[kwlug-disc] OT: "No I will not fix your computer."

John Kerr johneddie.kerr at gmail.com
Tue Oct 29 19:57:02 EDT 2013

Sometimes automation happens in industry when adding more people will not
increase production. The industrial revolution took place when labour was
pretty cheep.

Is it correct to say as more people purchase laptops there are less
computers to fix? There is no point to try to fix them, it will cost too

About 2 years ago I asked someone in a local computer shop about the repair
business and he said that it is mostly about getting the data off of a
failed computer and copying it to a new one. I asked him "has computer
repair hit the wall of the law of diminishing returns?" and he said yes.

Take printer sales for example, it was over twenty years ago when a
computer hardware supplier to the University of Guelph told me to go to
Staples to buy a printer, we can't buy them for the pice they are selling
them for. This was for a small office at the U of G.

Bob, I will send any business your way. But I am not surprised that you are
not doing much business in repairs.



On Tue, Oct 29, 2013 at 6:46 PM, unsolicited <unsolicited at swiz.ca> wrote:

> On 13-10-29 05:05 PM, Bob Jonkman wrote:
>> unsolicited wrote:
>>> I don't expect Bob much wants such business.
>> Urm, let's not be putting words into Bob's mouth.
> Absolutely. For which I do / did apologize.
> I have made the assumption, perhaps erroneously, throughout, that we're
> talking (home) consumer, not business (user).
> Business different beastie. Let alone easier / more predictable to get
> paid reasonable amounts, or offered the work in the first place.
> The 30 hours I talk about has as much to do with putting in processes and
> programs and individual / personal training to prevent reoccurrence, as it
> does in initial remediation to return a system to usability in the first
> place. A fair bit of this is already in motion in any business, unlike the
> home user free for all. And a business can leverage a bit of individual
> training to the rest of their organization.
> -----
> > Time is not valued.
> Hmm. Rather, time is not deemed affordable.
> (They'll spend millions to automate a plant so they don't have to use
> people. I'm sure there's a crossing line in there somewhere, but still
> trying to work that out - less employees, less money to spend in the
> community, less ability to buy product ... less need for automation.)[Other
> side: If you don't, your competitor will, and you'll be out of business
> anyways. Or at least have to reduce staff.]
> > When people pay, they expect a tangible good in return.
> Absolutely. They expect value. And they deserve it.
> And as long as product price/performance ratios keep going down, the value
> being compared against (remediation time/cost) vs new product cost will
> continue to suffer. People time will continue to lose out, and lose out to
> larger and larger extents. Middle class, isn't any more, is shrinking -
> wage disparities continue to widen. (Because time isn't deemed affordable.)
> They also expect the problem to be solved. Since one can't promise that,
> the problem / solution isn't yet known, and people don't like the
> uncertainty of T&E (Time and Expense, $X/hr - the problem takes as long as
> the problem takes to solve, charging throughout), they are even more
> reluctant to pursue repair. They know if they spend $x predictable dollars,
> they'll come out the other side with a guaranteed solved problem. vs the
> lack of guarantee that 2 hours will do it. (Like said, never mind this
> means a commitment on their part to re-learn and re-apply what they already
> have.)
> > I don't think Paul was asking for an ROI analysis, just a list of repair
> shops.
> Nor has anyone offered one.
> > The quick and dirty answer is: Geek Squad at Best Buy/Futureshop,
> EasyTech at Staples, and Nerds On Wheels.
> I have no reason to believe that is an answer, from what I've heard. At
> something like $75 / visit / issue, and a very narrow definition of 'issue'
> - if you need them it's seldom a single issue expense.
> i.e. There is no answer - everything is cost prohibitive. For the home
> user not willing to figure it out themselves, or have some nice person do
> so for them.
> I expect Canada Computer can be included in the above list - they may even
> give you a break if it's hardware and you buy a replacement from them.
> Wouldn't surprise me if installation were extra, though.
> Of course ... YMMV.
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