Are software designers
mocking at us?
Statement: why are the main software so bad? 2016
Graphic Comparison of the evolution of the main OS Last addition: October 15, 2019
Why from Windows 10 we go back to Windows 7 2016
Windows 10 fixes a bug of Windows 95 2016
Windows 7: Microsoft gets back to low quality. 2012
Browser World War Two... 2007
The computers we would like... 2004
Freedom and Internet
Is Firefox a real alternative to Internet Explorer? 2004
Software developers steal words.
Why we don't like Windows... (2000)
...and why from Linux I switched back to Windows. (2002)
Statement: why are the main software so bad?
To use a computer, or to design an internet site like this one, with dynamic pages and 3D worlds is already a serious task.
But difficulties are increased ten fold by useless hassle from changing and unadapted
standards, bugged software, and moronic browser war.
We should expect that software designers would be logical and rational people.
Especially, free software designers claim to be seeking only the good of the community.
Unfortunately, software people seem to be worse than average, doing bad work and
pointless competition, or issuing fundamentalist fatwas about what we should
do or not on the net.
All this has a terrible cost, months of work to maintain a site, multiplied by
millions of webdesigners and billons of computer users: more suffering and lifetime loss
every year than the Hiroshima bomb! In the beginning of Internet, it was easy to design a site,
with a free wysiwyg editor which result was readable by every browser. Today
designing a site like this one requires a huge work and many technical skills,
thus excluding from the Internet every ordinary people, working people, poets, artists,
not to speak of whole Third world countries.
So this is a serious injustice.
I gathered here several text bloks which were visible on the
resources page, under the form of an a posteriori journal. Some of these
bloks are today obsolete, but the mind defilements at the origin of these problems
are still producing other problems today.
Graphic Comparison of the evolution of the main OS
October 15, 2019
This graph shows the evolution of the quality of the Windows interface,
compared to other Operating Systems. This is not a numerical measure,
but a feeling of tiredness in use, or the number of curses a day.
The main losses are:
• The abominable tiles blocking the Windows 8 screen
• For Windows 10, the loss of the ability to handle background tasks (such
as SETI @ home, which must now be activated manually). Loss
aggravated by the increase in «background tasks».
• Example: we find on the Internet that wsapp is a «Microsoft
store». That a Microsoft site uses our computer for its calculations is
• The windows which untimely open above our work (focus theft) or which
move while we are clicking!!
• Continuous updates of this or that, sometimes blocking our
computer for days at a time.
• Complex applications, using many resources,
but which are of no use, like Cortana.
• The params interface constantly modified.
• And still this slowness!!!
Why from Windows 10 we go back to Windows 7
(October 5, 2016)
After only some weeks of use, I feel forced to correct my previous paper:
does not offer anything more than the previous. Instead it degrades
the capacities of Windows. Win7 already was a bit worse than XP, but
Win10 is downright worse, even worse than Win95.
The big news of Windows 10: we must
all live underpants down
real innovation of Windows 10 is the massive invasion of our private
life or professional secret: Windows 10 tracks our browsing habits,
records our business, and sends the whole to Microsoft headquarters.
They do not say why, but nothing can be excluded, since Microsoft
provides no denial to the worst accusations. This makes that official
or private agencies of protection of privacy denounce Windows 10, and
there is a safe bet that it will soon be banned from enterprises and
we can disable these functions: start menu, click on the kind of
flower «parameters» at the extreme left, then select
«Privacy». We can safely disable about everything.
Without warranty, since the computer security experts say that the
data transfers continue. It is therefore cautious to mute the
microphone and close the lid of the camera.
One of the
most interesting points enticing to move to Windows 10 was an
Artificial Intelligence at our disposal. However the reality is far
below the most pessimistic estimates: Cortana is, at best, an
calendar assistant with voice, but in any case it does not contain
any expert system as one would expect (in my former job EREMS in
1995, a colleague had developed such a
system, which capabilities far exceeded Cortana. Yet we even not
claimed the name of Artificial Intelligence.)
Cortana mostly refuses to start if we disabled the above spy
functions. She even refuses to search for a file on our disk! Any
question we ask, she... opens the Bing search engine!! The only
useful thing I could get was... time! But it... tells jokes! Really
stale puns (in French: «zebu z'ai plus soif»)... This
clearly shows that the designers of Cortana are about 60 years old,
and they never went out of their mother's basement since elementary
school. Their knowledge in Artificial Intelligence are just the
science fiction clichés of the time, as they already
demonstrated with Tay,
the first Artificial Idiocy.
And I am
kind, I heard some people straightforwardly calling Cortana a
«witch». Fact is, to hear our computer calling us all the
time is, at least, annoying.
Performance and interface degradation
10 is as slow as all his predecessors. Only the first few days it is
faster, which suggests that Microsoft knows what slows it, but does
not want to solve the problem.
unsuitable for visually impaired: the new functions «Windows 8
style» are blue-gray and black, and we can no longer configure
the colors of the old «XP style» interface. The imposed
colors are cold (white with black lines) and the presentation is
sometimes difficult to understand (ill-defined parts of the screen,
black text on dark blue)
correct any bug of the previous versions, but adds new ones:
-After only some weeks, the scroll bar jumps again when we release it
loss of configuration files of our various softwares, sometimes
appearance, here and there, of «tiles» that we neither
requested nor created (Opera and Firefox also do that)
noisy, with bells and dingdongs, even when it... plays music!
unable to manage the program priorities. For example, the Inworldz
browser no more stops the BOINC, so it is lagging to death. Accuse
Inworldz of being slow, after.
stuck for several seconds with max CPU load
mysterious endless sessions of disk scraping, as if someone else was
using our computer remotely.
task manager is sometimes better (load of the microprocessor),
sometimes less (curves), but it still does not give essential
information, such as who is using CSRSS. Or the disk scraping
sessions stop when we start the task manager, as for hiding what
How to return to Windows 7
I did not
tried, but it seems that it is still possible:
support microsoft back to windows7 or windows8.1
honest I am a little wary from having to reinstall Windows 7
completely, if the removing of Windows 10 fails. I shall tell you
about it, when I try.
is safe to bet that if Microsoft continues its descent, more and more
users will switch to Linux, starting with businesses and governments.
The problem however is that I still do not hear that we can easily
install Windows software on Linux, and even less that Linux is as
easy to use as Windows. And frankly I do not want to try again. So we
are entering again in a pattern of Middle Ages corporations, where
professionals have proper software, but complex and inaccessible to
the non-specialists, while the general public and small businesses
have kinds of easy to use toys, but we cannot do much with them.
Example: some days ago I wanted to show one of my youtube videos to
someone, on his cell phone. So I typed the URL of youtube... and I
found myself in an «Youtube application» playing grimey
videos without interruption, with no way to change them! Surprise you
that people hate the internet, after.
Windows 10 fixes a bug of Windows 95
(August 18, 2016)
updates: there is no need to reinstall everything, if we move
from Windows 7 to Windows 10. This is a considerable improvement, but
also a possible cause of problems if the cleaning is not done
properly on the disc. On my computer I had no major problem, just
some software to reinstall, or some lost configurations. Note that,
as long as we do not change the motherboard, if we reinstall Windows,
it will automatically switch to Windows 10 (if we had the free
version). (This is Internet registration)
8 was a failure, from the strange idea of the hideous «tiles»,
which were a significant regression from the «icons».
This kind of thing is what happens when you let an ignorant do «after
his idea», without feedback from competent people. At least
Windows 10 keeps our Windows 7 desktop.
10 fixes a bug of Windows 95. Hail this considerable progress: a
version of Windows which fixes a bug. In this case the scroll bar
which was returning to the starting point when we released it.
Turn your computer into a Big Brother's telescreen.
not careful, Microsoft knows everything that we write, hear or see
through our computer (keyboard, microphone and camera). It is
possible to stop this (in theory ...), if we missed the very small
writings during installation: do Start Menu>Settings>Privacy,
and see all that the little bugger knowns on us. This is the most
important innovation of Windows 10: we must all live pants off.
Several countries started actions to end this incredible espionage,
but Microsoft seems now stronger than the states.
is unusable because we cannot start it if we do not accept the
Orwellian conditions above. It is a shame, because it seems to be an
interesting task organizer, which can be controlled by voice.
still the mysterious «background tasks» which
endlessly scrape the disk without we know why (risk of virus). The
new task manager is more colorful, but it does not give more
information. For example, we still do not know who uses the dreaded
CSRSS, nor what the priority levels are for these tasks.
Window 7: Microsoft gets back to low quality.
(August 13, 2012)
Since long ago I did not
contributed to this page... It is all the better, meaning that things were
improving, especially with Windows XP, the most stable of all the
ones I have tried. However Windows7 shows again software which close
without reason, computer which freezes, windows which open and close
without logic, and always the slooooowneeesss, with however a
computer a thousand times faster. And still the old bugs, such as the
scroll bar which returns to the top when we release the button. More
some new ones: less freedom to adjust the colours of the windows, the
screen covering itself with snot, windows which become white or which
maximize without being asked to do so, etc. More serious, Windows 7
is unable to run some common software, such as my still new Epson
Lide 20 scanner, or Civilization (years of family memories). If it is
just for that, it was better to stay on Windows 95.
See the text I wrote some years ago on Windows 95
Browser war: back to 1914-18...
We recall that World War One only was a vast performance without any purpose,
just a manipulation by the franco-german weapon manufacturers to sell their
sinister products. That a similar situation arises about the browser war would
surprise only the most naive users. As a matter of facts, there are more and
more common points between Internet Explorer and Firefox, including in defects.
And now the problem is spreading to the new internet standards proposed by the
W3C, the Internet standardization body... May we suspect some underhand scheme
with purpose to censor the net? I rather think we simply see here the underworld
of the geeks, those computer fanatics who live out of reality in their own world
of dreadful video games and of refusal of kindness. Choosen samples of ukases:
The censorship of full screen, started with Firefox, soon contaminated
Internet Explorer: under pretext of security, new useless «tool bars»
forbid the full screen mode, or take more and more place on the screen. Hey,
folks, when we display an Internet page, it is the page that we look at, not
the browser. The pretext for this censorship is that certain sites make an abusive
use of the full screen. Which sites? Porn sites. Would the designers of Firefox
know only this of internet? Ah hopeless vision of the lonely male geek into
Tabbed browsing is of no use, as there already are tabs in the system
tray. However, this new religion, again initiated by Firefox, quickly spread
to the other browsers, still consuming 5 to10% of the screen with no purpose.
More, it arises a serious problem for the sites which use several windows, as
the site cannot know if the new window will open in a tab or normally. About
me, I all the time disable tabbed browsing.
The CSS nightmare. This new standard claims to better the layout of
internet pages. In reality it contains multiple ambiguous or undefined cases,
that each browser interprets in its own way while clainming to be the only one
to be standards-compliant (except of course Internet Explorer which invented
its own CSS attributes). Worse, certain simple functions of HTML were just suppressed,
like vertical align of a text in a block! Not to speak of the mess of character
fonts, each of a different size, and we cannot predict which of them will be
actualy displayed!!! So the statement of the CSS to place texts with a pixel
accuracy is pure wishful thinking. Anyway it is impossible to make a CSS code
without using browser sniffing, making mandatory the use of PHP (language used
to create pages with variable content, which runs on the server).
language is used for windows management and for numerous animations
(menus, games, forms checking, etc.). The problem is that it don't realy have
a fixed definition, and it contains numerous ambiguities and incoherences. For
instance the window management is made into the link which calls it, and not
into the actual window!!! Worse, the most recent standards (HTML4) announce
the utter phasing out of multiple windows! (censuring of the «target»
attribute). The W3C, the Internet standards body, announces the standardization
of all this into CSS3. But at which cost, and in how maaaany years?
Will the SVG forever remain a language of the future? This marvelous
graphic animation language, free and non-proprietary, is intended to replace
Flash. The W3C has fantastic projects mixing in the same page classical texts
with mind blowing layouts and graphic animations, such as to end up with the
dictatorship of square shapes on Internet pages. Wow, cheers, but still how
many years will we have to wait to have something which appears in the same
way in all the browsers? The virtuous promoters of free softwares are still unable
to provide a SVG plugin for Internet Explorer, and we even not yet have sound
or prefetch in the standard!
My first try of SVG, a simple text, was incompatible between Inkscape and Firefox,
however both free and independent of Microsoft...
Bumps and dints of the 3D. Some years ago, the situation was sound and
clear: the 3D was the free standard language VRML, more the Cortona browser
(quality, standard compliant, but 10 times slower than similar video games).
Today, in the name of capitalism, the visualisation of VRML-X3D is now split
between several browsers of various quality level, not compatibles between them,
or toll. And there is still no standard method to make multi-users worlds...
So online 3D communities (There.com, Second Life) choose proprietary solutions,
with a quality level similar to the VRML, while video games (Oblivion, World of Warcraft)
display ten times better speed and quality, still with proprietary solutions...
What to do?
Security without law. How in good old dictatures, security is always
a good pretext to eliminate people's rights. So we are imposed useless tool
bars, functions are removed (pop-ups), page downloading is slowed (The anti-phishing
filter of Internet explorer, even when disabled!). All this of course while
doing nothing to eradicate the problems, such as for instance install in Internet's
circuits some black boxes to spot crooks and spammers. It is however such systems
that the great companies of Internet accepted to install in China,
for purpose of human rights violation... This
Far West conception of security, where people have to defend themselves in an
hyper-liberal world, cannot do better to prove my statement of the beginning:
This is the world of video games geeks, who confuse Internet with one of their
horrible disordered universes.
And still Window's ridiculous bugs... In 2007 with Windows XP we still
stumble on enormous bugs dating back to Windows 95 (see my criticism): -The
windows manager which gets stuck when an application does not respond -The content
of a window which jumps back to its former position when we release the scroll
bar -When a window opens, the content under is still visible, so that we don't
know which window is active, and click on wrong commands -Invisible file names
extentions -The menus which hide or scramble randomly
their content -And still this incredible low speed at start, with however a
15 times faster computer! -It is to be known that Windows uses a «virtual
memory» on the hard drive (the too famous swap file) in place of the memory
of the computer. This considerably slows down the applications. Worse, the
memory is poorly managed, things accumulate in, and this can slow down the PC
to a ridiculous rate (several seconds to display a menu!!!!). At last this poorly
managed memory is by far the most common cause of crashes, as anybody can easily
check with the task manager. And Microsoft accuses the softwares, which would
be «badly written» and even officially «craplets». But
is it possible to write a reliable software when it uses the bugged functions
of Windows? Bet that all these bugs are still in Vista!
On Linux side, are things getting better? Of course I had no reply to
my criticism, other than some insults and a ridiculous «you should be
more patient, spend two or three months to learn ad try the various distributions,
to see which one better fits your needs». As if I had time to test...
more than ten different versions, how those people can pretend to be serious,
if they are unable to offer a standard system? It is quite clear that free softwares
will really spread only when they will have enough self-discipline, to offer
a quality, reliable and standard system, easy to use, with which it will be
easy to work and develop applications without having to spend days to try to
guess how to do a+b.
An efficient propaganda... It is interesting to keep in mind that the
free softwares movement has close relations with the altermondialists or
anti-globalization, a leftist movement which looks rather folklorical on
the West, but which supports most fascist or terrorist movements in the Third
World. So, using Internet Explorer and Windows would be «right wing»,
while Linux and Firefox would be «left wing», up to Firefox's logo,
which strangely looks like the hammer and sickle!!! The browsers war, new battlefield
of the class struggle? There would be really enough to roll on the floor with
laughter, if those balderdashes were not taking a toll of tens and hundred hours
of work to each of the millions of web developpers in the world. As much lifetime
loss than the Hiroshima bomb! So the browser war produces real suffering, as
in a true war... And to really hit the nail, a propagande worth of stalin: on
every technical forum of Internet, you alway find abrupt statements such as
«when I see a site which uses full screen, I immediately close it»
or «this is bad coding» (speaking of traditionnal HTML) etc. If
you ask a technical question, you will mandatorily get a reply such as «This
of these is missing to be correct code» but if your problem comes from
a defect of the standard or of Firefox, the same guy no longer replies. It is
this relentless and pigheaded lobbying which attracted my attention: there are
people who visibly don't need to earn a living, and who spend their time to
rehearse that Firefox and Linux are perfect.
So it is more and more difficult, not really to consult Internet, but especially
to persons without education to express on Internet. In 1997, a simple
wysiwyg software was allowing to create good looking sites that everybody could
see with the only browser available in this time. Today this requires to master
CSS and PHP, without accounting the time lost to code solutions to the many
browsers or to seek how to do B.-A. ba in CSS. Unless to use only the «blog»
or «community» sites, with their so poor and so standardized layout,
fed up with advertizing, and even not referenced by Google!
We could no more openly exclude simple people and Third world people!! Personnaly,
I come to regret the time of the suprematy of Internet Explorer, bad with plenty
of bugs, but at least predictable and identical for all. Everything
accounted for, the free software movement brought much more problem than solutions.
This is really not what we expected of it...
Some good points however... For instance I have, installed at buy on
my new PC: PowerDVD (movies) and NTI CD maker (burning CDs), both perfect for
the intended use, and which work without a hitch. This
is the evidence that WE CAN do softs which run properly and are easy to use.
On browsers, my preference is clearly to Opera, except that we still have to
disable some strange options such as resizing large images to the screen. But
its efficient zoom (Keys + and - of the numerical pad), which don't change
pages, makes it matchless for vision impaired people.
SOFTWARE DEVELOPERS STEAL WORDS
Even after having thoroughly read the instructions for
use of Lotus Word Pro, I know how to create «OLE objects», copy them, paste
them, but I did not found nowhere WHAT THEY ARE, nor what I could do with
them. And it is thus for many vocabulary of computers. Software manufacturers
impose us a burden of useless vocabulary to memorize. But this is not the
worse: often some words are dramatic dulling of far more profound and useful
The French «ordinateur» is, in the Catholic Church,
the priest who gives the ordination to a new priest. The specialists of
the IBM company who proposed this translation of the English «computer»
thought that this word was no longer used nowadays. This is their opinion...
An «Avatar» is, in the Hindu mythology, a divine
incarnation, of Krishna, of Vishnu... who intervene in History at a critical
moment. The least that we can say is that calling an «avatar» the appearance
by which the visitors express in a virtual world is rather a loss of lyricism!
Especially if we think that these «avatars» seldom look like mythological
heroes, and those who animate them are sometimes very far of being gods!
The icons are before all sacred religious images
used into the Orthodox Christian world (Russia, Greece..). To take over
such a world for a so banal use is nearby mockery. On the great public french
access provider Wanadoo I found «picto»
Some softs guide the user with wizards. If such
wizard were to exist only in «fantazy» books, it would not arise
much concerns; the problem is that this word is also used for real characters,
indian chamans or african «sorcerers». As for Mages, etymologically
it was the
priests at the epoch of their splendour, after they chased out the Romans
until Islam went into Persia: a hardly known nice religion, however very
In the Linux and Unix OS we find daemons, pieces
of software assuming background tasks like monitoring mistakes in certain
functions. This is rather confusing with the evil being dedicating all their
time and energy into hurting and deceiving us, so I do not know if it was
a good idea to hire them into our computers...
IS FIREFOX AN ALTERNATIVE TO INTERNET EXPLORER?
Written on December 29, 2004
See the texts I wrote some years ago:
See the well known defects of Internet Explorer (vulnerability
to nasty softwares) we all expected a true alternative. Recently Firefox
claimed to be this alternative: security, simplified navigation, etc...
At first glance, we have a good feeling about Firefox 1: easy installation,
sober look, quick handling. But when I tested it on my sites, a bad surprise
awaited me: the fullscreen pages could not open.... Years or art work were
destroyed! And it was only the beginning of a long series of bugs sometimes
serious: language detection system which does not work (exit all the multilingual
sites) 3D plugins which blink on and off, or the incredible option forbidding
OK, naive as I was, I went on to the site of Firefox, to report this issue
to the «open community of independent developpers». By the way
I was not alone, several others were asking this function to be re-implemented
even is a complex system (bugzilla) of bug report, feature request, etc...
that I used. (
KLAC KLAC demand refused under pretext of security.
(Ulterior notice: Firefox again attacked this site, in 2006,
with making the full screen mode still more difficult to invoke:
So, with heavy regret, I must conclude that Firefox is not the friendly
alternative we expected. Not of a technical point of view, not of the point
of view of communicating with the developpers (who are not the sympathetic
open community they pretend to be) and Internet Explorer remains the best
choice (or the least bad). Firefox is only the old Netscape relooked, with
some red security messages to give a feeling of security, but even of this
point of view it is not better than the recent Internet Explorer. It will
be of interest only for anti-Windows activists.
THE COMPUTERS WE SHOULD LIKE
My experience indicates me that software and hardware manufacturers only
developed their products according to what they were able to do, but without
really considering the use and the users. However a little effort may
help them to really understand the user's needs and fairly enhance their
Today the computer has become an everyday tool in the office
as well as in the house, and even in the bush, for a quantity of tasks without
any link with software development, by a quantity of peoples who have absolutely
no knowledge in computers and no desire to acquire any. Is it asked to the
user of a washing machine to be an engineer in electrotechnics, or to the
driver of a car to make thermodynamics studies to configure the engine?
Definitively no. So the computer designers must do their work too.
To ban: the disconcerting menus that we must try
many times before understanding what they do, all the implicit knowledge
on the state of the system and its working, all what complicates the
task and its understanding.
To ban: The configurations split between many different
menus, where we must search everywhere...
The complexity really necessary for the system must
be «hidden» to the user, who must have to cope only with the choices
really necessary for his work.
This apparent simplicity does not excludes complete
test or configuration functions.
Computers and softwares wust be designed for real
users, not for ideal users all with high school level and telepatic
knowledge of the state of the machine. Using a computer for a given
task must not be more complicated that this task itself!
To ban: The labyrinthic helps where we do not know
where to search, or absurd classifications (With Sun Star Office,
the help is in four categories, from «simple» to «advanced».
So we have to search four times for our problem, and we do not loose
time with such an help)
Peoples who write helps such as «the option field
KZDS / GD2R allows to choose between the KZDS option or the GD2R option»
would do better to stay in bed!
To ban: the helps which do not explain of what they
speak, especially which do not define clearly the vocabulary they
Helps must really help! The person who searches
something does it according to her own logic, to solve her own problem.
So the help designer must not impose his own logic; he must start
from the different ways the users, confronted to a precise problem,
will try to look at the solution of this problem. If we need to learn
by heart entire books to use a software, so it is cheaper to buy another
A person already informed only needs a short-form help, a memo,
or on the contrary very detailed explanations on precise points.
A beginner will require a step-to step help, with examples. Often
we use the help because we tried to make work a function, without
obtaining the expected result. So we need an help in the form of
In activities which require technical knowledge,
(photo, music...) the help must recall them shortly, for the common
user who does not necessarily possess them.
A clear and univocal vocabulary
Example: to configure an email account, the main name is
called in very different ways according the softs or the access providers,
etc... introducing ambiguities, «guessing games», and mistakes.
To define a standard for certain accurate functions.
A tyre is called a tyre for every car manufacturers, so why
not for all the computers.
Simple to start
Starting is certainly the moment where the user feels the more... used
by the machine, unless of being the user who uses this machine. It is
this machine which asks us questions when it needs it, without any consideration
of our time lost while waiting for questions. This contempt is also found
in credit cards machines, in front of which is lost every day the time
of several human lifes.
I measured once more than five minutes of starting
time for Windows 95 (thanks to scandisc and all the softs which «load
themselves» at starting)
We must be able to plug the power and start. If the
machine has questions (to log, for instance) it asks them all at the
same time, in place of harassing the user.
The hard drive seems one of the main responsible
of the starting time. Why would not it be possible to sell softs on
memory cards, as on the playstations? So the softs would already be
in memory, without need to be «loaded». This while waiting
that hard drives would be replaced by a static storage faster and
Simple to stop
Most computers today are sensitive to power fails, and
they require complicated manoeuvres to stop.
Many OS risk, in case of power fail, to write at random on the
disk, and harm a zone with vital system data.
In rich countries, the power is reliable. But everywhere
else in the world power cuts and short duration cuts are rife. We
have to make do with.
To unplug the computer from the power line and from
the phone line is still the only way to protect it from thunderbolts
power surges, and thus this has to be done in a way or in another.
So to avoid to have to do several manoeuvres, it must be possible
to stop the computer simply in removing the power plug.
Cautions must be taken against interrupted writings
on the disk: -To mark a file as valid only after a completed writing.
-To forbid any writing before the power loss affects the position
of the head. -But a power reserve must allow to end the writing of
the current sector!
Today efficient little battery cells would allow,
if not to cope with long power fails, at least to make forget short
fails. It would be possible to save our work in case of power fail,
or if we unplugged the power while forgetting to save our work.
Again the responsible of these disavantages is the
hard drive. With a static RAM memory, the unexpected loss of power
does no longer present a risk of loss of data.
Certain OS are sensitive to viruses, or have security
breaches or fragile zones on the disk (such as the well known Window's
FAT) target for viruses or exposed to mistakes.
A minimum of common sense would allow systems like
Windows not to allow gaping security holes.
Cautions must be taken against interrupted writings
on the disk: -To mark a file as valid only after a completed writing.
-To forbid any writing before the power loss affects the position
of the head. -But a power reserve must allow to end the writing of
the current sector!
Fragile or exposed zones must be protected and their
information kept redundant.
In an ideal system, files would include themselves
all the informations such as their position in the directory tree,
their dependencies, their mime type, etc... So if the FAT is lost,
it can be reconstructed in an exact way; the only lost files would
be those which were physically erased. As the successive versions
of a given file would be still present on the disk, as long as the
corresponding space is not overwritten, it would be possible to get
back older versions of a destroyed file (which would appear in the
Changing hard drives for static RAM memories
Suppressing the fans (Do we really need a power of
several gigahertz to type a letter? At best the fan would start only
when there is a power call into the chip (Temperature rise).
Numerous problems appear under Windows about the
DLL (a very good idea, but quickly confronted to its limits): conflicts
between versions, uninstallation unfinished or abusive (which remove
DLL used elsewhere.)
These DLL must be all in the same directory, with
sub-directories by software. Same thing for all the sub-functions,
These DLL sub-directories should also be accessible from the directory
of the software.
The different versions of a DLL not always being
compatible, each software keeps its own.
A dependencies table must allow to know which software
uses a given DLL, driver; etc... for purposes of checking, updating
Under MSDOS or UNIX functions of the OS are commands
which can be typed, or called from a software. This is very useful
for troubleshooting, or when developing a software. A the extreme
a standardization of these commands would make softs portable from
an OS to another.
These functions which can be called manually or by
soft must also allow to make diagnostics or to detect configurations.
All these functions must also be usable from menus, all gathered
into a support window.
A centralized quality management
In the PCs, the necessary technological evolutions, and above all the
anarchic (see conflictual) initiatives of the circuit and software manufacturers,
led to a complex system, that nobody really master, and where all attempts
of rationalization is blocked by the inertia of «traditions»
(ancient technical limitations or palliatives)
We often hear that the PC is obsolete; but before only
thinking to create something new, we must start on a sane basis, account
with the real expectations of the users and work with method. We must also
account with the possible evolution of the technique. Otherwise we shall
only create... super-PCs!
Normalization is the only warranty that the
hardware or software that we buy will really functions and lasts in
time. Ergonomy and ease of use are the only warranties that we can
really use our machines in a transparent way, while forgetting the
A centralized quality management must have authority
over hardware builders and software developers:
-Refuse concept which arise problems;
-Refuse products too complicated for the intended use;
-Enforce developers to debug their products;
-Avoid situations of monopoly, of negative impact
on prices and normalization.
Seen the fast evolution of the techniques, a system must not include
intrinsic limitations. For instance the arbitrary limitation do
640ko of the memory of the first PC has be after an incredible source
of problems and diverging attempts to pass over it. So any system,
bus, format, etc... must always enlarge its size, speed, etc, to
accept new techniques, while keeping compatible with older formats
to cope with a park of more limited ancient machines.
Is it really necessary to have more than 1000 kinds
of modems, sound cards, printers? What a source of problems, when
new systems must be created (like Linux, BEOS...)! It is necessary
to have standardized interfaces. (1000 builders are required only
to make capitalism. Only one interface is required if we just want
to work rationally)
It is time to find a more reliable alternative and
less noisy alternative to the hard drives. For instance a non-volatile
static memory card, easily transportable like a notebook, and which
would contain all our work and softwares.
It is time also to find a replacement for this cathode-ray
tube, cumbersome and energy greedy, which makes our eyes sick and
enforces us to live in the shadow. Ideally a screen system should
be static (the image can stay without energy consumption, so long
as it does not change) and working on the basis of a modification
of the colour of a white background (without any light source, which
will alway arise problems of contrast and eye ache, especially fluorescent
lights always polluted with UV).
If commercial softs may still be on the leading edge for
a long time, free softwares may develop and offer all the basic functions
that expect the majority of users.
To ban: For a small bug which could easily be settled,
we have to pay the full price of the next version of the soft.
To be free is not a good reason to be an ugly hurrying
job filled with bugs. Most users will always prefer to pay for a good
software than to «support» bad free softwares.
A bug in a software can always happen. But in this
case correctives patches must always be available. The successive
versions of a soft must have for purpose only to propose new functions,
not to make pay for debugging.
Today developing and maintaining a software is a
complex affair, a long lasting team work, which entails a sustained
effort of communication, concertation, methodology and normalization.
«Personal initiatives» and «genial new things»
can lead to concretely usable things only at the cost of such an effort.
A large majority of computer games can be summarized
in fact as the learning of keys sequences manipulation. What makes
the interest of the game itself disappears between the manipulation
of the software.
It is really a shame that nearby all the game softs offer only
standard scenarios in worlds already made and standardized, without
any creativity of the player.
Yes, of course, fighting games or car race games
are not for artists, but there would exist some mean to create an
universal game engine, with a descriptive language (terrains, situations,
actions, characters...) standardized with powerful editors to create
for instance complex landscapes with simple commands. This would allow
to the players no more a standardized thought and taste, but really
to build their own worlds with their own rules. In the long run, this
would allow a new kind of games, no more based on conflict, but on
emotion and relation. This day the Internet will really be for everybody,
and not only for fascists or punks!
Today computers and Internet seem preferably oriented
toward violence and pornography. In reality their potential is infinitely
much larger: to make visible to everybody all our imaginations. Internet
is a fantastic communication tool, which allows us to exchange the
best, and, starting from our virtual utopias, build a real world much
more nice and happy. This is the purpose of this site, especially
its 3D worlds.
WHY WE DON'T LIKE WINDOWS (95)...
This text is historical (written
in 2000, or before). Windows was beterred, and this makes this text partly
obsolete. But problems are still there and many still see Microsoft as the
This criticism of Windows (95) get its full taste when
we compare it to the criticism of Linux which I made later...
Of course there is Microsoft's commercial policy, for which
Microsoft has so much prosecutions. But if it was only that, the problem
would be much smaller...
The real concern is that WINDOWS DOES NOT WORK PROPERLY:
bugs, failures, vulnerability, unmanageable, incredible sluggish speed...
Microsoft has the incredible pretension to LEARN US TO
THINK: Windows always does things we cannot expect, and when we want it
to make something, we have to fiddle into disconcerting configurations...
Many peoples believe that it is Microsoft who invented
the copy-paste, the mouse, the menus, etc... and thus are grateful. FALSE:
all these features existed years before on the Macintosh and under GEM.
Are the gigantic files of Windows and its applications really useful?
To give an idea, on my first PC (Amstrad P1512, bought in 1985) without
hard drive, I was able to put on only one 360KO floppy disk, the boot,
the MSDOS, GEM (equivalent of Windows) and my text processor (GEM Write)!
The functions of modern systems are not 1000 times more numerous to justify
1000 times larger files!
The incredible Window sluggish speed can be explained by
programmation mistakes which could be easily settled. For instance, this
text, entered with Front Page Express, appeared on the screen only one minute
after hitting the keys! (With dreamweaver2, it works without a hitch). Not to
speak of these mysterious «background
tasks» which completely stop our work while Windows endlessly scrapes the
The repeated failures are absolutely not due to the installed
softwares. In a training course on a machine with only Microsoft softwares
installed (front page, paint...) I spent half of the time only to restart
You know, nowadays, virtually nobody switches on his computer
to make computer science. We use a PC to look at a movie, check our mail,
write, draw, hear music, do an invoice for a customer... all tasks really
far from computer science, but that the repeated bugs constantly disturb.
Everybody cannot be an engineer, think to peoples without computer knowledge,
think to the Third World peoples, already happy when they know to read...
Today computers are clearly ELITIST!
And all these criticism are alas also true for many other
software manufacturers, which products are far too often hurrying jobs,
even not tested in real use.
Nowadays, seen the progress of computers, we are perfectly
right to insist on computers and softwares FAST, SIMPLE TO MAKE WORK, RELIABLE
and ERGONOMIC. Programmers must think as if they were the users and meet
their needs, in place of imposing them a pseudo computer culture useless
for nobody and for nothing.
Mister Microsoft, if you want to keep your monopoly, sell
products which work and meet our needs: we shall hurry to buy them and to
be happy with them. Otherwise others will do it in your place...
...AND WHY FROM LINUX I WENT BACK TO WINDOWS.
This text is historical (written in 2000, or before).
Since new versions of Linus were released, that I did not tested. I hope
that they accounted with these criticism...
Tired of all the Window's tricks, and much keen with the idea
of a common work offered under GNU license, I installed Linux (Mandrake
8.2 powerpack). The problem is that all the criticism I made about Windows
95 quickly showed to also apply to Linux, often in worse! And probably for
many other non-Microsoft softwares...
All the defects are still there: Failures,
sluggish speed (a little less, only one minute for Sun StarOffice
to save «General Epistemology» versus... 13 minutes with Lotus
Word Pro!) gigantic files (0,3Mo for GEM Write, 30 Mo for Lotus
Word Pro, and... 270 MO for Sun Star Office!) and above all
far more complex! In more, many softs are not finished, and
it is very difficult to install even the required minimum to
work. Two months after I still have no sound (no CD, no midi,
no movies, no MP3...) and to get it I must... compil again the
kernel of the system!
Example: One day and 10 Euros of phone calls
to configure my two Internet connexions...
Example: I was even unable to start the game
«FreeCiv», a free clone of the well known Sid Meyer's «Civilisation
II». It is necessary to go into a console, to configure a «server»,
to guess commands and options, in brief make software in place
of playing. (Ulterior notice: the Windows version of FreeCiv, in 2005, straight away
stalled my machine)
Example: emails. Any alternative to Microsoft's
«Outlook Express» is welcome, due to its notorious transparency
to all the viruses. But I was unable to configure Eudora, I
could create only one account with Netscape Messenger (Linux
version) and Sun StarOffice's mail (only one account for send
mail) behaves in a very strange way. For instance I was a month
long unaware that my send mails were going into the send mail
box, but that they never leave my computer. Really nice for
my correspondents! Microsoft Outlook Express, at least, works
in a way we can expect from an email software. Of course, it
would be perfect if one day Microsoft thinks to suppress these
mysterious functions which seems to be designed only for viruses...
Counterexamples: Honestly, there are things
which work pretty well under Linux. My three button mouse worked
perfectly. Also Linux seems really insensitive to viruses in
emails. So there are really peoples able to work correctly under
And it is so much complicated! It seems that
software developers under Linux were really unleashed to create
disconcerting menus. Only to differentiate themselves from Windows?
Useless, if it is not so good.
And to debug under Linux... see the complexity
of the thing and the absence of documents on its working, we
find ourselves in practice as bad as under Windows without source
files. Unless to be an engineer and to spend weeks to try to
understand how all this works. Know this: Under Linux you have
to «learn» all sort of things «absolutely indispensable»
to make work the system.
Why so complex? Linux is build around Unix,
a system which comes back from the epoch where computers were
voluminous laboratory machines served by large teams of engineers.
So you have to «mount» a floppy disk (Yes, each time you insert
or remove a floppy, you have to go in a console and type commands!)
and «shut down properly» the computer, in place of only
remove the power!
The Gimp drawing software works really well, and offers features
similar to a 300 Euros software. Only one «small» problem...
you cannot save into the GIF format! Hey men, a drawing software which cannot
do the GIF, the most popular format on the net, it is like a car which can
go everywhere except on tared roads. What help is it, even if it is free!
We should have preferred to pay a little (as the GIF files licence is not
free) and have something we can really use. (ulterior notice: the Gimp is literally a
gimp, incredibly sluggish and bugged, compared for instance to Paint Shop Pro
Is Linux really free, if we consider that to
obtain a satisfying running we must spend days and days, and
constantly call the customer support, at $15 one question!
I was unable to install any software under
Linux (except those available on the installation disks). We
get lost in pages of ununderstandable explanations, where we
must type commands of who knows what and put files in directories
(which directories? All this is supposed known in the FAQs).
There is however a packaging installation system which seems
to work very well, so why it is impossible to download packages?
At last, the aesthetics of the screen is not so good.
With the Gnome desktop, the less horrible was a mustard yellow and black
lines window; under KDE even with nice colours there still remain grey
shadows and harsh black lines, not to speak of ugly grey and smoke blue
icons. Under Windows 2000 in some minutes I recreated the lovely pastel
camaïeu harmony I used before. This concern is very relevant when
we stay hours a day facing a desktop environment.
So all this is really sad. The idea of a community of developers
sharing and offering their work to create a good system usable
by all, this idea was very attractive; but we must admit that
the result was not what real users needed. Only a few percentage
of the total computer users could accept Linux as it is, so
Bill Gates can still be confident. How a shopkeeper or a professional
who has no time to loose can afford a system which requires
so many delicate interventions? How peoples without computer
culture (beginners, olds, disabled, Third World peoples) can
really use a system which routinely requires to... compil
a software to install it? (Compiling a software is normally
done during developing, by specialized technicians). How people
who live in countries where power fails occur daily could
use a system non-tolerent to power fails?
What I think is that the Linus Thorwald's idea
was good, but that it was not good to start from UNIX What was
needed was something really accounting with the user's requirements
and wishes, and not something passionating to debug for the
exclusive use of fanatics of software development.
As the problem is there: as it is, Linux is
still rather far of really challenging Windows.
So the criticism I made about Windows, I have to relativise
them (without suppressing them) as they are true for many others. The only
purpose of these criticism was to do BETTER than Windows, and not a pale
So I all let go and installed Windows 2000.
By contrast, what a relief after two months of problems and
troubles under Linux... Especially, after some days of experience,
Windows 2000 seems to work better than Windows 95, and seems
more usable. But we must not lower our guard, as even if Microsoft
apparently bettered its products, it did not lost its contempt
of the customer. For instance Microsoft is preparing the phasing
out of the ISA cards... So bad for the owners of special cards,