RAM by Dave from www.opticgroove.com.au

I made up the title. Yes the words are completely made up, as if you weren’t sure. The first is a play on words of technology and the second tech knowledge.  Today’s goal is to make you smarter, we aren’t off to a great start at this point, are we?

Techlife has always been a forum for you, the readers. I just pretend to know about the technology we discuss. But there is a topic we have never addressed here your “Go-to”.

Each of us has someone who we see as our “Go-to” This is the person who makes us tech knowledge-ier.  Our “Go-to” is someone who we rely on for technology — questions, decisions, hints, tips and troubleshooting. In most cases this isn’t our “Go-to’s” main role in our life. We just view them as more knowledgeable about technology. Oh how lucky they are to know us.

Raise your hand if you are laughing because your “Go-to” is your 4 year old grandson. It’s ok. Many “Go-to” roles are filled by someone younger. Of course that choice becomes a problem when it is time to upgrade your old tower PC and you aren’t sure if trusting the 4 year old with a decision such as “Should I add more RAM or a bigger hard drive?” (Tip: Always add more RAM if your machine can handle more.)

Some of you who laughed at the 4 year old grandson as someone’s “Go-to” were a bit smug. You are thinking I have the best “Go-to” they know everything. You know they do because even a simple question turns into a complex explanation. They use fancy math equations and acronyms you have never heard of before. So as great as their answers are, they end up needing to “explain it in language you’ll understand.” Result: You nod your aching head, and reach for an aspirin. (Seriously who takes aspirin for a headache anymore?)

You may even serve as a “Go-to” yourself. Laughing inside as you spew forth advice word for word from your 8 year old “Go-to” as your listener’s eyes glaze over in a combination of thanks and fear you secretly know all to well. You always hope they never ask that scary question which makes them question your tech knowledge and your “Go-to” status in their eyes.

5 Tech Tips for Everybody

Here’s where we make you smarter, run this by your “Go-to” and let us know if they agree.

  1. Don’t sweat new hardware. PC, laptop, tablet or smartphone more than four years old? Anything you buy will be faster and work better than what you have today.
  2. Buy last year’s model. Most people don’t need the latest top of the line hardware and will do just fine with last year’s model, saving while still buying good gear.
  3. Review actual needs. Examine your requirements” and see if there is software/website/app that does 60-70% of what you need at a fraction of the cost or even for free.
  4. Try before you buy. After using software/website/app for a bit of time. You’ll know when/ if it is worth supporting the company by upgrading.
  5. Tech shouldn’t complicate life. Technology should be used to speed up tasks and improve your work/life. If you aren’t finding that to be the case stop using it.

Next time before you scream and reach out to your “Go-to” yelling about how you are about to jump off the Tech Now Ledge. Take a breath. Your “Go-to” is a thankless job. They deserve more love.

And lastly remember to double check if the power cord is actually plugged in.