Saturday, June 19, 2021

Computer-induced stress worse than tax time?

A survey commissioned by Crucial.com has discovered that computer performance problems are causing people stress. No news there, right? Well, it’s causing more stress than you might think.
 

 

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According to the survey, 52 per cent of Americans were unhappy with the performance of their computers, and of those, 94 per cent said that had caused them stress.

How much stress? Twenty-one per cent said more stress than going through airport security. And 18 per cent said it was more stressful than filing taxes.

In his Forbes article, Gene Marks says it’s because we live in an app world:

There are now hundreds of thousands of apps (they used to be called applications but the world has gotten that much lazier over the past few years) written by tens of thousands of application developers around the world.  Some are great.  Others are not so great.  And no matter how hard Google or Microsoft or Apple may try, they can’t test the reliability of them all.  So the world becomes proliferated with lousy software.

I’d argue that it’s because of our dependence on technology. I started my journalism career with a tool set of A) a phone book, and 2) a phone. Now, if I don’t have a Web connection, I’m more or less helpless. I don’t know how many people can’t get from Point A to unknown Point B without the intervention of a GPS or mapping program, but I’ll wager there are plenty, and there will be more and more with each passing product year. And how can the masses maintain personal contact with loved ones if they can’t get to Facebook?

Crappy apps (crapplications?) or no, we are the problem. There are things we should be able to do without technological intervention, like read a map, look up a phone number, and maintain a personal relationship.

 
(As a postscript, our content management system crashed as I was entering this story. Oh, irony …)
 

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
Dave Webb
Dave Webb
Dave Webb is a freelance editor and writer. A veteran journalist of more than 20 years' experience (15 of them in technology), he has held senior editorial positions with a number of technology publications. He was honoured with an Andersen Consulting Award for Excellence in Business Journalism in 2000, and several Canadian Online Publishing Awards as part of the ComputerWorld Canada team.

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