Over the last year I’ve noticed a surprising surge, a positive plethora, an explosive excess of lists on the Web, and yes, here at Network World.
In the last year Network World has had the Top 10 venture capital deals, Top trends in Personal Tech, Top 10 mobile trends, Top 10 Color Laser Printers, Top IT jargon you love to hate, the Top 10 things Microsoft loves and hates about open source, and the Top 10 dangerous online activities.
Apparently online readers flock to this stuff, so I feel I should wade in with the Gibbs’s Top Eight IT Hates (which is rather euphonious when said out loud … go on, try it):
1. Web sites and blogs that don’t date their content. This is simply stupid. If you think your content has enough relevance to post, then stick the date on it.
2. Lack of documentation. I know, I know, you’ve read my rants on this topic many times, but now that network products are getting more complex, vendors need to build the documentation “into” their offerings. Whether it’s an application or an online service, how it works and how it is to be used should be part of the user interface. The beauty of this approach is that, if done right, the documentation will always be in synch with the code.
3. Lack of warning about problems. I really noticed this when I was trying to setup Network Solutions’ Pro Ecommerce service. A tech support guy advised me to use a particular technique to update product data even though a senior tech later admitted to me that those techniques were known to be faulty! Tech support warnings built in to the user interface would be more than just a good idea.
4. Having to reboot after installation. I don’t think I need to expand on this one.
5. Windows Genuine Advantage. While I fully understand Microsoft’s desire to secure its revenue stream and thwart pirates, the stupid marketing spin that is inherent in the name is simply annoying. It would appear that Microsoft thinks we’re so dumb that the wording will fool us into thinking this is something we want rather than something it wants. Having a Windows installation without Windows Genuine Advantage is like having a network without a toaster.
6. Winrot. Again, this is something I have railed about and a few of you have told me doesn’t exist, to which I can only reply “$*!& #!!” This problem is real and in front of me. Remember my problems with deferred procedure calls? I never figured it out and it seems to have gone away. I suspect it was a direct result of Winrot, as I’ve never seen the same problem on a machine that hasn’t been as heavily used as my desktop.
7. Rebuilding and installing Windows. As a result of No. 6, as well as friends needing to be helped with their PCs, I have had to install or re-install Windows several times over the last year. I always get about halfway through when I start to feel the need to stab myself in the head with a spoon. What, with the endless updates and reboots required, it rarely takes less then one whole day.
8. Self-serving, litigatious companies. Let’s see, there’s the Santa Cruz Operation (SCO), the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), all of the patent trolls … it’s a long list.
This could easily have been my top 100 list but space, alas, prevents me from going on.