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Comment Having created and moderated several Fora... (Score 1) 1838

...over the years--particularly successful one's, I find /. a rude, juvenile environment where putting someone down with nastiness is encouraged and applauded. How many legitimate questions have "well, get off the Internet," or "go read a book" or "use Linux" responses that are clearly intended to insult; I'm sure their authors are grinning at their own creativity, while the rest of us wish that would just go away.

A thread with posts from angry people is not a post I care to read. Moderators are desperately needed, who can simply "Hide" the offensive, off-topic stuff. If you really need your fix of dumb and nasty, you can still have it, but it wouldn't impede others from dealing with real substance.

The original poster at the top of a thread should also be a moderator for that thread: If responses are off-topic, nasty or just serve no useful to the purposes of the thread can be hidden so only those primarily interested in helping and sharing can play, and those of broken brain can still get their jollies with an extra click.

Comment As Users (and Representatives of Other Users)... (Score 1) 184

...we need to provide some useful guidance to Microsoft.

My problem is that like all "one-size-fits-all" products, Outlook is equally unusable by virtually anyone who tries to use it.

To me, the first question: Is Outlook an eMail client, or is it a Personal Information Manager? I can use Gmail if all I want is to send/receive/categorize mail. But, what I want is an integrated PIM: My eMail, Calendar, Contacts and Tasks, all together in one common place, and integrated with each other. Why, for example, do I have to work so hard to put someone's eMail address in the "To:" field (click the field, open Contacts, search for the name...which is poorly implemented in the first place)? I should be able to start typing the user's name (say, last name first, or first name first, depending on your preference setting), and it should provide me with a number of entries, until I provide enough information to reduce it down to some small number (also configurable; say, 10), from which I can select my intended recipient(s) for that eMail. Why can't Calendar and Task documents be directly linked to the Contact(s) they include (if any), so I can see all my transactions centered around a particular person, all in one place, both past and future.

Think of the Real-Estate Broker trying to deal with multiple, on-going offers and bids and other questions. How is that stuff organized? It's organized by ADDRESS of the subject property. What makes it easier than to give the user a map to pick from, and--after they've got it all set up--the names of Buyers and Sellers associated with the address involved in the transaction? Then, link all the Tasks, Appointments, Buyers, Sellers and Others (lawyers, CPAs, etc.). And, provide a way to link to other documents, on- or off-line (e.g., draft contracts). THAT makes the customers' life easier, because all he/she thinks about every day are properties, uniquely identified by address. Click on the map of properties for which that broker has contracts (to sell, lease, rent or buy), and everything is available. In other words: Provide a platform for which experts in a field can build a user-oriented experience, without having to get all users to comply/conform to ideas spawned by some group of geeks writing the code for the product. These would become the "new apps" for Outlook, and another competitive market is built up.

The second question: Why does the GUI have to be so clumsy, so artificial, and so hard to customize? Give me a starting point for the GUI...maybe 10 possible templates from which to choose: "Friends and Family" and "Small Business" and "Enterprise" and "Smartphone". THEN, let me customize if I want.

The third question: Why do things have to have bizarre names known only to M$ and geeks? "File / Options" is an example...What the @#%&(& does Options have to do with File? Call it what it is: Personalization, and give me a place (out of the way, like a drop-down list in the right margin of the app) where I can go do that. Burying things under complex menus with bizarre names picked by geeks is not user-friendly. And don't get me started on the transmogrification of the common word "Ribbon."

If "Outlook" is the product name, in short, give real-live people in real-live situations the ability to apply a template (which can then be customized) to provide an up-to-the-minute status report, and to "peer" into (aka have an "outlook" on) the near future. It should work for Granny, with a far-flung network of offspring and friends (super-simple menu), and it should work for the CEO/Admin team, so they can work seamlessly together via computer, cloud or smartphone (separate menus for CEO and for Admin, each working on the same data.

Outlook is STILL stuck in the 2003 era, and my Outlook 2013 shows it. It's time for a radical re-think of what a useful tool, all-in-one (not in separate applications) Outlook COULD be, instead of just putting another coat of paint over the old girl and let her continue to look grotesque and work ineptly.

Comment Re:One Woman's Experience (Score 1) 786

Try reading my post again, and this time, try putting a brain on for a change. I OVERCAME the gender issues, but I had to learn how to deal with them, and the men in my (personal and professional) life didn't.

With posts like yours, it's abundantly clear that "(my) gender IS the Fucking Issue", you Neanderthal!

Comment Re:One Woman's Experience (Score 1) 786

So, you have so much experience living and working as a woman, have you, Cedric?

What kind of warped thinking has to be injected into your poor, wounded ego to vent your spleen at a woman who DARES to actually share her real experience.

Go back to your cave (you DID understand the "shadows" reference, didn't you...or was that wa-a-ay over your head?

Comment One Woman's Experience (Score 5, Interesting) 786

As a woman who's been in the electronics/computer field for more than 55 years, now, I read with much disgust the attempts by some in this thread to discount women, and then claim that, somehow, "It ain't true."

Believe me, I've been there. After three books, hundreds of published papers and articles, and decades of consulting to Fortune 500 firms, I have been on the receiving end of the misogynistic "swinging dicks" who couldn't write a competent subroutine or draw a working circuit if their lives depended on it. I can (and, in the past, have) named names and identified organizations where women dare not go. What's interesting is having the CEO of a Fortune 500 company hire me (at $2,500/day) and then have twerps three years out of school decide they know more than I and refuse my counsel because my anatomy is different from theirs. Usually, there's a competent male around who steps in and shuts the abuse down. When there's not, I have developed a strong skill in suckering such blithering idiots into cul de sacs of their own ignorant reasoning, until they are reduced to mumbling to themselves. But, why should I ever have had to DEVELOP that skill?

We are all born the same way, and discover our gender as we grow up...but, due to family influences (e.g., drunken men abusing their wives, "men of the house" who want their women "barefoot and pregnant"), some males grow up with a tacit belief that women are, somehow, inferior to men. There's a name for these people: They are BIGOTS (and it often extends to other differences, like cultural heritage, skin color, education, that are patently irrelevant to judging whether the person is "human" or not).

Fortunately, not all men are chained to this philosphers' wall, drawing conclusions from shadows and accepting them as fact. There are many men who exhibit humanity and treat ALL others with respect and dignity...and they are a delight to work alongside. Unfortunately, they are outnumbered by the dolts, in my experience.

Comment AVG Was Once A Great Product... (Score 1) 170

...then new owners decided they're in it for the money, not customer satisfaction and a reasonable profit. So, I didn't see this; I've already migrated all my clients to Webroot...cheaper, better, and without all the self-serving pop-up messages or uninvited "adds-on" to other products and the O.S.

Webroot is a good product, albeit underdocumented (what is it with all these security companies who think their products don't need or shouldn't have Admin or User documentation???).

Comment Sounds Like You're Making a Classic Type III Error (Score 1) 177

...Solving the wrong problem.

eMail is not a storage medium; it is for short communiques, and sometimes those lead to threads while an issue is threshed through. But using your eMail system for historical storage is like buying a small automobile for long-haul freight. Or, using Twitter to negotiate a contract.

Decide what of all your data you intend keep, and find a useful, generic tool for storage and retrieval, irrespective of content.

Comment Re:Glasses, contacts, lasik (Score 1) 197

Actually, not quite solved. It requires collaboration between the opthalmalogist/optician and the person.

I had terrible problems reading computer display screens until I worked with my optical experts and discovered the "reading" glasses are set for around an 18" focal point...but when I measure the distance from the plane of my eyes to the plane of the screen, it's about 25". If you're getting older, your "accommodation" (i.e., ability to do dynamic focusing on demand) diminishes, and so you're stuck with trying to focus about 7" in FRONT of the screen. That means the screen is beyond the point of best focus.

So, sit at your computer, in a chair you use often, with the display a distance away that is comfortable for you. Then, measure the distance between the center of the screen (irrespective of whether you can read that screen right now, or not) and the plane of your eyes (I have the measurement made with my eyes closed, so the tape measure can touch my eyelid; it helps to have a friend take the measurement for you). Take that number to your vision experts, and tell them that's you're preferred "focal distance" (the distance at which you want the best focus).

Those lenses will be useless for reading, because text will be all out of focus (too near the eye). You can have a pair of "reading" lenses, too...or, you can have bifocal lenses, which give you display-reading in the top half, and book/magazine reading in the bottom.

Incidentally, when you get older, and your lenses get "cataracts" (noticeable when oncoming cars, at night, have "startbursts" from the headlights), your lens replacement(s) will be fixed-focus at infinity, giving you great distance vision.

Comment Re:(Video) Not Available in your Country (Score 1) 63

That's a YouTube restriction. Unfortunately, it appears that the only sites that host this film have pirated it in Ireland, and put it up only on SCAMMER sites. I would hope there would be a downloadable version available as .mp4, so we can educate others about the magnificent achievements Boole made in understanding basic logic. I believe him to be as important to the evolution of computing as I do Alan Turing (where would Turing have been without Boole???).

Irish Television, RTE, could make the film available, but apparently the developers of the documentary wish to retain total control over it's distribution. I'm hoping someone puts the pirated version up on a Torrent, so the rest of us can learn from it, too.

Comment Open Source is no guarantee... (Score 1) 214

...but it admits to the possibilities that a) an enterprising white hat (or black hat) CAN inspect the code for integrity, logical structure, and fitness for purpose, and b) if a black hat can (or could, or does) exploit the code, a white hat can improve the code to close that security breach. Closed Source limits the potential white hats to those the intellectual property owner chooses...and they have little economic incentive to choose well or comprehensively, or ask for expensive comprehensive inspection of the code to find potential flaws, because it will increase their costs.

Comment Bad Habits? (Score 2) 497

We ALL fully document our code, have clear specifications before we write code, use meaningful variable names and rely on IDEs...amirite?

In my case, I only program (after doing it for pay for 45+ years) for myself, and I'm creating new stuff all the time, based on experience. For example, my backup strategy. It started out as a simple script to launch Drive Snapshot. It evolved, into having multiple, cascaded backups on one partition of the computer, which are replicated automatically to my main "server" in case the computer dies. Each computer in the office uses the same central repository. It's got bells and whistles that make my job a lot easier when I experiment...if I try some new app and it trashed Windows, I just roll back to last night's backup. (I believe in 100% backups of all computers...including the server...every night, and schedule "fixit/improve it" time first thing in the morning, so I can rollback and lose nothing.)

So, personally, I now break all the rules, and let my needs dictate the code I write. It isn't specified, it's an evolving organism in my small environment.

Oh, and I'm doing all that in cmd files...might consider upgrading to something exotic, like AutoIt, someday, but I've been saying that for four years now...

Comment Re:Switch to Linux (Score 1) 193

Nonsense! You're just trading one O.S. for another, and one that--in the wider world--is more obscure and harder to find support for. I build Windows systems that are as reliable as Linux systems...and a LOT more secure because of regular Updates. (P.S.: I use both Windows and Linux; I don't use Mac because I don't like closed eco-systems any more than I like Monsanto's GMO seeds for the same reason: It's harder to determine what is happening inside.)

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"Though a program be but three lines long, someday it will have to be maintained." -- The Tao of Programming