Sorry this is so late. Part of the issue is that windows`10 continues its reign of derp on my computer. Among other things, it’s decided it’s a great idea to not run JASC paintshop 9, which is what I use to make covers.
Yeah, I know it’s an old and obsolete program, but it does exactly what I want it to without dropping me in the claws of Adobe. Yeah, yeah. You’re going to suggest GIMP. Would you believe GIMP is not intuitive? And that I’ve not had the time to conquer the learning curve? While I’m completely proficient with JASC from using it for years for other stuff, like posters and thank you cards?
So, Dan installed the Anniversary Upgrade (WTF? Why are they doing… never mind.) And it completely did away with Pidgin. I mean, did away with it to the point of not showing it under installed programs, even though I’ve been using it for two months. And then when I find it in downloads, as Pidgin.exe it tells me it can’t install because it can’t remove old program.
This is not a big deal, as I re-installed AIM. It’s only a big deal as it clearly went trumping through my file system doing crazy sh*t without any warning it was going to do it. And definitely sh*t I didn’t want it doing.
Same applies to “easy access” supposedly programs I use most, which showed Skype (never use on this computer, which has a sound issue) and Corel Word Perfect which I not only haven’t used in 7 years, but am FAIRLY SURE I have uninstalled (or only severely crippled to bring up files word can’t handle.)
Yes, I am in a state of high rant, and about ready to uninstall 10 with a sledge hammer, except I love my husband, and he’s a tech-head and wants me to continue trying it. (Even though he promised me he’d reverse it if I hated it. Hey, Dan, I hate it. And no, it’s not just new-program annoyance. It’s changing files it didn’t ask to change.)
I’m not a ludite. I was very excited when my computer was upgraded and I could use my computer with an internal drive. Or when I could make files big enough that I didn’t have to save each chapter separately. I love my spell checker. I’ have an unrequited love affair with filter forge.
What I don’t like, what drives me nuts, is of another order.
The best way to explain this is to tell a story: when I was a young newly wed, I made our bread by hand. Part of this is that I was used to freshly made bread every day (what we’d call artisan bread, I suppose) and wonder bread tasted like slightly less appealing pillow stuffing. Part was that we had a warehouse membership and I could buy 50 lbs of flour for pennies on the pound.
So a part of my morning was kneading the bread. Problem was two small children, and wanting to speed up process. I told Dan I wanted a kitchen aid mixer, the almost top of the line, so it could do the kneading. It was, of course, beyond our reach.
When Christmas came around and his parents asked what I wanted, he mentioned mixer.
They sent me a bread machine. (This was early days of bread machines. They later became FAR more flexible, and when I could eat carbs, I owned two I used every day to keep family in fresh (small loaf) bread.)
Early bread machines were DUMB and designed for dumb. They had a set program (which btw, wasn’t very good high altitude, and involved buying special bread mixes, which we really couldn’t afford) and if you wanted to do anything else, too bad. Sweet bread? Never mind. Challa? You’ve got to be kidding. And what do you mean you want it to knead dough for pretzels?
To me this was far worse than not having the mixer. It was something that forced me to do things ITS way and expected me to be grateful for it. Fortunately it dove off the counter in a poltergeist incident (I’m actually not joking. I didn’t do it. I was across the room. It wasn’t dancing on counter. It was unplugged. We were eating dinner, and suddenly it jumped up, pirouetted mid air, and dove to floor. No, I don’t have an explanation. Do you?) Five years later I bought a mixer.
More and more, with computer upgrades, particularly windows 10 (8 I got around by refusing to use the computer on which it was) I feel like I’ve been given a brand new bread machine.
From the things it keeps pushing as very important, I gather that Microsoft thinks I want a gaming, tv/movie/music system. I DO. I have one of those. DOWNSTAIRS. This is my work computer. I want it to work with the things I use every day to do my job. It’s not a complex job. I use email, word processing, chrome (which I also hate, but not as much as all others) to do this and facebook, Jasc paintshop, filter forge, and oh, yeah, a chat program to ask for help/run something by friends who are closest thing to a work group I have.
Windows 7 did that fine. I don’t object to Windows 10 having a new look. I find that annoying, mostly because I didn’t choose it, but I’d get used to it.
The thing is that other than new look and my stuff stopping working I have yet to find something it does differently/better than windows 7. I mean, just ONE thing. ONE. So far nothing. It’s like “but you have cortana, and you can ask it questions.” Uh, okay, but I can navigate file system by hand without that. And I DO know how to use a browser’s search engine. Or “you have all these gaming things right here” “don’t game.”
It’s like those birthday gifts you get that you look at and go “Why on Earth did you think I wanted THIS?”
What worries me about all this — besides my being in a state of high snit at the computer right now — is that it seems to be the way things are going.
I’ve talked here before about how I think new technology frees us from the tyranny of mass everything, and gives options to the INDIVIDUAL.
At the same time there seems to be a reaction from not just our politicians but from our tech companies, and yeah, our book companies, too. And that is to create something standard for the “standard voter/user/reader” and then demand you fit their parameters, instead of their fitting what you want and need. This is the result of MBA programs (and others) that treat people as “classes” and “widgets.” This thought was outmoded in the 20th century, but to an extent the technology demanded it. There was only so much we could do, and it worked better if done en masse.
Those days are gone, but the thinking remains, and the thinking is trying to force the tech back into forms the intelligentsia are comfortable with.
I don’t think it will work. As I said, it’s a reaction by people who are afraid of freedom: for themselves and more importantly for others. I think in the end, like the bread machines, they’ll have to give us more options.
I just wonder what it will take to get there.