Actually, that’s not entirely accurate:
Windows 10 has irremediably pissed me off.
Why is it that even when Micro$oft manages to do something “right”, they manage to make it suck?
Some of the reasons Windows 10 is pissing me off:
- They are actively pandering to “Aunt Tillie”:
The above reference comes from Eric S. Raymond’s “Jargon file
Aunt Tillie: n.
linux-kernel mailing list] The archetypal non-technical user, one’s elderly and scatterbrained maiden aunt. Invoked in discussions of usability for people who are not hackers and geeks; one sees references to the “Aunt Tillie test”.
Now, let’s leave aside the fact that “Geek” culture has been doing itself a serious disservice for 30+ years, by (implicitly) viewing “non-technical users”/those who aren’t “hackers and geeks” as stupid sub-animals. (I’ll come back to that in a subsequent post).
My basic problem with the “Aunt Tillie” caricature is that it’s dangerous on a multitude of levels:
1. (Almost) no actual person is really as “scatterbrained” AND incapable of improvement as the purported “archetype” would suggest. The (tacit) assumption is that (so-called) “gurus”/hackers/geeks/3l33t etc. were “born that way”.
EVERYONE experiences some sort of “learning-curve”. EVERYONE was a mere “n00b” at some point. The only legitimate questions to ask, are such things as: how “steep” was (or is) the learning-curve experienced by any given individual? How “fast” is that individual progressing? Is the individual’s learning-curve becoming “less steep” over time?
So, that’s the first problem: Both Micro$oft AND “geek” culture are (implicitly or explicitly) assuming that those who don’t (currently) self-identify as “hackers”/”Geeks”/”Non-technical users” are STUPID SUB-ANIMALS who are INCAPABLE OF LEARNING AT ALL.
So, yeah: “Geek” culture (especially as exemplified by GNU/Linux) tends to be really snippy/pretentious/short-tempered toward those assumed to be less knowledgeable — without bothering to understand WHY they may (currently) be (relatively) ignorant with regard to a specific topic.
(Hint: telling somebody to “RTFM” — “Read the fucking manual” — tacitly assumes That they didn’t do so. It is entirely possible — ESPECIALLY given the overt shittiness of so much of what passes for “documentation” (not to mention the well-known antipathy to writing documentation of any kind among “geeks”) that the unfortunate individual asking what you consider a “stupid” question HAS ALREADY RTFM, and merely failed to “UTFM” (UNDERSTAND the fucking manual).
So, no. Both Micro$oft and “Geek” culture tacitly (or explicitly) operate from the premise that most people are simply too stupid to ever learn anything.
As a result: Micro$oft has spent at least the last 25 years attempting to create a “Tillie-proof” OS. During the same 25 years, the real-world equivalents of “Aunt Tillie” have been fumbling their way toward at least a rudimentary understanding of — at the very least — the basics of the GUI interface. If they can manage to actually get any kind of “anti-virus” bullshit installed and running, they are already far beyond the level of “scatterbrained” idiocy ascribed to the “Aunt Tillie” stereotype.
Meanwhile, “Geek” culture (especially as exemplified by anything UNIX/Linux/GNU/BSD-related) can’t help but become ever more sidetracked into ever more idiotic nonsense:
NOBODY BUT RICHARD STALLMAN ACTUALLY GIVES TWO LIQUIDY SHITS ABOUT THE TERM “GNU/LINUX”. Pandering to “RMS” might be a strategic move if you’ve invited him to give a talk at your university or something — but otherwise, nobody gives a shit.
Quite frankly, pandering to Stallman’s (many) idiotic quirks strikes me as abysmally stupid:
THAT is exactly the sort of stuff Micro$oft/Apple desperately need. When the guy the Non-geek world (tacitly) views as the “Godfather” of the FLOSS (“Free/Libre Open Source Software”) paradigm can barely manage to refrain from eating stuff of of his own foot, and/or throwing toddler-like tantrums during his own speeches — well, you get the idea.
At any rate: I’m seriously contemplating doing the “dual-boot” thing.
Over the last few days, I’ve managed to:
- Download Yumi.
- Download the latest KNOPPIX ISO image
- Grab the latest Debian “Live” ISO images (Hint: Debian offers a variety of “default” GUI options/window managers, etc.)
- Use the aforementioned Yumi/ISO images to create a bootable USB stick
- Figure out my desktop machine’s BIOS settings to where I can actually get the USB stick to boot
- (Merely as a test): use the “Windows 10 repair disc” to “reset” my windows installation (WHY does MIcro$oft have to resort to stupid terminology, instead of simply teaching “non-geeks” the already-established definitions of preexisting “technical jargon?”)
Thing is: I don’t consider myself particularly “geeky”.
To the extent that I fit into any socioeconomic/sub-cultural “box”, I’m probably “Poor white trash with an Autodidactic streak”.
At any rate…..My next step (assuming I continue with this project at all) involves re-partitioning what Windows considers “Drive C”, such that I can then install — some “flavor” of Debian to that drive, while (hopefully) preserving Windows 10 — as, if nothing else, a “fail-safe”.
The (current) hardware configuration of this machine (Memory, particularly) is just barely within the “minimum” specified for Windows 10. At some point, I need to add more RAM to this machine — both to improve the aggregate performance, and as a means to squeeze as much potential usefulness out of the hardware itself as possible. (“Planned Obsolescence” can — and SHOULD — begin “planning” for it’s OWN “obsolescence”).
At any rate….yeah. If I’m going to end up having to periodically reinstall Windows 10 just to prevent this machine from grinding to a crawl, I may as well install a better (IE: more “open”/less “proprietary”) OS, and (probably) get back to learning about programming, etc.