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Thursday, February 01, 2007

The Blogs that Got Away -- or

Or why I only upgrade if I have to.

So last week when I logged into Blogger, which is changing it's operation over to a new format upon being sold to Google, I got a message that I had to migrate to the new format. I'd been invited to do so for weeks, but declined. But they were pre-emptively moving users over in batches and my number was up. I didn't really have a choice. So I configured my new login information, posted my last post and was done with it.

Done is the operative word. Done for might be a better choice. For the last three days I've been trying to log back in to Blogger and was greeted by terminally slow and partial loading--which completely prevented access to updating and maintaining Crackpot Chronicles. Today, using tricks I learned as a self-styled geek, I back-doored my way in and finally got the Blogger interface to work. If this post publishes, that is.

I had some jaunty posts in mind during that dead time. A letter-perfect graf by MoDo (Maureen Dowd) skewering Bush's Iraq policies that practically smoked. Some comments on how anti-war demonstrations have recently taken on a revived fervor and credibility. Some quirky Maine anecdotes. I've lost my zest for these--blogging being the of-the-moment phenomenon that it is. All because Blogger was terminally balky due to unresolved and probably unforeseen problems in ramping up the new version.

I've worked in the software biz and I know how product is rolled out without as thorough a testing as might be necessary and how goofy surprises often accompany even a robustly tested update. My brother is a reporter on the consumer electronics beat. When I griped to him about some of what seemed to me stupid design flaws in a recent gadget acquisition, he shrugged and replied "rush to market." He's a much better sport about it than I am.

Which brings me to Windoze Vista, the latest incarnation of Microsoft Windows. I've seen the TV spots, read the reviews and articles and it sure looks nifty. But me, I won't touch it with a fork until I have to and under no circumstances would I ever "upgrade" to a 1.0 version of anything I care about. Unless it was your machine and you paid me to.

How do you like this story about an entire country that's about to get nailed by Vista?
Earlier this week Slashdot linked to a lengthy post by Gen Kenai detailing the sorry saga of a country completely in thrall to the Microsoft monoculture -- South Korea. Due to a series of decisions made way back in the late 1990s, Korean computer users managed to lock themselves into a situation where today, if they want to complete an online transaction, they are entirely dependent on Microsoft. It's bad enough that this means Apple and Linux users are a minuscule minority. But what's even worse is that Microsoft Vista, set to launch within days in Korea, doesn't work well with the old Active X technology that is ubiquitous in Korea.

So suppose you decide to buy Microsoft Vista, perhaps in conjunction with a new computer that is powerful enough to run Vista, but then you suddenly discover that you cannot bank or purchase online or do anything else that requires secure encryption. It's kooky, a huge number of people in Korea are justifiably outraged, and lawsuits are beginning to fly.
From How The World Works on Salon.com, which you'll need a subscription for to read more than one article on a day-pass.

I don't patch my Windows, having been burned once by incompatibilities. I don't upgrade my browser, relying, successfully, I might add--knock wood--on my antivirus and personal firewall software, which I do update. I've only been burned once. I am the only person I know to have suffered a Y2K crash--on an old Windows 95 laptop, which was well backed up and successfully restored. But I can wait for Windows Vista and it can wait for me.

// posted by Ellen @  10:35   //Permalink// 
Ellen says hey
Mainer, New Yawka, Beijinger, Californian, points between. News, views and ballyhoos that piqued my interest and caused me to sigh, cry, chuckle, groan or throw something.


Previous Posts

The skirtification of politics
inhale
Happy Birthdays to me, Elvis, Joan & Tricky Dick
Chinese Arts Conquer the West -- almost
007 the year of the Bond!
Countdown 753
Sit on my lap and talk dirty to me, dolly
Coded racism in campaign ad(s)
Ahmet
'Tis the Season

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