Thursday, August 2, 2012
Where’s My Inner Geek?
We bought a Roku, one of those little tiny boxes that lets you stream movies and shows to a television.
No need for a PC, it said on the box. It connects directly to your high-speed internet wirelessly. True, but for most of the items on the menu, you need to go on the computer and enter a code to activate. This wasn’t a big problem, but it still struck me as a tad misleading.
It’s really easy, it said on the box. plug it in, add it to the home network, and enjoy. Well, I connected it to the TV set and plugged it in (easy). I put the AAA batteries in (no problem). Now we get to configuration of the network. This little baby was designed to automatically detect wireless networks and then guide me right through the set up steps. Yes! It detected my network and I selected it (so easy! I am practically ready for my guest appearance on The Big Bang Theory!)
Not so fast. Enter your network password, which is case sensitive. That means having to go to that unnecessary PC and look up the password, which involves wandering about the desktop looking for the hidden list of passwords. Enter it in that laborious press the arrows across the line of letters and numbers and clicking “ok” for each one. I am not used to this and it takes a very long time. I made mistakes and had to start over. Finally hit “connect.”
Nope, “Cannot connect.” Try lower case letters. Nope. Recheck the password. It is correct, but still, “cannot connect.”
STEP 4: Complete Guided Setup—It’s the final stretch and hooray—it’s a breeze! I quote directly there. My perky little Hi! Let’s Get Started. booklet taunts me with it’s helpful assurances and mini pep talks about this experience bring out my inner geek.
Finally the on screen process politely suggests that I call support. Fine. I called. The technician was friendly and spoke English extremely well. I had to log onto my supposedly unnecessary computer. (Honestly, who believes that a computer is not a necessity today? That’s all I’m saying.)
I handed over control of my computer to someone half way around the world somewhere, and after 45 minutes or so (much of which involved me fumbling to enter my e-mail address and a password, with some swearing under my breath that the tech politely ignored after the first slip) I had a roku account.
The tech had me click on a Netflix movie to test it out. Then I sat and watched the title just sit there. “Something is not right. This is taking too much time, I think. Let me try…”
“Oh, wait,” I interrupted. “I’ll bet I have to press start. Yep, that worked. Gee, thanks for all your help.” Inner geek, indeed. Geez.