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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 11:42 AM   #21
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rustic23
Unhealthy? Not sure. My cound down is at 26 w@#King hours to go. But I'm not counting! DW's is at 3 1/2 weeks!
Alright Rustic, wipe that silly grin off your face...

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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 12:28 PM   #22
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

By the way, Trombone Al, I am one of those computer illiterates you spoke of with such distain. I didn't have a serious need to work with a computer in my job and when I did, my employeer threatened our blue collar shop employees with immediate termination for going to an unofficial or inappropriate website(which could always be determined retroactively). I find your attitude toward our lack of education offensive, egotistical, and stereotypical of the IT crowd who inevitably complain about the H1B visa folks.
I tried taking computer courses twice: Once from my trade school who hired a laid off NASA engineer who knew nothing of how to teach (when men's livelihoods depended on it) and once at the local community college where the county IT Manager tried to fill a paid slot to stand in front of a class. Notice I didn't say tried to teach. His attitude was somewhat the same as yours.
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 12:42 PM   #23
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

"
Instead I say "First, bring up Explorer," and then, never fail, they always say "You mean Internet Explorer?""

If you know that, whay not just say "bring up Internet Explorer?"
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 01:25 PM   #24
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Caroline
I suppose one just has to do as Sisyphus did, and revel in the glory of the struggle.
Quote:
Originally Posted by brewer12345
I think that's by far the sickest thing I have read here.
Probably another instance where I could stand to be more politic, but I have just such a visceral reaction to that line of thought. Brrr!
Just wait 'til that second kid arrives-- you'll be spending a few midwatch hours reading "The Best of Sisyphus"...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gpax7
By the way, Trombone Al, I am one of those computer illiterates you spoke of with such distain. I didn't have a serious need to work with a computer in my job and when I did, my employeer threatened our blue collar shop employees with immediate termination for going to an unofficial or inappropriate website(which could always be determined retroactively). I find your attitude toward our lack of education offensive, egotistical, and stereotypical of the IT crowd who inevitably complain about the H1B visa folks.
Ya know, Gpax, I didn't interpret Al's post anything like that. It certainly doesn't have anything to do with H1B visas, either.

I'd be a little annoyed if one of my "customers" bought my product, something intended for computer-literate users, and then not only demonstrated no freaking idea how to use it but also expected me to teach them the most basic computer operations for free. It's the computer equivalent of buying a new car and expecting the dealership to teach you how to drive. It's like buying a chicken at the grocery store and expecting the cashier to teach you how to cook it.

I can understand blaming one or two instructors for one's failure to grasp the material. But after the second bad experience it's probably better to consider another way to get the knowledge.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yakers
Instead I say "First, bring up Explorer," and then, never fail, they always say "You mean Internet Explorer?""
If you know that, whay not just say "bring up Internet Explorer?"
Followed by this instruction: "Now shut it down and bring up Windows Explorer."

At the risk of preaching to the converted, the name of the Windows file-management program he wants the caller to use is "Explorer". Again, if the customer doesn't have that level of knowledge then they probably shouldn't be buying his product. But you knew that and you're just tweaking his beaver, right?
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 01:28 PM   #25
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Or, to account for Netscape and other users, it might just be better to rephrase it "First, open up your web browser".

Believe it or not, even the phrase "Bring up" causes people's thought processes to hang up. I've caught myself doing it at work, where someone would whine for help and I'd say "bring up such-and-such an application/window/toolbar/menu/etc" They look at me like I done lost my mind, so I'll rephrase it "open up such-and-such..."

People can be such funny animals sometimes...
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 02:00 PM   #26
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

It is Microsoft's fault for naming two things Explorer. I get confused too.

I think I will stop bugging CFB with my computer questions and start asking Al.
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 02:05 PM   #27
 
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Quote:
I find your attitude toward our lack of education offensive, egotistical, and stereotypical of the IT crowd
Actually I simplified my attitude a bit. *Half of my frustration is with Microsoft. *Their design of Windows makes it extremely difficult for novice or occasional users. * The confusion between explorer and internet explorer is one example.

Another example: "Files" and "Folders." *Most novice users get these confused, and it makes communication difficult. *But think about it: In real life if you say "Bring me the Smith file" then what someone brings you is a folder containing documents about Smith. *Adding to that trap, sometimes folders are referred to as directories.

In other words, I understand that it's not all the novice user's fault.

However, I do believe that many of them should expend a little more effort to understand the computer that they are using. *I know from their questions that many haven't tried at all ("What's the Start button?", "Where's the Help menu?"). *Sometimes they literally say "I don't have time to read the manual, so could you walk me through this?"

And finally, note that I didn't tell the user what I was thinking. *My users love me. *I actually get emails from them saying "I Love You, I Love You" because I help them patiently even with problems unrelated to my product. *I found it's easier to just help them than to explain why it's not my problem.

Here's an email I got a week ago:

Quote:
You (or someone in your office) just last week gave my computer person a very helpful response in how to set something up here in my office so that the data between computers was shared better.* I greatly value that!



In fact, that is one of the best things about Time Logger -- the service.* The times that I have called TLs office, I was not put on hold, I was not asked for my security code or customer code or warranty code or any of the other stupid questions that other software companies ask when one calls their support line.* In fact, real, live people answer the phone at Time Logger, and that person then helpfully leads the caller through the solution (even for non-technical dinosaurs like me.) * The same goes for my computer tech company -- Edwick always gets prompt, courteous answers from Time Logger, and again, no one at Time Logger insists on seeing a paid receipt for the software before giving out an extremely helpful answer.



I also always appreciate having someone who has a good command of the English language answer the help desk line.* My time is valuable and all too scarce, and it is frustrating to communicate a problem and solution with someone for whom English is a second language (particularly when I dont know the technical terms for certain things.)* While it may be efficient for these other software companies to off-shore their help desks, it is not great for the consumer.* Again, I appreciate Time Logger very much.
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 02:14 PM   #28
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Hey Beaver Guy: *You're not in San Francisco anymore. *

As a matter of fact, you're in the Red-Neck, and Marijuana Capitol of the Country.

Just keep your fantasy to yourself, because if you tried that "Weak ****" to the folks that live in my area, you'd be so busy adjusting your attititude, you'd have little time for anything else.

Just got back from fly-fishing on a beautiful day, and what a pleasure it is to run-head long into a post from a self-rightous "Nerd".

With your attitude, the best you can hope for is that the "locals" will tolerate you.

Love, Jarhead
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 02:16 PM   #29
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Double-click My Computer, right-click on the file, select the desired text, hop on your left foot while rubbing your tummy... *:P

In Al's defense, years ago I took a series of Excel classes, and assorted other Office app classes. Invariably, someone would show up in Excel Macros class with absolutely no knowledge about a PC or Windoze...
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 02:24 PM   #30
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
I think I will stop bugging CFB with my computer questions and start asking Al.
Better be careful Martha...

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
At one point, in China (maybe now?), if you were due to be executed, they just come up and shoot you in the back of the head when you don't expect it....I have much less tolerance for computer illiterate callers.
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 02:25 PM   #31
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

At work, I have to do a bit of "helpdesk"-like support.* A lot of times, I used to have to walk over to the person's desk to figure out what problem they are having because sometimes, even if they are speaking English fluently, I cannot understand them.* Now we have a remote-control tool and they can actually show me what they mean when they call on the phone.* I love the remote-control tool perhaps as much as T-Al's customers love him.*

Quote:
Originally Posted by getoutearly
I hate to wish away my life.* Really I do.* But, I find that I am focusing more and more on my planned-for retirement ...
Does anyone else have this problem, and any suggestions on how to avoid this?
I have this problem, and theoretically, I think I know what would help--to focus on other parts of my life, on other interests, and enjoy the present, as Caroline, brewer, Rich_In_Tampa have wisely advised.

I want to break some habits by creating new ones. *Instead of checking my account balances everyday, I've discovered Ebay--just kidding!! (I've managed to stay away for years and years and suddenly I have this desire to own ceramic objects that I did not even know existed until I registered on Ebay.) *No, I mean I would like to learn new skills for my job, another job, my own business, or just for pleasure.

Since I first started my current job 3 years ago, I felt content and happy because the work is not demanding. *But now, I am antsy to start learning new things. *I have been thinking that I will stay here until I retire, ideally about 7 years from now. *(The benefits are good, the pension is generous, and the work is easy. *However, I want to retire around 50 but full pension age is 55, so there's a future big decision there to make.) *

Lately, I just feel I need to challenge myself more if I am to last a couple more years to make it to the 5-year pension vesting.* And by challenge, I mean engage in interesting things, not just in my work life but with other parts of my life, too.
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 02:31 PM   #32
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

For an online countdown:

http://www.timeanddate.com/counters/customcount.html
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 02:37 PM   #33
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Okay, I'm gonna sound dumb now, but what's the difference between "Explorer" and "Internet Explorer"? I was raised on a Macintosh, so in many ways the PC environment is alien to me.
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 03:59 PM   #34
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andre1969
Okay, I'm gonna sound dumb now, but what's the difference between "Explorer" and "Internet Explorer"? I was raised on a Macintosh, so in many ways the PC environment is alien to me.
Internet Explorer is a Web browser. Explorer or "Windows Explorer" is a file browser (i.e. you use it to browse your file system). A lot of people don't every use explorer or don't realize that is the name of the program. If you don't know the shortcut, you acess it by clicking on an icon labled "MyComputer" or you access a particular view of Explorer by clicking on an icon named "MyDocuments." Al is correct that most of the problem is Microsoft's. But to give them their due, they got into this confusing mess trying to make earlier confusing mess less confusing.
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 04:00 PM   #35
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

no dif. though it used to refer to someone with initiative who discovers things, now it refers to passively browsing the internet. windows also has a "windows explorer" which accesses files on the pc, not on the internet.
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 04:28 PM   #36
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Boy, I thought folks were suggesting to start your own business as the way to go over megacorp and government. Maybe we should reconsider since T-Al looks to be on the verge of going postal.
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 05:34 PM   #37
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Been around these da@n computer things since 1981. Back in the old days you copied a file by typing

C:/dir
Copy C:/directoryname/filename C:/directorynamedifferent

DOS 1.1 was command driven only....no mice, no Windows, no icons no nothing except a black screen with amber or green characters and a flashing curser.
Ahhhhh, the good old days.

As for counting down to retirement......

Anything that drives you nuts is by its' own nature....unhealthy. Obsession usually has a negative outcome. Expectations that are reasonable would seem to be far less unhealthly than unreasonable ones that might create too much stress in ones life.

Counting down when you are close seems like fun....being doing it for a few months now. My PC at home has a countdown timer that is always on top and DW and I like to kid each other about the number.

I have been looking towards retirement in some shape or form since I was in my 20s. I will meet my original date because I kept my eye on the target. At 5 years out I made a major switch in my plans and ended up taking an ER at age 50 instead of age 55 but I also kept working but at a different place and a different job. Age 55 is next year and I will ER from this job and place.

I can't see myself obsessed with ER in my 20s or 30s. It would have driven me nuts. Instead I focused on the next job; the next increase and the next move to enhance my career and my income to allow me to RE at 55 with a nestegg that will allow me to be FI the rest of my days. The dream was ER; the focus was getting to be FI.

We are 14 months, 29 days from ER.... but who's counting?

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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 08:44 PM   #38
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

Wow, thanks for the feedback everyone.* Glad to see I'm not the only one that tends to "focus" on that magic day.*

Rich-in-Tampa, thanks for the perspective.* I'm trying to pull myself away from focusing too intently on the prize, and enjoy the trip.*

For a mega corp (and we are one of the biggest), we do have some good people.* * When I'm interviewing people (which I hate), I tell them that one of the benefits of working here is the quality of people we hire.* Not necessarily the absolutely smartest, but well rounded people that, for the most part, aren't a buch of a$$holes.* Which is different from some of our competition.*

And, our bureacracy and BS is no worse than any other company I'm sure.* Although I am convinced Scott Adams actually got his inspration from within mycompany...

Anyway, thanks for the feedback.* Think I'll take up gardenning to help me un-focus...* Or, maybe just drink more - and take up golf again...

Now if I could just figure out how to open this Netscape Explorere folder, er file...
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-02-2006, 09:35 PM   #39
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

I know that I am not going to ask any dumb computer questions around here. I am feeling very intimidated. I am sure that I have had people that I have called for help, feeling the same way about me. Of course, I do know slightly more about computers than I do about fixing cars! I guess there is quite a few things that I don't know very much about. I hope that my doctor or CPA doesn't think that I am a stupid when I ask them questions. I frequently have people start conversations with me at my workplace, stating I know this is a dumb question, but.... I always assure them that there is no such thing. Little did I know!!!

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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?
Old 05-03-2006, 08:53 PM   #40
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Re: counting down to retirement - unhealthy?

I didn't start thinking seriously about ER until I was 56 (well, sorta early). When I was reasonably sure I was retiring I put a countdown clock in my financial spreadsheet. Every new day, I walked into my office and gave thanks for having my job which was making it possible for me to see the light at the end of the ER tunnel. As each day passed, the light got brighter and brighter.
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