WordPress Google Apple…

And if I wasn’t obsessive about not having a title that drops down onto a second line, I’d add Microsoft and Facebook to that list. As you might guess, this seems like a good Monday to share a little technology rant. Keep in mind, I spent 42 years advocating for companies like these, so I feel justified in taking a few shots.

WordPress – You guys have to work harder at making the Block Editor intuitive. Short of intuitive, can you at least make it predictable? What am I talking about? How about these three things:

1) If I’m writing a new post, and want to change the block I’m using, I click on the “+” sign. That’s fine, as long as the block I want is one of the six you show me, or I can remember the letters it starts with. But, if I click on the “show me all blocks” you rearrange the editor and there’s no way for me to get back to the way it looked three seconds earlier.

2) Could you offer a better warning when I am about to change a Reusable Block. You see, a Reusable Block that includes a bit of CSS, looks just like a new paragraph block, since you can’t preview the CSS in the editor. If I start typing in it, it behaves just like a new paragraph block. The only clue I get that I’m about to overwrite a Reuasble Block – CHANGING EVERY INSTANCE OF THAT BLOCK IN EVERY POST – is when I save the post and I get an odd little “Ready to Save” question. How about a “You are currently editing a Reusable Block” warning?

3) Fix your galleries – I know, I’ve mentioned this before, a gizzion times, but your galleries are the worst. You still can’t figure out how to show hover-over captions and you still can’t figure out how to reliably show titles and captions in the carousel. It can’t be that hard. I say that because you ustacould do it. So channel your inner Classic self and fix it.

Google – This is easy, give me the option to suppress that stupid black box in the Gmail browser that tells me everything I just did, while blocking the view of and access to the bottom several emails. Either that or move the box over to the right where it can’t do any harm. Or put it back in the center of the top – where it used to be – where it likewise can’t do any harm.

Apple – Holy Moly, Apple, among other things, learn how to spell. If you’re having trouble with this concept, here are few hints:

1) People are never trying to type words that don’t exist. So, when I type “Ghis”, I wasn’t trying to type “G hg dtss s” – I was trying to type “this”. And when I typed “Thas is” I didn’t mean “Th asg I’d” I meant “That is.”

2) People are not always trying to reference you. When I type “if they have honey crisp apples, get a few” I wasn’t trying to say, “if they have honey crisp Apple, get a few.”

3) And now for one of the other things. Please consistently give me the option to decline a call, even when my phone is locked. I realize I might inadvertently miss the chance to claim a big prize but do it anyway. While you’re at it, let me block text message phone numbers with one swipe, not a three-step process.

Microsoft – Get over yourself!

1) Since you watch everything I do, you should know that the first place I want to save a file is in Box and the last place I want to save any work-in-progress is OneDrive?

2) The last document I worked on should be considered a “Recent Document.” I say that because when I try to bring up Word’s recent documents, it gives me a list from three days ago, but nothing from this morning.

3) I don’t want a tour of Windows 10’s features. I don’t want one today, I won’t want one tomorrow, and I won’t want one the next time you do an update. Unless, of course, you fix the recent document thing.

4) I don’t want to use “Snip & Sketch.” I use the old inferior Snipping Tool because it lets me save screen shots to Box, (see #1 above) whereas Snip & Sketch lets me select Box but fails to save the image there.

5) When I right-click on a word (that I want to look up) give me the option to look it up in a web browser, not just your proprietary and relatively useless internal resource.

Facebook – I have to credit Brad Lewis on this one. Stop presenting me a list of people and places whose names begin with the few characters I just typed. “There” is a word. It doesn’t always mean I want to mention “Theresa,” especially when the context is “I was trying to drive over there” because if I was planning to drive over Theresa, I don’t think I’d announce it on Facebook.

78 comments

  1. That was very enjoyable and well said. I don’t disagree with any of it. LOL. I need to deal with tech support on occasion and they ask me why I am calling after I already told a rep who first answered the call why I was calling in detail.
    My latest ongoing saga involves my Windows computer and Lightroom. Something removed half the key words from half my files (species names and GPS data). I wanted to know why it happened so I can prevent it occurring in the future. The first tech gets in and looks at LR and says you are able to add keywords, what is the problem? Rarely do they listen to the client. I am now waiting for a call from level 2.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Where do I start? :-) WordPress – I’m still using Classic Editor. I have enough drama in ‘real’ life I don’t need extra in my online life. Google – I have to look for that black box to see what you are referring to. Apple – Oh, please, let us ‘decline’ calls, and by all means improve word substitution. Microsoft – I use Excel and Word mostly and neither will list my most recent documents so I can easily find them. I have to go on a full on search every time to find something I opened 30 minutes ago. It is majorly annoying. If I had another option, I’d dump them like yesterday’s trash. I’d add Instagram and their reels as annoying. I’m sure reels are important to a lot of folks, but I could care less. Why not give us an option to see or not see them. I have two issues with Facebook with regard to a page I manage. They restrict everything – a new post only goes out to 10% or less of your followers, and when you check the news feed there are normally 10 or less shown. I just don’t get the purpose of that. Whew, feel better already. A good technology rant is good for the soul. :-)

    Liked by 3 people

    • I’m sorry to say it’s less about what you can figure out and more about what works. I have confidence in you, Frank but s lot of things don’t work. I’m using the block editor, but I still have to use a Classic block for photo galleries.

      Like

  3. YAY! If you were running for President, Dan, I’d vote for you and canvas the streets for everyone’s allegiance. I’m often in the “What? What just happened?” state of mind. Thank you for the levity and wisdom! Yep, “Dan for President,” I can see it now. 😊

    Liked by 4 people

    • Thanks for the support. I’m not sure Theresa is listening 😏 I have made complaints/requests to all of these companies. They are either “aware and working on the issue” (for almost 2 years at WordPress), or “not convinced it’s a problem” (Google) or they’re convinced I’m using the product incorrectly (Microsoft). Facebook just doesn’t care.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Valid complaints all. For WordPress, I still refuse to battle the block and switch back to Classic for every post. There’s something to be said for old school. Facebook? I’m sure Theresa agrees.
    😉

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Outstanding, Dan! I know I get frustrated, but I am also computer illiterate. It must really be bad for people like you who know the glitches could be fixed!!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks GP. The worst are the features that used to work before the products were “improved.” Apple’s spellcheck was never as bad as it is now. The other companies have all introduced these issues in the past year of two. It’s frustrating.

      Liked by 3 people

  6. hee hee hee. I’d rather enjoyed that rant. As a sanctimoniously hang onto WordPress Classic with every fibre of my being.It seems as if there is a competition to see just how badly these companies can annoy the people that pay their bills.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh goodie, I can rant too.

    WordPress photo gallery – You suck the green weenie (sorry if that’s too vulgar for a Monday morning, but that’s how I feel). As Dan said, get your act together. It shouldn’t be this hard. None of this should be hard, but you’ve made it so at the command of some bigshot who thought it would be cool to frustrate WordPress users with useless programmers. I stick with the basics now and seldom use the gallery because I don’t have the time to deal with that nonsense. Ugh.

    Facebook – Stop telling me who I might like because Suzy (who I have little interaction with) is our sole link. That would be okay if I’m only focused on the number of “friends” I have, but it doesn’t work like that for this user. Also, I find it odd that you notify me when certain people post, but not others, and then I miss the important posts that I truly want to see. And another thing – I watched a video by a Catholic priest ONCE and now he comes up in my video feed all.the.time. I would say “Jesus,” but that’s not proper. Please stop.

    Nice post, Dan. I don’t know some of what you’re talking about and I don’t own Apple products, but I know of your frustrations. When an IT guy feels that, you know there is something wrong. Perhaps some day these companies will fix their mistakes, but more likely, they’ll just add to the pile

    Happy Monday!

    Liked by 3 people

    • You go Mary. The truly frustrating thing is that most of these problems have been introduced along with an alleged update or “improvement” like the Block Editor. I wouldn’t mind using the Block Editor if I didn’t have to write custom CSS to indent a paragraph or remember to insert a Classic block to handle a photo gallery.

      Facebook doesn’t care what you want to see. They have an algorithm that decides what they want you to see. Ultimately, that design leads to people paying to promote content they hope you will see.

      I’m pretty sure this will all get gradually worse over time.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I laughed all the way through this. While not really funny, I sympathize with your pain. Reading your comments about Microsoft made me glad I use the very basic features of my Mac. My big issue with Facebook is I refuse to use their app. I use a browser even on my phone. Every day it seems I see a different screen format. Now I cannot play videos without the app? Oh, wait til tomorrow, it will change. And I am still using the Classic Editor. They will need to pry it from my hands.

    Liked by 1 person

    • My wife has a similar complaint. She’s not on Facebook, but likes to visit some public pages. These are just businesses that have a Facebook page instead of a website. Some days, she is told that she can’t see that page unless she logs in. Then, later that day, the page works, but they almost always plaster an big reminder (about 1/3 of the page) that her experience would be better if she logged in. Actually, it would be perfect if they just removed that banner.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I just can’t with the Block Editor, Dan. I’ve said it before and will say it again: I will ONLY stop using the Classic Editor when the UNhappiness Engineers pry it kicking and screaming from my options. I hate, hate, HATE having to search for basic functions!!! I’m so sick and tired of all these “minimalist” redesigns of everything — IMO, that sort of design is just useless. I want my toolbars, I want my icons, I want some boxes and lines, not just words and images floating on a totally blank background.

    The ONE exception to my hatred of the Block Editor is that it DOES solve a major invisible formatting issue that the Classic Editor has suffered from for yours. I’m typically typing out at least most of my post before I start adding images. And I’ve found that sometimes when I preview the post, there’s an unexplained hard return either just above or just below an image I’ve inserted. Sometimes there’s no obvious cause. But more often than not, it’s when I’ve put in a photo, changed my mind, deleted it, and then inserted a photo in the same spot. The blank space is visible in the preview, and it’s visible if I’ve already published the post and am making a change, but when I go into the Editor to delete what looks like extra hard returns….. there are none! Looks totally fine. Try a number of things to fix it, and sometimes I can get it, but usually no. I’ve had to trash drafts before and repaste in my content to a new one because of this. BUT I did discover a few months back that the Block Editor IS good for something after all — those mysterious spaces ARE visible in the B.E. and I can simply backspace or delete them, resave the draft, and go back to my Classic Editor with everything fixed!

    As one of my best friends likes to say, I guess even a blind pig finds an acorn once in a while.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I hear you about the trend in design. I don’t see how it helps. I have so many complaints about the Block Editor that I could have a running series of rants just on it. I’m using it, because the Happiness Engineers said a problem people viewing my blog were complaining about was because I had an outdated theme. Of course the new themes were designed to work with the Block Editor. I went through all of that, and people still had problems. It turned out to be an iPhone thing :(

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Way to go, Dan. You socked it to all of them and came up with the most annoying. I find the block editor so restrictive that I don’t use it. The few times I did, it launched my post before I was ready. I still haven’t figured out how to schedule a post in Block. I think you ought to get a few signs together along with some folks and take this to the Capital in DC. Be careful, though. Those National Guard types are a little touchy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hahaha – I’ll wear a tee-shirt with a big “C” for classic.

      Tip-of-the-Day – Scheduling in the Block editor – Make sure the right sidebar is showing “Post” options, as opposed to “Block” options. Look for the word “Immediately” under when the post is to be published. Here’s the truly intuitive part ;) Click on the word “Immediately” and a calendar will appear. Select the date and set the time. Be careful, as it guesses as to whether you mean AM or PM. Also, there is no “Save” option, once you have it set the way you want, just click somewhere else and the calendar goes away. Sometimes, the calendar goes away on its own and you have to click on the scheduled time to finish. – – – I would have been fired for designing an interface like that.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Preach it, Brother! My phone has started not only suggesting predictive text, but inserting it for me even if I don’t choose it. I feel like Eleanor Shellstrop in The Good Place: “Fork that! Fork that! Fork! Why can’t I say fork?”

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Way back when Microsoft lost me when they changed basic functions on the browser. Upgrades should be improvements not an ‘opportunity’ to retrain. When experiencing upgrade chaos my first step is to Google ‘how do I (blank). Getting the answer in no way improves the amount of vexation with the software vendor in question. And that would include Google. I am not sure when they upgraded the contacts with an icon. I just know it took way more time to find the darn icon and update the contact information. These days Libre office is my preferred office package. Are they better than MS office ? It depends on your point of view. I will choose painless upgrades over retraining just about any day. I will bash the Word Press happiness engineers another day. Just about all of those outfits are fast and loose with the words ‘upgrade’ and ‘improvement’. Oh gee I almost forgot Facebook. Which would be the correct decision. Bad software administered with an even worse attitude. If I had met Facebook first Microsoft would still have a good reputation. Now I need to get some of those quicker picker upper towels because the sarcasm is really starting to drip.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Excellent rant, Dan!

    I’d like WP to let me Italicize more than one block of text at a time!

    Apple- Spellcheck. Sigh. I’ve turned it off several times because its typos are far worse than mine, but I found I do use it so I turn it back on. I have a love/hate relationship with Spellcheck.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. What have you got against Theresa, besides wanting to run her over? 🤣 This is why I do not have a Google or Facebook account, and nothing related to Apple. Just the updates from Microsoft throw me into a tizzy. For a couple months, their newest update wiped out all my passwords and had me sign-in anytime I just wanted to ‘like’ a WP post. Amazingly, it cleared up. I need no more aggravation than that. The last words I need to hear from my husband, the retired computer tech, are: “Let me sit down and see what’s going on.”

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Like so many others who have responded, I happily use the Classic Editor. I have a link on my bookmark bar that opens a new post in the Classic Editor and I click once and start a new posting. As for the other issues, either I have not experienced them or they don’t bother me. On an average day I use a Mac (Mojave OS) and a Windows computer (Windows 10) and use Microsoft Office on bother systems. I really welcome the fact that most software packages now operate almost the same on the two operating systems, unlike in earlier days. As for my iPhone, I tend to use it just for talking and texting, which it handles really well. The only interesting thing it does is try to figure out whether I am texting in English or French (I have done both in the past), so while I am typing it suggests words in both languages.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The block Editor is a self-inflicted wound, Mike. I needed to change themes (I was told) to solve a problem people were having viewing my blog. That turned out to be Apple’s problem, not mine but I had already switched.

      The frustrating part for me is that some of these things worked as you would expect up until a particular upgrade or improvement.

      Spelling corrections in two languages…that might be more than I can take.

      Liked by 1 person

    • That is one of the most annoying features, Janis. Their model depends on connections. The more people are connected, the more little they are to be online. While they like it to appear that they are helping you make friends, it’s really just self-preservation on their part.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Making me rather glad I’m not blogging much these days. I haven’t gone near a WP attempt in so many months. I like Blogger fine except for the comments management. I approve comments first so an email is sent with the comment and a short list of options: publish/Delete/Spam. They are so close together that it is too easy to accidentally tap Delete in stead of Publish which I have done twice now. At least I could undo that action on WP. Not so on Blogger. With them gone is gone. Gggggrrrrrrr…….

        Liked by 1 person

  16. The Block Editor still dries me crazy, Dan. I try to use only the six blocks but I use the quote sometimes, so I clicked show all. One thing got me mad is it doesn’t like new categories. When I add new category, I couldn’t publish my post and it says it was not allowed. I emailed WordPress, the ‘happy engineer’ just said it was the thing they are still working on. So I opened a new view of my blog to redo my post without closing the other one in case I forgot something so I could go back to look. In the new view, I didn’t add new categories, just clicked a couple existing ones and published it first hoping to edit and add. When I clicked publish, both posts were published. That wasn’t what I wanted because I had to delete one.

    For Gmail, what I don’t like is that even after I designate the mails in different folders, they still show up in the In box or the All box. I want them to just go to the folders, like MSN.

    For Facebook, I don’t like so many things. The list is going to be way too long.

    Can we have one media would do everything we want to do?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh Miriam, categories in WordPress are so messed up. I wanted to create a new category for the Thursday Doors post where I revealed the winning badge. It simply would not let me select it. They said it had to be in use already. I assigned a very old post to that category, it still didn’t work. I wanted to use the category to trigger the appearance of the sidebar widget. After a long time of messing around with no success, I just gave up.

      That’s also a good complaint about Gmail. I have to use Outlook for a different email account, and I don’t want to commingle them but I want those features, too.

      I wish we could have one that worked. I hope you’re having a good week.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. This weekend I must have had to delete everything and start over a dozen times because WordPress thought I wanted to change a reusable block. And you’re right: you don’t find out you’re going to change it until you try and publish the post.

    And, I’ve wanted Apple to provide the ability to send a call to voice mail or just blow it off for I don’t know how long. I wish they’d spend less time developing apps that I won’t use and can’t get rid of and make blowing off calls from the lock screen a thing…

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s never too late to join a rant, Audrey. If I had waited one day to post that, I could have added how, sometimes, the preview option destroys your session and forces you to start over (that happened last night).

      Like

  18. Haha, Dan, your post gave me such a laugh. I have all these same issues but I thought it was probably just me because I’m not that good with computers. I thought that I just wasn’t good enough to have figured out how to do it better and never complained because I thought everyone else had figured it out and would try and tell me how to fix it which might be worse than living with the problem. So good to know I’m not completely computer illiterate and it’s all the fault of the company’s in question.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Thank you! And thank you for not driving over Theresa.
    I hate the Block Editor. It takes me way too long to blog now. And adding pictures makes me want to drink, but I can’t drink when adding photos, because I have to focus on the 10-step process and subsequent do-overs.
    And this: “your proprietary and relatively useless internal resource.” MMHM.
    I have not been on Facebook in about a year. Can’t say I miss it.

    Like

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