The Invisible Operating System!

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At the start of this week after talking to a Microsoft Rep at work about their Windows 8 Operating System and the current problems my partner is having with Windows Vista reminded what was wrong with both Microsoft’s and Apple’s operating systems is that they are not invisible!

Now you may think this is a strange thing to say but if you think about what the operating system should be actually doing in so much it is a frame work and user interface to make a computer in to a productive and creative tool. So in actual fact on a computer an operating system should fade into the background in so much it is easy to use and only maintenance which needed to be done on it are routine and automatic tasks which should run in the background with little or not disturbance to the user using it.

Both Microsoft Window’s and Apples Operating Systems fail on both counts in so much both are high maintenance operating systems which need constant tweaks to keep going at their optimum performance and both are extremely vulnerable to errors and malware, just Apple is better at hiding such things.

The upshot of which the user has to waste more time both just maintaining the operating system and fixing a constant stream of bugs and security problems both operating systems throw up constantly. All this eats into the time the user could be productive and create and defeat the whole point of an operating system that is to fade in to the background.

But as I keep saying both Microsoft and Apple have both hyped up the importance of their operating systems but both simply do not deliver operating systems which are usable, stable and low maintenance which unnecessary dominate the users time in maintenance and issued caused by the said operating systems.

But as always the large majority of users out there are blinded by the advertising and propaganda produced both by Microsoft and Apple and far too lazy or apathetic to look elsewhere or force both companies to actually produce decent operating system!

Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal scrapbook of mine just follow the link to Patterns in the Static!.

Please Note: If you are interested in my small social network just follow the link to On the Other Side!.

Social Networks: Big is Not Always Beautiful!

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I think I have said this before about the fact that smaller and less centralised social networks are far more personal and on a human scale than the larger global social networks. But I thought I would repeat that as I am leaving Twitter finally after a weeks deliberation and thoughts of it real usefulness to my life in general.

One conclusion I have come to about the global social networks like Facebook, Twitter and the such is that big is not always beautiful or functional in the case of social networks.

At the start such social networks served a real useful function of bringing people together over the internet and served a real beneficial function of creating real communities on the internet. But as they have grown they have become far too big to a point now they cannot function as they did in the early days in so much they have become far too impersonal and difficult for one individual to comprehend the sheer scale of the social network itself.

In the end the size of these social networks has destroyed there usefulness as social networks as people in every day life really only deal with relatively few people on a daily basis and cannot really cope of copperhead the sheer number of people on such large social networks like Facebook or Twitter.

My personal view the future of social networks should not be the monoliths like Facebook or Twitter but more decentralized social networks which work on a far more smaller and manageable level so people can cope and comprehend what is going on the social networks in question.

Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal scrapbook of mine just follow the link to Patterns in the Static!.

Please Note: If you are interested in my home page just follow the link to Experiment No. 3.

Please Note: If you are interested in my small social network just follow the link to On the Other Side!.

Starting to Question Twitter’s Usefulness!

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I have started to question just how useful and usable Twitter is as both social web site and place to get news as now it is starting to become a place much like Facebook has become full of useless trivial remarks, useless information and worse of all becoming a place where people troll, bully and abuse other people. Add to this even with the people I follow or follow me can also be accused of spreading hate and most definitely distorted and uninformed propaganda to promote their causes almost at any cost.

What really got me thinking especially recently was the fact that Robin William’s daughter had to leave Twitter because of the abuse from trolls and basically unthinking, vindictive people who thought it was quite acceptable to throw abusive remarks and pictures at her.

I have been slowly backing away from Twitter in past few year or so to a point now I really only now use it to post links to my blog and much like Facebook before it, it has not generated that many hits on my blog other than it distorts the actual number of followers I have on my blog by including my Twitter users as my blog followers.

I must not only one who is starting to question the validity of the large social networks like Facebook and Twitter to be called social networks any more and I must not be only one to notice they have become places where people, companies and groups either out to sell their products, promote their political views even spread their messages of hate and intolerance.

Twitter much like Facebook before it is starting to fail as a social network much as did Facebook has done before it in so much it now not what you call a social network any more which promotes social interaction which makes it’s very existence in it’s present form very questionable indeed.

But unlike Facebook I will think long and hard about if I leave Twitter as it may be failing like Facebook but it is not as bad as Facebook yet!

Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal scrapbook of mine just follow the link to Patterns in the Static!.

Please Note: If you are interested in my home page just follow the link to Experiment No. 3.

Please Note: If you are interested in my small social network just follow the link to On the Other Side!.

Mint is a Good Direction to Go

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As Windows xp users are slowly thinking about changing computers or those who have old hardware which frankly is very serviceable and only made useless by the Windows inefficiency of use of hardware should consider an alternative to Windows 8 and Apple.

One alternative which should be considered which will both give the Windows xp users an interface which they are familiar with and not have to abandon their old hardware which on the whole is still very serviceable and far from the end of its life is to replace the Windows xp on the computer with Linux Mint with xfce desktop.

This also has the added advantage in these times where money is short it will save the Windows xp user money as they will not have to buy new hardware and pay over the odds for an operating system which frankly not liked by the majority of users.

Why do I say this?

Because I have already done this for a friend who was given an old laptop running Windows xp which would have to be thrown away because frankly when it was running Windows it life span as a viable computer had come to end not because of the hardware but software.

But I installed Linux Mint with xfce desktop on the said laptop which breathed life back to the hardware and produced a laptop which was usable because it ran fast enough to be used again.

The friend in question now uses the laptop more than his Windows desktop simply because it is more stable and usable than his Windows computer with little or no problems simply because the xfce desktop is so similar to the Windows xp desktop with few minor differences.

Would I recommend that all Windows xp users do this?

The answer is yes especially if the user is just someone who uses their computer for browsing the internet, basic word processing and collecting their email as it will mean it will save them money and they will not have to go through the trauma and headache of learning the new Windows 8 desktop which frankly is very messy and user unfriendly!

Oh, the one other big advantage is the days of the constant battle with viruses and malware users are having with Window computers while surfing the internet will be greatly reduced even eliminated when the users go to Linux Mint. Basically the Windows xp user can surf the internet for a first time in a long while safely.

A good place to start is at the Linux Mint site and follow the download link and download the xfce desktop version of Linux Mint: Linux Mint

Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal scrapbook of mine just follow the link to Patterns in the Static!.

Please Note: If you are interested in my home page just follow the link to Experiment No. 3.

Please Note: If you are interested in my small social network just follow the link to On the Other Side!.

A Common Misconception About Facebook!

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The funniest moment yesterday is when some of my colleagues actually thought people socialise on likes of Facebook!

Well it just shows the real lack of skills some of my colleagues have with social interactions if they really think people socialise on Facebook as from personal experience on Facebook the last thing people actually do is socialise there any more.

If anything a large majority of people on Facebook just talk about themselves and the good things about their lives to anyone who will actually listen to them or give them any attention even how small. Few actually have what I would call real meaningful conversions about anything unless it some trivial matter which could be better talked about else where.

Add to this a large amount of self serving people who are simply there to promote themselves, their political views and even businesses which sort colours any conversions there to either a stream of propaganda promoting their views rather than actually holding a real conversation or social interaction with anyone there.

The most damning thing about Facebook is simply those people there who are simply there to throw abuse, spread lies and hate to anyone gullible to listen to them or even verbally attack anyone with vile and sicking abuse who dares to disagree with their points of view.

What worries me is that people using Facebook regularly think this behaviour in any social media is totally acceptable thing and always they give the simple answer you can always block someone if they gets abusive. But, it is a big but, that does not solve this fundamental flaw of Facebook that people both and run Facebook allow these people to peddle their hate, sick and abusive views to continue.

Just because it is online these people seem to forget they are dealing with real people, real issues and what they type there will effect anyone. It is as if users of Facebook use the fact that it is online as an excuse to not take any responsibility for what they type and the way it effect others.

I will repeat this until it sinks into the large majority of Facebook users we would not accept such behaviour in face to face social interactions so why do we accept such behaviour over social networks as it is still wrong and abuse of other people rights, sensibilities even in some case simple out and out bullying!

Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal scrapbook of mine just follow the link to Patterns in the Static!.

Please Note: If you are interested in my home page just follow the link to Experiment No. 3.

Please Note: If you are interested in my small social network just follow the link to On the Other Side!.

Windows 9 Still is Not Going to be the Answer!

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When it comes out I still think that Windows 9 will still not be answer to the prayers to the current Windows xp users even with the return of the menu, start button and real desktop as it will still be Windows 8 in the background with all it’s associated problems. That is it’s associated problems with updates, security and customization which have always been part of Windows 8.

I suspect that Windows 9 will not cure any of the current security and associated software problems plus I suspect even with Microsoft’s claim the foot print of the operating system is going to be smaller it’s hardware requirements will still be bigger than any other operating system on the market including Apple.

So once again users will have to spend more on their new hardware or throw away so called outdated hardware which frankly is the greatest crime as the hardware they are currently using is far from spent so it’s a waste of money and resources. After all look at Apple’s computers they may be expensive but their operating system make better use of the hardware so the hardware last a lot longer so waste less resources in the long run.

I am still of the view we are serviced by a retail industry centred and blinkered to just selling Windows Computers which is doing users, especially Windows xp users, a major disservice at a time when money is short and we should be careful with the use of our resources in general if we want to reduce our pollution footprint on the world.

I will keep saying this until someone out there wakes up to the fact that the best way for Windows xp users is to go towards the Linux root especially with Linux Mint with xfce desktop as it will mean that they can keep their old hardware and a desktop which is very familiar. Add to this an operating system which is as stable and friendly as Windows xp was with the added advantage Linux Mint has little or no security issues of Windows has always had.

This is all from personal experience as I have already converted at least two ex-Windows xp users who are using old hardware to Linux Mint with xfce desktop with a lot of success. One of these people now use the Linux machine over their Windows desktop simply because it is easier to use and actually does what it says on the packet. Much like Windows xp it simply works and the operating system fades into the background where it should be.

I know I keep beating the Linux drum and point out the short comings of Windows but someone has to as currently Windows users are really getting a bad time on the internet in so much they are constantly plagued with malware and viruses even constant update problems something which is not right!

Add to this people think this is perfectly normal experience of the computer and the internet but it not the case contrary to what Microsoft and computer industry want users to believe. But this is not the case as with right operating systems including Apple operating system the internet and computers are meant to be easy to use and not hard work Windows has made it!

Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal scrapbook of mine just follow the link to Patterns in the Static!.

Please Note: If you are interested in my small social network just follow the link to On the Other Side!.

Fun With Cultural Differences!

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I think this has to be said to clear some cultural differences between the United Kingdom and United States especially over the use of the terms Republican and Liberal in politics. This in a hope that some Americans do not get the wrong idea of my political views and stance.

So here we go to clear some misconception with those people across the big pond.

Here in the United Kingdom a Republican is not a major right wing political party, though it is a minor political party, but some one who wants to turn the United Kingdom into a Republic that is remove the Queen as the head of state and replace her with an elected President. It is an anti-Royalist stance as some citizens of the United Kingdom are frankly fed up with some their taxes being given to a Royal family whose existence is now in question in a modern country and they think the taxes could be better spent elsewhere as President would be cheaper option.

One interesting thing until a few decades ago to talk about a Republic in the United Kingdom was treason and you could be arrested for believing and even talking about a Republic. But now we can talk about it openly which is most definitely a step forward. There is even now a Democratic Republican Party here now in the United Kingdom but it is still a very minor political party.

Now we come to the biggest bugbear between the United States and United Kingdom the use of the term Liberal which definitely has two different meanings with ours in the United Kingdom being the oldest definition!

Here a Liberal is not a left wing or a communist or even a socialist but a political party which dates back to the early days of Parliament itself here in the United Kingdom. Yes, I will admit the Liberal are more left wing than the Conservatives here but they represent the middle of the road of politics which has always had it’s base in the South West of England.

Over the years the name of the Liberal Party has changed especially after a merger with the SDP party in the 1980s after which the party name was changed to the Liberal Democrats but basically the stance of the party remained the same.

What I think most American miss in our politics here is that our politics here does have a true left wing in the from of the Labour Party, though now they have sold out their left wing politics for votes but still represent the workers and Unions here in the United Kingdom. Plus we also do have real left-wing parties who stand in our General Elections which include the Communist and Socialist Parties.

This one of my pet hates with a large minority of the people from United States as they assume that when I use terms like Liberal or Republic they mean the exactly the same as in the United States but I will reiterate to these people there they do not mean the same.

All this goes to show there are those in the United States who have a cultural laziness to assume we here in the United Kingdom have the same culture as they do which is simply not true. As an Englishman I find this very offensive as after all I have taken the time to understand that the culture of United States is different to ours here which is definitely a very good thing!

Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal scrapbook of mine just follow the link to Patterns in the Static!.

Please Note: If you are interested in my home page just follow the link to Experiment No. 3.

Please Note: If you are interested in my small social network just follow the link to On the Other Side!.

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