I’m trying to purchase a computer from Dell. Well, that’s not exactly true. My new employer (Started the new job today, went very well) buys from Dell. The process is that each employee builds a computer at Dell.com, then emails the boss with the specs, and he buys the computer through the corporate account. Sounds simple, right? Well, first of all, Dell doesn’t let you just email specs. I can’t imagine why not - surely they’d be happy to let kids email specs to their parents, or perhaps they’d even be prescient enough to foresee my situation. But no. They let you save, and they even let you tag to del.icio.us and all sorts of other social sites, but apparently that’s just to the initial start page for the computer, not the customized version. So, I thought I’d just get one of their online chat CSRs to help me. Again I failed. Or, rather, Dell failed. They had no chat representatives available. Do they let me get in line and wait for the next one? No, they force me to resubmit my request. I tried about five times and gave up. So I was directed to email them. This steaming pile of crap is what I got in return. Their response was much longer, but that’s the only part that wasn’t boilerplate gobbledygook. Next I tried calling. I hate calling companies. If I’m calling you on the phone, it’s because your website failed. Anyway, I was greeted by loud music and an unhelpful robot voice that refused to give me a person. I tried a different customer service number, because I think I might have gotten the wrong one the first time (I don’t remember why I thought that, but it made sense at the time). This time I got another unhelpful robot, but this one gave me a person. Hooray! Until I asked her my question. Turns out she was tech support. I have no idea how the robot got me to tech support when all I wanted was customer support, but that’s neither here nor there. She transferred me to the correct CSR, who said a great many things, none of them helpful. So I gave up. I’m going to ask someone at work tomorrow. And I’m going to continue to tell everyone I speak to about computers to avoid Dell.