I just installed a new keyboard. You know, I typed that last sentence fairly quickly and without thinking about what I was saying. I actually used the word “install” to refer to the action of connecting a new keyboard to my computer. Technically it’s accurate, but it implies an intricate and elaborate project, where I should just be plugging in a USB cord, then resuming work. (The dictionary example for “install” is “to install a heating system; to install software on a computer” … it’s a comment on the sad history of software usability that heating system and software installation are side-by-side examples.)
But back to my keyboard. I purchased a Microsoft keyboard for use with Microsoft Windows. Sure, it’s one of the exotic ergonomic keyboards with all the fancy multimedia buttons, but still, it has the Microsoft logo, I’m using Microsoft OS, and USB allows for pretty rich communication with and identification of devices.
So why, oh why, do I have to insert a CD, and go through a 5 minute installation program? And why, when I do, should I be forced to lift the keyboard and find the exact name of this one?
And why, after I install, am I told that I might need to restart Windows? Don’t they know?
And while we’re on the topic, I thought there was a “no restart” policy as part of Microsoft compatibility certification. Maybe that’s for Vista … and Vista probably has the drivers for this keyboard. Still, like most of the world, this machine is still Windows XP, and regardless, I don’t think a keyboard should have to ship with a CD.
Next I think I might try to install my own heating system. It might be easier.