I noticed a troublesome habit that I have picked up during my daily EMR routine, and during some of my off-hours computing.

I can’t quite figure out what to call it, but it surely deserves notice.

I am irregularly halted by waits and pauses during patient care, by my EMR.  Since all the data is on the other end of the data handcuff, I can’t work until I have the computer’s permission.  When I am waiting for my EMR’s permission, I note that I have adopted the disquieting habit of “pause mode.”

If it takes a while for the computer to turn its attention to me, if I’m alone in the room, I’ll just sit there and close my eyes.  If there is a sudden change in illumination on my closed eyeballs, it’s time to wakey-wakey.  Otherwise, I sit there.

This is uncomfortably like the two versions of “rest states” that windows operating systems – Sleep Mode, which does not work, and Hibernate Mode, which also does not work.  You may use whichever one you wish, depending on your preference.

I am traditionally the superior reasoning partner in the relationship, and the computer, as Miss Manners states, is an appliance.  You ought not be interrupted by your mechanical servants, the door bell, the telephone and the computer.  If it plugs in to something, it is, by tradition, your inferior.

Some times, I lean back from the computer keyboard and think.  Sometimes, I lean back from the computer keyboard and wait for it to prompt me.

One of these actions seems very wrong.  ‘think?

And why are we insanely intolerant and restless, ADD, when the radio or the telephone has three or four seconds of silence or nonresponsiveness?  We literally crawl the walls.  But if the computer blows you off for five minutes…..

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