Monday, November 12, 2007

If this doesn't prove to you I'm a geek nothing will

Took the car in Friday for a regular tune up.

Why blog about this?

As the tech was trying to print out the report of what was done something, a here-to-fore never seen error was interfering. So, there I was, looking over the shoulder of the tech guy trying to solve the problem from software written by EDS (when Ross Perot owned the company) and I got interested. Cool! I wonder how this software works. The tech is playing around and I couldn't help myself. I blurted out a few suggestions, asked some questions and got involved in the trouble shooting.

As if that wasn't bad enough, after that problem was solved I asked a simple, not so innocent question. It relates to the fact that I hate paper. It gets everywhere. I've been getting more and more of my of statements, bills, receipts electronically and storing them as pdfs and what I do have in paper have been in a long-term scanning/sorting endeavor. Mountains of paper reduced to a few redundant CDs.

One of the things I still get on paper is my car receipts and records of maintainance. I don't want to scan new paper. So, I ask, "Hey, that information on the screen there... umm... is it possible to email it to me?" "I don't know, let's try", says the tech. He was kind of into it because he didn't know how and it seemed like a cool idea.

Now, remember, this is software from the 80's working inside XP. We could capture a screen but the data was on multiple screens and it was unwieldy to capture, paste, capture, paste etc. Very unsatisfactory. Then, we found this strange option called "copy append" that did the trick! Presto-change-O, paste once into a document and send as pdf. BOOM! (The other cool thing was that the shop used open office. How cool is that?!)

Now, I'll be getting my records electronically, the tech gets to go to mister boss man and say "hey, here's an idea that customers might like AND we use less paper, saving money".

All this in a garage. Yep, I am a geek.

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