31 thoughts on “December 16, 2016

  1. Every time someone comes in to buy an iPad I ask, “which one” and every single time they say, “there’s more than one?” 😡

    People will drop absurd amounts of money on crap they don’t even understand.

    The worst is when they say, “I don’t know, it’s for me 1 year old. What do you suggest?”
    I suggest you get a fricken clue! 😒

    • For a one year old? May I suggest a “Busy Board”? Or perhaps a “Leapfrog Learning Pad”? An iPad is WAY too expensive for such a young child, as well as having WAY more functions than necessary for someone so young. But, of course, there are people with more money than sense.

      • Too many people are influenced by names, and/or the hype surrounding them, and will happily drop exorbitant amounts of cash to be part of that crowd, and the tragic thing is, they don’t even understand why they want to be part of that crowd.

    • I got somewhat of the same question yesterday (as I do every year at this time of year). Adult in the toy department: “I’m shopping for a 4 year old. What would you suggest?”

      • I hate getting that question. I don’t have kids, don’t want kids, don’t know any kids, don’t like kids, don’t want anything to do with kids. I know what a kid in the 80’s would want, but I could not tell you what a kid today would want. Except an iPad or iPhone to “play games” which is what every child I’ve encountered in the past 6 years has asked me when they see my phone. 😒

        Oh wait! They want a hatchimal or an NES classic. Because you can’t get them. I cannot wait for this holiday season to be over.

    • Worse:

      “Ipad Air 2, Pro, or Mini 2, 3, or 4.”

      “I dont know just the regular Ipad.”


      That’s not an option!


      “Okay, 16, 32, 64, 128 or 256gb?”

      “I dont know.”

      Just 5 minutes on your phone using google please people! It will make shopping faster!

  2. Intel over AMD
    Nvidia over AMD
    Unless price is a main decision factor, then choose AMD.
    It’s not as good, but usually loads cheaper.

    • Actually, I’ve used both over the years (favored AMD for my primary system for a long time), but now, for most it doesn’t matter. Only the heavy lifting (video transcoding/editing or gaming) is affected by the choice. And as much as the tech sites and mags claim otherwise, the difference between the two brands in a price range is usually trivial for those applications. Often single digit percentage points.

      For Web browsing, social media and e-mail, the difference is less than trivial. As Board Worker points out, a Chromebook is probably adequate.

  3. Hello, Client Base, my old friend…
    It seems you need my help again…

    Browsing Internets without AV…
    Toolbars as far as I can see…

    Though I toil, oh my clients will curse my name…
    once again…
    When they install…the virus…

  4. An i3 is a bare-bones processor that will suffice if you only seek a machine for Facebook, Google, word processing, and general Internet browsing. An i5 is best for gaming, Photoshop, or intense multi-tasking. An i7 is only recommended if you overclock or are running high-end graphics or video software. The higher the attached number, the better the processor – the first digit indicates its generation and the other three its class (mine is an i5-4460 Haswell; 4th generation + 460). Not sure on AMD CPUs, however, but I could research that easily.

    Graphics cards are a different beast entirely. You don’t actually need one unless you’re going to be running games from 2013 onwards at high settings or working with the high-end graphics stuff. You can make do with a standard Intel 3000 chipset on a Facebook machine. Any additional graphics card will run games or graphics or video programs better than a motherboard chipset.

    Hope I helped, Harris! Oh wait, he can’t hear me…

    • For the initial list of applications you named, I’ve used a Core2Duo and onboard GPU (nowhere my primary machine) and had no performance issues. Modern systems are massively overpowered for what constitutes daily use for most people.

      A major reason mobile devices are so popular.

      I’m not disputing your primer on relative merits, which seems pretty good to me. It fits in well with the current crop of processors/GPUs. But a good used computer with enough RAM will work for the majority. Especially if one has the skills to swap in an SSD. Or knows someone who does.

    • Funny thing is, parents used to do that for cars (back in my Dad’s day. I look under the hood and say to myself, “yep, that’s an engine.”)

  5. And never give computer advice to a relative who hasn’t tried to learn at least a bit by themselves. You will own any future problems … forever.

    • That’s why I charge friends and family who ask for computer help. Usually $20, for a support session of as long as they need it. $20 shows I value my time, and it’s enough that they won’t call again unless they really need it, but it’s not outrageously expensive. Exceptions can be made (parents) but if you start that way, you won’t get abused.

  6. My mother is a retired college professor, knew how to use word processing programs long before I did, uses Excel and such for keeping track of her taxes and her various church groups’ finances…

    … and believes that her email is saved on her computer, so when she accidentally deletes an e-letter, will spend hours rooting through her Window Explorer’s garbage bin folder for it.

    • Sounds exactly like my mom. I can’t even begin to describe my dads level of computer competency. The best I can explain it is he gets violently angry at pop up dialogue boxes that have the options of an “x” to close the box, an “ok” button and a “cancel” button. Or any combination of options to close out of the box.

    • Well, to be honest, email used to be saved on your computer, before webmail came about.

      If she’s using an email program like Outlook or Thunderbird rather than webmail, then it’s probably there somewhere.

      • I use Thunderbird. I don’t trust some “cloud” server to secure my files. Or the companies that run them. I know that’s the way it heading, but they’ll have to drag me kicking and screaming.

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