Friday, August 20, 2010

Technology Headaches

Obviously, I don't have too many problems with using computers and other such modern technology, or else you would not be reading this now! However, sometimes, these things can create as many problems as they solve. When computers balk or do their strange thing that humans do not often comprehend, it can cause screaming fits on the user's part. It is true that sometimes though, these problems are caused by user error, often in my case.
The new semester starts on Monday. I thought I was all ready for it. Knowing that the college was about to set up a new version of the Blackboard program, I have been working for a while setting up the sites for each section on the staging platform for this new version of the program, gathering documents from databases to be used as resources they can use while writing the first and second papers, linking the sites to webpages, downloading paper topics, syllabi, information sheets, and blank forms I will use throughout the semester. It took me a lot of time and a lot of editing, thinking, and redoing before I got these sites into shape, ready to be archived and imported to the new platform.
However, when I archived the first site and tried to unzip it in the new program, I learned the archived site was corrupt. I wasn't sure what to do. Retrying it didn't help. The tech guy didn't answer his phone. If I were him, I wouldn't either, frankly. Rather than dealing with people like me, who aren't too handy with this sort of thing, I would do the transferring myself and tell the person I had done it. But he's very busy just now, dealing with the whole system, too busy to do things like that for me. I may have to do it all over again before Monday and Tuesday, regathering these files and reinserting them painstakingly into their slots in the shells of the new sites. I hope that is not the case, but if I don't hear from him by Sunday, I will begin doing it myself, if I can.
Today I had another frustration. I didn't order enough death certificates for either of my parents, especially my mom. It is a hassle to order them by phone, because one must fill out a separate form for each separate certificate and have each notarized--expensive and time-consuming. So this afternoon, after yoga class and some last minute stuff at the college, I drove to Santa Ana to get the certificates. I had gone to Google Maps, feeding in an address on South Main St. But initially, I went to North Main Street. As I parked and got out of the car, I glanced at the instructions to check the room number and saw it was South Main St, not north.
What do you think? When I drove back there, it turned out I was initially correct after all; there was no 1200 S. Main St., or rather, it was a school, not a public building. By that time, I was fed up, and just went home. I'll have to try it again sometime next week. What a hassle!

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