Posts Tagged ‘twitter’

Was…was it something I said? Was it something I didn’t say? Maybe my choice of retweets and pseudo-humorous take on news items was not the sort of wisdom you had come to seek when you clicked the ‘Follow’ button. Or perhaps you didn’t mean to press it, but chose to wait an appropriate amount of time to pass before you removed me from your list. Maybe you thought that was the polite thing to do, rather than make it obvious you hadn’t intended to click ‘Follow’.

It’s okay, I won’t be mad. You can tell me…

As for the whole ‘promise of cake’ thing: was that what intrigued you? Rest assured I did not mean to get your hopes up about delicious baked goods being delivered to you. God, I really hope you weren’t just a follower because you were under the impression that a scrumptious gateaux was being prepared. My apologies if you were mislead. This also wasn’t some elaborate jape, where I suckered people in knowing they had a fancy for Boston cream pies only to laugh maniacally when no cake was presented. Like some pastry-based Ebay scam.

I'm sorry. I'm so very sorry. Please...please don't look at it...

I’m sorry. I’m so very sorry. Please…please don’t look at it…

I know I’m fairly new to the whole Twitter thing, but I’m making the most of the 140 characters I’m given. I’m not about to waste those characters with banal details about my toilet breaks and Spongebob quotes. I wanted to show you what I had to offer in my little corner of the Internet. But somewhere along the line, things went wrong.

Please come back to me. Let’s get a debate going. Just tell me what I did that made you not love me any more. I’ll promise I’ll do what it takes to clean up my act, cut down on booze, wash my dishes when — oh, sorry…force of habit…

I promise. No more empty promises about Battenbergs. No more re-tweets from Ricky Gervais, if that’s what it’ll take. If you need more dick jokes, I got plenty. If not, consider them gone. But I must know how I can make amends. We barely got to know each other. I bet you would have liked me. I’m sure we would have gotten along famously. Besides, 69 followers is pathetically small. And it makes my girlfriend giggle…

Justify my existence with a comment

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I come from a generation that is accustomed to the everday use of computers. Now it’s true that not every family had one when I was growing up (we didn’t get out first computer until I was about 15) but that didn’t stop us from learning about them in schools or cycling 87 miles to a friend’s house just to see what 16MB of RAM could do (for comparison’s sake, the netbook I’m using to type this out has 1024 MB of RAM…and that’s primitive compared to modern standards!).

But even back then it wasn’t until the end of the 1990’s that the Internet started to grow exponentially in popularity. And if you were hooked up to the ‘information superhighway’ you had to make sure no one else was using the phone, or that you had a good book to hand whilst waiting for your modem to dial-up.

Current and future generations will never understand the nostalgic joy of a novelty such as installing a 20MB game from about nine floppy disks, or that thrill of being the first in your neighbourhood to see Internet cleavage.

As a result I feel that people are becoming spoiled with how readily available this technology is. We have the Internet on our phones for fucks sake! (Who the hell saw that coming?!) And with this nonchalant attitude towards computers I feel it’s time to lay down some words of wisdom for new users to the information age.

It’s a computer…not a space shuttle launch

Having a computer these days is like having a head. Chances are if you don’t have one then you are a mere headless chicken flapping about the farmyard of social mores and gushing blood from your neck of…ignorance, I guess (metaphors are awesome!). Computers are about eight billion times easier to operate than they were twenty years ago when you had to type command prompts onto a black screen to load Doom II.

Laptops and computers are now ready to go with just about anything. Including the Internet. Gone are the days of having to strip and hook up metres upon metres of CAT5 cables to feel ‘connected’. PC ports at the back are even colour coded so you know which peripheral goes into which slot. And everything is pretty much becoming USB compatible anyway so you practically cannot go wrong!

But people still don’t know how to handle these things. I’ve had people in the past call me up in regards to a problem that, nine times out of ten, has been caused by them changing a setting that they didn’t understand and causing the binary equivalent of a stroke. I’ve been guilty of this myself in the past I must admit.

But let me draw up a comparative example:

I don’t know dick-fart about cars. What I know about mechanics you could convert into the venom of a Black Widow spider, squeeze it into a syringe and inject the poison into my eyeball and I’d feel nothing but a slight twinge. I don’t even have a license and I haven’t done lessons in years.

If you put me behind the wheel of a car and told me to drive to the end of the street I could do it pretty easily. If you told me to drive around the estate I could probably manage it after a few bumpy starts. But if you told me to drive to Salsbury Plains and back I’d curl up in the boot and question why a just god would hate me so.

In other words I am a beginner at driving. So if I don’t know how to drive then I’m certainly not going to go tinkering about under the bonnet and start pulling plugs out willy-nilly. And the fact that I used ‘plugs’ as mechanical terminology only furthers my point.

So if I won’t go farting about inside a car’s engine why on earth would someone who is only just getting used to the idea of a QWERTY keyboard suddenly go dashing about inside their systems very important settings? If you don’t know what you’re doing then don’t do it. Remember that sentence it’ll probably save you a lot of aggro in the coming years.

And because most of you will not take in the above advice, I feel it is my duty to talk to you about:

Getting a computer fixed

Okay, shit goes wrong with computers. That’s a fact of life. Or technology. Or, whatever. Eventually, whether through your own fault or not (see above advice), the inevitable will happen. Every computer has crashed at some point and yours is no exception. So it’s wise to know what to do in these situations.

If your system isn’t functioning at its most efficient (‘shittingly buggered’ as we adepts say) then it will need to be fixed. And depending on the severity of the problem will depend on how you go about doing it. A minor set back could be easily resolved with something as easy as, say, a quick restart. Like putting a small fire out with your foot. Occasionally the problem may require the assistance of someone more skilled than you. Sticking with the fire theme this may be getting someone to help you throw a wet towel over a chip pan fire.

Then there are the problems which may require the help of a paid expert. (“The house is on fire! Run like fuck! Save my China dolls!)

Chances are that most of you will know one or two people who can handle minor to major problems. Having a so-called ‘computer expert’ in your address book is always handy. I know enough about PCs to use them comfortably and can help various people with one or two problems. But there are times when I have to call up my friend’s for something I don’t know the solution to. It’s a beautiful spectrum of geekhood.

But! Don’t become too reliant. Not every problem is resolvable. Just because your neighbour with the hairlip helped you rid your PC of a few viruses doesn’t mean he’ll know how to hook you up to the matrix using a system of network cables and some lightening. We all have our skills and weaknesses. For instance: I’m terrible when it comes to networking. That’s my major weak spot in terms of PC troubleshooting. And I’m not exactly a professional in anything else either.

To be honest, there are going to be times when you’ll have to admit defeat. Computer fixes can only go so far before you’re having to get the nerdy Saturday worker at the local repair shop to wipe your entire system clean and start from scratch. I can only hope you backed up all that balloon fetish porn you had. That’s right. I know all about it!

Okay, so that takes care of the actual computers themselves. What’s next?

Computer adverts lie

You will have seen these knocking about on TV. Microsoft and Apple have been battling it out over the past couple of years trying to out bullshit each other with their terrible assumptions about what people use their computers or the Internet for.

Let me get right to the point: I have never, ever, known a family to gather around their communal PC in their laboratory white kitchen and send photos of their son in a birthday hat to their Grandma who’s living it up in Las Vegas.

And I have never known, or seen, anyone use their mobile Internet to exchange minutes from their last meeting or arrange a business lunch with Jenkins from Sales. Maybe I’m hanging out with the wrong people (or in this case, the right people!) but this shit just does not go on in the real world. I know adverts aren’t meant to be true to life but the impression it gives about the Information Age is so clouded in idealism that it’s actually quick sickening. It’s awash with puritanical family values and entrepreneurial success that appeals to a lifestyle that no one is leading.

Take note of the phrase I used just up there: Information Age. Particularly the word ‘information’. The Internet – for me and many others – is a vast scope of knowledge and facts and data before it’s a communication tool. Yes, no one can deny what the Internet has done for communication and business but where are the adverts showing a person looking up a unique recipe for a Mai Tai? Or a keen stargazer reading mind-blowing articles on NewScientist?

Yes the iPad shows someone browsing through text-heavy sites. But if you watch the advert you see the hand flicking through these web sites like they’re fucking channel surfing. Not sitting quietly and absorbing the knowledge like a normal person.

The internet has so much more to offer (more on that later). And so I don’t have to put if off any further…

The Internet has porn…deal with it!

This is nothing new or shocking anymore. As long as there is the Internet there will be porn. Just like so long as there are laws there will always be people willing to break them.

It feels a little redundant saying that there is porn on the ‘net (to use the common vernacular), but I think it’s worth stressing just how ubiquitous it can be. There is absolutely no point in denying that there, in fact, about 712 quadrillion boobies floating around cyberspace at this very moment. It’s almost awe-inspiring if you think about it.

Parents, this one is probably more for your sake. Don’t kid yourself into thinking that your child is responsible enough to not do a keyword search for ‘lusty babes’ or whatever. After all they know you can trace their browser history. But that doesn’t matter. It’s not about being irresponsible. It’s about having something at your disposal that not only arouses curiosity but has also never existed until about fifteen years ago.

Think back to when you were a child (some of you may have to do some serious synapse firing for this exercise). If you had, say, a magical suitcase under your bed that gave you access to as much pornography, or violent comics, or sweets as you could handle for practically free (if not actually free) could you honestly say that you couldn’t dip your hand into that wonderful Samsonite? Even out of mild curiosity?

Now convert that suitcase into a laptop with wireless capabilities and give it to your 12-year old offspring.

Look if you don’t want them watching two moistened ladies ‘scissoring’ each other in a hotel suite then it’s you who is going to have to be responsible.

For the rest of you reading this and thinking that you’re about to be interrupted mid-sentence by the sight of six or eight people somersaulting onto each other’s junk, bare in mind that porn being ubiquitous doesn’t mean you’re likely to come across it by accident. (heh)

Finding porn is like finding anything on the Internet. You have to physically either know an address to go to directly or you have to actively type in a keyword search. If you’re not sure whether what you are clicking on is porn then read the goddamn search results. They have descriptions to clue you in. And Google Images comes with an adult filter to save any unintended embarrassment. (or boners)

If you don’t want porn, then don’t go searching for it. It’s actually not a hard concept. But if you are looking for some porn, drop me a line I know this great hangout joint.

Speaking of porn:

There is more to the Internet than 3 or 4 sites

I was deadly serious before when I said that the Internet has so much to offer. When I first started using the Internet I was mesmerised with what I could look up. I went to web sites of my favourite bands to check out latest news on them. I looked up questionable articles about how to make weapons. I downloaded an unending cavalcade of free games and trial software. And yes, I even saw my first boobs on the Internet (sorry Mum!)

Quickly, give me the name of web site!

How many of you said (or rather, thought) Google? Youtube? Facebook? Myspace? Twitter?…

Anything else? Is that it? Five web sites. Come have a look at my bookmarks. I have sites about humorous articles (of which I will try and pitch this blog post to), gaming news, alternative news, job listings for freelancers, message boards I frequent, alternative search engines to Google and information on how to go about applying for a Master’s Degree.

This is not me being an Internet snob (I use Facebook quite frequently, in fact I’ll be posting the address for this post as a status). I know most people browse more than the above sites but my biggest concern is that future generations won’t see beyond these few. Facebook is already a one-stop place for just about everything. Many sites, including news sites, now give you the option to sign in to your Facebook account without actually being there. And I know Google is still powerful but with its database of everything you’ve ever searched for in the past can we honestly still trust it? Remember when we talked about searching porn? Now think about Google storing that information in its files…

See, I remember a time before Google (how many new generation surfers can say that?) and even though we had search engines there was still no one-stop place for our browsing. The Internet was (and still is) so vast that it was impossible to explore it all. This expansion is still on going and it’s still an amazing place to find information.

Stick to your Facebook and your Twitter by all means. But don’t forget that under the blanket of this corporate takeover of the Internet is still the little guy trying to get the word out.

And now my post has turned all preachy and shit. Thanks noobs!

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