On 24 Jan 2007, at 14:32, Christopher J Collins wrote: > We do what we have to do and learn what we have to learn to support > our clients to help them achieve what they want to achieve. I loved this line in your reply. It speaks volumes of truth. However, it avoids the issue of this (becoming more frequent) situation: Our local school district used to have many Macintosh computers installed in the classrooms and school libraries. As the price of PCs lowered, the district started buying them instead of Macs. Often, this was presented to the district as a "package deal" which included all the software to operate the new machines. One glaring discrepancy was that there was no additional software offered in the package that would give the students and teachers the same productivity levels that they had had with the Macs. Additional scholastic software packages had to be bought for the PCs. The second discrepancy was that the district would have to hire at least one full-time PC tech for each school to support the new PCs and the techs would not be able to service Macs. It was never asked of the teachers and other staff whether they wanted to change to PCs or not. They were simply informed that they would lose their Macs during the change-over to the new machines and have to learn how to manage them on their own. Most of their information came from the newly hired techs and was provided on a "first come, first served" basis. As things progressed, all the Macs were removed from the district and more PCs were purchased in "package deals". The PC techs were finding themselves swamped with repairing, upgrading, and replacing machines more and more frequently AND trying to make time available to be able to instruct the staff in how to manage their new machines. The techs approached the district offices and requested more techs be hired to take some of the workload off their shoulders. The district has now hired at least two techs per school at a cost of more than $65K/year per tech. After all the salary and equipment costs, the district now says that there isn't enough money in the budget to be able to afford new text books for the students and we have to continue using books that were printed in the 1970s. Today, the techs tell the teachers that they have to be put on the calendar for an open day to get their PC(s) fixed. One library had four out of six PCs down at the same time on a Thursday and couldn't get a tech to look at them until the next Tuesday. This sort of thing is a normal operating procedure for our school district now. The choice of PC over Mac is not always possible due to other influences. Most of the PC techs in our district that I am acquainted with will not try to learn to service Macs because it would put them out of work and they readily admit that to me. For them, it is a matter of having a paycheck at the end of the month. I know that it is a tremendous simplification to blame all this on PCs, but if it ain't broke, don't try to fix it. The old Macs were trudging along without any problems that couldn't be fixed by the room teacher, no need for another high-salaried tech, and the machine rebooted and back in business before the day was over. If newer machines were needed because of improved software, it was never contemplated to upgrade the Macs, just replace them because "the whole world is using PCs and you need to use the same kind of equipment in our schools" (quote by one administrator who doesn't use any computer for his office work, his secretary does his typing from a dictaphone). End of rant.