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  • Customers say the best things....

    Today at my work...
    I work in a bookstore....

    This woman customer was probably about 75.
    I said something barely technical to which her answer was:

    "Are you one of those nerd people? I heard that being a nerd was an IN thing. Not like it was in the 50's."
    ======================================
    DJ Jackalope
    dopest dj in the galaxy. *mwah!*

    send in the drop bears!
    ======================================

  • #2
    Re: Customers say the best things....

    You need the "Computers are Cool Now" T-shirt.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Customers say the best things....

      Ok...

      So today I said the only thing you can say to your neighbors chasing horses that got loose in your front yard:

      "I'm going to the store, you guys have fun with that."
      ======================================
      DJ Jackalope
      dopest dj in the galaxy. *mwah!*

      send in the drop bears!
      ======================================

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Customers say the best things....

        This brings up a question I constantly ask myself. How do I talk tech to the none tech? How do you do it; especially management? I'm serious for a change and just want to hear other people ideas and methods. It's something that really vex's me.

        xor
        Just because you can doesn't mean you should. This applies to making babies, hacking, and youtube videos.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Customers say the best things....

          Originally posted by xor View Post
          This brings up a question I constantly ask myself. How do I talk tech to the none tech? How do you do it; especially management? I'm serious for a change and just want to hear other people ideas and methods. It's something that really vex's me.

          xor
          Speak slowly, and use little words...

          Seriously, I feel your pain. Everyday with clients, I have to explain something technical to someone who can barely turn on a PC. I try to use "real world" examples that will help non-technical people get a particular concept. It's usually not technically correct, but sometimes it's enough for them to just have a rough idea of what in hell I'm talking about. . e.g. I've likened IP addressing to the Post Office's Zip+4. It gets the idea of individual addresses across to those people.
          Thorn
          "If you can't be a good example, then you'll just have to be a horrible warning." - Catherine Aird

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Customers say the best things....

            Originally posted by Thorn View Post
            Speak slowly, and use little words...

            Seriously, I feel your pain. Everyday with clients, I have to explain something technical to someone who can barely turn on a PC. I try to use "real world" examples that will help non-technical people get a particular concept. It's usually not technically correct, but sometimes it's enough for them to just have a rough idea of what in hell I'm talking about. . e.g. I've likened IP addressing to the Post Office's Zip+4. It gets the idea of individual addresses across to those people.
            My example: DNS = phonebook
            "\x74\x68\x65\x70\x72\x65\x7a\x39\x38";

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Customers say the best things....

              Real-world analogies are helpful, and hands-on 'verbose' demos are helpful as well. For example, I was explaining cookies to someone, and why they might present a privacy issue. In firefox, I showed them the 'show all cookies' screen, and examined the different sites' cookies. We then browsed for a bit, using the 'ask me every time' setting for cookies. This really demonstrates how often web sites set cookies, and how often they're from a 3rd party.

              The example I use for cookies is that they're similar to nametags. They take a browser that would otherwise be anonymous, and uniquely identify it to a website. However, wearing and showing the nametag is entirely voluntary. (but some sites might refuse to help non-nametag-wearing people, or it might be necessary for logins and such)

              After the baseline of cookies is understood, it's easy to explain privacy issues like tracking cookies.
              Last edited by YenTheFirst; September 1, 2008, 18:59. Reason: added an analogy
              It's not stupid, it's advanced.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Customers say the best things....

                Another good one is opening up wireshark on a wireless lan, having them do some browsing, and demonstrating the difference between HTTP and HTTPS. seeing their browsing session in plaintext on your screen is quite effective, I think.
                It's not stupid, it's advanced.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Customers say the best things....

                  The internet is like tubes......

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Customers say the best things....

                    Originally posted by barry99705 View Post
                    The internet is like tubes......
                    Actually, I find it easier to say "the internet is like a sewer system"
                    A third party security audit is the IT equivalent of a colonoscopy. It's long, intrusive, very uncomfortable, and when it's done, you'll have seen things you really didn't want to see, and you'll never forget that you've had one.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Customers say the best things....

                      "I'm going to the store, you guys have fun with that."
                      ======================================
                      DJ Jackalope
                      dopest dj in the galaxy. *mwah!*

                      send in the drop bears!
                      ======================================

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Customers say the best things....

                        Originally posted by xor View Post
                        This brings up a question I constantly ask myself. How do I talk tech to the none tech? How do you do it; especially management? I'm serious for a change and just want to hear other people ideas and methods. It's something that really vex's me.

                        xor
                        Simple formula called "KISS" meaning "keep it simple stupid." Fact is, most folks including corporate managers, and even grandma and grandpa normal living in CowPieUSA do not want to have to learn a foreign language in order to operate a computer, computer server, or even a toaster oven. Those people are NOT impressed with our computerease, or our high tech flatulence speak, but rather, they simply want the troubeling thing(s) in their lives to work so they may get on with their lives.
                        Last edited by Greyhatter; September 2, 2008, 01:38.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Customers say the best things....

                          Originally posted by Greyhatter View Post
                          Simple formula called "KISS" meaning "keep it simple stupid." Fact is, most folks including corporate managers, and even grandma and grandpa normal living in CowPieUSA do not want to have to learn a foreign language in order to operate a computer, computer server, or even a toaster oven. Those people are NOT impressed with our computerease, or our high tech flatulence speak, but rather, they simply want the troubeling thing(s) in their lives to work so they may get on with their lives.
                          I agree, though it's still sad. A life without a computer would be a very lonely place. Is it me or does anyone else feel like a new user to this "good ol' compooter" or "dat dang computation machine" should have to take an IQ test or go through some sort of screening process. Oh the days of the 386(this was my first because I was only 5) when everyone thought computers were magic.....oh wait they still do.

                          My $0.02
                          We're not arrogant, you're just simple minded

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Customers say the best things....

                            I've had to explain lots of different technical things (instrumentation, physics, math, astronomy, computery things...) to non-technical people even in not-so-strongly-English-speaking environments. It helps if the people asking the questions have a long attention span and can sit through a long explanation because I tend to start from the beginning, drawing pictures helps, and I agree that drawing analogies from their lives helps a lot. If they don't want to put the effort in to understand past the superficial level, I just tell them about some websites to go read or hand them a book for when they're ready to learn.

                            But sometimes when people are asking technical questions, they don't really know what they're talking about or asking for because they're so unfamiliar with the environment, which is a different case, so I tend to hang up a big poster with a picture of whatever the subject of inquiry is so people can point to where they still have functionality/where they don't so I can get a better understanding of where I have to begin.
                            lurking...somewhere

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Customers say the best things....

                              Originally posted by Z^2 View Post
                              But sometimes when people are asking technical questions, they don't really know what they're talking about or asking for because they're so unfamiliar with the environment, which is a different case, so I tend to hang up a big poster with a picture of whatever the subject of inquiry is so people can point to where they still have functionality/where they don't so I can get a better understanding of where I have to begin.
                              At the shop I worked in, we frequently had people call up and say "my [modem|hard drive] doesn't work," only to find out later that it's their COMPUTER that doesn't work after asking them further questions. Somehow that always bugged me... we'd consider someone highly ignorant (at least) if I called my whole body my mouth or brain, but somehow its acceptable to be so ignorant of computers that you can't even name BASIC PARTS. You don't have to know what a motherboard is, but at least know that the big box is called a computer. Computer store ads have aggravated this by selling a whole computer system and calling it a CPU. Frequently I had customers calling and asking for a CPU when they really wanted the whole box.

                              The conversation I had most frequently with folks who had their computer in for repair of viruses was "ok, understand that if we reinstall your operating system EVERYTHING will be erased." Inevitably the next questions would be "oh, even my pictures? well, what about MS Word? Oh. What about...." I started telling them it was like bulldozing a house. The OS was the house and their programs were like furniture. They immediately saw how silly it was to expect their chairs to still be standing after the entire house was bulldozed.

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