Rant: I still hate software (DRAFT)

Draft!  Work in progress! Feedback welcome!

Revised version intended for Qworky’s blog Better Software/Better World

If you’ve got any examples of or stories about software you hate, please leave them in the comments!


Maybe it’s just me, but things haven’t gotten any better since when I posted Rant: I hate software on Liminal States fifteen months ago.  I’m constantly dealing with software that fails in mysterious ways with inscrutable messages and makes me feel like it’s my fault, that I must be stupid because I don’t understand what’s happening.

Last week, I wanted to change my photo here on the blog and couldn’t figure out how.  I found the admin panel, found my user account … nope, no way to change the photo.  Eventually I sheepishly asked Mikal and fortunately he knew — I had to go to gravatar.com.   Duh.

Wait a second, though.   Maybe it’s not just me.  Here’s a conversation I just had about Google Wave with my brother Greg, who’s a blogger, a social media consultant, and not stupid:

@gregpincus: well fooey. how would I have done it differently
@jdp23: if you had gone to after my quesion and hit control-return if in edit mode (or double-clicked, hovered, and then clicked reply on the mini-popup if not in edit mode on that blip) you it would have been an inline reply
@gregpincus: ah. so intuitive


And y’know, a lot of other smart friends of mine tell me stories about how software makes them feel stupid too.

Hmm.  Maybe it’s not us.  Maybe it’s the software.

Andrea Mignolo (aka @pnts) told me that when she sees grumpy people, she wonders how much their hassles with software contributed to their bad mood.  At least for me, these software annoyances truly infuriating … I can feel my blood pressure rise and it often takes me quite a while to recover unless I vent about it.

Which is what this thread is for.  As you run into examples of software you hate — or software you kind of like that has some annoyances that you hate — please feel free to vent.