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A Tech Reality Check for Me by Me

Mea Culpa! That is why I am writing this. Over the last few years I have openly questioned and mocked many in the tech media. I have laughed that they all sit at a Microsoft announcement with their MacBooks. I have wondered what they were thinking when giving all of these startups so much coverage. Things like Slack, HipChat, Quip, etc. These seem like nice products, but everyone knows that if you are part of a decent size business you need a Windows PC on your desk connected to an Active Directory and Microsoft Exchange server in the back.

Well over the last few weeks I have had two moments that really caught my attention. First I was chatting with a friend who is a professor. He said to me something that stuck. Incoming students have no clue how to use Microsoft Office. He said it has been trending this direction over the last few years, but it was really noticeable this year. They all just use Google Docs. They have lived on Gmail most of their tech life, so this just seemed so normal to them. The same way using Word is so normal for me. For the first time he gave up his fight to have all assignments submitted in a .doc(x) format, and setup a Google account himself.

The second moment happened this morning. A client with seventy seats still had seven running Windows XP. They had one piece of very old proprietary software that a few still needed to run, so with some due diligence they remained on those machines. Finally the old software was no longer needed, so it was time to upgrade. The company is on a thirty six month refresh rate. So most are on Windows 7 machines less than three years old. Well I was a little shocked this morning when I got a response to the e-mail about upgrading these seven machines. I was told they want to replace these machines with Macs, and they want to have a plan to replace all their machines in the next twenty four months. Most of the employees use iPhones and iPads, and want their computers to work as well as those devices do. Maybe continuity put it over the top? Whatever it was, after a quick chat it became clear that I was not going to talk them out of this. The decision has been made. It is now up to me to get this done.

So to all those in the media that I accused of living in a “bubble”, I am sorry. Turns out I might have been the one living in that “bubble”.

P.S.This post was written in Draft on a Toshiba Chromebook 2!