Sorry, I’ve been preoccupied for the last 24 hours or so. I finally bit the bullet and decided to get myself a tablet computer, and what better than to get the king or queen of tablets, the iPad itself — something that everyone seems to go quite “gaga” about. (It makes sense, doesn’t it?! Alas, not so!) So I went out and bought one, and spent the rest of yesterday fiddling with it and seeing how it might fit into my workflow. If you’re not familiar with the iPad, as I wasn’t, you’ll soon discover that the iPad is all about selling apps (viz., applications), movies, songs and other things that are supposed to make your face light up with joy. It’s certainly not designed for someone like me, who doesn’t like to be managed and regulated by someone else.
For, not to draw this out too far, the only thing I got for my bother was a headache, and a sense of irritated frustration that almost had me signing in to the local psychiatric ward. Why is there so much song and dance about this benighted company? The only way — aside from a few pieces of software that promise much more ease of use — to get something on to your iPad is to go through iTunes, and that loads everything you ever had on your iPod (which I had given up trying to understand years ago), plus the few things that you really want to add to it, and then there is no simple way to get it off again, since the iPad doesn’t have a simple file manager that lets you copy your stuff to it, and then delete it when you want. Oh, no, you have to go back to iTunes again, and the trauma continues.
Now, I know this isn’t my usual fare. Usually I have someone to roast, like Micheal Ruse — who’s always such a handy target on a dull morning — but this time all I have is this piece of technology straight from hell. In fact, instead of Sartre’s other people, it seems to me that the horrors of hell would much more appropriately be described in terms of an eternity trying to make sense of Apple’s completely idiotic system. I suppose some people might find this easy and intuitive, but to me, it’s like dealing with a demon straight from electronic hell. So, it’s back to the store for now. Tablet computers will have to wait until another day, when I’ve recovered from my latest encounter.
So, if all I’ve got to show for the last twenty-four hours is a short tirade against Apple, and its entirely idiotic way of managing files on a tablet computer, a way that doesn’t let you get near the file system of the beast, chalk it up to Apple’s rather — dare I call it — “Catholic” way of dealing with its customers. Just take it from Pope Steve Jobs (peace be unto him), since he obviously thought he knew best. If it isn’t somewhere in the Apple Magisterium it must be false. I’m used to getting my hands dirty, actually accessing files, loading files, erasing files, and simply managing files all on my own, that this kind of patronising, “We won’t let you anywhere close to the file system lest you cause some problems that you won’t be able to solve on your own, and we have a program that does it all for you,” is irritating almost beyond reason. Last night I tossed and turned and cursed the darkness of the Apple underworld that I had been led into by the hype surrounding everything of Apple’s that comes on the market. Little did I dream that it hadn’t grown up, and left its childhood pram or crib, when they made iPods this way too, and caused me such consternation even then. I put some music on my iPod, after a great deal of trial and error, and now it sits in its dock and plays at least that much music over my stereo system, but I haven’t connected it to iTunes since.
So, goodbye to Apple once and for all. There must be some explanation for all the excitement that people display every time Apple comes up with something new. And, possibly, just possibly, all this is reasonable to some people. But I like to have control over what I do, and dislike intensely being led around by the nose by some engineer dreaming up the best new way of keeping the faithful in leading strings, waking up every morning with “Lux Aeterna” on one’s lips, and paying one’s due thanks and praise to the silicon gods of 1 Infinite Loop (a company whose head office is a perfect circle has more than ordinary hubris!). Is it just the cachet that keeps people loyal to Apple and all its latest gadgets, or do some people simply like this kind of torture? Anyway, it’s back to the PC/Droid world where I can actually do things myself, without so Computer god looking over my shoulder every time I want to make a change. The iPad is going back to the store, and I am going to try to forget the nightmare experience that I endured while I had it.
Back tomorrow sometime with a new post on my usual subjects, but, as you can see, for now I am still obsessing about the inanities of the gadget from hell that made my yesterday such a horror! It does seem relevant, however, to much that I do write. Apple is distinctly catholic in its attitude to consumers (or members of its particular sect) with its Curia, Magisterium, Vatican and all, whereas Windows and Linux are Protestant and expansive, much more adaptable to changing circumstances, and more in the control of the individual. Phew! Just made my getaway! I swear — another 24 hours — and I’d be suffering from acute PTSD! I’l be back with something a bit more substantial later, but — I swear — just trying to make sense of the iPad over about ten hours of yesterday, before in frustration I simply pushed the reset button that set the iPad back to its factory defaults, simply emptied my mind of anything more substantial than how to escape from Apple’s clutches!