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Jim and Peri's
for Turkish Learning --
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Internet Survival Kit for Turkey --
Not covered in Jim and Peri's Survival Kit.
A Third Source of
Internet Problems in Turkey --
requires the right tools for the job...
In the introduction to this blog-series a few days ago (http://www.learningpracticalturkish.com/internet-survival-kit--006-06-05-2.html), I neglected to mention a 3rd source of Internet problems we suffer in Turkey. It is of 'general cyberspace' origin and it happens to us when software developers dish out poorly-tested Windows XP-based application software.
In some respects, poorly tested software is a general problem that Internet junkies worldwide have to suffer -- not a problem exclusive to Turkey or even to Windows XP. Yet living here, so remote from any individualized Customer Support (or Customer Complaint) possibility, it seems much more 'personal' when software developers send us (or 'Live Update' us) a new bug-infested version -- and leave us to scramble when it doesn't work.
Even worse is when a new software version appears to work (at least for its 'announced purpose') but later turns out to be responsible for one or more nasty (and seemingly unrelated) problems that cause our delicately balanced computer system to 'go south'.
Here's an account of our latest real-life example of such an occurrence (in which I've compressed action and time, to prevent your dozing off...)
The Symptoms -- on our computer system
Treatment of Symptoms
It looked to me as though our computer was having hard-disk corruption problems, so:
Result of the First Treatment --- and attempt at re-treatment
The Restore process took nearly 15 minutes -- and it seemed to fix the screen character-dancing problem. But the Microsoft Office Shortcut Bar still displayed the non-descript icon for all applications and the Homesite date/time stamp problem remained -- and had been joined, I now noticed, by the same problem in Edit Plus (our full-featured text-editor).
At this point, I presumed that Homesite and Edit Plus had been damaged during the suspected hard-disk corruption. So I tried un-installing and re-installing them. When that had no effect, I thoroughly searched the On-line Knowledge Bases, Support Documentation, and even User Wikis for Windows, Homesite, and Edit Plus -- without discovering a single useful clue.
The Cure -- what finally worked
And, then on an off chance... I began cruising Google, for the phrase 'date/time stamp not update' -- and I stumbled across a brief note on a Java Developers forum which said simply. "Are you by chance using Zone Alarm 6.5? That was my problem!" -- and it provided a URL for more info.
I had been trying Zone Alarm (ZA) Internet Security recently -- because I just got tired of Norton Internet Security's excruciating restrictiveness. And, I had permitted a Live Download and Update to ZA's 6.5 Version the evening before our date/time problems surfaced...
Make a long story short, when I un-installed ZA 6.5 and re-installed ZA 6.1, it fixed all the remaining problems... My personalized Microsoft Office Shortcut Bar icons came back in all their glory -- and both Homesite and Edit Plus performed the date/time stamp operation flawlessly.
In all, I had wasted almost 8 hours -- including a particularly beautiful beach-day -- running down that Zone Alarm software bug and repairing it. grrrr.
But, I grudgingly have to admit, I guess, that there was something positive that came out of the software problem-discovery-process...Because it highlighted the value of:
1. online forums, knowledge bases, wikis, and blogs -- and the individuals who take the time to post their software developer problems, solutions, and useful findings
2. modern search engines -- with their splendid ability to lead you to the exact thing you need (I favor Google but only slightly, and regularly use 3 others -- Yahoo, MSN, and Ask Jeeves.)
Without those two key elements working in harmony and unison, I'd still be scratching my head -- and missing another perfect beach-day...
Aren't those two elements considered integral components of the Web 2.0 concept? Is that bright Internet future already upon us?
© [LPT] Internet Survival Kit -- Finding the right tools for the job...