Last night I put the laptop away and noticed it taking an unusual amount of time to shut down. That was because a Microsoft Automatic Security Update was taking place. This annoys me because I use the Firefox browser in place of Internet Explorer and it doesn’t use ActiveX controls, it’s therefore secure, and it doesn’t need Microsoft security updates (which are basically fixes to Internet Explorer).
But, I have no choice but to sit through updates and their consequences. Last month’s update resulted in a permanent error message, a Microsoft hot fix, and an email to Jack Schofield at The Guardian Online. For several days afterwards, more automatic security updates took place, like minor aftershocks. These led me to think each update was fixing the errors created by the previous update.
This morning, I waited twenty minutes for the Start menu to appear. I just took a coffee cup to the kitchen, and when I came back, a message was saying the PC was about to restart. I’m waiting for a parcel. I know what’s going to happen. The doorbell rings, the PC restarts. So, I stopped this, went through the restart, and here I am half an hour later.
An hour ago I set out to write a spoof and record a Hold It Up For Ridicule podcast. I don’t think people realise the scale of the PC problem. I depend on the PC. I worked at a desk with a PC for 15 years, and I used to think the fuss about the PC was just peoples’ incompetence. I was arrogant, and yet most people use PCs at work and are protected from the real problems. Once I start using a PC at home full time, I started to realise that PCs aren’t very good. If a lot of people in offices over the coming years go my way, and use their own PC in their own home without a real live Tech Support person a phone call away, there might be a lot of frustration about. You have to sit with your PC all the time, day in day out, to make sure it’s doing what it says it’s doing. A PC in the home that you rely on for work is like having a TV that requires you to constantly hold in the On button.