It's holidays 2018, and we're a bunch of nerds headed home where we will be consulted for all things technical, regardless of whether we know anything about it. What have you been asked to fix so far? And how did has it all gone sideways?
I clicked around iMovie for 10 minutes to figure out how to rotate 3 video files for my dad's friend's wife. They were all filmed sideways on an iPhone a few months ago. I got a mystery USB drive and muddled my way thru it.
Yep, my mom had at least two issues stacked up: bluetooth to car won't do media audio, just call; changing the lock on their RV from "1234" to something else.
I get asked about every upgrade prompt on every device from my parents and in-laws as a matter of course.
This year my sister is getting in on the action by saving her new cable modem for me to hook up for her.
Gave my dad an Oculus Go last weekend. He had some friends over last night and texted me to ask if there was a way to mirror the display so he could help explain what they're seeing. A quick Google search showed that the feature was added in October and it's about 3 button presses in-headset, and then tapping "yes/accept" on the linked smartphone. I sent him a link with the steps with screenshots, and he responded "Thanks, I think I'll wait till my son [me] comes for New Years! Looks pretty complicated! "
I responded back with the extremely concise steps to do it, and haven't heard back. It's frustrating because he's the one who helped me get into tech when I was a kid. To see him so blatantly/lazily dismiss the simplicity of the Oculus Go interface is disheartening and really doesn't make me want to gift him cool new tech again.
I have survived TWO family christmas gatherings with ZERO requests for tech support. I have successfully trained my entire family with the "Sorry, I don't do that anymore. Sorry, my knowledge is way out of date. Sorry, I have no idea how to do that" and it has worked.
Explaining to my FIL that a package labeled "Mouse", no matter how much it looks like a pen, is still a mouse.
No, you won't be able to hand-write emails in Yahoo! Mail with it (and seriously? Your handwriting is 100x worse than mine, and even good handwriting software has a hard time with me).
Parents house: Sound bar connectivity issues, transmission replacement on an RV
Mother in law: Setting up a Google Home Hub, about 12 password resets, MacBook reimage, wifi reconfig for range increase
Father in law: Setting up a NAS and Android TV, setting up a wifi network and wifi calling due to lack of cell reception, front suspension diagnosis on a Tacoma.
It's great to feel useful but damn, no breaks.
I'm working during Christmas. Our shore-based IT-department has the holidays off.
Request on Christmas day:
"Hey, a TV-decoder is kinda like a computer, right? We can't get a signal. Why don't you take a look at it!"
I press the big, red, button labeled "RESET", and wait 2 minutes for the standing ovation. Christmas saved!
My dad asked me to rewire his sound system setup to go from the karaoke system to a media switch to a mixer.
Christmas evening my mother-in-law assumed I had blocked Words With Friends on our WiFi because she was not able to play. She showed me the screen with what I presume was her list of ongoing games that were grayed out. I gave the deer in headlights look for 1/2 a second and then Cheryl took her phone, restarted the app, and all was back to good.
I hosted Christmas this year and the only noteworthy request was that Dad needed a hand anchoring his portable satellite dish in the yard, getting it pointed and peaked, and getting the LNB patched into the RG6Q drop in my outside J-box.
My dad, the certified MCSE before he retired, told me his monitor was flickering every once in a while, and he'd have to turn his monitor off for a bit and turn it back on to fix it. He bought his bargain bin flat panel monitor in like 2005 but proclaims it's "had no problems until now!". Dude, I don't have to look at that, buy a new one.