Companies on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown

This is basically a continuation of the previous post about the biggest software delusions of the last decade. In hindsight I would have set rather a different tone for what I wrote, less rant and more technical, but the problem is that I keep things on my mind for a long time and never care enough to write them down leaving them rotting until they come out as technological rants. Anyway, rants are always more fun to read, so let’s keep the style.

In this post I’m going to write about some things left out in the previous one and also comment some things which happened in the meanwhile. You might ask what I have to show for my big claims about complex issues? Very little indeed, but does this make them less true? You’ll be the judge. What I try to offer here is a different perspective on issues which are always analyzed from the marketing or business point of view. Trying to explain these things giving technical reasons, offer in my opinion much better explanations than those fished from the flavor-of-the-day marketing magic hat.

After the last post I was sent per email a “graphic that illustrates the 30 years of innovation at Microsoft and their failures along the way” to link on my blog. I don’t care really about the reasons to ask for a link-to. What I want to say is that this graphic made fun of Microsoft’s failures of the decade just by listing some of them. And this is more or less the usual approach I see taken on the subject even by technical blogs. Which means focusing on the facts, rather than trying to understand them.

Windows Phone

Can we say that Lumia/Windows 7 phones flopped or is it still too soon? I think that after some of the articles I’ve read here and there, we might say that. Lumia phones were pushed out by a big carrier in the US (AT&T) and have been subject of a massive marketing campaign, but still they sold less than the dropped and not advertized N9/MeeGo project.

Nokia is laughable for dropping MeeGo! It can’t be stressed enough, because that would’ve been their only chance to regain market share and they completely blew it.

But why? Surely many reasons stand in the background, but in the end of the day one has to consider what is better on the technical level. If your definition of a better phone is how shiny it looks, then important decisions in the mobile industry shouldn’t be left to you. Many think that Apple is leading the smartphone/table industry because of their marketing strategy. While Apple products are often appealing and polished, this can’t be farther from the truth. Take the desktop market. Is Apple leading there? No. Why? Aren’t the products as polished as their counterparts in the mobile market? Or does Apple strangely suck at marketing their desktop products? Sure, Apple computers are expensive, but so are iPhones!

The first rule here is that great products sell themselves. Clearly marketing helps, but no matter how much marketing money you spend on a product which people don’t want, it will not sell, especially in the long term.

Take MeeGo for instance. I don’t mean that this project would’ve rescued Nokia instantly. Probably they would’ve still to endure 1-2 years of losses along the road, but eventually it would’ve flourished. Of this I’m sure. And considering how many people still buy overpriced N9 phones on ebay, I have a point. The trick is that if you know you have a great project at hands, you invest in it, endure some losses in the strong belief that it will eventually succeed.

One might say that this is exactly what is happening to Nokia and Windows Phone, only that they are betting on the wrong horse. It would be an acceptable point of view if we don’t get hands down on the technology itself. MeeGo was a great project, in my opinion it would’ve been the most advanced OS on the mobile market. Compare this with a repackaged Windows Mobile (not based on NT technology) running Silverlight. Alone the fact that a developer is forced to write his apps in Silverlight or XNA, that alone, would be enough to say “case fuckin’ closed!”. Rumors say Windows Mobile 8 will feature a NT kernel and also that developers will be able to compile C++ code. Seems like after enormous pressure, Microsoft had to give in about C++ (wow, that was totally unexpected… except that I wrote it even a year ago and would’ve been clear to anyone which has even a yota of experience as a developer). Even if it’s true, this is totally messed up. Those developers who lost time to port their C++ code to C# for Windows Phone 7 because C++ would never be a part of the toolchain of that OS lost their time probably for nothing. Also, users which are running Windows Mobile 7 won’t get a free update to the next version, which is incredible since both iOS and Android update their OS even for older phones. It should be pretty clear that when you want to take away market share from the biggest in the game, you must offer at least in part something which is better. Now can someone tell me in what regard a Windows Mobile 7 is better than iOS or Android. Leaving out the hardware of Nokia (and I still think that a smartphone without front-camera is pretty silly nowadays) and just focus on the operating system itself. Is there any advantage? Both iOS and Android have many more apps and of higher quality than WP7. iOS is closed just like Windows Mobile 7, while Android is more easy to hack and play with. Both iOS and Android allow C++ to be compiled, while WP7 doesn’t.

Metro and Windows 8

I’m still calling it Metro, but what is it called now? Microsoft lost the brand to a very famous European wholesale chain store. As a friend of mine said, “I would fire the whole marketing team, if they even can’t come up with a brand name which is not already used”. And not only is it used, but it’s used by a very big chain. It’s like calling your new technology “Walmart”, at least google the name first! (maybe it’s because they were forced to use Bing…)

And enough with these flashy marketing names for development technologies! There’s no reason to pretentiously call something “Silverlight”, it makes it only much more ridiculous when it ends up in the shithouse (or silvershithouse). Use dumb prosaic names like Win32, MFC, Qt! It doesn’t fuckin’ matter! What matters is the code and only the code, and after a year or more of hearing about Metro I haven’t yet seen the code! Granted I don’t look for it, I don’t dig it up from some msdn showcase, I don’t go to conferences, but this isn’t a good enough reason. Just google “metro code snippet” or anything similar and it will be hard to come up with results (I’ve found a preview on msdn which is just a collection of small samples which I was too lazy to view all). The code in this case is like a big mistery waiting to be unveiled…

Except that nobody cares! Apart making fun of Metro, I have yet to see anybody waiting impatiently for Metro or even talking about it (apart making fun of the name etc.).

Microsoft got me personally annoyed to a point in which I don’t follow anything they do anymore. I will have to try sooner or later Windows 8 just to guarantee the stability of my own product, but that’s it. I won’t use it nor play with it. I will skip it completely. And all this is ok, because I think that everything Microsoft is doing is not here to stay. Bing, Silverlight, Windows Phone, WPF, Zune (R.I.P.) etc. And time is confirming my claims. Of course, I can’t predict the future, something might change and change the faith of one of these products as well. But with the current management this is very unlikely.

As for what I read about it, the whole new UI is just jaw-dropping stupid. It’s incredible how this trend of “simplifying UIs” got hold of so many projects. Seen what happened to Gnome 3? Seen what happened to Ubuntu when it came out with Unity? Why is Mint now so popular?

Sure people don’t want to learn again things they already can do, but the problem here is that there’s no damn reason to change something which is working perfectly well and put instead something which is just worse. While humans strive for harmony and unity, these concepts can’t be applied to everything. A desktop is a productivity device. It’s efficient, fast and advanced. While a tablet is a device for consumption, it is ideal to read, play games, browse the web. Having one application at a time visible in a desktop is not only a bad idea, it is idiotic beyond imagination. The key point of a desktop is that it allows complex applications to be used, which would be impossible to use on a tablet: Photoshop, Maya, LibreOffice, Premiere etc. And the whole concept of tiles, which to Microsoft is so brilliant is equally moronic. If Microsoft doesn’t drop the whole concept soon enough after the Windows 8 debacle, I will just drop Windows completely.

The complexity of window managers could be solved much more elegantly by providing a basic mode for users which are not technologically capable.

The betrayal

Developers have been “betrayed” by Microsoft numerous times. Like I mentioned in the previous post, Microsoft deprecated and dished out new technologies at a pace that no one could follow, deprecating in a matter of few years what they just claimed to be their newest direction. Hence confusing and frustrating developers who tried to keep up-to-date, while refusing to significantly update existing and widely used technologies.

Or in the case of Windows Phone 7 the few developers who ported their code to C# now read that Windows Phone 8 will allow C++ code to be compiled. Will they be satisfied by this? Same for the users who bought Windows Phone 7 devices: they will not be able to run applications compiled for Windows Phone 8. Well, at least they got the tiles…

Losing the ground

The one thing which differentiates one OS, apart their own intrinsic quality, from the other is the number of applications which run on it. But the quality of the OS increases once there’s enough interest in it, and that interest is again a result of the applications which run on it. So simple right? While Microsoft knows this rule, it did everything it could to annoy developers. Microsoft tried to bind developers to Windows not by pleasing them, but by dishing out ugly technologies which run only on Windows and using their market share to force developers to use them.

Developers, like anyone else, guard their own interests. Many lost faith in Microsoft completely and started looking for safer havens. This surely is true even for other experts, although I can speak only for my own kind.

For instance, how did Microsoft lose its IE market share? I can’t even start judging IE as a product, apart its history of lack of security, its history of ignoring standards making life hell for web developers, its appalling plugin technology. We’re talking about a product which in 2012 considers clicking on a URL such an important event to signal it emitting a click sound. IE lost its market share by being an inferior product. But do you think that users with no technical ability would’ve downloaded and installed Firefox on their own? No, it’s because more technical people advised them to do so. I did it many times. And this is true for many products which make a name for themselves among technical people and from there they get to the masses. By the way, I consider this the best path for a product, because it means it stands on solid ground.

And finally Valve is starting to sell games on Linux. It can’t be stressed enough how important this is, because if this works out and I can’t see why it shouldn’t, it will change everything. If Microsoft loses the game battle to Linux, then they will lose the OS battle. I think this could be the battle of Stalingrad for Microsoft, because once there are enough games on Linux, there’s no end to the ground which Microsoft can lose. At that point Valve could even come out with its own console and compete against XBox. And since the gaming industry is so powerful, it would mean an overwhelming cash and interest injection into Linux, which everybody involved in that OS could benefit from. Of course, I’m speculating here, but does Microsoft understand the potential here?

I don’t think management does. They are hopping from one technology to another: WinForms, no WPF, no Silverlight, no Metro (replace with the new still unknown name), C#, no HTML5+JS. The problem, in the end, is that if as a CEO you don’t know what you are dealing with, you can’t take informed decisions and you will surround yourself with people you can’t evaluate technically. Your decisions will then only be based upon the appearance, the flashy name, how pretentious the concept sounds or how many millions are spent on marketing. A technically capable CEO is not a guarantee for success, but an incapable one is a recipe for failure. Remember what the former CEO of Pepsi did to Apple? Look at what Elop is doing to Nokia or Ballmer to Microsoft.

20 thoughts on “Companies on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown”

  1. While I agree on many points this one is kind of requires just to be a believer:

    “Probably they would’ve still to endure 1-2 years of losses along the road, but eventually it would’ve flourished. Of this I’m sure.”

    Why exactly you are sure?

    What we can only be sure of is that number of apps that will be written for MeeGo would be approximately around zero (that is, several thousands). It does not mean the phone itself would not be great and averagely popular – many people buy Android phones and never install anything on them (and I know even one iPhone guy who is totally satisfied with what came right of the factory). So, MeeGo smartphone would have a future indeed, but that would not be a future Nokia’s management wanted to have, apparently. They did not want to have a niche product for die-hard Nokia fans.

    So basically choice Nokia was making is the choice between Android and Windows Phone – two providers with the real app store potential. The popular belief here is that Mr. Elop made that choice (and did it incorrectly).

    I doubt that. I think Nokia could join Android same time Samsung/Motorola did, but for some reasons it decided to try MeeGo first. Something about Android scares Nokia a lot. So, my view is that after Nokia realized that MeeGo is not a way they are willing to go, they chose Microsoft and hired Mr. Elop as a CEO to negotiate a better deal and not the other way around. But that’s just a guess.

    It does not make their decision right, of course, but I think their reasons and their analysis lies on little deeper level than just pure technical incompetence.

  2. Hey Oleg, I’m sure that the number of apps for MeeGo would’ve been a huge, simply because a lot of developers know Qt/C++ and porting existing code is fairly easy. Of course, no one would port code on a platform which has been around only for a few months. Of course, there are people who jump on a new platform in faith, but they are only so many (just look at the number of apps for WP7). I’m just saying that MeeGo was already very interesting for technical people, porting code would’ve been easy and this is as much as you can expect when starting a new mobile platform. MeeGo was never pushed by Nokia and it was trashed almost immediately, they never believed in it, it was just a try without commitment. If devs have no confidence that the platform is going to stay, then no one will invest in it obviously. If one arrives late at a competition, one must stand out for quality (or be extremely low in price, but beating android to that is not an option). But gaining market share requires time: people switching from IE to other browsers did not happen overnight. What I mean is that if a company really believes in a product, it will invest in it and wait, since it may take some time, even years. Of course, a company can be deluded about a product, but when the skills are lacking on the technical level, what is the criteria to believe in product? Brand? Marketing? I don’t believe there’s a better criteria than the technical one to believe in a product. Otherwise it’s just taking a spin on the wheel of fortune. Why believe in WP7? Surely not because of the incredible amount of Silverlight developers or existing code base. So what was the reason Nokia believed in WP7? I think brand and marketing. I’m taking a guess obviously, but who, being technically capable, would make Silverlight the default programming environment for a mobile phone?

  3. Daniel,

    Nokia didn’t just pull out of Meego, all the main backers behind Meego pulled out because they didn’t agree where Meego roadmap was going. This is why Tizen was created because Intel, Samsung amongst others wanted a mobile OS to embrace HTML5 at its core. Nokia gave all the Meego patents to Jolla so it isn’t a dead OS just yet and Jolla have got deals with other mobile phone makers to use Meego. I think Nokia is just trying to give itself a clear roadmap for the future and having less financial burden on none core assets which may also partly explain why they sold Qt to Digia. Nokia is moving back to its roots. The probably chose Windows over Android because Android is just so fragmented and currently Windows RT seems to have a good roadmap ahead of itself…


  4. Hey Teddy, I don’t know the reasons why Nokia backed out from MeeGo, but there were very interesting things going on there. For instance, Nvidia had already released their drivers for it. I have not been involved in the project, but what to me was clear even then was the lack of commitment Nokia had to the project. It wasn’t even advertized. They just came out with the N9 and basically deprecated it immediately, although it was a sound project. MeeGo isn’t dead, yes, but it is dead for Nokia. Selling Qt was just a normal consequence of not being interested in anything != Microsoft. Everybody expected Nokia to sell Qt, it had been obvious from the point they announced their interest in WP7, and if you read the Qt blog you’ll see many comments anticipating this, while Nokia always stated that “no no it will continue to be very important to Nokia for the emerging economies and such”, and yet it was obvious they were no longer interested. About Android, sure they might have chosen WinPhone for that reason, but to me that’s not a good enough reason. I can’t see a positive outcome for Nokia. Only if WP8 is so much better than WP7, but I have my strong doubts. Trust must be earned, and it will take a lot to MS to earn that trust and I don’t see that coming at all. Just alone the fact that existing WP7 users won’t be able to update to WP8 is absolutely ludicrous. Who will ever buy a WP7 today, when you already know it’s going to be obsolete in a year?

  5. Hey Daniel, thanks for answering

    Well, I won’t argue with your points because they are all true. But. WP7, with dismal market share and without C/C++ compatibility already has more than one hundred thousands apps (!). It’s probably a record if relating to the number of existing phones:)

    So, you should not believe in WP7 – it’s already there. Note that I am talking only about one aspect of WP7 – the size of its store, the future of the platform itself is apparently very questionable. But so would be MeeGo’s future.

    My personal advice for Nokia would be stick with Android.

  6. Hey Oleg, 🙂 I agree that Android would have been a good choice, they could still develop MeeGo on the side. It is true that the Windows store has lots of apps, but consider that Microsoft has literally begged for them, one should take a look at the quality of the apps, not the number. On iOS and Android there are just much better apps. Just take a look at the games for iOS and Android. That might change of course with next releases of WP, but as for now it’s like this, and this is mainly due to the Silverlight/XNA limitation, a limitation which would not have applied to MeeGo.

  7. I totally agree.
    After VS6.0 and W2k all things started to getting worse, no doubt on that.
    Only a word as an answer in my opinion: Monopoly.
    Monopoly is the evil. You start to loose contact with the base, with the quality of your product, with developers…and start to think only on marketing and make money at all cost, no matter what.

  8. Monopoly is surely a very important factor. Another important factor imho is being present on the stock market. While the stock market is a way to accumulate immense wealth, it also distances a company from reality. When a company has shareholders it doesn’t matter if the product is good or bad, as long as the shares increase their value. Shareholders are mostly non-technical people and they won’t be convinced by the quality of a product given technical reasons. One has to make them believe that Win8 is going to win over the tablet market etc, that Metro is the unifying technology which will make Microsoft destroy Apple and Android. This is why a company which is listed on Wall Street can’t say publicly “yeah, sorry Windows Millenium/Vista was a disaster, sorry about that”. They will instead praise how Vista has been the most sold OS and things like that. What matters is only the grandiosity perceived by investors. That’s why, I believe, the best way to maintain contact with reality is to not be present on the stock market. Of course, that would also probably make it impossible to accumulate large capital as Microsoft or Apple did.

  9. God No

    Steam is the last thing I want on Linux.

    Who’s the dumbass that thinks it’s a good idea to require *AND maintain* an online account for a single player offline game. I won’t touch NewVegas or Skyrim because I don’t want this Steam’ed shit on any machine of mine.

    Same reason I won’t play Starcraft II. Why the hell do I need to regularly go online to play an offline game ?

    The Witcher is supposed to be DRM free, but right there on the back of the box “requires 50MB download of license file”. 50MB for a license ?

    Some of us live in rural areas without blazing speeds of internets. Even if I had broadband at home I still ain’t downloading license shit or going online for an offline game I bought retail.

  10. Ciao,

    I don’t know if you are obliged to give answers to your shareholders, in any case you’re obliged to give professional answers to who believed in you, buying your products (user & developers), develop for your platforms and so on.
    I’ve just download VS2012 express.
    1) Aside the missing resizable build window from VS (at least from Vs6.0) as you said, what I have to highlight is the missing of a silly feature, very very silly feature but useful from my point of view. The editor window is missing the italic style for code comments!!! Unbelievable. Well, someone could say that this is a very particular feature from a 50millions lines of code of a complex software. Well/2, first of all this a little feature that is missing from VS6.0. Second, many many editors have this feature and this shows, at least from a statistical point of view, that viewing comments in italic style from you code could make your 8 hours (at least 8 hours ) daily professional life as coders a little better.
    2) I’ve been reading Josuttis second edition book and I’ve trying his examples on VS2012. What I’ve found suddenly is the missing initializer list feature :o. So the first thing that came into my mind is that perhaps C++ last standard was released lately, one or two months ago…no! was released on August the 11th (from wikipedia). Well I said to myself, perhaps Microsoft hasn’t allocated too many people for the C++ standard library update. Surely, the other compilers haven’t done any yet, so I tried a little search on the web and I came to this table….
    The table could be wrong, I don’t know for sure.
    Anyway, the only compiler, from the three, that is missing the most feature from C++ standard is…. VC11! Hey hey, stop a while: did you notice Microsoft has changed the graphical layout for Vs6.0 …to… Vs2012 for each version of it released? Wow I’ve noticed that!! wait, how could I possibly earn money from looking the VS series layouts?!?!

    So silly questions I asked to my self are:
    Has Microsoft been doing all efforts, and more during these years, to keep their products as much “strong” from the quality/dev’s work etc. as possible?
    Wasn’t sufficient to release just SPs for VS as new bugs were discovered and fixed /features implemented and so on INSTEAD of ship a new product every 5 minutes
    exchanging it as new big STEP in technologies of human beings?
    Have they spend more on marketing instead to concentrate on their products and quality of their products?
    And fundamentally, have they asked to devs what REALLY they need? Or they prefer to guide the market based on their idea of what is better? (Monopoly?)

    My considerations:
    As you said, Daniel, when I sit down in front of my pc on work I need products that run and do their jobs well, possibly with features that help ME as software developer.
    I don’t want to go to my office and sit down in front of my PC looking for hours how beauty is the graphical layout of the next Visual Studio (the effort spent to do that instead to allocate resources to update C++ standard library for example).
    I don’t what to go see any flickering effects on my program (with Windows 7 basic) on a 3Ghz/4gb ram PC (default win32 project) just because Microsoft decided to move on the next Windows transparent effect.
    An these are just few issues…

    English is not my first language, let me know if it’s unclear.

  11. @CodeVisio: don’t worry, English isn’t my mother tongue either. Thank you for your argumentative comment. When you mention the UI problems of VC++ I could really go on enumerating them for hours. I don’t use VC++ as my editor any more and haven’t for at least 4 years now, but I see the so called “progress”. Those times I had to use VC++ I became incredibly annoyed. The new UI is actually worse to me than the one of VC6.0. Just to give you some examples, they converted the UI to XAML, however they left every window non-resizable. Such as the Project Properties window which drives me crazy, because I use a somewhat bigger DPI, it results in the fact that I have to scroll in order to see items in the tree on the left (they could not even implement a splitter in between to resize the tree). The search dialog which pops up always at a different location (making it impossible to use the mouse and press find next). The docking which always snaps at the wrong time and just annoys me to no end. The common libs/includes are now only available per-project, no way to configure them globally, couldn’t they just implement BOTH ways? The incredibly slow start-up time. The whole project architecture which forces a conversion with every new version of VS. I really could go on and on and on, and again I don’t even use it, if I did, I’m sure I would find many more things. But just alone the fact that they retained most problems present in VS6.0 and introduced some new ones, is sufficient to pass judgement.

    What is pretty clear, as you stated, is that Microsoft doesn’t really care about the life of a developer. Basically any tool, like Notepad++, will do much better than Visual C++ as editor. It probably just needs (if doesn’t already have) a plugin with a compile button and some small tree view of the files. That’s it.

    The problem is that you need technical people (or at least people who got a clue) to guide a company. Take Ballmer, he probably barely knows what C++ is, what does he care what your editor looks or feels like? Nothing. But you are, as a developer, a very important wheel in the machinery which brings money to Microsoft. If you have better tools, you will work better, produce better code. If you have a better ecosystem for you app, your app and your users will benefit from it and this will reflect very good on Windows, because the same app will work better on Windows than on, say, OSX. On the other hand if you ignore as a CEO what C++ is, you can’t have vision, which is the first quality a CEO needs. You will neglect developers, which then i turn will be frustrated, which may result in their decision not to partecipate in any technology you dish out. That’s my case for instance. I don’t know how WinPhone8 will be (although I have an idea), but just based on my discontent with Microsoft I can tell you that if I had to buy a mobile phone my choice would be:

    1 – Android
    2 – iPhone
    3 – Blackbarry
    4 – Used MeeGo
    5 – Symbian
    6 – * wildcard standing for ANY DAMN PHONE BUT NOT A WINDOWS PHONE
    7- WinPhone 8

    I will not endorse Microsoft in any of their delusions.

    @anon imus: I’m not a gamer myself, so I don’t really care about Steam, but that doesn’t count since there are lots of people who do use it and that was really the subject of my case. 🙂

  12. As for the original text that started this thread, “Well said. Well Spoken.”… Thanks for your services. I’m a sysprog and applications developer of 40 years plus, before MS existed, from days when I was punching cards on an IBM keypunch. When MS came along with DOS, then Win 3.1, Win95, Win98, WinME, WinNT 3.1, WinNT4.0, W2k, XP … up through those generations there was sound credible logic to at least allowing one to keep the “classic view” to the OS so the GUI was consistant and finding things was not too tough. But the GUIs of the various versions of Visual Basic, Visual C++, etc found in the Studio suites started drifting until upgrading a compiler was a bigger pain than it was worth. Moving from DLLs to COM files then the (pardon me) crap I’ve seen lately has made me more than consider retirement… and that’s despite my main job being maintenance of IBM mainframes… any sizeable corporations uses 3270 emulators running on PCs to get to their mainframes but Windows on the PC has me thinking digging ditches would be more fun (not to mention the obvious “big brother” evidence throughout corporate life). I’ve hammered MS in their “customer surveys” when I was left going to get info off their site and made no doubt to them that my feelings were negative because they’ve screwed over the developers that allowe “them” (MS) to become successful. Sadly whatever reads comments doesn’t matter… it’s probably written to some archive in Salt Lake and forgotten. I pray for the day I see MS has gone bust soon and Linux or “whatever” has replaced them… but as sadly as other things, I suspect when Congress let MS get away with their monopolistic practices a few years ago, that there were back room talks which kept Congress from doing their job for us and rather that the started kindling the fire which the NSA needed with MS, on which jumped Google, AOL, Yahoo, etc, etc, the phone companies and sadly, apparently even Apple folded of which I only programmed for a few years in the early 80s but for which I gained much respect after I saw MS simply trying to emulate Apple’s GUI and it appeared Apple had held out from the big brother effort. Alas, apparently no more. But at least their privacy statement isn’t as blatently anti-privacy as Google whom I’ll curse until the day I die. MS has turned into a bunch of out of touch lab rats (each with an ego the size of Google’s) and have little to no clue about what real work has been done in the world… and will be done in the world without them, when the day comes. Thanks again, Will/Colorado Springs

  13. Nice Post Daniel!

    M$ is crazy…
    I prefer WinXP,
    Win7 is barely tolerable for me,
    and I won’t even touch Win8 or newer
    I WOULD NOT even use M$ Windows 8+ if they PAYED ME TO! LOL

  14. “Companies on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown”, a good attention-drawing title & I know this is a 2017 comment to your 2012 essay, but still, I will thank you for my enjoyment of reading your essay and the contemplative comments. I’m not a developer, nor a coder. I search to find ways to compile workable–sortable & what not, lists from what I need of Google Chrome & Windows 10 system compilings of my browsings at, EbscoHost, open-source journal pages, & coding forums. I need to see, organize, & manipulate information from viewings over time because serendipitous connections might be made mentally or I might gain further understanding by seeing an overview. For me & likely others, Chrome & W10 files can be unfriendly for intuitive data usage & aren’t always accessible ones EXCEPT when coders and developers (bless you all) provide the way, & when coding forum participants share how-to’s. So you have now the “Ah ha, I see” as to how I, a non D or C came to your site, it was from a link on . I’ve thanked Nir Sofer for single utilities & for launcher zip. To you Daniel Pistelli, thank you for your well-formed, educational, enjoyable essay. I pray you are thriving in 2017. I won’t read newer essays because now is the time for the outdoors, for locomotion health. It’s important to health imho to use the brain for the body not only for the mental, & to attend to the state of the ANS & PNS (our nervous systems). In appreciation, sf

  15. Thank you, sf! And sorry for the lately approved comment, but I don’t check comments very often on this blog (likely in 6-months intervals). And yes, as much as reading or writing a rant might be fun, doing outdoors activities is better for our health.

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