This is about the fifth time I’ve started this entry, because when I was entering it in Netscape and had to hit [backspace] to delete a typing error, it would try to navigate away from the page and go back one page. I despise shortcuts in Windows. They have two shortcuts for ‘back’. Ctrl-left arrow and backspace. Why is backspace a shortcut for anything other than ‘delete one character’?
One of my net-buddy’s sent me a link from the Forbes web-site concerning the new Windows Vista. How it still isn’t ready for production. One of the most disheartening quotes from the article is the following:
The new programs are phenomenally complex, with scores of buttons and pull-down menus and myriad connections among various applications.
Joy. That makes me look forward to it. That makes me want to install it on my wife’s computer, and my kid’s computer. That makes me want to recommend it to friends who have recently figured out how to configure Microsoft Outlook Express to retrieve their mail from their ISP.
I wonder what accidental key-strokes are going to do in that lovely OS… ctrl-alt-F, reformat your hard-drive? Sure! Ctrl-Windows-Spacebar probably turns your computer off.
In MY perfect world, Microsoft would market Microsoft CORE. The base operating system, with nothing but file management, hardware management, and the GUI (with NO shortcuts, but allow users to define their own by right-clicking on the menu item, and then pressing a key combo to perform that action). Microsoft CORE would sell for $20. Ok, ok, they need to make money, too… $30. Then if I want a web-browser I could pay to add that in. Anything, in fact, would be an additional fee. Calculator? $5. Solitaire… okay, solitaire would have to come with it. But stop it with the big, hulking behemoth operating systems that have capabilities beyond which the average user is capable of taking advantage.
Maybe what Microsoft doesn’t understand is as the population of computer users grows, the average computer literacy drops. Market towards the average… power users can upgrade and put stuff in as they need it. They have that knowledge. Average users need stability, security, and ‘it just works’.
Recently I subscribed to Yahoo!’s music service. Three times now I’ve had to reset my licensing of the music on my computer because the digital-rights-management licensing (Microsoft’s way of licensing media) has gotten corrupted. I bought a song, downloaded it, and couldn’t listen to it. That’s bad. I googled, found a utility for Napster that reset the rights so that Yahoo! could download them again, and then I could listen to it. Of course Yahoo!’s support site did nothing for resolving the issue. We’ve gotten too complex, too fast, and I don’t think we’re on a firm foundation. Time to retool.
That’s enough ranting…
So this week… after a single day of rest (which I spent building Pinewood Derby cars for the boys) work resumed on Monday. Our team has shrunk a bit, with 2 of our most prolific case resolvers moving to other groups, and even other countries. Plus tickets are picking up a bit. So not only did I have to still work on all the action items (corporate-speak for ‘to-do list’) left over from the trip, but deal with new cases, too. So it’s been a week to re-learn time-management. The world keeps turning… no ‘pause’ button to take a breather and get your feet planted again… 🙂
We’ve got a new member of the family, too. His name’s Harley and he’s a 3-year old white (some say blonde) labrador. He’s an absolute sweetheart, if a little hard-of-hearing (or maybe it’s selective hearing). A home-school family’s boy was having issues with allergies so they were looking for a good home for him, but decided on us instead. Took him to Cameron’s soccer game on Saturday and he was a big hit with the crowd. He needs just a bare touch of obedience training, I think, but he is a very good dog. And already house-trained, so you can’t beat that. We’ll have a lot of fun with him in the parks this year as he loves to chase balls, and play tug-of-war, and run.
On the weight-loss scene, the Germany trip didn’t hurt me so bad as I thought. In fact, when I weighed in I had lost 2.2 lbs. I’m sure that was from the Sun-Wed when I was rather strict with the diet rather than a reflection of the Germany trip itself. I’m still almost 2 lbs from my all-time low, but I’ve been going to the gym and walking most mornings and although it’s been a cold weekend we’ve stayed pretty active with Cameron’s soccer game, grocery store walking, and walking Harley.
Teresa’s managed to find herself a social life, too, with this Homeschool Resource Center she’s been helping out. She’s been spending a lot of afternoons with the ladies, and the boys have had a lot of playmates. Both over at our house, and at their house.
I can’t wait for the warmer weather so we can start doing more stuff outside, though. I thought I’d be coming back to better weather but it has been bitingly cold here. Not as cold as Germany, of course, but I didn’t dress for it here. Highs in the 40’s and 50’s since I’ve been back… what happened to the 60’s before I left?! I’m ready for spring… but I usually am by now. I can only take a couple months of winter. Florida must have thinned my blood too much.
Guess that’s it for now. I better publish it before I hit some shortcut I’m unaware of and lose everything I typed in…. again. 🙂