Top 10 PC TechnoScams
The personal computer industry lends itself to snake oil more than any other major consumer field. High technology is moving so fast and is so complex that it would take full time study just to keep up with the major salient points in the ongoing development of the industry. Therefore there can be no such thing as an "informed consumer" in high tech, and the various snake oil salesmen masquerading as technology CEOs know this well. They have foisted on the poor unsuspecting public more scams than Nigerian 419ers could ever come up with in their wildest dreams:
1) Inkjet Printer Ink. Most people can't believe that they can pick up an inkjet printer that will print out their documents and photos in full color with photographic clarity and resolution for $29.95. However, they'll find out that they've been suckered in after a handful of pages are printed, the tiny "starter" ink cartridges are empty and they face an expense of nearly $100 to buy new ink cartridges. Gotcha!
2) Inkjet Printer Paper. Why bother with photo labs when you can print out photos at home that look just like the ones that came from the pros? Sure, many new inkjet printers can reproduce photos in amazing clarity, but the paper that requires is far more expensive than just having the lab do it for you.
3) OEM CPU Coolers. The heatsink and fan assemblies which come with new CPUs are usually sufficient for keeping the processor at cool operating temperatures only if the PC is idling outdoors in Nunavut in February. Aftermarket cooler technology is efficient and inexpensive, so why do the manufacturers insist on packaging overheating-prone junk with their CPUs?
4) ISP Bandwidth Claims. Sure, you can get 8MB/s download speeds for your $39.95 a month broadband subscription. Just remember that not only is it 8 megabits per second, which works out to 1 megabyte per second, and that is a theoretical maximum that can be achieved only if the distributed traffic load on your ISPs servers is next to nothing... which is almost never.
5) VOIP 911. Don't trust your life to it. Ever. Unlike regular landlines which will directly connect you to emergency services in your town, VOIP can connect you to a generic 911 operator who might route your emergency call to Portland, Maine instead of Portland, Oregon.
6) Video Game Feature Sets. It is common practice for game publishers to issue new versions which require supercomputers to play properly. What is the point of distributing a game if the hardware specifications are at least five years ahead of market availability?
7) Linux. It doesn't run any of the applications that real everyday computer users need with the sole exception of Open Office. Dealing with it is so cumbersome that it will make you look at a $100+ purchase of the evil bloatizoid Windows Vista as money well spent.
8) Mac Pricing. A great OS riding atop hardware that is priced three or four times above what you can get at etailers. Price out Apple's RAM or Video Card upgrades and get ready to laugh uproariously.
9) Vista: SuperFetch and ReadyBoost do nothing noticeable other than sucker the unsuspecting into thinking that they are actually valid features. Vista Ultimate is the Ultimate Joke as the only reason to spend the big bucks was to get all sorts of Wow! exclusive features that were never released.
10) AMD K10 Phenoms. Hahahahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaa... Don't get me started on Dr. Ruiz and his Phenom-enal Phailures.
More by this Author
Of all the incredibly stupid things people do to their CPUs, including overclocking them until they are hot enough to melt steel, the single most imbecilic modification has to be lapping. Using absurdly...
The Most Outlandish Computer Comparison Ever! A 1986 Mac Plus pitted against a 2007 AMD Athlon 64 X2 4800+ DualCore in a series of Microsoft Word & Excel user tests. You will NEVER believe who wins!
The one and only real Braciola: a slice of prime, lean mega-pounded beef, filled with the most delectable mixture on Earth; rolled, browned and then simmered in sauce all day long! Yum!