Thursday, September 13, 2007

Joining Can Be Fun

koolaidman Kool-Aid (while arguably one of the top causes of the diabetes epidemic of our generation) contains trace amounts of Vitamin C. Vitamin C is essential to the overall health of our immune systems and enables us, as a species, to combat the effects of illnesses both natural and lab-engineered.

Sometimes, "drinking the Kool-Aid" means something entirely different. In this case, it means I've just installed the beta version of Windows Live Writer.

Alright. I use Windows XP Professional at work and at home. Windows Vista Ultimate is running on my personal laptop. I use Windows Media Player to both manage and enjoy my media library (all internet options disabled, of course). My job revolves around supporting the internal workings of the entire Windows server line with all the associated applications people stick on them. Why not try the (free) Microsoft application which will (in theory) let me compose these posts in the style of publication and then (also in theory) actually stick them up on the blog for me?

Blogger doesn't have a WYSIWYG editor. What I write in Blogger looks nothing like what gets published. Windows Live Writer looks just like the blog even as I type.

I may keep it. It may end up an abandoned personal software fad by the end of the week. It is too early to call at this point.

My reason for remaining on the fence about this and, in fact, all Windows applications is simple. Microsoft Office.

You know, that isn't true at all. Microsoft Office is far from simple. Microsoft, in a press to replace all current installations of Office with the newest and biggest (at as close to full cost as possible), continues to add "features" and "enhancements" year after year and version after version until what was at one time a very nice word processor and spreadsheet program is now a massive bloated cross-functional suite of applications which consumes more and more system resources and requires longer and longer training periods just to get people up to speed on churning out the same documents they were able to produce on the old versions.

Did you know you can actually take classes and a test to get certified in the use of an office suite? To me, this indicates a level of complexity far beyond that of a standard office productivity application.

Whoa. I was completely supposed to be talking about Windows Live Writer and some form of anti-establishment rant about Microsoft Office just kind of happened. What I meant to say was that I'm using Google Docs more and more. Anything important eventually gets opened there and saved there to be freely accessed from any computer I want. Someone else handles my online backup solution and I completely love that.

I also love that I can compose a document and email it to my special email address to export it to Blogger for quick publication.

This leaves me wondering exactly why I installed Windows Live Writer. I suppose it is pretty but not revolutionary.

Just like Windows Vista.

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