated as I thought and it was in NO way as easy as I had first hoped.

When the laptop arrived yesterday, I was just so excited I would be able to start moving around elsewhere in the house to work on my writing that I hadn't taken several things into consideration because I wasn't concerned about getting online for anything.


Registration and Warranty-

If you pay for warranty in whatever yearly increments, you WILL have to go online to activate it. I thought- Okay, that's simple enough- I was instructed to go online and activate it when the hardware arrived. I thought that meant the laptop itself. I figured I could just punch in serial numbers and product numbers and code numbers, blah blah blah...

But--- You can't activate the WARRANTY until your PRODUCT is registered first and that entails going online as well. You have to access the company's website so they know you have it before you can put a warranty on said product.


Microsoft Office

The customer service associate my husband placed the order through assured him my Microsoft Office would be FULLY installed and I wouldn't have to worry about registering it so I would be able to continuously use it—unlike with the trial versions on most computers where you have a time limit, once opened it has to be used in 30 or 60 or 90 days before you have to decide to purchase the full program or not....OR so many uses before having to register it.

Oh, sure, it was FULLY loaded on and I got the backup disks, and I put in my product code once I opened up the program the first time and therein, it informed me that I would be able to use it 25 times before I HAD to go online or call them to "register" the product in order to use it- otherwise some options might not be available to use.


So, this disturbed me why?

Because I didn't want to use my laptop until the warranty was on it and all that stuff needed to be done online, but via the laptop, not my home PC.

This wouldn't have been that big a deal, except I chose NOT to get the virus and spy-ware programs on my laptop since I wasn't going to be going online with it at this point.

Much as I didn't want to go online unprotected, I realized I would have to, even if it were momentarily to take care of these important issues. I tried to wire into my laptop with our DSL line, but I know NOTHING about configuring ISP codes and whatnot and it wouldn't let me in until I could do that. I finally got frustrated and gave my brain a break until my husband got home from work so he could help me.

In the meantime, it got me to wondering why EVERYTHING electronic these days HAS to be registered online or why you have to access a website just so you can use the item. We never had to register our boom boxes or walkmans or VCRs, but nowadays it just seems they expect everyone to own a computer and have internet access so they can "track" your every move and purchase and it irks me.

Suppose you just wanted to buy your item, be it an MP3 player or a laptop or a PS3- take it home, open the box, plug it up and have the instant gratification of using the item once you have it in your possession? Why does it have to be so complicated and convoluted to buy things anymore? (Yeah, hubby had to go online with his PS3 to get "important" updates! ACK!!)

Well, needless to say, I got my laptop registered. After we tried and tried to figure it out on our own, my husband called our internet and phone provider and they talked us through manually setting up my laptop with all the code numbers for our ISP. I registered the laptop and checked the warranty, which apparently had already been activated several days ago when my laptop shipped via the computer company and I registered my Microsoft Office while I was at it so I won't have to worry about that either.

I can now use my laptop with our internet service- if I want to- and we could even get one of the wireless routers so I could access it from elsewhere around the house- but I don't think I'll be doing that until I check into adding some virus and spy-ware protection. For now, I just want to get used to it and start figuring out Word for my writing and I need to save copies of my novel manuscripts into Word documents so I can work on them on my laptop instead of on this computer.


Devon Matthews said...

Taryn, best of luck with the laptop. I feel your pain. I got one for Christmas. It was intended for writing purposes only. I didn't go through all the rigmarole you did because I have Word on a disk and simply installed it. BUT... I quickly found out I had to learn to type all over again because the laptop keyboard is smaller than the regular pc. Also, I think they're designed wrong. That big space where you place the heels of your hands shouldn't be there. It's very awkward, if you ask me. It distances the keyboard. I also ran out and bought an external mouse. Just try copying, pasting, and generally moving text around with that touch pad. I found it impossible to do. Long story short, I am not in love with the laptop the way I thought I would be. I hope you have better luck with yours. Everyone I know who uses a laptop wouldn't trade them for the world, but I'm not there yet. ;o)

Taryn Raye said...

Yep, I totally agree with you there...I like it but I'm not loving it yet. LOL

We're going Wal-Mart this weekend and I might very well get me a mouse, too. I can't STAND trying to scroll or move the cursor with that touch pad and I tend to keep tapping it too much, so it does things I'm not expecting it to do- like clicking on things too many times. Took me a while to realize that's what I was doing.

My laptop keyboard is nearly as big as a regular computer one, but the keys are all smooshed close together so it seems smaller to me and the keys are flatter and they have a "softer" push touch than what I'm using on the PC. That's going to take some getting used to.

Mine is also intended for writing only. Maybe it's like a new pair of shoes- just gotta keep "walking" in them until they get comfortable. I sure hope so.

Taryn Raye said...

Oh, and I meant to say- I miss my mouse...every time I've need to scroll, my hand shoots out to my right expecting it to be there and it's not...instant reflex though cause I'm so used to being able to take care of things at a quicker rate than with that touch pad.