Thursday, January 15, 2015

please allow me to complain bitterly for a moment about how atrocious microsoft is

what it is: complaining bitterly about how atrocious microsoft is
where i found it: a new computer

I guess it is no secret that Microsoft sucks. But please allow me to complain bitterly for a moment.

My wife bought a new computer. It comes with Windows 8, which is some kind of ghetto programming attempt to make something that's kind of like a ipad, but has none of the functionality of an ipad. Pulling the computer out of the box one would it expect it to boot right up and work beautifully. Yet Microsoft and HP (not specific to this manufacturer) have loaded the thing with so much bloatware/adware/malware that you can't open the internet without at least ten (I am not exaggerating) browser windows of adds covering the page you're trying to see. When you close one, it opens three or four more, rendering the machine all but inoperable. I go to uninstall this bullshit, spending two hours getting rid of one program after another. The machine starts working. Five minutes later the fucking programs re-install themselves. I uninstall them again, which is hard because they're all named shit like Wincleaner and Win System Optimizer, which sounds like something that you would need. In one instance, I uninstalled one of these programs and in retaliation it installed SEVEN more programs. After two rounds and a bunch of visits to the internet for advice I finally got these obliterated. The machine seems to be working, but . . .

Then come the issues with the user account. To access your computer you now have to have a Microsoft account, which tries to force you again and again to merge all of your accounts - Skype, Google, Apple, Facebook, whatever, with your Windows account. And you can't use these services without forking over your user names and passwords to Windows. And the traditional versions of those softwares don't work on the machine. So either merge all of your accounts with Microsoft or do not compute.

Then there are task bars and search bars and "apps" all over the thing that have nothing to do with your interests or inclinations or way that anyone would ever want to use a computer. Working in a large organization myself, I can understand how idiocy and confusion become perpetuated and systemized, but Google and Facebook and Apple seem to be able to at least seduce you into your own slavery in a somewhat appealing way.

What Microsoft seems to be doing here is committing suicide by making everything so unpleasant and atrocious. Not only are PCs outdated, but they are making their own continued use even more annoying than they ever have been. In basic Windows they had a product that worked and became the standard for every business machine out there and now we have devolved to this.  I'll stick with my 2003 Oldsmobile running the functioning, but long since abandoned XP.

Maybe none of this is surprising considering that THIS is the guy running the show over there.


As an addendum I'd like to include here some excerpts of comments harvested from Skype message boards. Skype was a well functioning respectable application, that is until they were bought out by Microsoft. Guess what, now they suck. See what hate filled recent users are saying about them:

This kind of system fascism shouldn't ever be accepted or even allowed for an operating system . . . Blood boiling, this. . . . you're not that important skype. Get out of my way and stop trying to outsmart me. All of windows 8 is like this . . . This is so typical for your company. You don't get that you have to create INCENTIVES for people to do what you want, you cannot force them to. Why don't you ever learn . . . why are you taking everything amazing out of it and making it more and more annoying to use  . . . I can't remember ever being so frustrated with a program that used to be so simple- I can't find the icons, I can't find a save button for making changes, I can't follow any of the guides because they seem to be written for a completely different program than the one I am using!! I HATE Skype!!  . . .Skype is total trash.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

making shit men on saturday afternoon

what it is: making shit men on a saturday afternoon
where i found it: dragonslayer, star wars, robocop, etc.

HERE's an interesting profile on Phil Tippet, father to many creatures, who likes to make shit men on Saturday afternoons.

dinsosaur supervisor

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

be kind to the black messiah

what it is: be kind to the black messiah
where i found it: the holidays

Over the holidays I've been in an endless spiral, ever deepening and consisting of the latest Swans and D'Angelo albums. While these two works might seem to have little in common, both artists are fortunate to have never been diagnosed with schizophrenia. Taunts of "I'm a little boy! I'm not a human!" and weird, distorted, incomprehensible overdubbed voices dance in my head at night. Instruments that make no sense with each other mock me. Samples of horses screaming mixed with excerpts like "Jesus had hair like lambs wool!"won't leave me in peace. Someone please help.

Both of these albums really need to be listened to in full, multiple times, for them to really sink in or for aspects of their odd logic to emerge, but here are a couple of excerpts anyway:


Monday, January 5, 2015

beer is the answer

what it is: beer is the answer
where i found it: virginia

I just returned from a Winter trip to Virginia, which continues to evolve as an improbable beer paradise. New breweries are opening each minute and brewers have put together a strong lobby to change beer making laws across the land. Go Virginia. Above is pictured the new brewpub, Beer is the ANswer, opened by a beer loving Vietnamese dude named An who has drunkenly branched out from the pho he's been serving for twenty some years. My brother in law took his employees there for a holiday lunch and An gave the Virginians un-used to these strong liquids so many samples that one of them needed to be taken to the hospital.

Other hi-lights include the Licking Hole, which is in the middle of fucking nowhere, but grows most of the ingredients served in their delicious beers.

the road to licking hole
Also of note, but in a more industrial setting are Hardywood and Ardent breweries, fermenting excellent beers amongst warehouses, crackheads, and late night drag racing high school kids.

the scenic facade that will become ardent

Others not to be missed include Devil's Backbone, Midnight, Center of the Universe, Blue Mountain, and the old school Legend of downtown Richmond. Finely crafted drunken-ness apparently makes life in Richmond - capitol of the Confederacy and home town of Gwar - more tolerable.