By the time you read this article, Windows Vista, the successor to Windows XP will already be on the shelf ready to purchase or in the new computer you are about to buy. People are going to be skeptical to want to buy it because of all the growing pains it took to learn Windows XP. In fact, people still don’t know how to use XP without a book or a geek by their side showing them what to do.
Let’s break down first what I believe to be the computer knowledge percentage theory, and then I will let you know how Windows XP and Vista fit into that theory. Lets say 100% knowledge represents everything there is to know about computers (computer genius). These people probably work for a computer company already or hacking into another one. Now lets go in the other direction…
33 percenter (Computer illiterate) – This person only knows how to turn on the computer (sometimes), run a few applications they use most often, go to a website, and maybe push the start button. They are not capable of most things beyond the basics, modifying their PC environment, troubleshoot simple problems, or get into safe mode if needed. In fact a way to tell a 33 percenter is to ask them where the desktop is. They may even say the computer is sitting on it. These people are more likely to swallow their pride and have a pc tech come and do all the maintenance and repairs on the PC.
66 percenter (Computer Saavy) – This person is a little bit better. They can do light troubleshooting, install or uninstall applications, modify their settings themselves, and go into safe mode to diagnose a startup issue. They sometimes do their own maintenance but some of the more sophisticated problems are over their heads. Some of this group can actually get into the control panel, but only understand about 5 of the 20 icons that are on the screen. Don’t trust these people with advanced topics, like network troubleshooting or the event viewer. They are more then happy to call a tech for that!
85 percenter (Computer Guru) – Now we are getting into my territory. These people know how to repair simple to difficult computer issues as well as creating solutions to problems that are uncommon. They can setup networks, troubleshoot BSOD issues, hardware errors and advanced internet setups. These people, when they have the power, are able to teach the 33 percenters how to use their computer more efficiently, and the 66 percenters how to have more confidence in what they already know. By allowing the less fortunate people are the people they serve. The 85 percenters are a godsend to this new world of technology/
Now getting back to my main topic, Windows XP was designed for the 66 percenters and up. The so called wizards in the computer settings were not designed for the simple minds of the 33 percenters to grasp. In order to change your wallpaper, there are 3 ways to do so, but XP never shows you exactly how to do it. You would have to know to right click an empty area of the desktop, and click properties. 33 percenters don’t even have a chance!
And forget it if you do get an error…the instructions on how to diagnose it might as well be Japanese to you. Which is why Microsoft corrected this problem and created…
Windows Vista. The OS WAS designed finally for the computer illeritate in mind. Now when you want to change the wallpaper, right click the wallpaper itself and select personalize. There you can change it to whatever you want using the easy to see and understand menu that’s provided. And lets say you wanted to connect a remote printer to your computer. In XP you have to be a genius to manually set the ip address along with the advanced settings on how the printer will print once it gets the data from your computer. With Vista, you have 3 steps…select printers from the NEW start panel, select ADD PRINTER, and yes connect it from a network. The PC automatically searches your network for any printers it finds. That’s it! As long as you have the driver cd that came with the printer (or if you are on a corporate network, have the IT guy preload that driver onto your computer), then you are ready to print a test page and begin using your printer. Easy easy easy!
So before you say poo poo to moving on to Vista, ask yourself, what percenter are you?