Thanks To Yahoo, Another Service Bites The Dust: Rockmelt.

RockMelt-Logo3I’m really getting sick and tired of Marissa Mayer’s shtick.

The first bit of shtick didn’t affect me other than I was annoyed with her hypocrisy of telling Yahoo employees that none of them could work from home while at the same time she had the office next to hers converted to a nursery. “Yahoo!” is the same company that pushed telecom companies to provide broadband service to suburban and rural areas so they could provide their services and tools to people (like me) who work from home. (I wrote about this in an earlier blog post… check it out.) Working from home is great for Yahoo so long as people who work from home are putting money into Yahoo’s accounts, but working from home isn’t good enough for Yahoo’s employees.

Then I received word that one of the apps that I use every day – Astrid – was bought by “Yahoo!” and was shutting down for reasons I neither understand or want to hear because I’ve moved on to another app. Don’t get me wrong, I would have loved to keep using Astrid because I got alerts when other members of my family or team finished a task; but there’s no point in dwelling on the how’s and why’s it’s being discontinued since I have other things to worry about – like my own work.

Then I got word that a browser that I’ve used for years is also going away – “Rockmelt.” This has been a wonderful tool that integrated Facebook and Twitter; while I was working I received alerts about other people’s posts and tweets and I could respond accordingly. Rockmelt has been bought by “Yahoo” and will be going away at the end of this month.

Granted, I couldn’t care less about Yahoo’s spending spree’s until the products they buy are products I once used and can’t any more since they aren’t replacing them right away. As I stated elsewhere, why would I use Astrid again when I’ve been forced to move on to something else like “Any.Do?” Why would I change back again? Why would I use the next version of “Rockmelt” after this one’s vanished for a period of time?

The only reason why I would install Yahoo’s version of Rockmelt is to see how my websites render on that browser. Besides that, why would I go back to using Rockmelt if it ever returns? How do I know it won’t disappear again like other browsers in the past have done; like “Netscape,” “Mosaic” and “Flock.”

Yahoo’s business model is both confounding and aggravating – they are essentially demanding that we try out their competition by shutting down their own products they’ve bought. They’re demanding that we try and eventually liking other companies while getting along without theirs. Why would we go back after they introduce their new and improved products? That’s assuming they ever develop replacements. Yahoo is alienating their potential clients by pissing away the clients their new purchased companies already have…

While this blunder should be annoying to anyone with half a brain I’m reading commentaries about how “bold,” “brave,” “confident” and “courageous” Yahoo’s CEO is and how she’s a “wonderful role model” for other working women. I’m not sure if those commentators are stupid, or if it’s me? Am I the idiot? A lot of these commentators are implying that critics like me should take a wait and see attitude while they’re excited to see what comes of all these acquisitions. What do we do in the meantime without any of these products Yahoo has shuttered?

Who are these people cheerleading for Ms. Mayer? How come these commentators aren’t seeing what we’re seeing? How can they not see that they’re alienating their client base with “Yahoo’s” actions now? Are they paid shills? Do they have stock in this company? Do they have a personal interest in seeing Ms. Mayer succeed?

I have no idea; but I would like to know if her publicist would like to take me on as a client, too!

Couple of words on “Windows 8” and Microsoft.

There are a couple of articles out there that are debating whether or not we’re starting to see the end of Microsoft because of horrible sales of their tablets/states/flat widgets. While I think the theses of these articles are wrong (Microsoft isn’t going anywhere) there are some points I would either like to consider or have answered.

First; Nobody has been able to give me an answer to this question that I felt was adequate enough for me to get on with the rest of my life… why did Microsoft release Windows 8 so soon after Windows 7?
I mean… besides the money issue.

Rather than release a “brand new” operating system, should they have been working on an upgrade to Win7 that would allow it to work (better) on touch screen devices? We had five years between XP (2001) and Vista (2006), then only a few short years between Vista and Windows7 (2009) – Windows seems to have a track record of releasing a great OS, then a weak OS, then another great one again… Windows8 users have been scrambling to find a way to either find a way to make it look and work like Windows7 or downgrade to Windows7 all together…

Could Windows7 be the “XP” for this decade?

Rather than creating something brand new from scratch, shouldn’t they have been building more essential tools for something that already works and works extremely well?

Win7 is a great operating system and I am able to get more work with my machines than I ever could with my XP unit or on any Mac. Granted, it’s an OS that I’m used to and I know where everything is… and maybe that’s the point.

Again, why fix what isn’t broken by rebuilding what isn’t broken from scratch.

Second; One of the reasons why Microsoft (and PC manufacturers) are in such trouble is the number of people who are buying tablets instead; you either want an iPad or an Android tablet.

No matter how awesome a tablet is, it’ll never be as powerful as a desktop computer nor laptop simply because you can put more hardware in either of those two. A tablet is, by its nature, limited by its size. I have yet to meet anyone who has gotten work done with a tablet without the use of a Bluetooth keyboard and even then they have to use an external storage like “Dropbox.”

A laptop/desktop PC might be over kill for your grandmother or great-aunt who only wants to read emails, go on the internet and play solitaire while a tablet is woefully insufficient for doing real work. All those people who really ever needed something small and simple like a tablet are getting those now and is a reason why PC sales are suffering.

What’s going to be curious is the phenomenon that will occur after everyone who wants a tablet gets one.

Third; One of the biggest beefs I have as a graphic designer is the footprint of operating systems – regardless of whether or not it’s a Mac or PC. Meaning, how much system resources are being used by the OS rather than the programs I use to create like Adobe Creative Suite.

If it were at all possible to use Adobe Creative Suite on a Linux machine everything in this article would be moot – I would be switching ever computer in this house (except my wife’s work computer,) over to something like Fedora or Ubuntu because in most instances they have smaller footprints.

As a professional graphic designer – not using the Adobe Creative Suite in this point in time is the surest way to handicap your career. You MUST use something that runs CS (and now “Creative Cloud”) if you want to be considered for a job or freelance work. For Graphic Designers who are still using PC’s, Windows isn’t going anywhere for a very long time unless something horrible happens to them like Windows9 is a bigger dud or Adobe does something daring like release a version of CS/CC for Linux.