Old Habits and XP Die Hard

So I’ve been wanting to help my parents get back into ‘life with a PC’ for the last few months, coaxing them gently towards the internet, online photo exchange (so they can see the grandkids) and perhaps even Sunday morning IP video calls.

First step on this journey is getting them a PC and after several weeks of looking I finally settled on a AMD powered Dell which was on special offer for less than $500 or 250 of my fairest British pounds – remarkable !

But why bore you with such details? Here’s the rub..the reason I spent so much time trying to find a laptop was because I didn’t want to get one with Vista. Call me old fashioned but I’m quite comfortable with XP. I know how it works, I know it’s limitations (which are pretty few) but mostly I’m just not convinced my parents need anything more. I’ve plenty of software lying around they can use and it’s always been pretty rock solid for running all the aps I’ve ever needed.

Apparently I’m not alone. Apple have already started poking fun in their latest ads and whilst I was searching for machines at my local Fry’s one sales person described Vista as a “train wreck” whilst another told me an amusing story about a shipment of Lenovo machines which came in loaded with XP and had been sold in a matter of days.

But is Vista really that bad or are we also experiencing a realization amongst users that if the technology ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Like I say there’s nothing right now compelling me to buy Vista. I’m not suffering productivity losses, my web experiences are just fine, I can edit and manipulate video, speak to family members in a variety of global locations, manage my database of songs and run all manner of cool games…I’m a happy camper. There’s no way my parents will have higher demands than me, however I will be able to offer them “knowledgeable son tech support” with XP and set up the machine before they even get it…

It will be interesting to see how Vista adoption changes over time. As more software and products are configured for Vista then it will undoubtedly seep into our lives. I think it’s just interesting to note that even as technology advances, our productivity comfort zone and habitual usage patterns may mean we resist this constant market push for change.

Dick Reed
Just Media, Inc.

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