I have ordered a new computer. This will give me time to consider my options with the old one. It should, according to what I read online, be possible to restart my old computer and retrieve the information in my files by use of a simple free download. Having read the instructions several times I can now refine that sentence and add a little accuracy.
It should, according to what I read online, be possible to restart my old computer and retrieve the information in my files by use of a simple free download, but it won’t be. It never is. It might not quite be free and it definitely won’t be simple. If it were simple, dare I suggest that it wouldn’t need a video tutorial and there wouldn’t be quite as much discussion about it on the support forum. However, having tried everything on the computer and come back to blue screen each time, I definitely have to try something that needs a download.
As a bonus, I have had a lesson on why it is important to back things up and why I need to learn more about using computers.
The loop where I do things and, twenty minutes later, end up with the same blue screen I started with, is mimicked perfectly by the so-called “customer service” phoneline at Curry’s. I have no doubt that if you have a computer it works well. However, if your computer refuses to start, and you buy a new one, it is a nightmare. You ring the number, it asks you to select numbers. You select numbers and after three steps it tells you to contact your carrier and disconnects automatically. This is repeated, with variations, when you try different combinations. I ended up ringing the repair line, where I was told that the service might be slow due to Covid. After 15 minutes of being told they would be with me soon, I hung up. I suppose that every cost-cutting measure for the next 20 years will be due to Covid. Quite honestly I’m beginning to think that the main casualty of Covid wasn’t the hundreds of thousands of deaths or the thousands of fearful recluses – the main casualty has been truth and customer service.
Fortunately, when I eventually coaxed the stone age laptop into action I was able to get some answers. Does it not occur to them that someone buying a new computer may not have access to working technology, or want their phone linking to the internet?
In time, we will recover out courage when we hear a neighbour cough, we will haul ourselves out of the stone age which Putin’s war looks set to return us too, and we will become used to living in plastic bubbles as the Earth fries, but we will never again be able to see a doctor face to face, pay for a pizza by cash or talk to a human being on a helpline.
For some reason, I felt drawn to finish with a quote from Brave New World – “A really efficient totalitarian state would be one in which the all-powerful executive of political bosses and their army of managers control a population of slaves who do not have to be coerced, because they love their servitude.”
That is our future – tethered to the internet by a mobile phone, dating by Tinder, politics by fake news . . .
Aldous Huxley died on the same day as C S Lewis and J F Kennedy. Nobody noticed. Just like nobody notices our slide into a society of willing servitude.