Re: Help Lines&Tech Manuals

Subject: Re: Help Lines&Tech Manuals
From: Jim Grey <jwg -at- ACD4 -dot- ACD -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 2 Mar 1994 09:25:44 -0500

Until the mass populus gets used to computers in abstract; that is, the
notion of what kinds of things to expect from computers, help desks will
be swamped with calls for basic help.

I remember a Bill Cosby routine in which he remembered old TVs which had
a billion knobs, none of which seemed to do anything except On/Off/Volume
and the station selector. "Konk. Oop, the knob fell off. Well, just
replace it with one of the other ones there."

I remember as a boy in the early 70s, my great-grandmother had an ancient
Setchell-Carlson with all those knobs behind a removable panel. "Dang!"
was my young reaction. "All this when all you need is On/Off/Volume and
the station selector!" I had already learned what to expect from modern
TVs. I still have no idea what the knobs were for.

My mom says her family was the first on the block in 1951 to get TV. She
recalls people being flatly bewildered by the box, even though its major
controls were On/Off/Volume and the station selector. Visitors just didn't
know quite what to expect from the thing, and were prone to the silly
misconceptions and mistakes similar to those people make today with computers.

Admittedly, the TV is a much simpler system than the average PC. So, it will
take longer for People In General to develop that abstract set of (correct)
expectations. As this happens, I betcha silly calls to help desks will
go away.

(Mouse as a foot pedal! Classic!)

jim grey |beebeebumbleandthestingersmottthehoopleraycharlessingers
jwg -at- acd4 -dot- acd -dot- com |lonniemackandtwangandeddiehere'smyringwe'regoingsteadyta
GO/M d p+ c++(-) l u+ e- m*@ s+/ n+ h f++ g- w+@ t+ r- y+(*)
Terre Haute, IN -- The Silicon Cornfield

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