Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Never use me to demonstrate your product

…if there is any technology involved. Seriously, if you're unveiling a new gadget with a big presentation don't have me on stage to show it off.   It will malfunction then blow up.  In a past life I must’ve stolen Steve Jobs’ lunch money or something. The wonders of science don’t seem to work on me. I watch the movie HER and think, if it was me, right in the middle of my first steamy cyber sex with "Samantha" she would suddenly start speaking Urdu and I would have no way of readjusting the settings.

Some examples:

I recently upgraded to the new iPhone 5S, the one with the spiffy thumb print feature. In theory, once you’ve set it up, you just press your thumb on the home button and it turns on your phone. Half the time it doesn’t work. Siri pops up. Or the phone says “try again,” (which I do unsuccessfully two more times). If someone lifts my phone I bet it will work for his thumb.

I use something called Twitterfeed. The i dea here is that every time a new blog post goes up it’s supposed to send out one Tweet and one status update on my Facebook page. Depending on the day it sends out either zero, one, two, or three Tweets â€" sometimes within seconds of the posting and most times randomly scattered over two hours â€" and doesn’t post on Facebook at all. I’ve tried to go in and fix it. No luck.

My GPS is supposed to show me freeway traffic. When it feels like it, occasionally, it does. When I need to see it to gage a certain trip, it never works.

My Bluetooth only works in the car when I don’t have to make a call.

There are times “closed captioning” just appears on my TV for no reason.

I tried to watch a “Pay Per View” movie and needed 4 ½ hours to download it.

My Kindle doesn’t sync.

My DVR refuses to delete an episode of THE NEW GIRL.

But the greatest example of what I call Y2Ken is this:

I attempted to upload my latest book, MUST KILL TV (available here [1] ) on Amazon. This is an incredibly simple and easy process. They walk you through the steps â€" you upload this file and that, set up pricing, etc. â€" and a day later your book is ready to go. During the process there are a couple of places where you click “save so far.” Easy enough. I get to the first one, click it, and the internet crashes. I did you not.

So I call TWC and a recorded message tells me “Internet service is out for the entire Westside. We don’t know why but engineers are working on th e problem. “ I know why.

A couple of hours later the internet returns. I return to the task at hand. First off, nothing was saved so I had to begin the entire process again. I get to “save so far,” click it, and all is well. I negotiate the next few steps, arrive at another “save so far,” click it, and power for the entire neighborhood goes out. I swear, this is a true story.

We were without electricity for four hours. Finally, at 11 at night â€" 12 hours after I began what should be a five-minute process â€" I successfully uploaded MUST KILL TV. [2] I apologize to everyone in my zip code for the inconvenience.

I’m going to stop just short of saying there’s a conspiracy. But I tried to download a podcast that offered tips on how to coexist with the new technology and it crashed my computer.

  1. ^ available here (
  2. ^ MUST KILL TV. (

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