Saturday, February 22, 2014

New Stuff

I bought a new electric kettle. The accompanying instruction booklet is longer than the one that came with my new iPad Air. The kettle instructions are simple: plug it in, switch it on and in a couple of minutes the water boils. With the iPad, same thing - except all you do is turn it on and after a minute or so it comes to life and tells you what to do. Nothing boils.

The box for the iPad is about the same size as one which would hold a 1/2 ream of paper. Not so long ago, I can remember that a large vehicle was required to get a computer home. Once you muscled it into your house, you'd spend a day getting set up and loading on all the software. There were several instruction books - one for each piece of software. I purchased my first computer from Montgomery Ward in Oxnard. That's how old I am. 

Look at this user guide!  These are the instructions for my tiny belt-clip pedometer which I still can't get set correctly after studying the guide several times.  All I want to know is how far I've walked!!! It's impossible to get a single function. This thing attempts to tell me the number of steps I've taken, the distance traveled, the current time, the number of calories I've burned plus it incorporates a stop watch. It's unnecessarily complicated! Because they've put 5 buttons on the tiny case, you can't touch it anywhere without accidentally erasing or re-setting something. The data of the function you are operating is impossible to read - stuck in the corner, in print finer than motes and abbreviated in a strange way.

These things are entombed in plastic at purchase so you have no idea of how poorly they function until they're disinterred. I'd take it back to Sports Chalet, but the packaging is long gone. 

My sister had a friend with a ski repair shop. When he was interviewing a prospective employee, he'd hand him or her an electronic watch with instructions -  the kind you unfold like a piece of origami, printed on tissue thin paper with a #2 size italic font, poorly translated from the original Japanese/Chinese/Korean.  He'd ask them to set the date and time. If they could manage to accomplish the task, they'd get a job. I seriously wonder if you asked anyone today under twenty to do this if they could - just because of their short, short attention spans. 

It must seem like I've been shopping up a storm. Here's another purchase of note -  my new wallet. I bought it because it's just cannot jam too much stuff in it. My current wallet is always crammed with receipts and it has a change purse which makes it bulky and hard to handle. The new one holds only a few credit cards and a few bills. Originally $12.99 it was marked down three times to $3.88, less than I pay for a drink at Starbucks. An incurable bargain hunter, I can't pass up a deal like this one, even though the design is strange. It required no instruction booklet. 

1 comment:

  1. I like the wallet and the design...and the price.
    I hate reading instructions. Most of them are impossible and unnecessarily so. I long for the days of on and off switches.
    How's Richard doing? Did the accident mar his handsome face?