I'm a highly-technical, gadget-oriented, English-literate human being. There has to be a better way for me to get a cable card in a new TV than to wait around between 11am and 2pm on a work day for a Comcast technician to show up, put the card in, make a phone call to the central office, tell me everything looks good, and leave. Please tell me why I'm not trusted to do that myself?

We need a special “techie credential”. Find a central authority (private company, government, whatever) where you spend a weekend proving that you are a reasonable person who knows a lot about computers and technology. They would issue you a card and Techie ID number. Then when I called Comcast, the conversation would go something like this:

  • Comcast Rep: We'll schedule a technician to come out to install that cable card.
  • Techie Me: That's okay, I'll take care of it, my Techie Credential Code is 1123581321
  • Comcast Rep: Ah, great, we'll just drop the card in the mail with instructions, you should have no trouble getting up and running.
  • Techie Me: Thanks for the great service, that sounds simple and convenient! Have a wonderful day.

How much easier would that be? It'd save Comcast a bunch of money on support requests. The people who don't have techie creds will also get more time with their service-people and get a higher quality experience. Finally, it'd save them the hassle of having a potentially loyal customer like me hate them passionately for making me waste an afternoon of work waiting around for something that will take 2 minutes and could be done by a drunken monkey. I'll even sign something that says it's all my fault if I blow the install. I'll even pay the $16 fee for the service call they don't have to make.

Please, let me leverage all the time I've spent learning my craft to save the world time and money in these small ways.