Archive for Change

Emerging From The Cave

Tiki Tom

For a bit over a year I have been hiding in the bowels of a very large bank. The idea was to have a job to go to but not one that entailed much responsibility. No serious intellectual challenges, no P&L, no direct reports. I wanted to go to an office everyday just like millions of wage slaves do but not have all the old responsibilities.

I got that… in spades.

There were some things that I learned. I got to experience an Agile environment from the inside. Not just the the theory of Agile, like so many pundits, consultants, and industry analysts do, but Agile in practice and at scale. I had the opportunity to work in an open office plan, something I hadn’t experienced before and would like to avoid in the future. Along the way I met some really great, funny, good-hearted people. Unfortunately, I also met some people that were political to the core and just plain jerks.

One downside was less time for writing. My site was updated only sporadically and I thank my loyal readers for sticking with it. The monthly article I write for CMSWire wasn’t always monthly and I had less time to research new material.

Now, that has all come to an end. I have left the big bank and returned to the land of the living. No more hiding in the cave.

Over the course of the next few months I plan to… I actually have no plan. For the first time in my life I have no plan. I will research and write more but that’s not a future. I have 18 books on data science to read. That will take up some time. I think I have a book in me to write as well. Perhaps my only plan should be to come up with one or retire.

Or maybe, just maybe, throw the doors wide open and see what walks in. An open heart and an open mind may just reveal the true path.

Why is The Internet Losing Their Minds Over MS Paint

A picture of the sadness that is MS Paint.

Yesterday, July 24, 2017, Microsoft announced that it would be deprecating MS Paint for the Fall Creators Release of Windows 10. Immediately the Internet went crazy with grief. There were even petitions! The reaction to the rather nonchalant announcement that MS Paint would no longer be part of Windows was so strong that Microsoft had to announce today that Paint wasn’t going away at all. Instead, MS Paint would still be available from the Windows Store, though it would no longer ship with Windows 10.

Why?!

MS Paint has been around over 30 years. That’s four centuries in computer time. It hasn’t changed much in that time and is, let’s be honest, a pretty feeble program by modern standards. This is like weeping for the demise of the Ford Model T.

There are so many other simple drawing applications out there I can’t even count them all. Paint.net is better. GIMP is a hundred times better, free, and runs on everything shy of an MVS mainframe. Ask you grandpas about that one kiddies. Microsoft has also recently released an updated version called, unimaginatively, Paint 3D.

So why all the Sturm und Drang and gnashing of teeth? Nostalgia. That’s the only viable explanation. What else could it be? It’s like retro computing. No one really yearns for the days of DOS commands or thinks that a 25 year old Mac is better than a modern one. Yet, hobbyists fill their basements with ancient computers. MS Paint was, for many, the first graphics program they ever used, perhaps even one of the first programs they used. It’s not about the utility of a 30 year old piece of software; it’s about retaining a small piece of youth.

Give it up campers. If you want to regain the wonder of youth, listen to U2 or get a NES Classic. Crying for MS Paint is like trying to fit into that concert t-shirt from freshman year in college – a guarantee of embarrassment and sadness.

It might have helped if Paint 3D wasn’t, in of itself, kind of boring. Even so, embrace the new. Besides Paint 3D, Microsoft has also made Fresh Paint available from the Windows Store. Those are just the Microsoft offerings. The Windows Store and Internet are overflowing with low-end graphics programs. Use one of those.

But please, stop whining over an application from the Reagan era that should have been put down long ago.