Underneath the wires


“Software is everything!”


This is the first thing that I heard come out of my lecturer’s mouth. My immediate reaction was… how could this possibly be true? Prior to hearing that, I’d spent hours fixing family computers, installing motherboards, restoring hard drives, and tossing in a variety of electronic organs into this electronic being. If you are an average computer user and you see another guy with a toolkit, screwing stuff in the right place and building up a computer…you are impressed.


When I first started my journey into geekdom the most obvious thing was to learn how it worked. If you want to learn to help cure people, that general consensus is that you should study medicine, get to handle a few organs, and soon enough knowing the majority of the body…should mean that you can help people master their troubles. Instinctually I thought the same way about computers. Surely the guy with the cables in his hands, is better off than the guy that’s sitting behind the computer typing?


–>By the way this isn’t a picture of my room…although it’s good to dream 😀



It took me a while to realise that my logic, although correct to some degree, lacked a different approach. Somewhere along the line, in the computer world, we’re going to encounter software. If you’re into networking, learning to build up a motherboard may be useful however, at some stage even a cable monkey has to learn to flick through computer diagnostic screens and check everything is hunky dory. A doctor can give you good advice, but somewhere down the line he’ll encounter a patient with a bodily abnormality that is a result of something in her psychology (or software), rather than in the torso.


I’m using the human comparison for those of you reading this who aren’t familiar with computers on a technical level. Early on in life I did a few years of therapy to correct my internal software (psychology or thought patterns). This doesn’t mean I’m sorted for the rest of my life (i.e. there will always be updates I need, and new paths to explore.) When I started to first work with my head for a while, I began to realise that problems can get fixed faster. If you’ve been to a therapist of some kind and are prepared to change, sometimes you will find the strength in yourself, to correct a few errors.


I’m not trying to sound too idealistic and unreasonable either. Hard work and determination play a huge role as well…although back to the computers now.



The layers

I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “Nothing is what is seems.” This is a very paranoid and poor judgment to make. Instead of getting worried, take a second to think of it in terms of technology. We look at websites every day; we click on links, download photos, Google research topic and so forth. Behind it all is code. Endless amounts of words and numbers, directing the flow in information to the right place (waiting for sometimes a single mouse click from a user). This should be a frightening prospect to those who delve into other academic fields. If you look deep enough into the human body, you no longer see obvious foibles like emotions, veins, organs, or blood. You start to see cells and atoms…and beyond that chromosomes and DNA. These attributes we all carry help us to stay alive, to catch criminals and invent even greater technology.


This is how I’m starting to feel about software. There are people who spend years behind the computer coding, building and sculpting. They are (for the most part), the people responsible for when a new gadget or computer is released. If software wasn’t around we would stop emailing each other, watching cable, TV adverts would be non-existent, and life would feel pretty dull and uneventful all of a sudden.


So what is my point behind all the examples, and computer loving? Embrace technology. I often say to people that ‘there is a program for everything’. You might be able to think of something that hasn’t been made, to contradict me. Well, in theory I’d put a word in a programmer’s ear about it, and within a week you’d need to find a new argument. Now I’m not trying to act like some sort of genius, and come across as if I can build anything, but we have the tools are out there.

Apple is emerging as one of the leaders in the computer industry. One of the reasons for this is because when you buy an apple, you get a lot of software given to you to use, before you need to throw down another credit card. The whole point is they want to use software, to give people a boost. Why should a user buy a computer, and waste time gathering together bits and pieces of extra software, to start using?

I like that idea. Put some tools in the customer’s hands, and teach him to build!






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