I Have Technofear Around the Parents

Sometimes I worry that I am possibly computer illiterate. This concern arose when I asked tech support for help trying to reconnect my netbook to the main network here at home. Their reply was like an alien language to me, but I managed to get through all the steps provided and then realized that my family had set the router to sleep when not in use and that I tended to use my new toy when they were not near the Internet. Not to say they weren’t on their computer; it’s just that if they don’t use the Internet the router takes a nap. Apparently. Whatever I did worked.

The point I am making is that after MANY MAN HOURS during which I had lost sleep and threatened dear Hobgoblin (yes, that’s what I named it) I would spill coffee on it and see if the warranty covered that, I succeeded. I no longer found myself in doubt. This was doubly, no *triply*, enforced when I spoke to my family this week.

Case a) My father is stuck in the 90’s representation of hackers. Yes, there are many hackers with focus on identity theft, information theft for financial gain, or (as he put it) a malicious game. Yet there are many “hacktivists” who put their powers to social causes, whether he agrees with them or not (he also believes in the anti-Wikileaks propaganda), and a focus on free information or net neutrality (something else I’m sure he doesn’t understand). Trying to convince him that all hackers are not like the people from The Net is a losing battle. It was like convincing a crotchety old man that hippies made some sort of positive difference in the world and still exist today. This is ironic since he was a hippie.

Case b) My step-mother just argued with me for 20 minutes about viruses and my networking with the main computer. For one, she was concerned that my netbook was not connecting because there were “too many computers connected”. Yes. We’re flooding the router. Gotta ease up on the clutch. I promised her the router could handle many, many computers, but if they were on-line at the same time that might affect quality. The router is a dirty, dirty whore. Then she wanted to tell me that if I got a virus there was a high likelihood that since we’re all on the same network I could give it to her. She asked about my virus protection and she is going to ask her very special tech friends how good it is and how likely that scenario is. I felt like an after school special. She doubts my word that I can stay clean and won’t transmit anything to her. I can say something about connection, network, adapters, virus software and yet she will only trust the word of other old people. I understand your friend “does” computer… stuff for a living, but that doesn’t make him infinitely more knowledgeable than I. This is especially true since I have grown up in the computer era and he has had to learn this as it develops.

Case c) Mom asked me if she could e-mail a song file this morning. I… I can’t… I won’t get into it. She reads my blog. I’ll leave her be. People who know where I’m coming from will understand.

And it makes me think of this:
Keep Your Parents Off The Internet – Three Dead Trolls in a Baggie

Execute the program?  That seems a tad extreme.
Via Memebase
More Technology Impaired Duck Memes here.

Again, there was going to be a less personal post, but I was purely frustrated this morning and had to do a little venting.


About Strix Varia

Seeking the strange creatures of the Internet while staving off the boredom of being unemployed and far from old friends. Follow the blog if you need something with which to pass the time away.

Posted on February 11, 2011, in computers, life lessons, personal issues and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Hahaha 🙂 my parents are a little like that too. But I think the worst would have to be introduce my ‘grand’parents to Internet. That’d take my life.
    Great piece you got here!

  2. Tooooooo funny! Oh girl you had me laughing with this one. Very well told.

    Looking forward to the next installment, wherever it may lead.

    Love you!

  3. Saw a link to this post over at Stumble Upon. Thanks for sharing it.

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