People Describe The Most Ridiculous Thing They've Ever Seen A Technologically Illiterate Person Do
Windows on Unsplash

New technology seems to be introduced at a faster and faster rate all the time.

It's only natural not everyone will be conversant in all the latest tech.

But some people really struggle.


Redditor NanoPope asked:

"What’s the most ridiculous thing you saw a computer illiterate person do with a computer?"

Mice

"I have two coworkers who aren't sure how computers really work. Both have wireless mice."

"Coworker A's mouse stops working and can't figure out why. Coworker B takes his mouse and walks over to her desk, puts his mouse down and jiggles it around, remarking 'Huh, mine isn't working either here. Must be your desk or something'."

"Meanwhile his cursor is doing a dance around his screen back at his own desk."

"All I could do to keep a straight face."

- SecretlyHistoric

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"I was born in the early '80s, but I grew up with computers (Atari 800XL, followed by Atari ST, before we got our first 486 "IBM Clone" PC), so I was pretty computer literate from an early age."

"When I was in elementary school, my grade took a field trip to a temporary pop-up dinosaur museum. There were several hands-on exhibits set up, some of them involving computers."

"I remember seeing a group of students and a teacher crowded around one of the computers trying to figure out how to get it to work. The teacher had the mouse in her hand, turned upside down, and was trying to move the cursor by rolling the ball around (this was before optical mice)."

"Also, this was NOT a trackball, but an actual rollerball mouse with a mousepad."

- drummer_who_codes

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Keyboards

"My father in law one day rearranged just the keys on his keyboard in alphabetical order."

"A was still Q, B still W and so on."

"In the end he smashed that keyboard and bought new one."

- lemonedpenguin

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Email

"Early 2000s, I opened an email account for my parents. I set it up on their work computer since I was waiting for them to finish work when I set it up."

"Everything worked great until one day I told them to open an email I sent them and they kept insisting they'd do it the next day when they were at work."

"Long story short they thought their email lived in the work computer and they couldn't access it from other computers. A quick lesson in email and suddenly they got much more responsive to emails."

- cybergaleu

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"When I was the computer support person at my local library back in 04 an elderly lady was at a machine with an envelope and a confused look on her face."

"I approached and asked if she needed help and she said, 'I'd like to send this letter to my daughter in email, but I don't see anywhere to put it in'."

"She was holding a sealed envelope with her daughter's email address as the address and her return address in the regular spot. No stamp though."

"The look on her face was so earnest that I couldn't even be angry. I patiently explained what email was and helped her set up a Gmail account and typed up the letter in the email for her to send."

- Lobsterbib

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Picture This

"My mom wanted to paint a picture of the Pope, so in a Youtube video that showed a picture of him she took a picture with a camera, developed the picture into a 4x6, and gave it to me to enlarge."

"So I just searched for the original image and hit print..."

- 3-DMan

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Disk Drive

"Back in the days of the original Apple Macintosh (beige case, black and white display, new-fangled 3.5" floppy disk drive), one of the secretaries where I was working managed to force 2 floppies into the single drive at once."

"'It kept asking for disk 2,' she explained."

- corndogco

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Don't Turn It Off And On Again

"Back around 2000 I did IT for a country club. Every Friday and Saturday night, without fail, the server which was in a locked room would crash."

"This caused the food and beverage ordering system to go down for about 20 minutes."

"One weekend, I stayed late on a friday and sort of camped out."

"At about the time the server normally crashed, at the height of the dinner rush, the food and beverage manager walked in and unplugged the server from the ups, then plugged it back in."

"I asked him why. He said it 'made everything run faster' and further said this was a normal weekend routine."

- -Blixx-

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"I used to be sort of a sysadmin for remote signals intelligence sensors for the Army. A few times a week for a few hours, an entire region of a specific network would go down and we'd just go kinda dark for a bit on that platform."

"No one could figure out why, and we normally have near 100% uptime. Colonels are calling asking wtf is up, teams are dispatched to check the sensors, no one could give an answer."

"Then we noticed they were only in hours that fell between 7am-3pm local time, Monday-Friday... hmm okay. Let's check everything again, teams go out to reboot each sensor individually, every node and server between us and the sensors, physically reseat cables... nothing, still goes out randomly for hours."

"Then one day during an outage the techs forward go check out that specific server room."

"There was a lone Navy Lieutenant Commander in there doing office work (even though he had a private office) and he didn't like how loud the servers were so he just powered them all down when he wanted to work in his hideaway."

"This dude just casually blacked out a bunch of national security missions for a whole a** country instead of you know, closing his office door."

- napleonblwnaprt

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We Don't Know How To Use Their Tech Either

"My grandmother has complained to me that store clerks are shocked and confused when she informs them she doesn't have an email address to provide, or a computer to make one on."

"She was born in 1929 and is 93 years old. The most modern device she owns is her TV, which has a VCR attached to it."


"She listens to music on a radio with a tape deck in it. Her phone hangs on the wall of her dining room. She doesn't even own a microwave."

"I think someone who was almost an adult when WWII ended can be given a break for not having an email address."

- Chris_Buttcrouch

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So, are you the tech savvy one or the one who says "oops, my bad"?

Share your tech troubles in the comments.

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