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Yet Another Google Boondoggle

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Within the past day or so, I’ve switched aftermath‘s theme to Mistylook, mainly to get the page tabs at the top.

There are several aspects of the Mistylook theme that I would have done differently. For instance, I prefer to have timestamps along with the datestamps on posts. And since I never actually use the calendar and probably nobody else who bumps into aftermath does either, I might have an easy resolution to my mild annoyance over it not being centered in the sidebar: I might simply go without it.

When one is dealing with something made available to a mass audience, such things are natural. We all have our own way of doing things, personal preferences and such. But even taken together in the aggregate, all of my differences with Mistylook are minor – they do not interfere with the operation of what Mistylook is designed to do. And if I wish, I can actually deal with any of those differences on my own, simply by procuring paid access to full styling of my WordPress blog. Last but not least, if all else fails, I can very easily shift to some other WordPress style without wasting hours and hours reversing efforts that I’ve already put into writing all this.

But this post isn’t really about Mistylook. It’s about how pissed Google has been making me lately. This time, on their farce of a video posting feature.

That’s a snapshot of Susan‘s WordPress blog. When she encountered problems with Google’s video feature, I offered to post her video files for her, then gave her the links for her to post. I should have taken her difficulties as warning signs instead. A few days ago, some of our google video posts – like the Google SMS failure, just some at first, not all – started going black, unplayable, with no explanation from Google, nor any sign they might ever get around to fixing their brokenass system. And just like their SMS bellyflop, one by one the few Google video files that did still work were eventually also lost.

And here’s where the stark contrast with Mistylook is telling. This is not just a nuance, a personal preference. Maybe AT&T can get away with charging customers while openly laughing at them for presuming to expect that their service will actually work, but seriously: a feature that does not work is not simply a different style; it’s a failure, pure and simple. And unlike Mistylook, where one can work around a difference, Google video’s failure is something for which the user has no recourse, other than to get the message and stop using Google features at all, which is what I’m working toward. Alas, if one has made the mistake – as I have – of already relying too heavily on Google for anything in particular, it can take hours and hours of wasted time reversing the mistake.

I regret not having moved quickly enough. With all the frustrations I’ve been having with every single other Google feature – without any exception whatsoever, all are of no better than the most mediocre quality – I had already launched efforts to move all content for which I currently use Google over to more reliable ground, and in that spirit had already quit relying on Google to host my video files. Unfortunately, Google’s idea of proactive computing is to crash the system before the user can escape.

Bumper Sticker [] - reprobate

Written by macheide

3 August 2008 at 1:34 pm

Posted in reprobate


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