Time To Install A Brain Upgrade

, , , , , | Learning | April 22, 2021

I work for a small software company affiliated with a nearby university. We are licensed to sell and support the software while students can use it for free. A very small part of my job is monitoring the customer service email. Because we are a small company with clients who email their support engineers directly, it is typically college students looking for an excuse to turn in their homework late. 

I had one guy call the customer service line and leave a voicemail at 5:37 pm and claim he couldn’t do his homework that was due at 5:30 pm because we didn’t pick up. You know, ignoring the fact he had two weeks to contact us and we only answer software questions, which you don’t actually need to do the homework if you are paying attention in class.

I have just given one PhD student a new install package to run.

Student: “I tried to install it and it doesn’t work.”

Me: “I am going to need more information. Can you confirm that it was installed properly by checking to see if [folder] is empty or has files in it?”

The student sends me a heavily clipped screenshot of what doesn’t even look like our software.

Student: “What does this mean?”

Me: “Hello. Unfortunately, I don’t know which context this is in so I cannot help you with that. Let’s focus on troubleshooting. Did you check [folder]? Did you also check your app settings to see if it was installed correctly?”

Student: “Does it matter where it is installed?”

Me: “It does matter where it is installed. That is why I am asking if you can see the files in that folder or not. Can you please let me know if they are there?”

Student: “Can’t you just send me a new license?”

Me: *Thinking* “Are you going to actually install it this time or not?”

For the record, it turned out he was trying to install a second copy on his work computer, which is a big no-no and goes against the contract he signed. It also didn’t work out for him because of permissions at his work. Oh, well.

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