We can't imagine how we could live or work without them, but computers are the reason why thousands of work hours a year are lost and why workplace fury is on the rise.
A "computer rage" study, carried out Mori, surveyed 1,255 UK workers across the financial, manufacturing and public sectors and service industries.
It found that 23% of the people polled were interrupted by IT problems at least once a day; 40% said computer snarls had caused them to miss work deadlines; one-fifth said it can take up to three hours to solve IT problems; and nearly half said they had noticed colleagues suffering from serious stress levels caused by computer foul-ups.
Swearing, plug pulling and kicking machines were all signs of Cyberfury, said Compaq, which commissioned the study to determine whether technology is perceived by workers as an asset or a burden.
The company said it wanted to look at the business implications of compumeltdowns and ways to simplify computer products.
"The picture is one of frustration with IT and a loss of productivity," Compaq UK marketing director Vesey Crichton told PC Week.
"We need to understand how big the problem is in order to focus our R&D on fixing the problems," he said.
The report, which did not quantify computer-related productivity losses, found respondents mostly blamed IT managers who install troublesome systems and software suppliers.
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