Monday, May 12, 2014

Windows Hourglass and the Wicked Witch of the West...

windows hourglass wicked witch

Sometimes it seems like years that I've stared at that damned hourglass, the famous, infamous, notoriously unappreciated Windows hourglass. In my case, it usually comes just before the white screen of death. Over the years, everyone gave advice. Run Linux. Get a Mac. Right now what I'm running is Windows XP; and of course, the hourglass just ran out on that one. The problem may not be Windows in the first place. I'm always working on some hand-me-down, obsolete dinosaur ~ that's the real problem. The current jurassic fossil: ten years old and counting. Can't remember if my laptop is older or newer than that. I call it The Fire Hazard. Anyhow, everyone else has moved on to Smart Phones. I'm still not ready to go there ~ image editing is hard enough on a big screen. Sigh. It wouldn't be so bad if every piece of new technology didn't cost about what a rotten used car costs. Whatever piece of new equipment I'm coveting is always somewhere out there in the hazy distance. Ah, computer envy ~ don't you just love it. It would help if I knew how to maintain a computer. Anything I get is likely to end up in the same shape as this one. Well, things aren't likely to change for me anytime soon; but I do hope that future generations have a nice, smooth, easy time of it with technology perfected... and no more hourglass.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Google Plus versus Follow

Well, I see that it has been over a year since I've blogged this one. Just... caught up in the growing complexities of life, I suppose. And I certainly have gotten off topic. I had meant this blog to be a more-or-less chronological journal of my understanding of the Internet, and of the development of my website. Instead, it has become a catchall for any tech thought, pet peeve, or general rant that pops into my mind: a virtual glass bowl or ash tray for the (figurative) stray pins, paper clips, and unidentifiable bytes I find lying around. Today's gripe: Google has arbitrarily discontinued the "Follow" button from Blogger. I noticed this because all of my two followers were gone from another blog of mine. I suppose I missed Google's memo, drowned among the countless list updates that fill my inbox. I see why they're ditching "Follow." They're forcing us, instead, to add a link to Google Plus Circles. Forcing us to be more public than we want to be. See, I wasn't happy in the first place when Google jumped on the Facebook bandwagon with Google Plus ~ especially since they'd already betrayed users during the Google Buzz rollout. Ch-ch-ch-changes (without warning)! But, no surprise that they're imitating Facebook ~ everyone else is, too. Facebook just got too popular. No-one could compete (but everyone knew they had to). It's not as if Facebook is more private. In fact, their privacy "slips" have been notoriously intentional. (I tried to write a blog post on the most recent weird Facebook-privacy robo-outer I discovered, but explaining it was just too complicated and involved a new species, besides). But Google! They're so... worldwide. I mean, if Google ropes us into their idea of social (which, ahem, they just have, in my case) ~ what do we have left, in the way of privacy? Nothing. But should I worry? I mean, they already have Google Maps (rather frightening detail, that dead raccoon I saw on street view, and the red hummingbird feeder I saw on my friend's porch, 150 miles away). And why should I be concerned anyhow? My life's pretty dull. But I can't say I want some stranger looking at my hummingbird feeder. And I, with my sugar-water...