Futzing with computers

Sometimes you get in a rhythm when you’re working on something, and after playing in a program for so long it gets to be very comfortable. I used to use Microsoft Excel all the time. I would argue that I was fairly close to being an expert in it. I knew hotkey shortcuts, could import live data, make charts do exactly what I wanted them to.

Then, in 2007, version 12 was released. I was flummoxed. I couldn’t get my head around it. I got my first personal Mac the next year, perhaps coincidentally, so I didn’t even bother taking the time to figure out v.12.

Similarly, I’d been using GarageBand following OS updates, after mostly using Audacity to record a radio program I’ve been producing for several years. And, again, it was highly clunky.

I was forced used to use it, however, and so I found that there were elements of the program that I did enjoy using.

There are people who keep backup copies of Windows XP because they prefer that system over any subsequent update that Microsoft released. And, I’ll admit, I prefer the Office Suite on that operating system over the more recent ones as well.

But, times change. Computer programs change a lot more swiftly than people. So we’re left to adapt, hopefully identifying the changes that we enjoy – and that those changes outweigh the cost of losing the familiarity we had with the program to begin with.


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