Tech: Offline Blues

An epal wrote:

Hello, PT:

Comcast sent us a replacement (improvement) modem and told me it was easy to replace my old one – just follow the three easy steps.

Put the new one in and then had to give a ridiculous password to connect to it. I have to use that $#%^&* password for my computer, my wife’s, her sister’s and our friend who lives in our attached apartment. Then I had to do the same for all our phones. Then our two Internet radios had to have help finding our router.

Our home phone does not work with the new router. Comcast has tried to configure it remotely three times and is sending a service guy today. I hope he is competent.

Then our wireless printer wouldn’t work. I am still having trouble with the printer and will call Brother today. I went through the printer’s menu to help it find the router. It recognizes the router, but asks for that password. After using the alphanumeric key pad to enter that %^&* password it said OK, now press the “Enter” and the “OK” buttons. There is no enter key on the entire machine. “Brother” better have an answer for this today!

PS: I am not happy.

PT Replies:

Sorry about your Brother. Someday we will look back on this day and laugh.

But not today. I am amazed at the crap we put up with that passes for technology service. And more and more of it is “onshored” into our DIY laps.

I had an HP wireless printer for several years. The manual for the wireless function was fatter than the book for the printer itself. The one thing I could never get it to do was to print wirelessly. You can imagine the thrill of replacing that doorstop with a Brother printer that…prints wirelessly!

P.S., Looking back on the service call, I realize now that the FOG they sent was in no mood to be happy. “It better be a power problem or I can’t help you,” was the second thing he said. Fortunately, it was and he could.

I pay over $200 a month for this abuse and they keep trying to sell me more. It’s getting so the best I can say for my FiOS is that it isn’t as bad as my Comcast was. I know people in the boonies who have also tried satellite dishes without finding ecstasy (except in pill form).

I can’t wait to see what New! Improved! Technology will arrive to eat these guys’ lunches. I know that Comcast already regrets their earlier hubris, but apparently it hasn’t improved their service.


== PT

P.S., That was Sunday. On Monday we lost the Internet connection for one iPad plus a visiting iPad. The third iPad (mine) connects, sometimes, through an unknown router. But it doesn’t look like either of my routers. And it’s working without a password.

The Good News: The new cellar box is half the size of the old one. Big deal.

The Bad News:  The replacement battery I recently bought for the old box is useless.


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