Monday, February 03, 1997

It Slices... It Dices...

Editor's NOTE: This is a moldie oldie that I pulled from a text dump archive. None of the links will work anymore (or 99% won't) - but the names and companies have NOT changed.

OK. So last night I was watching late night television in a scotch-induced haze and I came to the conclusion that this world is going to hell in a hand basket. With my thumb poised in the "surfing" position, I rocketed through all 77 channels and saw only 4 channels with programming on it - the rest were infomercials.

Infomercials? Give me a break! If I see one more ad for a psychic hotline (Deonne - stick with music, baby), ab crunchers, gizmos for walking without going anywhere, car polish, no money down real estate (give me a break - this ISN'T the 80's!)... you get the idea. These "programs" had nothing to do with providing INFORMATION (other than how to order) - and only wasted the bandwidth of occasional insomniacs like myself.

Every single program has the same objective - induce other caffeine junkies to buy a product to change their pathetic, miserable little lives: "Just by ordering your course (or calling your hotline, or going a bazillion dollars in debt to buy property I can never resell, etc.) I've felt better about myself (or "made $1,000 a minute while playing golf", or "took control of my life", etc.).

HOT TIP: Once the 4 easy payments of $39.95 have been consumed, I guarantee that most of these people will eagerly awaiting Sunday night at 1:00am so they can go on to the NEXT "real thing" that will make them happy.

Now, let's contrast that with the good folks over at the Orange County Mac User's Group that invited me to preach about the virtues of FileMaker this past Saturday morning:

  • The organizers don't get paid - they're there on a Saturday because they WANT to be
  • They exist to help people with their computing questions, problems, etc.
  • They charge about $35 per year to provide newsletters, disks, web site, and more
  • They actually like their members, and actually help people to work through technology problems (as well as the occasional personal ones as well)

In a nutshell - they give to get. This also applies to others in the FileMaker (and computer) "family" here on the Infobahn - we're here because we WANT to be. Check out our Other Sites for a PARTIAL listing of others who also want to help.

Rather than putting MY 4 easy payments of $39.95 into a machine that I'll use 4 times and still be paying for long after it's been collecting dust in a closet, I'll take a REAL walk and divert the time, energy and money into something that REALLY matters.

I suggest that YOU also take YOUR 4 easy payments of $39.95, and join a local users group, volunteer to set up a database or two for your local school (or church, or synagogue, or mosque), or throw up a web site to share your experiences and knowledge with others.

If you're hell-bent on pissing away your 4 easy payments of $39.95, make your check payable to "ClickWare" (we also take Visa and MasterCard) and we guarantee to change your life by taking your money....

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