Actually, I understand what the techs are saying about their mothers. I'm not even a tech and I remember telling her to just program the VCR herself and if she didn't try to do it, she'd never learn (she never did). The average tech must spend so much MORE time than I ever did explaining stuff that they assume everyone around them is a time-sucking idiot who needs a computer with the complexity of set of blocks in order to not call them every 10 minutes with a question. You're no doubt correct that most of them would rather do the work of learning to use a more useful, open machine but before they even try, they've called the person quoted in the article, who makes the rational, self-interest observation that stuff needs to be easier to use.
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