Friday, May 21, 2010

Windows* Software Developers, Why do you do it?

At some point in the progression of the Windows operating system life-cycle, software developers started building their applications to come to the front, or some function to become the active function in your workspace when they reached a certain point in loading or carrying out a function.

Let me see if I can explain that a different way in case I'm too brief up top.

You set something to work (your HP Solution center scanning a document) and you go back to what you were doing - typing a document in MS Word. What happens is that the scanning software gets to a certain point where it is "processing" and has a function button that says "cancel".
The Developers program this screen to come to the front of your windows and be the active screen, and since you don't realize this is happening because you are typing a sentence, you hit the space bar in your progression of composing something, which activates the "cancel", and now your HP software thinks you canceled the scan. It stops, and you have to start all over again.

Let's do another example.
You are working on a document, you click on the Outlook button to get it going. All through its opening process - who KNOWS what it's doing at that moment - it forces itself to be your active workspace, and there is nothing that it's done that needs your attention... it just wants to be in front! and so you have to keep clicking back to MS Word (or your browser, or notepad, or whatever else you were doing).

I remember when this switch happened. I was in grad school when this shift in thinking happened.

Windows gives you the option to have multiple applications working/open/active at the same time.
thanks! I like that...
I know you are there, scanner, because I made you work! I am ok with you finishing your job and then waiting quietly in the background until I'm ready for your product.

So why, oh why do you think you need to come to the front and remind me that you exist?
Why do you do it?
...because you think I'm stupid and need you to make decisions for me?


*edited to add "Windows" because this does not happen on my Mac.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

On Falling

"The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall."

- Nelson Mandela

(I love Honest Tea)

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Taking a Break

Just got back from two weeks in Australia with my family there. Had a couple nights at my Dad's farm outside of Sydney – very peaceful, very Folb. 

For the second week, we went up the coast to Byron Bay – the most easterly point on mainland Australia.

It’s a beautiful beach town with interesting shops, magnificent views, and enough to keep the five of us occupied for the week.

I went diving at these little islands... 
...saw couple kinds of shark (wobbegongs and leopard shark), and lots of fish.
Funny thing... there were two women in my group who were from South Africa, and two snorkelers on the boat who were also from South Africa. The seas were very choppy and the snorkelers got very seasick so spent their time puking.

Have you seen these “fotopols” before?

They are placed in strategic positions so that you can take photos like this:
(that's the view east of Australia)

My stepmother gave the trip a twist by asking that we try as many of the restaurants in The Good Food Guide as possible. This is a restaurant review list made by the Sydney Morning Herald, and there are a number of restaurants from the Central Gold Coast recommended.
We tried restaurants for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
But there is one that I would like to recommend above the others.
FatBelly Kat in Brunswick Head.
A stylized Greek restaurant run by a husband and wife team. I believe she is the chef, and he the manager. The service was impeccable, the wine the best, and the food absolutely amazing.
If you ever find yourself around these parts, give it a try.
We did.

Another restaurant I enjoyed was Harvest in Newrybar. We went here for breakfast and dinner. Even though it was not in The Good Food Guide, it was recommended by people my stepmother knows. The food was amazing and the ambiance was very well done.

The other interesting thing about the trip, was that I was the only non-Aussie Folb there. This hasn’t happened for over 20 years. Yes, I was disappointed that the rest of the gang couldn’t make it, and yes I missed them. But I tried to look on the bright side. I figured this would be a good opportunity for me to have some quality time with everyone…
And it was… I had great chats with my Dad and Stepmom, with my Dad solo, and with each of my brothers, together and one-on-one. It’s always been easy being with my brothers, even though they didn’t really grow up with me, and me them.
I feel like with this trip, I got to know who they are as men. And that made all the hours and hours of flying worth it.