The power of You Tube And Google.
That title sounds a bit cavemanish right? Well that's pretty much the brain capacity you need to operate those two sites, but you may need someone to tell you that you can use those two sites to each yourself new tricks. Don't know a word? Google it. Are you a visual leaner, YouTube it. It's not hard people, it just takes an ounce of will power, a few grams of common sense and a desire to learn.
Now not every trick found on either of these sites will work, sometimes you're just out of luck and need to get an expert. And other times, you can save yourself a bit of money and learn what the experts know. Especially in computer repair. Oh my god, I have no degree in computer science or anything computer related, but I can tell you a great deal more than the average geek squad. And I'll do it for less. How did I learn? Well when you don't have the money for an expert and you really want something to work, you either start asking people or start asking Google, if it's available. And I had broken stuff that I really wanted to work, I learned that if I learned how it worked I could probably fix it. That's how I got started.
Personally, I prefer Google, when I want to find out about something new that I don't know much about. I also prefer You Tube, when I need to find a "how to" video. Unless your internet connection, PC or Power go's out. You have access to more than a libraries worth of information. With these two services at our disposal, I think we can achieve a lot more than what we give ourselves credit for.
Symptoms to question.
Now, to frame a question for either. All you have to do is list symptoms, if that doesn't work it may be too many. In that case, try to sort what is normal and what is new, then try searching for what's new.
Sometimes it's as easy as "How do I ______?" And fill the blank. Other times it can be as complicated as submitting a recipe for some French dish I can't pronounce. It varies in between, but most of the time, it's a simple question. It's not rocket surgery, but it is like being a nurse. You have to know if the patient is having a fever before you tell him and send him home with medicine.
Seriously, one of the easiest things to do is fix a desktop PC. Laptops are a bit trickier, but the top two problems I see in laptops are: bad fans and hard drives. A lot times the hard drive just go's bad and people are like "Oh great, now I need a computer." And then proceed to spend a lot more than they need. Slightly smarter people will try to find someone to take a look at it. And to save themselves a lot of money; all they had to do was go to the local library or a friends house. And Google the symptoms that their computer is having.
I've even had friends who are like "Why is my PC so slow? Microsoft sucks." And the problem isn't that Microsoft sucks, their problem is that they don't stop to think that surfing the internet without protection is bad their computer. If you have sex with a condom on, wouldn't you want some protection for your computer when you look at porn?
Then you get the paranoid people who put 15 different ad blockers on their PC and it slows down, because it doesn't have enough cpu power for itself. Now a days, you only need one 360 antivirus solution and then another program to auto clean your PC. Now I'm going to cut myself off before I start ranting.