Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Why I have a job

So Friday we ran a "How to get your web page up and running" workshop. Basically, we thought we were going to show people some basic FTP tools, set up web accounts for them and talk about the index page, etc. What happened, though, was that the people who showed up barely knew how to turn on a computer, much less navigate an FTP client. Here are a couple of conversations:

Flustered Professor: "Oh, my gosh. You're going too fast. I'll never remember this." (Pauses to write down steps as I dictate them.) "Wow, this is really complicated."
Colleague: "Yes, thus why we have jobs." (It was hard not to laugh.)

Crazy Lady who comes to every workshop we have: "Where did the other picture go?"
Me: "What other picture?"
CL: "The one on the other page."
Me: "Oh, the one we linked to?" (clicking on link we'd created to a picture to demonstrate linking to files versus linking to web sites)
CL: "Oh, there it is. Now go back."
Me: (Clicking the back button).
CL: "Now click it again."
Me: (Clicking the same link again).
CL: "Where is the other picture?"
Me: "What other picture?"
CL: "You know, the one on the other page."
Me: "You mean the one embedded in the page?"
CL: "Yeah. Why doesn't it show up when you click the link a second time?"
Me: (Dumbfounded)

On Saturday, my mom calls--actually my stepfather, who talks to Mr. Geeky first before putting my mom on the phone.

SF: "Just tell her to leave the computer alone."
Mr. G: (Listens to my mom explain the problem). "Ummm . . . let me let you talk to Geekymom."
Mom: "The computer is running really slow. I think we might have a virus or spyware or something. I can't remember what programs to run. And my e-mail's not working."
Me: (Tell her what programs to run).
Mom: "Okay. I'm gonna do that and call you back."
(15 minutes go by. Mom calls back).
Mom: "It says some file called something, something, something dot c-a-b is infected but it's write protected."
Me: "Uh, I think that's part of the operating system. You may need to re-install."
Mom: "Oh, crap."
Me: "Yeah, I don't know of anything else to do. I'd call AOL about the e-mail thing. Maybe they can help you with this too."
Mom: "Yeah, I'm gonna back up my files now and call them."
Me: "Okay."

What I should have said: "If you'd tell SF to quit downloading porn through limewire and visiting the porn sites with all the popups, you wouldn't have this problem."