General Question

SirBailey's avatar

IN GENERAL, do you feel it's getting harder and harder to find anyone anywhere that knows the solutions to your computer issues?

Asked by SirBailey (3130points) June 11th, 2009

I’m not talking about Fluther. I’m talking even the computer tech websites, certainly not India-based tech support, not even the “geeks”. Why? Is the technology getting too complex? Are the schools no good? Not even the home companies of the devices can give you straight answers. Do you find this?

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24 Answers

oratio's avatar

I had a EA game problem a couple of days ago. They just keep suggesting solutions that obviously has nothing to do with the actual problem, but the problem is connected to their software. At times like that I feel like going all pirate.

Supacase's avatar

I think it is becoming more specialized. My husband is my computer guy, but he works so much with networking and network architecture now that my piddly PC issues aren’t something he keeps up with on a daily basis. His company has separate desktop, applications, security and who knows what else departments. He can do any of it, but some aspects aren’t as second-nature to him as they was 6 years ago when he was a Network Admin for a small company where he did anything and everything involved with computers and all that IT stuff.

SirBailey's avatar

I tell ya, it SCARES ME when I get instructions from these “techie” people that (because I’m a computer person myself) I KNOW are ridiculous, useless, totally unrelated to the problem and will require a great deal of work!

And there’s always their “reinstall the operating system” solution!!

MrItty's avatar

Mmmmnope. On the contrary. In the past decade, the number of requests I’ve gotten from non-geeks that boil down to “Hey, you’re smart, fix my computer for me!” has gone down dramatically.

dynamicduo's avatar

I don’t find that at all. In fact, as time goes on, it tends to get easier to diagnose and fix problems, combined with help systems being strong enough to let the user troubleshoot their own problems. Then again, I’m someone who troubleshoots other people’s equipment for them in addition to my own, and I built my own computer from scratch, so I know how they work more than the average person does. The technology isn’t more complex than it was 10 years ago or even 20, it’s just more powerful. There’s no reason why today’s tech would be harder to support than yesterday’s, with the exception of things like the Macbook Air which are completely solid and are usually only taken apart by the company themselves.

Bri_L's avatar

@dynamicduo – I agree. (belated congrats on 10k. I was away for a long while) While I find the organized must-go through check lists of call centers trying, I have found the web to be unbelievably helpful with blogs, instructions and the like.

ccatron's avatar

not to be redundant, but i agree that it is easier to find answers to problems on the internet than it used to be. it’s all about knowing how to search for things. i’m a network admin and google is my best friend. you just can’t know everything! it is nice to be able to lean on the knowledge of others….there are more things to know about than there used to be, so one person can’t be expected to know it all.

oratio's avatar

@ccatron Yes, you can get the answer to the most interesting questions, where you least expect it.

ccatron's avatar

i forgot about Wolfram…bing has become a helpful resource as well

Joe_Freeman's avatar

I agree that the Web makes troubleshooting a lot easier than it used to be. Of course, without Google and similar tools, this might not be the so much the case.

El_Cadejo's avatar

Most problems i find easier to fix on my own now with the great deal of information there is out on the web. What i fear is when i have a problem that disables me from accessing the web and i try everything i know and am forced to call tech support. FUCK THOSE PEOPLE.
“is your computer plugged in and turned on?” oh boy look at that its not silly me, thanks .

ccatron's avatar

now that i think of it, i do think that many tech support for computer companies are lacking. i worked for Dell long ago for about a year and they didn’t really require you to have a degree of any sort. as long as you could answer a 10 question over-the-phone test, you were hired…unless you have other issues. the training we had mostly included teaching us how to troubleshoot, research and tear down their systems..but you could easily slip through the cracks because they need people to answer the phones. and they moved me around 3 times to different departments before i quit. (not because i didn’t know what i was doing——they moved people around a lot to fill needs)…and i quit because i hated being on the phone all day.

and now that more people are buying computers, that means more people will call tech support, so there is a bigger need for warm bodies to answer a phone.

YARNLADY's avatar

My house is full of computer knowledgeable people. Hubby has been active in the computer field for over 35 years. He not only understands them, he even speaks their languages, and he gets paid very well for his expertise. Sonny and Grandson are both employed in the computer field, as is much of my extended family (in-laws).

SirBailey's avatar

Ya know, I sometimes wonder if that’s my problem. I’m in the field many years and, at this point, I usually do NOT ask simple questions. I know the answer to those. It’s the tougher ones I reach out for. Maybe that’s why my success rate is poor.

Bri_L's avatar

@SirBailey – hehe I have the opposite problem sometimes. I have been troubleshooting so long that I often overlook the simple solutions.

I just overlooked making sure I had the latest upgrade of the software. Duh.

SirBailey's avatar

I hate it when that happens!

La_chica_gomela's avatar

I feel like it’s getting easier. It used to be that just finding someone who understood the problem (nevermind the _solution!) was all but impossible. What with the advent of internet forums (yes, like fluther, but also the myriad of software/hardware specific forums) makes it wonderfully easy to diagnose and fix my own problems now!

siilver's avatar

I think the correct answer is yes… and no. Yes it seems to be harder do to the fact that certain places (no names but they are blue and yellow and rhyme with west why) don’t hire people based on their knowledge anymore. They are given a CD and a handbook and told run the MRI (the CD) and go from there. Most call centers are outsourced, and trying to talk to someone via telephone at a local shop still is frustrating because they are going to want your money and for you to bring it in anyways. But, at the other end of the spectrum, if you have reliable access to the internet you can pretty much find the answer to anything. I mean you can Google the random Windows errors that no one seems to know about (i.e. – error 0×00034566 fatal exception…) and you will almost always find an answer/s or at least a support group of other users who Microsoft claim are crazy and in which no such problem exists. The best advice I can give is try forums as mentioned and don’t always rely on one search engine.

SirBailey's avatar

I’ve been trying for days now to find out why HijackThis keeps showing me the same log date and time (6/1/09) no matter how many times I run it. I’ve been trying to find out why my task bar acts crazy. Dead ends to both.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

@SirBailey: Was it easier to find someone who knew stuff about HijackThis 5 years ago? 2 year ago? How about 1 year ago? ... Didn’t think so…

siilver's avatar

@SirBailey I recommend you go ahead and 86 HJT and try out SuperAntiSpyware (SAS). If you look real hard, rapidshare via a google search for SAS serial for example, you don’t have to buy it I have found it to be one of the best at getting rid of any and all infections and to keep certain elements of my computer safe from config changes (i.e. – homepages, startup programs, etc.) My favorite was TDS-3 but it became a little out dated after the updates stopped coming. Definitely try it out and see if that fairs any better. Good luck!

skorned's avatar

ya i do feel its getting worse…even on forums dedicated to computer issues, getting a response is getting harder and harder….and naturally, I knew more about the technology in products than 80% of tech support I’ve talked to…

I’m guessing its because of how much technology has burst, and just how much variety you have nowadays. Thanks to that, the number of experts in each field have naturally gone down…and besides, I don’t see people getting friendlier day by day (other than fluther :), so I’m guessing the number of people who would browse these forums and help out are reducing…the only reason a geek would go on those forums and reply to a query would be if he had a problem of his own and meanwhile stumbled upon some other problem which he did know how to solve…i believe in the past there were a lot of people who just browsed these forums looking for ways they could help people in their fields of expertise

SirBailey's avatar

@La_chica_gomela, I’m not clear with what the point is you’re trying to make. Actually, I HAVE noticed computer expertise has diminished on a number of (even) the tech sites so, in fact, maybe the answer to your question is “yes”.

@Siilver, I’ve been testing SAS for a few days now. Don’t I have to buy it after 30 days??
FYI. When I click on your TDS link, I get all sorts of warnings from my monitoring software to not go there.

siilver's avatar

@SirBailey sorry it said that. i just was trying to show you a link to the item itself, it leads to free d/l center, like cnet so i don’t know why, but you can just google tds-3 or trojan defense suite and you will find it. the link for TDS was just SAS doesn’t require you to buy it to use all of the important features (like registry booster and Norton, etc), but you will need to obtain a serial number if you want to unlock real-time protection and auto updates. Other than that it works great.

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