« 2013 | Mysteries »

Technology woes!

I have a new mouse. It matches the new laptop. I’m having more luck with the mouse than the new Windows 8 so far, but must admit that things are getting better. I miss the Start button!!! I knew where I was on the old one, and could find things without excessive swearing, but those days are over.



As if getting used to a new operating system, transferring 40GBs of files, realizing 300000000 times that what I want is on the other laptop, reloading programs, trying to find the disks to reload the damn programs, where’s the program that sync’s my phone with GMail, ad nauseum, my bank changed its website this week. Everyone that knows me knows that I am anal about finances/accounting/tracking money and am a fanatic Quicken user. I’ve always been able to download transactions from my bank right into my checkbook account on Quicken and keep things up-to-date and balanced. And it’s a handy tool since we all use debit cards so much. I’m strict about adding in receipts as soon as I get home from a shopping trip, but once in a while, my brain cells seize up and stop working things go awry. If I’m in the mall and use the debit card several times (or write checks), and miss entering one, the download will show up that extra debit, alerting me that something’s missing before it becomes a major screw-up or checks bounce or I’m in the grocery store with a full cart and not enough in the account to cover the total. So, yeah, I’m pretty dedicated to using Quicken.

WELL, the bank updated their site this week, which I thought KNEW which transactions had already been downloaded; it only brings in new ones. And I was wrong. I just bought a new version of Quicken, the 2013 one, loaded it onto the new laptop, and thought all would be well. I was wrong again. Knew I was in trouble when I tried it for the first time. The site asks for user account number and a series of dumb questions to gain access and I got through that, then it switches over to the “Q” program and asks which account to download the information TO.  A drop-down box appears giving me 4 choices that are apparently arbitrarily chosen by someone who hasn’t a clue random numbers??  Again, anal me has 20+ different accounts that I keep track of. Now I know that sounds freaky, but today, there’s more to track. Husband and I have a joint checking and savings account. We each have separate savings accounts in our own names. I have 2 bank cards, 2 store cards, several IRA accounts, a few CDs, a 401k account, a car loan, a mortgage, a Medical Flexible Spending account. This is not unusual in this day and age, and as it will also track stocks, the list could go much further down.  SO the 4 choices I get in the drop-down box, determining where these new spending amounts will go is into my 401k, into his savings account that has about $8 in it, against my car loan, or against the utility company that provides my fuel for heat on an annual budget plan.  DUH!!!   I tried it about 82 more times, and was enraged. And sweating. And swearing. It also gives you the option of making a new account, and I thought maybe I could do that and just cut/paste over the relevant data. That causes havoc and I deleted it. Never was it willing to place my transactions in the account called, oddly enough, Joint Checking.

So, finally, desperate, I called the bank and asked if there was someone there who could help me do what I’d been doing for the last 10 years, 3-5 times a week, flawlessly, easily and now was pulling my hair out in clumps over it. When their tech support wasn’t up to helping me, this being only the second day that the new system was in place and no one on their staff was really that familiar with Quicken, they got Intuit/Quicken tech support on line and we entered in a very lengthy conference call. Actually, they were very responsive to the issues I was having, and my upset with their program choosing only 4 accounts as potential homes for the new info. As I ticked off on my fingers the types of accounts that I was tracking which is exactly what the program is supposed to do, and we all agreed that the average home could very easily have more than 4 accounts to track, they are actually going to look into making an adjustment for this in the next upgrade.

The real horror of it all was when I realized that every transaction I’ve made through my bank since 2001 was eventually downloaded.  All of them. Now, mind you, anal me already had them entered. This doubled them all up!!   So my Visa with a Zero Balance, now showed that Visa owed me some $64,000!!!!! I use it a lot, pay it off most every month.  ALL of those payments went in again. All of my mortgage payments. All of the transfers back and forth between Checking and Savings account. EVERYTHING was in there twice. It’s taken hours to go through all of it and delete the duplicates. I’m white-haired, what few are left.

I’m now clearly aware that the records of what’s been downloaded and what are new transactions must be stored in the old program on the old laptop, and not in the bank’s records which is another reason this whole mess occurred.

While on the phone with the Quicken tech, he asked me if I was aware that the new 2013 version also had an app for my phone, to track transaction on-the-fly, as it were, and asked if I had started using it. I think I’ve got enough new technology right now, and that’s gonna have to wait until my hair grows back.

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