Hmm .. Thursday morning. Quick cappuccino before we are off for a day to Antwerp. As Nyana is getting ready to present her lovely sellf to the people of planet earth, I softly send tapping sounds along the silent kitchen, tapping away on my Ibook. Many of you who may read this might be in the same spot then I am. Willingly or unwillingly you are : The family Geek. The one uncle Paul and cousin Dan turns to when computers go astray. The one people call for advice when they want to buy a new gadget. The one that helps them out when they are in techno trouble but always gets introduced as ‘the computer freak’ ( MAN I hate it when people do that.) For me its the same thing. From time to time the family rings me up that there is trouble afoot in computer land and if I could please stop by and fix it. This week was no exception. My niece phoned me up to gently declare that the two computers she had where ‘not doing anything anymore’ and if I could please take a look at them. "If they are dead" she said "just tell me if I have to buy new ones". As noobs can be noobs (and she is a darling noob) they cannot see the difference between hardware and software errors. The fact that she has 2 kids rattling away at the machines is not realy helping to improve the stability of the XP systems they own. I had however reinstalled BOTH machines some 4 months ago and was surprised to hear that they managed to frack up these pretty sturdy installs. But probably clicking YES to every single pop up does that kind of thing to windows.
Now I have the choice. Do I go down and once again reinstall the whole deal or do I do something different. Because quite frankly I know that when you do the "same thing" to the computer you did last time, and THEY do the "same thing" to the computer they did right now, we will be in the SAME PLACE in exactly four months and journey to the dark side is complete (oops , wrong quote).
So i’m going to look into their ‘computer behavior’. What do they do on the computer : Surf around, do stuff for school, email, chat .. Stuff like that. And if their computer needs are not eccentric or proprietary oriented (what a word) : I might just hook them up with linux. Grandma Jeanne (the Gran-EEE grandma) has been using Linux on her systems for over 2 years now and is loving it. Perfect stability.. Perfect performance record. Even now, when she is planning to go online, I’m not worried at the slightest. Looking at what the average user does, a Ubuntu distro would be perfect to meet their needs and give them a perfect computer experience.
Because, you have to think of it. We all are techno-geeks right.. We love to embrace people into our world of technology and communications. Get on Skype, Get on Facebook, Come join me on Gmail etc etc .. But being this kind of cyber-preacher does mean you have to support all the stray souls you brought into our brave new www-world. And that means that we need to give them something they can use and that will free us from the bother of having to spend every family visit behind their computer removing spyware.
So I’ll keep you posted on my nieces situation and wether or not I can "Ubuntify" yett another one.