And who better to write a internet technology review than me? After all, I was one of the lucky few (smirk, smirk) to be offered a free Windows 10 upgrade, not only once, but EVERY time I opened my computer for the last couple of months. Smarter, faster, more secure… what’s not to like about that?
Evidently Windows 10 is new enough that not many reviews have been written about it. I couldn’t find any as I was toying with the idea of trying it. I asked around among my tech savvy friends and no one had any advice to offer. I didn’t find any help online either. Finally, just to get rid of the annoying pop-up I agreed to try it. The marketing lesson here is that if you badger people long enough they will agree just to get rid of you. But we knew that…
The upgrade was pretty easy since it required nothing of me except for checking boxes that gave permission for me to turn my life over to Microsoft for pretty much anything they wanted to do with it. I can see that it’s true – they have to know all those details about me in order to know what ads I would appreciate seeing (never) and what movies and news programs I want to watch (not). Advertising specifically tailored to my needs is very important. I don’t even remember what I did with my needs before the internet came along.
The initial appearance of my start screen was, well, smaller? Instead of charms spread across the whole screen they were all lined up in a small box on the left of my screen. I later learned that was desktop mode. I learned it when I accidentally got in tablet mode and couldn’t find a way back. You’re thinking “why didn’t she watch the tutorial?” I watched the little movie. I watched it every time I encountered a new question. They were always clicking buttons and tabs that I didn’t have on my screen. I gave them virtual punches in the face.
After not being able to open my Open Office program for several days I finally adjusted by stopping production of documents. I was pretty proud of myself for that fix. After a couple weeks of learning my way around and thinking “I can do this” I noticed a weirdness of slow motion taking over my usual online activities. Not wanting to blame Windows 10 for every interminable black screen, or frozen loss of control episode, I called my computer’s doctor and got a prescription to clean up and check for viruses. It was about time anyway.
All was well, as I recall, and I was thinking things were moving along a little faster. Truthfully, I don’t remember everything that transpired in proper sequence. Did I close down and restart before the next problem occurred? Don’t know, but suddenly I’m going nowhere on the internet. I’m getting a simple message that there are no internet connections available. That’s happened before. I turned of the power to the router and rebooted, twice I think. My cell phone was connecting with wifi, my internet home phone was connecting with wifi, but my computer kept saying there was nothing to connect to. Liar, liar, circuits on fire.
I spent the rest of yesterday looking for a wifi switch on my computer, looking for Windows 10 help on my cell phone, and having real angst about being so reliant on the elusive cyber world. During my search for Windows 10 connection problems I ran across a note from Microsoft that offered a return to my previous Windows 8.1, which at that point felt kind of like a lost child finally finding mother. It didn’t occur to me that I would need the internet to bring my mother back. I clicked. The screen was black for hours.
I finally decided the computer had turned itself off and was not just working silently in the dark. I powered up and Windows 8.1 magically loaded itself and all my familiar friends were there and in good health. Thank you Windows 10 for the experience with smarter, faster and more secure… just sayin’.