Monday, May 28, 2007


I’m only saying:

I dropped by an Apple Store this morning, and the Apple “Genius” had never heard of an iBook that wouldn’t start for this reason before. He spent about 10 minutes poking around at his screen and came up with nothing, and he even went back into the private service area to see if anyone had ever heard of it. No luck.

Kinda funny, calling him a Genius (TM) when he couldn’t find what a five-minute search on Google for “ibook g4 black screen startup” yields several informative sites for (including one that belongs to Apple itself).

For me, that’s 0 for 2 for the Apple “Geniuses.” I suppose for other people the service works fine.

I get suspicious as soon as I walk in and hear the lite modern music blaring in the “Genius Bar” area. I’m no computer genius, but I do know you can’t diagnose a computer you can’t hear. When you turn it on and listen for the hard disk whirring, for the fan, for the CD reader engaging, you can identify a series of problems to either consider or disregard right away.

Last time I went to the “Genius Bar,” I had a crapped-out Apple hard drive in my machine. The “Genius” couldn’t hear it, let alone identify that this was the sound of a bad hard drive. I ended up taking my machine to CompUSA, where they had no music playing in the service area, but they fixed the machine just fine.

The main difference this time was that I was less shocked at how stupid Apple’s “Geniuses” are, so I stayed much more friendly for the whole performance. As soon as I determined that he was as useless as a switch on a dead circuit, I abandoned his ship and went straight to Plan B.

Thus far I’ve got e-mail recovered and working well, music playing, Web browser bookmarks up and running, database software alive and well. I still have various financial and office software to kick back into gear, but I’m optimistic. Lucky for me, I don’t count on other people to “Genius” me back into business—I keep my own set of backups.

That’s the third significant computer failure in two weeks for me (two were at work; this one is at home), and thank goodness for planning ahead for system failure, because thus far none of them has resulted in a catastrophe. Good and current backups, plus a modicum of skill at coaxing stubborn machinery, has kept us up and running with only minimal downtime and just about zero panic. Each one was on a machine at least two years old. I’d rather see the machines lasting a little longer, but I don’t have time to gripe about that right now—the main thing is that the machinery failures haven’t become huge obstacles, and for that I’m happy and grateful.

I could mutter on about how Steve Jobs’s shoddy manufacturing practices cost me the better part of a beautiful Memorial Day, but I’ve got better ways to spend my time. I’m no “Genius,” but I know the time to forage for moochable barbecues is when the day’s sun starts to edge over into the western part of the sky. I could sit here and check out my image-capture software, but I think I’d rather strap on my bike shoes and go hunt for someone with hot coals.

Happy Memorial Day to all!


Lainey-Paney said...

Don't even get me started on the Apple GENIUSES!

"Hi, what do you do for a living?"
"Oh, I'm a genius."

Yeah...I can see that going over really well in a bar...

"Hey, that guy over there is really full of himself. I asked him what he did for a living; he said he's a "genius"!!! Hahahaha!"

mrjumbo said...

Yeah, well, it's not quite as bad as telling people you're an ASCAP inspector, but it's still not much of a way to make a living.