I swear, the software developers of the world are trying to drive me crazy. In every high tech company worldwide, developers are updating, upgrading, and redesigning everything. All the functions we depended on are getting turned inside out. Between operating system updates and upgrades that casually delete the basic functionality of the thing you are supposedly updating — thus rendering the update pointless and expensive since it effectively denies you the services for which you just paid — and on top of that, nothing works with anything else. Well, it’s no wonder I’m frothing at the mouth.

Now we are six orchids

Operating systems turn your applications to rubbish. Replacing those old applications gives you new applications that don’t work anything like the old ones did. Whenever I upgrade anything — voluntarily — and they ask me if I want to delete the older version, I get a sick feeling in my gut. I just know that it’s all going to turn to rubbish right in front of my eyes.

One of our many Brown-headed Cowbirds

About a week ago, I bought an update to the four major pieces of my Topaz filter system. I have a lot of Topaz filters. I’ve been buying them as they come on sale for years. I’ve also continued to use their old Topaz Studio 1 because Topaz Studio 2 seems essentially useless. It also won’t work as a plugin to my old version of Photoshop. To be fair, it also doesn’t really work as a standalone. It’s another of those anti-intuitive applications.

However you think it ought to work? It doesn’t work that way. Not only does it not work the way you think it should, it doesn’t do anything you need to do. It just sort of sits there, uselessly. It makes you wonder what in the world were they thinking when they created it. Were they thinking of users at all or just having fun in the development section?

Especially because their first studio was almost great and just needed a few tweaks to take it from almost great to absolutely fantastic. Just a few little tweaks to functions like leveling, resizing, and saving items.

Instead, they came out with something entirely different that not only doesn’t do what you figured it should do based on all the other work they had done, but actually makes it impossible to use a lot of functions for which you previously paid. They might not be supporting those filters anymore, but hey, I paid for them. And they weren’t cheap, either. Essentially, they eliminated the gateway to using all of the filters I build myself, all my favorites for portraits and landscape and macros.

I freaked out. Nothing freaks me out more than one of two things: (1) Discovering that some essential piece of expensive home equipment has ceased functioning and needs to be replaced immediately or we won’t have heat, hot water, or electricity, and (2) having my expensive computer cease functioning in a normal way.

Marilyn by Garry

We got both pieces of news yesterday and today, so it was a super insane freak out day. The first was being told that we had some kind of leaky pipe and were about to be invaded by giant flying cockroaches. Garry is terrified of snakes and cockroaches. I think I left Israel after meeting one of their giant flying cockroaches. It wasn’t the economy. It was those huge — bigger than a goldfinch — flying roaches. They scared me more than the scorpions who actually could have killed me.

And now, the solutions to my freak out. Plumber called back and said “Just poison the suckers. It has NOTHING to do with leaking pipes. That’s total nonsense.” $175 later, there’s a lot o poison in our sewer pipes. Because I will live with a lot of problems, but not with giant flying roaches. I’d rather live in the car.

Then, my friend Ben called and I told him I had just run a recovery on my PC to try and retrieve a lost application. It hadn’t work, so I had un-recovered it, but I still didn’t have the application. Which had been the gateway to all the software I use to process pictures.

He said “Search for it on Google. Someone has a copy of it.” And sure enough. It was actually someone from Topaz who said that although they don’t support it, if you want it, here it is. Free.

Now, everything works again and I have the updated versions of the sections I wanted. This process took me the better part of the day.

Ye old stone bridge

Between WordPress trying to shove their format down my unwilling throat and Topaz deciding to eliminate hundreds of dollars worth of filters I bought by removing the gateway to using the filters — plus a new interface on both the PC and my Mac.

I don’t know the new name of Mac’s current operating system. Probably something like Scorpion Gulch. It’s all poisonous. Meanwhile, Google changed their calendar, email, and the format for contacts. I don’t understand most of it and feel an increasing unwillingness to make any effort to learn it.

I really don’t mind companies are making sensible upgrades. These updates and upgrades are just plain weird. I expect updates to have a fundamental relationship to the original product. I do not expect it to be so completely different I don’t have a clue how to use it. I understand that if you don’t change things, you just can’t sell them. But why make changes that are illogical and anti-intuitive for users? Changes needn’t drop in like a meteors from outer space.

And remember: none of this stuff actually works with anything else. Everything is unique and only works by itself. Nothing plugs in to anything else. Computers don’t work well when everything is at odds with everything else.

I hate it. I don’t understand it. I want whoever is doing this to please stop. Make sensible changes. Fix things that are broken. Make things work more smoothly. Repair glitches. Don’t build weird new designs on top of old broken pieces.

Not like anyone is listening.

Please enjoy the pictures. Who knows what’s going to happen next? Maybe they will decide we don’t need cameras. We will get to choose which kind of cellphone we can use for everything because they will also ban laptops. Everything will have to done on tiny little machines that people my age can’t see and our arthritic fingers can’t use. What fun!

Categories: Apple, Computers, Customer Service, PC-format, Photography, Software, Technology

Tags: , , , , , , ,

18 replies

  1. It’s like Fantasia. They just that broom alone. Rose bought me a nice new Sony camera a while back. I don’t know how to use half the things it does. Sometimes I accidentally push a button and activate some mystical function – that things start happening all over my viewscreen – which I then have no idea how deactivate. I feel like Mickey Mouse with all those broomsticks hauling unnecessary water while lightning strikes all around me! I still haven’t discovered any tutorial which will help me use this stuff and the manual is like an encyclopedia. However … If I don’t accidentally activate something, it does take pretty good pictures. Go figure?


    • I still have that happen to me and I’ve been shooting for more than 50 years! 90% of those function are of NO interest to us at all. They really need to include two menus — the “deep dive” for the gadget heads and “everything you REALLY need” for the rest of us.

      The complete (bad) redesign of formats are maddening. It isn’t JUST WordPress. Everyone is doing it, doing it, doing it. They pump out “exciting new software” that may be exciting to the developers, but is insane for the users and no one has a customer help number anymore. Not only do they put out software that leaves people completely freaked out, but they don’t give you support, either. Apparently the people who are least consulted in this business are CUSTOMERS. We don’t count at all.


  2. I have this great old MacPro computer that runs the music editing software I use all the time. I’m satisfied with the results I get for the type of recording I do.., but I can’t download newer versions of the software because those versions are no longer supported on this computer/operating system combo (no upgrades available). So, if I wanted to take advantage of the new software I’d have to buy a new computer ( software upgrade, less than $100) at somewhere between $3000 and $4000. The sum total?.., Well you do the math. While I love the capabilities of new tech.., I hate the damn computers, their manufacturers and upgrades that change everything.


    • Nothing works with anything else anymore, either. For a long time, the goal of design of to be intuitive and to make applications work harmoniously with other applications. Now, it’s all gone the other way. Everything collides in some kind of software version of The Big Bang. I hate it. I obviously NEED my computers, but I hate what they are doing to them — and incidentally, US.


  3. Maybe that’s why I’ve decided to give up (or at least curtail) digital and computer-based hobbies like blogging and photography and have gone back to my old standby – needlework. Crocheting and knitting have stayed the same for hundreds of years, so I don’t have to learn anything new. The end result of my work is the same as it was half a century ago, and needlework remains stress reducing rather than stress enducing … and while there may occasionally be some blocking involved, there’s no Block Editor!


    • I wish I had something like that to fall back on! Photography HAS been my fallback position, but they have made it so pointlessly complicated. They keep adding more and more bells and whistles — and NO ONE NEEDS THEM. They are not only not fundamental to photographers, they are confusing and cause other features to stop working. It’s true. There are “mystical buttons” that if you accidentally push one, your camera stops working and you wind up spending HOURS searching to figure out what exactly happened. It’s enough to make you set it to iAuto and never leave!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Marilyn. I’m not a photographer so when I have a photo I use LunaPic. an online editing program that resizes, has different effects, and more. I guess for you it would be good for a simple adjustment. Just saying, 🙂


    • I do my processing on Photoshop. I just need this program to properly LOAD the photos after they’ve been processed. Specifically, it’s loading the photos from a new file which used to be no big deal, but now is a very big deal because their functionality doesn’t actually work as it is supposed to work.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Love the bridge photo, Marilyn! Hope all goes well with your “buggy” problem…


  6. I had no idea that roaches flew until I moved down here to Florida. I saw a spot on the wall. And then it moved. Scared the hell outta me. Landlord was like, “Oh, it’s just a roach.” No roach is ‘just a roach.’ Good luck with everything, Marilyn.


  7. I did enjoy the photos. Lovely.
    A new upgrade should come with warnings.


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