Google Woes; Bill's Churros



I've swapped over to Netvibes. I just couldn't handle the new iGoogle anymore. Google is "rolling out" a new version of their ridiculously popular iGoogle homepage. Those of us who received the gift of this freshly laid turd had no choice in the matter. It was foisted upon is with no warning. I simply woke up one morning to find I was allergic to sex, Celine Dione is presdient, and iGoogle was no longer functional. In short, the world was a much shittier place.

Aside from my dream of one day wallowing naked in the cool whip on top of a giant cake and fruit parfait, it is my greatest hope that Google will abort this new version in it's infancy and none of the rest of you will ever have to coddle it, spank it, or ignore its plaintive cries for attention as you move on to more attractive playthings.

In the world to come, the Gmail module is fucked up (links are unclickable, no reply button) and the layout is hackneyed (old folder-tree ish heirarchy, no tabs). Click on the screen cap above to view the new layout in all its decrepitude.
But perhaps the most galling thing of all is that you can no longer drag widgets to different tabs to organize them. If a module gets added to the wrong tab, it just STAYS THERE. There's no way to change it-- not by dragging it, not under the settings for each module-- nothing, nowhere nada.
The only way to add a module to the right place is to go into that particular section ON YOUR GOOGLE HOMEPAGE, click add content, and then put in the rss feed manually or search for it from there. You can't just click "subscribe to rss" if you are reading a website and decide you want to keep up with it because god knows what section (or whatever they're calling it) the feed will be placed in on your homepage.

And all of this Malfunctionality just so they can put rounded corners on the widgets and automatically fill users' tabs with suggested content? As many the owner of a Ford Taurus can tell you, a rounded corner does not a good design maketh.

It pains me to think that just yesterday I learned from NPR, on the anniversary of Google's incorporation, that Google's motto is "Don't be evil."
Harumph.

On the brighter side, thanks to the suggestions of Lifehacker and @Yearginsim, I'm taking a look at Netvibes, and they seem to have some pretty interesting functionality. The site looks a little bit... clunky. But I haven't yet really taken the time to play around with the aesthetics. I'm sure I can shock it up with my notorious penchant for bright colors and nauseating patterns. In the mean time, their widgets seem to be much more customizable and easy to manipulate.

AND they automatically titled my new homepage "Eat the Flag! EAT it!".
David Cross reference for the win. It seems like me and Netvibes were meant to be.

Finally, today's "What the fuck is this bullshit?" technology-related ranting is not consigned to the new iGoogle homepage alone. Did anyone catch those odd odd ODD Microsoft commercials last night? I saw one during the last quarter of the Vandy game on ESPN, but I imagine they were rolled out for the RNC, not Bobby Johnson and the 'Dores (as much as we'd like to imagine that a Vandy football game could garner enough attention to warrant unveiling a new multi-million dollar Microsoft advertising campaign). I kind of hate to even mention it. Because that's what's known as "Creating a buzz" in the advertising business. Or at least that's what my depression era knowledge of advertising lingo leads me to believe. But it must be discussed or I will get rhetorically constipated.

The commerical had Jerry Seinfield in it, eating churros and trying on savagely unstylish mens' shoes with Bill Gates in a circus-themed shoe store. I kept waiting for the punchline, or the reveal. I really thought that when Bill went to pay for his shoes he was going to whip out a Visa and, surprise! You'd been watching some kind of wacky Visa commercial all along.
But no. No reveal, no punchline, no point ever came. It wasn't even particularly clever in that "Oddvertisement" sort of way that companies think is the bees kness, the cats pajamas, if you will, kid. Whadda ya know, Joe?

It only left me wondering why Microsoft isn't allotting me forty large every day to bury, poop on, burn, give to hippies, or otherwise waste on completely futile endeavors. If they have the money to throw away on this shit, why not give it to me to do with as I please? At least the video of my escapades would be far more entertaining, and would only leave viewers bewildered in that "What is wrong with all of humanity" existential sort of way, not the Assberger-ish confusion of implying that future computers will be edible and made out of delicious cake.
I did not make that up. That was actually in the commercial.

0 comments: