The Dr. Krankase School of

"Take No Guff" Personal Computing

You've all had the experience of feeling stupid when you can't get your computer to do what you want it to do.


Here's why:

The Dr. Krankase School of "Take No Guff" Personal Computing can help.

This is not a method of mind control, it is not a self-improvement program, taking this course will not make you more attractive or rich or lucky in love.

But it will relieve you of the ridiculous burden of guilt that computers (unwittingly, of course, having nothing to wit with) have lumbered you with, both because they won't work the way you think they should, and because you can't get your work done until they do.

First Principles

  1. Never forget who's the sentient being and what's the appliance.
  2. The computer has a great memory, but it's utterly stupid;
  3. Insofar as it has volition, the computer, stupid as it is, really wants to do what you want it to do, but is prevented by Crappy Interface Design (CID).
  4. Here are some signs of CID:
    1. If you can't get there from here, THE INTERFACE HAS FAILED! Say it with me now!
    2. If you can't figure out why something won't work, THE INTERFACE HAS FAILED!
    3. If you have to remember f**kin' anything, THE INTERFACE HAS FAILED!
    4. ANY time you're made to feel that you've done something wrong, THE INTERFACE HAS FAILED!
  5. When you find something that works, hang on to it "till the eagle grins" -- DO NOT upgrade:
    • Remember, the early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

What You Can Do NOW:

Bombard software developers (particularly Microsoft) with e-mail, snail-mail, and phone calls, taking them to task for treating you with comtempt.

Don't be coy -- geeks are mere mortals just like the rest of us, and if you hurt their feelings, they're more likely to remember what you say.

Look at their PR: they say the're working for you. Would you continue to pay good money to an employee whose performance was so out of hand? Sock it to 'em!

[Shy? avail yourself of Kamikaze Editorial Services! They love writing letters like this!]

Excerpt from Lesson V: Dealing with the Help Desk

You boot up and get some impenetrable error message:

******************DON'T click OK until you understand it (= never).*********************

Call the Help Desk.

You'll be accused of abuse and neglect, of being a moron who doesn't know the first thing about computing, of committing ITrocities you never heard of and couldn't possibly understand, let alone pull off.

This is what they get paid for, and it's the only part of their lives in which they're actually superior to everyone else -- the rest of the time and in every other endeavor they're just lusers like the rest of us.

So humor them, let 'em strut and lord it over you: It does you no harm (unless you aspire to be a geek just like them, in which case you're more of a luser than I thought), and it makes them feel important and needed, which may cause them to do better work.

Getting into an argument with a helperGeek is like wrestling with a pig, and you know what they say about wrestling with a pig: DON'T DO IT. The pig loves it, and you get all covered with muck.

Other lessons include:

Interested? E-mail Dr. Krankase: krankase{at}infomonger{dot}com.


Last updated 17 July 2001.