Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Temporary Disruption to Service

I am finally spending some time at home which has given me the opportunity to tear my hair out setting up my new laptop. I now have two laptops, with some of my stuff on one and some on the other. Natch it always seems that the stuff I want at any given time is on the other machine.

Last time I changed computers it took me about a week to get it set up. This time, not only am I trying to install my (very old) favourite 32 bit applications on the new version of Windows, but it is 64 bit which should make it better and faster and easier but actually makes it difficult and flaky (but it does run more quickly - just).

I did seriously consider getting a Mac, but I did the sums on the cost of replacing the seven applications I use most frequently (email, word processor, spreadsheet, contact/diary, drawing, photo, website management). Then I added in the utilities and gadgets and decided not to.

And it is not just the cost of buying the programmes, there is the process of learning how they work. I have used some of my applications for around two decades. I could not describe where the controls are, or the menus or what features they have. I just sit down and am drawn towards certain parts of the programme and find myself driving the things on auto. Learning to use a new programme would not only mean learning HOW to do things, but it would involve consciously recognising WHAT I am doing.

Think about an application you use regularly. Try describing how to use it to someone else, even for relatively simple operations. It's not easy.

So here I am a sad Windows junkie, hooked on a second rate apology for an operating system and a bizarre mix of programmes produced by the inspired, the inept and the insane. And I am likely to be so for the rest of my life... but wait, is that Linux on the horizon...?

Watch this space...

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