Biological Interface Error

Sadly, it often turns out that the real problem with a piece of technology is the human. Sometimes it’s the human in the factory, the Tech Support or engineering department, but sometimes it’s the human behind the keyboard.

Don’t feel bad; It happens to everyone sooner or later, because humans are imperfect. Roll with it, figure it out, but Keep Calm!

There are many tongue-in-cheek descriptions of this phenomenon:

PEBCAK: Acronym for “Problem Exists Between Keyboard And Chair”

PICNIC: “Problem in Chair; Not in Computer”

ID-Ten-T error: When ID-Ten-T is spelled out it becomes ID10T (Idiot). In United States Navy and Army slang, the term has a similar meaning, though it’s pronounced differently:

  • The Navy pronounces ID10T as “Eye Dee Ten Tango”.
  • The Army pronounces 1D10T as “One Delta Ten Tango”

The automotive repair version is referring to the cause of a problem as a “faulty steering actuator”  or a “loose nut between the steering wheel and the seat.” Similarly, typewriter repair people used to refer to a “defective keyboard controller.”

The Broadcast engineering version is referred to as a “short between the headphones”.

And finally, we have very useful, if not politely delivered, advice: RTFM stands for “Read The Freaking Manual!” (Or something like that…) Very often, when you give up in frustration and call technical Support, all you really get is somebody that reads the manual to you. Moral of the story? Always save the manual, and if you get into trouble, re-read it!

Don't Panic!

Don’t Panic, THINK!

For even more empowering technology info, read my new book, “Deciphering the 21st Century,” Available now!

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