So psychometry is the idea that objects have impressions which can be read or used. Holding Ernest Hemingway's pen makes me a better writer, Napoleon's sword makes me a better leader. Holding a victim's coat tells you who the murderer is and all that.
This is more or less how I've always internally read machine spirits in 40k
. The idea is that perhaps there are no machine spirits and its just extremely well made but very old technology that is "finickity". But just in case there is and most people believe that then best to stick to the holy rituals and apply the oils and incense. Some old technology is very very smart and maybe it does have something in it, but does everything ? Who knows.
Printers in the real world are the perfect example. I know fine well that printers are just normal basic technology of our age. However the amount of times I've lost my mind struggling with a printer when I desperately need something printed makes me also certain that some horrible little gremlin lives in every printer and does all it can to ruin your life. Perhaps if I better appeased the printer creature it would work successfully.
A piece of machinery will alway perform better when properly oiled and cleaned. We know this because we know how technology works, but I don't know the ritualistic understanding of life of late-Paleolithic people living 10,000 years ago. It's an absurd amount of time. We don't know how they even perceived their sense of self. I mean for gods sake idiots think aliens created the pyramids just because they seem unable to believe normal people can build something like that and that was 3000 years or so ago. In the case of 40k
we are at the other end, where technology of the past is astounding and close to magic.
If the end happens and we all regress, would we know how to appease the spirit of the smart phone to correctly use the calculator function in the apocalyptic future of our own making?
If an Alexa survived and by speaking to it in a certain way I got it work I'd surely try the same with every old technology.