Just tell him he's got bloatware on his machine and needs a new one every so often to stop it getting heavier again...
Or is that just a tad mean?
Friday's here again and so, therefore, is On-Call, our weekly dip into absurd tech support tales contributed by readers. This week, meet “Rick” who kicked off his career supporting laptops running Windows 95 and tells us that “One day I had a call from a sales rep who said 'My new laptop computer needs to lose some weight, it' …
38 pounds of luggable (including case, manuals & floppies). At least it had a built-in printer. I still have it. You get attached to the daftest things after a quarter million air-miles together. Link.
It has an MFM controller in the expansion slot, a 20 meg hard drive in one of the floppy bays, and an aftermarket hack that upped the stock 256K of RAM to a more usable768K. I used an external modem. Yes, it still works. Came with Panasonic-labeled MS-DOS 2.2, but it currently boots MS-DOS 3.3 ... It might be hard for some of the younger readers to believe, but a LOT of RealWorld[tm] work was done with such primitive devices.
It might be hard for some of the younger readers to believe, but a LOT of RealWorld[tm] work was done with such primitive devices.
Also shows just how old the "recently invented" idea of the tablet with the detachable keyboard really is. Not at all new.
A 16gb USB stick would've cost somewhere around $3bill at the $/MB of the first HDD I purchased. Not as long involved in computing as you, but my first PC-based machine had a whopping 1mb of RAM, later upgraded to 2. And it oftened seemed you could do more RealWorld work than I can do with a modern machine. El Reg published an article a while back that basically claimed a lot of authors (novels etc) prefer to use basic text editors, becuase all the "bells and whistles" of modern word processors get in the way of real work. Probably why I prefer terminal/CLI for most server-type stuff I do (that and it's an environment I am quite familiar with).
[Yes yes, late I know. FTR my funeral was a few years back...]
Once worked on an IT project which the business insisted was important so they put their own Project Manager on it instead of one of our regular IT PMs.
After the first meeting the minutes come out containing "scuzzy controller cards"
Nobody had the heart, balls or straight face to correct him.
I suspect that English probably isn't Olivier's first language, so I can understand how he might be a little bemused as to how SCSI => Scuzzy.
Certainly, I've always pronounced it Skizzy myself (or, to be pedantic, a schwa), I think it depends on who you first heard it from, and the normal way to pronounce (or insert) vowel sounds in your main language…
'Sequel Server' is IBM's trade name for their database (and I think Micro-shaft kept the stupid pronunciation).
However, "Es Queue El" is the name of the LANGUAGE, the correct pronunciation of the 'SQL' acronym in names like MySQL and PostgreSQL etc.
Every time I hear 'sequel' I want to *cringe*
The first time I heard it, I was taking an OS/2 class (pre windows 3.0) and talking to the prof about doing data analysis. He was (naturally) recommending LAN Manager and "Sequel Server". I couldn't find ANY reference to "Sequel Server" *ANYWHERE*. Had I known to look up 'SQL Server' I would have found it.
Big mistake for IBM to have pronounced it "that way". It doesn't even describe what it does properly.
There's never been a period that I've NOT heard SCSI pronounced that way.
Vowel sounds are frequently added to vowel-deficient acronyms to make them pronounceable. I see no reason SCSI should be any different.
Or inconvenient consonants removed. I leave you with the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barber Shop Quartet Singing in America, pronounced "Spebsqua," which features both. In the same letter, no less.
"There's never been a period that I've NOT heard SCSI pronounced that way."
When Larry Boucher invented SCSI he wanted it to be pronounced "Sek-see". Everyone else on the committee thought that sounded unprofessional and decided it should be "Scuh-zee" instead.
I'm pretty sure that this was the same group which later renamed the seventh planet to "Urectum" because its old name sounded impolite.
"Rick kindly arranged a new laptop that was actually 1Kg heavier and ran Windows NT. The second part of the fix was to format its hard drive with the NTFS file system"
Based on my own experience's with people (all within a short distance of each other) at a certain pharmaceutical company with someone that declined a desktop refresh because he had previously petitioned his boss for a laptop instead.
Except he didn't get a sparkling clean one from the refresh stock (They were all allocated to replace laptops like for like) & got one that was still in scope for support for another year (His howls of complaint were quite amusing to my ears & those of his colleagues as he had been lording it over them for a month over his upgrade), he was shortly after more upset to discover that he couldn't get his desktop refresh as that machine had been reassigned to one that wasn't budgeted for replacement, but had since failed as out of warranty.
Or the guy that decided to jump the queue & get one ordered from another branch of the business (Head Office) & got annoyed when my group didn't have access to support\fix it locally.
Another queue jumper requested a higher spec machine transfer from a department closure (he got it) only to discover 3 weeks later after also lording it over with co-workers when I replaced all their machines.
"Ohhh Your old one was removed from the refresh project as out of project scope as you requested it be removed for disposal\transfer of assets, your now current machine will be replaced next year".
"Can I have my old one back to get the refresh?"
"Sorry wiped & decomissioned & on the pile, the replacement has been re-allocated to a machine that was due to be replaced, but the budget wasn't there to do so unless a upgrade wasn't required due to natural wastage"
A year later he was finally crowing about his new machine again, only to discover that the desktop replacement was of pretty much the same spec, but the chipset & software build now used a generic driver for the IDE controller instead of a specific (NT) one & that it was obviously slower in performance by comparison (Based on build & boot times).
We had a similar thing a few years ago in another Pharma. Every summer we'd get a batch of summer students who obviously needed a computer. Our PC team had none of the existing laptops in stock (Dell D620 I think), but then some new shiney black ones (E6300?) arrived which went straight to the students. Cue pissed off senior managers getting rather annoyed that they had older laptops (even they were just as fast).
This fuss was nothing compared to when iPhones came into use and suddenly the Blackberries they'd used became "useless" overnight or even kept throwing themselves onto the floor...
When a company I worked for were closing the plant, and making many redundancies, we came up with a formula based on age and residual value for whether someone could retain their laptop. Strangely my Dell D620 *just* fell the right side of the line.
One manager thought he'd be clever though and demanded a brand new laptop, "For all the extra work involved in the closure!" We granted the request and duly reallocated the old one to someone at the alternative plant.
When his redundancy was confirmed we requested the return of the laptop as it fell well outside the retention level. He tried stalling for a few weeks until we finally threatened him with a visit from the police as we'd be reporting him for theft (we knew full well they would consider it a civil matter, he didn't). If he hadn't tried it on he could have kept the old, perfectly good, machine.
I should think there are several pages of story / comments possible on laptop / smartphone envy.
But the move from BlackBerry to iPhone was particularly polarising.
But 3 out of my 24 smartphone users insisted on staying with BlackBerry.
They all liked their BlackBerry Passports... lots...
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