To my tech supportees:
XKCD’s Tech Support Cheat Sheet nails it! This is essentially what I’m doing when I sit down at your computer and dig you out of your latest hole.
If only you’d make some more intelligent guesses for yourself, you might be able to solve more of your problems.
But it’s not quite that simple.
You probably don’t understand very much about what you’re doing. I have enormous depth and breadth of experience which informs my investigation. I am—no false modesty here—a master of debugging. The extra context helps me hone in on a solution more often than not.
Still, do give the flowchart a shot. Being able to solve your own problems is very empowering.