I get excited when I hear about a computer program or mobile application that will “make my life better, more productive, and more fun.” Like Mint, the banking program that will balance the checkbook. Or MyFitnessPal, the mobile app that will make it easy to shape up. Or GPS Drive, the navigation app on my phone so I never get lost again. Or Yelp, the business locator and rating app that gets me to a good restaurant.
All of them are useful, but I find the time it takes to learn and use them isn’t always worth their benefits. Sometimes you have to register. You have to remember a user name and a password. You might spend several minutes getting an internet connection. Mobile apps need updating. You get distracted, or at least I do, and by the time I’m ready to go I’ve forgotten what I set out to do.
We took Michele’s computer and iPad to the Apple Store a few days ago. All we wanted to do was get some photos from her phone to the computer, and the normal process wasn’t working. The place was packed, but after a few minutes we were working with a young man who seemed like he might be the son of Apple founder Steve Jobs.
“You can set this up to download photos from your phone to your computer to your iPad. It’s all automatic,” he said.
“That will be so great,” I think.
For the next hour and a half, he helps us download programs and update apps. He’s calm and deft as he navigates to the sites and pages we need. He turns the devices over to us when he needs an address or password typed in. Michele and I stumble and fumble as we try to recall then type the information he needs.
When we are finished he informs us we need to install a new operating system on the computer, which may need to have more memory installed so all of the functions can work seamlessly.
When we get back home, most of the photo handling processes seems to work, but we know we have more work to do.
We’ll save that for another day. Then, finally, this wonderful system that is going to “make my life better” will be up and running and nirvana will be ours.