8 Tips for Those Who “Know Nothing about Technology”

May 23, 2007

A Small Business Technology Survivor’s Guide
by Doug Ziewacz

Let’s face it….Most of us will never aspire to the technological genius of Bill Gates or ever consider the monumental task of inventing the internet like Al Gore. As mere technological mortals, the rest of us can only hope to make it through the workday without wrestling pesky Microsoft Word Documents, waiting for internet connectivity, and enduring agonizingly slow computer speeds. While I am not suggesting a mass call to Microsoft Certification or advocating technological vigilantism; to all you technological incompetents I offer some quick and easy troubleshooting tips that anybody can perform. What follows is an 8 tip technology-troubleshooting survivor’s guide:

What to do if you think you have a problem

Is it plugged in?

Sometimes all the advanced technological trouble shooting in the world can’t get you past an unplugged cable or power supply. Check to make sure all cables are securely attached. From time to time cables are accidentally unplugged disconnected, or inadvertently unattached.

Go ahead and restart your computer

Save any unsaved work and restart your computer to see if the problem persists. Sometimes, a quick reboot is just the ticket for a pesky computer.

Ask yourself if anything has recently changed on your computer

Have you recently downloaded any software or installed any hardware that might be causing the problem. If so, go ahead and revert back to a time before your most recent activity by uninstalling the software or hardware.

Is this an isolated incident?

Evaluate whether your problem is isolated, perhaps affecting only a particular application or is it part of a greater problem involving your operating system or multiple applications.

Stick to the facts

Detailing the specifics of your problem and documenting the exact language and errors that you might be receiving will allow for a quicker and more efficient resolution.

Are you the only one?

Find out if anybody else in your office or building is experiencing the same issue. If this is the case then your issue might be network related and you should notify your IT support resource

You might not be alone?

Once again, Google just might be able to provide the answers to your dilemma. On many occasions I have found answers to basic computer troubleshooting issues on
Google Groups. Groups are forums for discussion, Q & A, or commentary. You might just be surprised by how many people have experienced similar problems and if you’re lucky somebody has provided the solution.

Help is there for a reason

Don’t be afraid to consult the help menu on the toolbar of your applications. The help feature of most software applications often provides FAQs and common troubleshooting issues.

For more information about this article please contact Doug Ziewacz


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