Magical Tech Support

For my first computer job, I did half tech support and half programming at Brigham Young University. I enjoyed helping people because they were appreciative when I could solve their computer problems.

It was interesting that about a third of the time, all I had to do was walk into the office of the professor that was having a computer problem, and the problem would be solved. I didn’t have to do anything. It was like magic. The same scenario occurred for the other tech support guys.

That was in 1992, and I had forgotten about that magical aspect of computer support. Last night, however, I was reminded when I went to a neighbor’s house to help with a printer that wouldn’t print. I didn’t expect to find an iMac. It seems like most people have Windows computers. Here was an exception. The first task was to power it on. Where was the power button? I felt foolish that I couldn’t find it. Although I programmed in 4D and Foxpro for four years on a Mac, the experience with legacy systems didn’t help me with today’s hardware. I searched for the power button on the keyboard, on the monitor, and on the base of the iMac. Somehow, I missed the nearly invisible power button located near the back of the base. Fortunately, the 10 year old son showed up and powered it on. He also turn on the printer. I had him print a test page, and it worked. The 10 year old was shocked. It hadn’t worked before. He had tried fiddling with USB cables, etc., but to no avail. Once I showed up, it worked, magically.

Now I hope it continues to work.