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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Dec. 27, 2007 / 18 Teves 5768

Computerized confusion

By Thomas Sowell


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | When I bought one of these small, cheap, old-fashioned cathode-ray TV sets on sale to watch while on my exercise machine, I had no idea how high-tech and computerized even these obsolete sets had become.


Nor was this a blessing. I could not even turn the set on and get a channel without reading a 60-page instruction book. If the truth be known, I could not do it even after trying to make some sense out of the instructions.


The next time my computer guru came over to help me with my computer problems, I asked him to set up the TV set so that I could turn it on.


After he went through the instruction book and waded through all the high-tech options — none of which interested me in the slightest — he set up the TV so that I could do something as elementary as turn on the set and choose a channel to watch.


Unfortunately, this was not an unusual experience. All kinds of computerized products — cameras, cell phones, even car radios — have had the same problem.


There must be some blind spot that computer engineers have which prevents them from seeing that (1) most people are not computer engineers, (2) there is no point making simple things complicated, and (3) not everyone is looking for a zillion features to have to wade through to do simple things.


Let's start at square one. What is the first thing you want to do with any computerized product? Turn it on.


Why should that be a problem when people were turning things off and on for generations before there were personal computers? Yet computer engineers seem determined to avoid the very words "off" and "on."


Apparently they feel a need to coin new terms for everything, no matter how simple or well-known those things may be. For computers, the word is "start," which you have to go to for either turning the computer off or on.


With our microwave oven, the word is "power." For my car radio and cell phone, there is no word at all.


For other things, there is the same coining of new words for things people already understand by old words. Printers can be set for "landscape" or "portrait," as if people had never heard of horizontal and vertical.


When I had to have a new radio put into my old car, I told the man who installed it, "I didn't go to M.I.T" and wanted the simplest radio to use that he had.


Yet even the simplest radio he had in stock came with over 100 pages of instructions — and nothing on the radio that said "on" or "off." In fact, none of the buttons on the front of the radio had anything to indicate what they were for.


The man who installed the radio turned it on for me. But this was an old car that I did not use very often, and I did not always want the radio on when I was driving.


Since he had not told me how to turn it off, I just turned the volume down as low as possible, rather than go into the 100 pages of instructions.


I would probably never have learned how to turn that radio off and on if the car's battery had not gone dead one day. While I was waiting on the roof of a parking garage for the Triple-A truck to get there, I had nothing to read except the radio instruction book.


Desperate times call for desperate measures, so I read the instruction book. You might think that telling you how to turn the radio off and on would be on page 1. But you would be wrong.


That would be too obvious, and computer engineers avoid the obvious like the plague.


Eventually, I came to the place where the instruction book said to turn the radio on by pressing the "source" button.


There was of course nothing on the radio itself that said "source." By leafing through the instructions, however, I eventually found a diagram where one of the buttons was identified as the "source" button. Eureka!


My new cell phone also has nothing to give you a clue as to how to turn it off or on, much less do anything so complicated as phone somebody. The next time the car battery goes dead, I will read the thick instruction book, so that I can call Triple A.

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