Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Battle with "IT."

Eggnog eyeing the PC with suspicion.

Years ago a teacher friend was creating a reading list for her students and asked if I had ever read Madeleine L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time. The book has as its basis the classic battle of good vs evil---with fascinating sci/fi elements which send the main characters hurtling to other worlds. The climax of their adventures occurs when the "heroine" Meg Murray must face down a huge disembodied and all-controlling brain referred to as "IT."
Today is one of those times when I suspect that such a malevolent entity is taking control of my computer. An e-mailed link to this blog is apt to land my unsuspecting friends on a different site. Sometimes a "dashboard" comes up which seems to be an amalgamation of my profile and that of an unknown. The blog links which I carefully typed into an "add a gadget" feature disappeared--somewhere--and I had to use a different approach. Searching the blogger "helps" lands me in the jargon of html's, widgets, and other bewildering instructions. At the end of each article is a query as to whether this article was helpful. I want to register a resounding "NO"--but I don't think IT is around to hear me!
Arguably, a person with greater technical skills wouldn't have these issues or could quickly sort them. While admitting my lack of expertise, I still like the idea of a scapegoat--the one who tells me "the printer is out of paper"--when I can see the neat white stack fitted into the tray; the one who whisks away four typewritten pages before I can command "Save." Surely there is a resident goblin with a "you can't get there from here" kind of roadblock.
It may take awhile, the final product may not be especially sophisticated, but the cats and I are committed to getting the better of "IT."

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