Two Gripes

Two things today that really "grind my gears" (Family Guy reference, if you didn’t get that):

  1. Self-Checkout lanes. Ok, these are kind of cool and all, but where in the world does the line form if it’s busy and there needs to be a line? Nobody knows. Stores just kind of leave it up to everyone to work it out. I think I did see one store that set up some ropes to help show this, but that’s like 1 in 100 stores or something.

    Today, I tried to start a line and some people were forming behind me, then the farther one opened up, so I headed toward it and some older lady, oblivious to the organized, civilized world, comes in from the side somehow, doesn’t even look to see if anyone else has been waiting and snags it. She didn’t see me at all. Ok, now I’m stuck between 2 of these things and the one I just passed will soon open up, but now I’m out of the line that I made. Duh!

  2. Microsoft Windows. Ok, congratulations on creating a breed of idiot computer users. You didn’t really think through the whole usability thing, but instead just copied what you saw Apple was carefully crafting and put out a few operating systems that were crap and then monopolized the industry to hold everyone in your web. In your efforts to "make things easy", you’ve created a generation of computer users that:
    1. Have to click "Apply" and then click "Save" every time they see these two buttons together. Hello? They both save it – one just gets you out of the window you’re in and the other keeps you in it in case you need to change a setting.
    2. Blame the web site developer if their browser doesn’t display web sites right because the developers can’t keep up with all the non-industry standard ways that the Internet Explorer web browser does things and clients don’t understand all that goes into making sure web sites look good in web browsers that comply with Internet standards and the one browser that doesn’t comply and seems to change the way it does things every time it’s updated. Yeah, so now not only do we have to make Internet Explorer work, we have to make the last 5 versions of it work as well.
    3. Call email "My Oulook" as in "My Outlook doesn’t work" – oh, you don’t have a good outlook on life? Why is that my problem? Or "My Internet" which is spoken by the same people that put the body of their email message in the subject line and type in all caps (which is yelling).
    4. Have to reinstall their operating system every year since it just seems to get slower and slower. Oh wait, this is a scam that they have with memory manufacturers and geeks everywhere who say that people "need to just buy more memory". Ok, how come this same computer was fast a year or so ago?
    5. Have created a whole new, sub-industry called the "Geek Team" that are people that have gone to tech school to learn how to solve computer problems by pointing and clicking instead of diving deeper into the command line/shell. If they can’t fix something by clicking a box or selecting something in a drop down menu, then well, it just can’t be fixed.

      (just get Macs, people)

      And now Microsoft is trying to do a hostile takeover of Yahoo… crap, I liked Yahoo (who owns Flickr). If that happens, it’ll probably become MSN.com which is a useless web site, but gets traffic because it’s the default home page for anyone who uses Windows and doesn’t know how to set a new home page. Here’s what Google says about this situation – it’s worth a read.

And that’s what grinds my gears. Tom?

-Tony