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Switching on PC is too technical for many users

Discussion in 'News' started by Phil, Sep 10, 2003.

  1. Phil
    Honorary Member

    Phil Gigabyte Poster

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    [​IMG]<font size="3">Switching on PC is too technical for many users </font>

    The results of a study released this week confirms what the world's BOFHs and sysadmins have known for ages: that users are a dangerous menace who should not be allowed near anything more advanced than a fridge.

    A staggering one in seven technologically challenged employees needs help even switching their computers on and off, according to research commissioned by City &amp; Guilds.

    The UK vocational awarding body's study of 405 random UK financial directors revealed that, despite the fact that PCs have been around for over thirty years, getting to grips with the devices is totally beyond many British office workers. A fifth were found to struggle to save a document, more than one in five need assistance printing, while a quarter cannot understand a spreadsheet.


    City &amp; Guilds pointed out that, apart from greatly reducing productivity, this lack of IT proficiency is causing IT support cost to sky-rocket as beleaguered BOFHs struggle to distribute some clue to their gormless users.

    Source: www.theregister.co.uk
     
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Comments

    1. flex22
      flex22
      I heard this the other day on the radio Phil.

      I'm not sure what to think about it.

      It's easy for us lot who are constantly learning this stuff, to say that they're all dumb.

      However, I remember back to when I was at school, computers used to petrify me.
      I wouldn't dare hit any of those buttons incase the computer blew up.

      To be honest, I was pretty much like that up until I started my course, believe it or not.
      Although I used a simple DOS program at work, which I could actually do with my eyes shut (literally), anything like Windows was a mystery to me.

      Yes, comps have been around for thiry years, but it's a matter of a decade, if that, since computers have widely been used in "everyday" peoples homes.

      People struggling with comps will mean more support staff are needed to train office staff.

      The thing that worries me is when my little sister knows how to do all kinds with a computer, it scares me.

      Although she's no expert by any means, when I compare myself to her at that age, I knew zip about comps.

      All the more reason to stay on our toes and not be complacent.

      Even though the current generation of office staff are a little lackadaisical with computers, the upcoming generation will be better clued up, that's for sure.
    2. tripwire45
      tripwire45
      I have to agree with flex. Back in the '80s, I used an Apple IIe where I worked and got pretty good at doing those things I needed to do for the job. The same ever since...I knew just enough to...well, most of the time, to use the computer for what I needed it for...and little else.

      I could see that a soft power switch could be confusing. "I want to turn my computer off. I push the power button briefly. Nothing happens. It has a life of it's own. I fear it."

      Before I went to school for the stuff, I bought Mike Meyers' A+ book in the hopes that I could just read the material and learn it (yeah, right). When he says in the book to grab a screwdriver and open up your computer, my response was: "No way. What if I break it and can't fix it?"

      I only had the nerve to open up a box in class because I figured, if I broke it, the instructor could fix it. Of course those days are long gone, but most people only use a computer the way they use their car...to do for them what they want and that's all.

      Also, you cannot expect to run a bunch of accountants or whatever through a PC orientation class once and have them remember all the material for the rest of their life. Part of the problem is the training programs for employees. You need to provide them with periodic refresher courses and create an atmosphere that says: "Asking the tech people for help is a good thing...they won't make fun of you...honest".
    3. Phil
      Phil
      Yes, I'm not convinced people are generally that ignorant, especially if they have a computer at home or have to use one at work. It was just the first paragraph that amused me since you do see and hear of some pretty stupid things being done and it's nice to dream of burying mithering users under the comms room floor.

      As you say the current generation of kids all use computers at school, I heard some schools are teaching cisco and Microsoft courses. When they hit the workplace the problems the survey are talking about will all but disappear.

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