Sunday, December 28, 2008

Technology Exhausts Me.....

I have spent the better part of three hours...... count 'em, three hours..... this evening setting up our new printer/copier/scanner/fax machine. I mentioned casually to hubby last week that we would need a new printer soon, and he saw one on sale in this morning's paper. When he pointed it out to me, I took that as a directive to go out and purchase it. He may not have meant it as such, but I wasn't taking any chances when it came to a new piece of technology.

Following the directions on setting up something as simple as a printer shouldn't be that difficult. These particular directions were written in English by someone who apparently had a relatively firm grasp on the rules of syntax and grammar. But I invariably either skip an important step or I don't understand something that should be crystal clear. Tonight it involved installing the print head and the roughly 7 different colored ink cartridges. (I forgot to check for that before I bought this model. Bummer.) The print head was a plastic compartment that had to be installed before the ink cartridges could be installed. "Push the Print Head to hold it in place, and lower the Print Head Lock Lever." (No idea why those words were capitalized. I mean, I know they were important, but that would mean capitalizing about every third word.)

I am relatively intelligent. Words (used correctly) tend to make sense to me. I can follow directions. The pictures, on the other hand, often leave me drooling in my soup. There was a photo of what was apparently the Print Head with a large portion circled, and the words "Do not touch" out to the side. Only it was difficult to ascertain exactly what was not to be touched. I tried to avoid touching all parts of it, but that was hard to do when I needed to both push it and hold it in place. There I was with the printer cover open, wires everywhere from the dozen or so items we have hooked up to our network, a flashlight with a dying battery held between my chin and shoulder, and sweat dripping from my nose. I tried nine times (or nineteen, I'm not sure) to "Push the Print Head to hold it in place, and lower the Print Head Lock Lever." It wouldn't stay locked, and the ink cartridges wouldn't go into their places.

Then I glanced at the picture again. Seems the Print Head works best if you aren't trying to install it UPSIDE DOWN. That makes me really paranoid, because if I was holding it the wrong way, chances are I touched the DO NOT TOUCH part as well.

Then I got to the ethernet cord part. My old printer didn't require an ethernet cord because it went through a router and a modem, so I assumed this one wouldn't need one either. Even when the directions told me to plug it in. I didn't HAVE an extra ethernet cable lying around, so when it got to that part, I just lied and said it was already plugged in and clicked "Next." Like the computer wouldn't figure THAT out. (I said RELATIVELY intelligent.) I tried it more than once. You don't know how it hurts my heart and soul to admit that.

But I don't give up easily. And the computer, naturally, doesn't give up AT ALL. After a trip to the nearest Wal-Mart for the required ethernet cord, I managed to finish the installation process and have successfully printed and copied. Tomorrow I will attempt the fax feature.

And none of this is what I intended to spend my money and free time on, which was a Christmas gift to myself. What I went to six stores in search of today doesn't exist anywhere in the free world. Except on eBay. Where you can get it for a mere $150 more than it costs in the store. Mine will be shipped tomorrow.

When it gets here, and I can do so without hiding my face in shame, I'll tell you what it is.

1 comment:

MamaNeena said...

Don't you teach kids via computer? Mental note: always plug in the ethernet cord!