My Kingdom For Reliable Software

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Howard (Howie) Merrill is the Master of the Web Manor website, as well as the author of the wonderful newsletter The Funnies.  Comments, questions, and anything else about Howie's Corner should be sent to Howie.

My Kingdom For Reliable Software

On the cover of the February 2001 issue of PC WORLD magazine, the main subject is "WINDOWS YOUR WAY".

This is followed by subtopics including:
"Hidden Tips..."
"Speed Up Your System"
and my favorite:
"PLUS: WINDOWS ME BUGS - and how to fix them"

I am well aware that Windows is shipped with basic setting that will accommodate a great many PC users and it is impossible for Microsoft to set up Windows so that it will works well for everyone. My problem is, (And I have many, so bare with me), hidden tips???

Why do we HIDE tips? Are they only for the advanced users that know how to find them???

I also am very well aware that software is shipped with a minimal amount of testing. After all, how many different situations can the boys in Washington State come up with? So they crank out new releases, fixes, patches, and NEW, IMPROVED VERSIONS!!!! and expect us to be the beta-testers. As Kevin Meaney would say, "THAT'S NOT RIGHT!!!!"

AND, if you ARE going to expect me to test your ********!!!! product, at least give me a way to let you know what is wrong, and work with me to fix these issues!

Have you ever sent a software company an e-mail about their product and had them contact you to resolve it? Well, actually, I have. Allaire (makers of HomeSite and other products) has actually called me at home and a very knowledgeable technicians spent the better part of two hours (at 7PM EST) working with me to fix an installation upgrade issue. Now that is support! But don't expect that to be the norm.

When you open this particular issue, what has to strike you is Microsoft's latest advertisement for Win2000. Three pages into this "Windows Your WAY" issue is a two page ad with a picture of the all too famous "BLUE SCREEN OF DEATH", which you are supposed to cut out of the magazine and paste to your screen "If you find yourself missing the downtime...". If this is not sad enough, it is followed with the text, "....Windows 2000 Professional is 13 times more reliable than Windows 98....".

13 times more reliable. Lemme see, I crash and reboot, on average, say, 50 times a week. Hmmmmm, if I upgrade to the premiere product, at a considerable expense, I will crash and reboot about 4 times a week. Plus, I lose the ability to run about half the programs I have acquired over the last 6 years of computing, probably need to upgrade most of the others. But forget all this.... 13 times more reliable than THEIR OWN PRODUCT!!!

Does this strike you like it does me????!!!! If they said 13 times more reliable than OS/2 or MAC, I can see the sales point, but more reliable than the garbage they touted as the answer to all of our problems 3 years ago?

I think a class action lawsuit is in order. The stress of working with this software is cruel and unusual punishment!

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Last Revised: 02/26/2001