Thursday, July 24, 2014

When an update isn't better

Well, I am pretty sure no-one Really Important reads this, but I just can't be bothered signing up for yet another site and seeing my post at no. 220 in a long list so here it is.
Call it a modern problem.

What I am referring to in the title is the new version of Mac OSX, "Yosemite". I always look at the websites that talk about this stuff,  partly for the improvements, but mostly for self-defence.
"Updates" are not always improvements, you see.

This one is definitely not: Apple has gone further in removing all aesthetic pleasure from their OS imagery and that alone is just plain stupid . . . if you look at your computer screen all day you want it to look at least pleasant - but Apple seems to be going backwards toward Windows 3 ugliness.
Of course, if there were features in the new version that made it essential or even desirable to get despite the ugliness I would reconsider but there aren't any, or at best none that I need.
Here I partly refer to iCloud. I have tried to find a way to take my iPhone's music off iCloud but it isn't there.  So far OSX does not force you to use iCloud for all your files but it may be coming.

Apple does not want anyone to make interface "improvements" or "skins' for their OSes so you can forget about "personalising" your OSX either.
At one time I had such and it was excellent, but that was back in the OS9 days, long, long ago - so we will once again get a new version with uglier interface and more features we didn't want (I mean iCloud. I don't care if other folks like it, I just want the choice to NOT use it.  I don't do anything criminal, but I like looking after my own stuff rather than hoping that the net and Apple will always be there.)

Don't get the idea that I will be sailing off to another OS any time soon though: you think they are better? Take a look at Windows 8: they had to bring out 8.1 because so many users had trouble using 8 because it didn't have a Start  Menu.  I won't go into any more now, just remember that everything is imperfect and sometimes making thengs better isn't the only element of the story.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

All Trekked Out

Once upon a time there was a teevee show that appeared courtesy of Desilu and some guy name Rodenberry: it was originally supposed to be "covered wagons in outer space" - or so the rumour goes, that was how it was sold to the TV Execs . . . . . . but it was a whole lot more than that.
Okay, it was good:  In the world of crappy sixties television, it was freakin' amazing.

Around that time when I was about seven, BEFORE Star Wars existed, I tried to make my own spacesuit out of cardboard.  I stopped when I realised what people would say when they saw me walking around in it . . and because it was really, really hard to do too for a seven year old from a poor family. . but it was not a copy from some teevee show or movie, I just did it from my own imagination. There was a whole lot of boyhood in there too but that is beside the point here.  . . .

Now . . . . . . in the last few months I have seen not one but two fan-made remakes of the original Star Trek series appear. First, there was Star Trek Continues, and now there is another, Star Trek Phase 2.
Am I the only one who thinks all this is way, waaay over the top?  Guys, WHY CAN'T YOU COME UP WITH SOMETHING ORIGINAL? Sure, it was good in a cheesy-effects-cardboard-sets-sixties kind of way but hey, that was fifty years ago ! How the frack did so-called sci-fi get so CONSERVATIVE?
I don't pretend being original is easy, heck it takes more work, but shit, if you are doing Sci Fi stuff the essence of Sci Fi is to go outside the borders of boring old Earth life and explore NEW ideas !
Present things in a different setting or way to get people thinking in ways they wouldn't otherwise!

Oh, riiight, and I guess maybe I don't get the idea of fandom either: it's really about Big Commercial Operations that are only too happy for kids to dress up and promote their products at their own cost. 

Sigh.  Well, I've got to get back to work making my own little ORIGINAL comic/graphic novel.