Absurdity

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It’s the little things that annoy me

I realise that the following will make it look like I just need to get out more but these seemingly little things just drive me crazy when using a Mac.

And what perhaps irritates more than anything is simply that many if not all of these issues have been around for a number (in some cases) of years. So, I can only assume that Apple wishes to consciously apply these ‘background stresses’ to my everyday life despite the sometimes thousands of dollars/pounds/euros/krons I have given them for the majority of the last decade or so.

So, this is a start of a very occasional series logging each of the sometimes tiny little things that drive me crazy on a day to day basis working with a Mac.

This is the list from the last couple of days in no particular order of stress inducing quality:

1) Why after all these years does the ‘Hide’ (for Windows people this is essentially where you minimise a window when you have a number of applications open) function still not work properly. Some applications in some circumstances just won’t ‘Hide’. This annoyance seems to be particulary attuned to when you are in mad hurry and using a laptop with a smaller screen.

2) The ‘Dock’ seriously is that the best idea that they had for application launching/switching. And again when you are on a smaller laptop screen and trying to do some page layout/whatever having the bloody thing appear everytime you wander into the wrong part of the screen just drives me bat shit crazy.

3) I have a number of machine and when traveling sometimes have to transfer a portion of my iTunes to, for example, my Powerbook. And all my setting for such things as ‘Skip for Shuffling’ and ‘Remember Playback Position’ just wander off into the ether. Which when I listen a lot of long radio shows etc. makes me want to kill myself.

4) In lots of places I go the ‘Daily Show’ is on at all kind so strange times etc. So, got an iTunes subscription thinking will get the episodes pretty much after their air in the US. But oh no!!!! Consistently used to arrive in groups of two or three days later. This annoys me especially as Steve Jobs when launching the iTunes Store made a big play out of how he was effectively competing with the pirates and not so much the legalised services. Will I now bit torrent the show pretty much as soon as it has aired and for free as just got so irritated.

5) A little thing Apple Address Book does (and as far as I can remember has always done) just sends me batty. I have some names in my address book such as Accountant or Wife which are just that – i.e one word. But for some reason Address Book insists in filling in the word again in the Surname field no matter how many times I remove it and this then appears everywhere in my Mail/iCal/iChat etc etc. See example graphic below:

Two Names

6) When I consign listened podcasts to the trash why oh why do they not appear instantly in the trash. Forcing me to open the trash to then delete them. I know they appear a few seconds later but just for some reason always gets under my skin.

7) In iCal when I check a calendar it doesn’t automatically select that calendar – meaning when then a create To Do/Event/whatever it creates it in the wrong calendar meaning I then have to go in and change it manually.

8) iCal again occasionally creating a To Do enters the date as the title of the To Do and won’t let me change it. Apple just bloody fix it before I get found on top of a tall building with a telescopic rifle.

iCal

9) iChat AV – saw a headline somewhere about this think went somewhere along the lines of ‘the best IM application that never works’. Well I wouldn’t say quite that never works but it is often akin to buying a lottery ticket and crossing your fingers. With the same set up and fellow people in the meeting it may or may not work. And please heard all the stuff about the iChat black art of getting the right combination of machine and bandwith. It is hardly a good advert for the Apple ‘it just works’ line if your grandmother has to start editing preference files etc. And for the record my main machine is a newish 24″ iMac with Intel Core 2 Duo etc etc and most of the people I video conference with have newish Macbooks Pros and Macbooks.

10) When I have inserted a blank DVD to burn a disc and then change my mind and eject the disc – I repeatedly get asked if I want to burn it. I mean seriously!

11) .Mac – Oh where oh where to start? But for now will just whinge about my syncing just never working on my Powerbooks. And never has and from a brief look at the forums etc this has been a problem for many people for many years.

Sync error

12) Apple DVD player forcing you to choose a region. I live in one country (mostly) have my business based in another and carry out my work all over the place and in the course of my travels buy the occasional DVD as you do. So, why on earth shouldn’t I be able to be able to play it on my $3,000 Apple?

Again, like so much DRM type stuff just pisses off those people who actually buy the stuff. It is 2007 for crying out loud. Oh, and before anyone starts this is I understand Apple’s choice. I am aware there are any number of other ways of playing DVDs on my Mac without worrying about the region issue. But: 1) Why the fuck should I? and; 2) We use Front Row a lot and is too much hassle.

Anyway, that is enough for now. I do realise these are in the great scheme of things mostly minor issues and I am not about to jump ship to the dark side but as I said at the beginning it is really the daily irritation effect of these little things and the fact that they should be relatively easy to fix and haven’t been for years.

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Filed under: Apple, Apple Annoys Me, Daily Life

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