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.
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.
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.
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.
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!