Computer Rants

Computer Rants

I have had a love-hate relationship with computers and with Microsoft for years. I often plead with my computer to just do what it is supposed to do rather than screwing up, giving me endless error messages and in general Fucking with my head.

So, about a year ago, I started writing these poetic rants down and sending them to Microsoft. They have not yet responded.

Here then are my Microsoft rants for your pleasure.

Dear Microsoft – Why I Left You

Dear Microsoft

I have left you for good. I wanted to let you know why in vain hopes that you will finally take the time to fix the many problems plaguing your software. But since you never respond to my emails and your on line forums are not that helpful I doubt it will make a difference.

I left because your products are so full of bugs and errors that I has become increasingly hard to tolerate. They have always been problematic but for some reason it has gotten worst.

I left because Excel was becoming so unreliable that I could not stand using it any more.
I shifted to Google docs and have had no problems at all. The docs work every time and has some features that are better than Excel including for example the ability to add or delete multiple rows or columns rather than having to do it one row or column at a time.

Excel has consistently given me three different annoying errors. First, every fifth or sixth entry I encounter an error saying that there is a circular reference. When I clicked help it suggested that I inspect the cells to find the error and remove it but when I tried to search for it I could not locate the error and realized that I would have to manually inspect each cell, a prospect that would take hours to accomplished and I don’t have hours to spare. I tried copying everything into a fresh new document that did not work. The error still occurred. I opened a brand new document and with in seconds the error popped up despite the fact that I had not entered more than two cells and there was no circular references anywhere.

Well, this has been a chronic but annoying error. But it was not the reason I left.

The reason I left is that about two months ago, when I tried to import some data into Excel I encountered an error message saying that no more fonts could be applied. Then I had to press okay and the error would repeat, until it would go away after ten or twenty times of pressing okay. Once I pressed okay 400 times before giving up.
I frequently had to reboot my entire computer to solve the problem.

And of course that meant that my work would be lost because the auto save button is always grayed out and has never worked once.

Another problem is that Excel would frequently go into Not respond mode. Sometimes I would have to close the spreadsheet and re-open it.

Whenever I open excel for the first time, I will often get five to ten versions at once and I will then have to manually remove each open file.

I have also had problems with Word. Word also opens multiple versions whenever I open it for the first time. Some times, it takes twenty minutes to open and clear out the multiple versions.
Microsoft word also randomly not responds just like Excel.

And Word also sometimes fails to save documents. The auto save button has never worked.

One week I kept track of all the errors I was having and calculated that Microsoft Word had a 60% error rate and Excel a 50% error rate meaning that 60 percent of the time when I opened Word I encountered an error minor or major.

Finally, Microsoft dictation does not work. Usually I have to click windows H shortcut five to ten times to get a stable connection. And then when I do the dictation program provides gibberish for every other word. If I am lucky I may get a sentence or two in clear text.

It is hardly worth using and I have given up on it. But on the other hand it has led to many delicious found poems which I have shared with her and posted on my blog.

So, for these reasons, I am finally giving up on you.

I would love to receive a response but won’t hold my breath.


Jake Aller

Microsoft How I Hate You

published in Lotus Eaters Magazine
lotus eater magazine

For thirty years I have had the Microsoft blues
For thirty years I have had a love hate relationship
With my damn computer

I love it when it works as it advertised
I love it when the internet is fast and furious

I love it when my emails work
My Itunes work and my word works

But all too often
All I get is grief

It starts with the error messages
Written in a strange haiku like language
That only computer geeks understand

Things like
General Failure reading disk drive

Begs the question who is this General Failure
And why is he reading my disk drive anyway?

Or my favorite
“Not responding” as the computer freezes up
For no apparent reason
Other than to fuck with my head

Sometimes my computer can’t find a printer
A printer that is connected to the computer
And one that they found five minutes ago

And the dreaded blue screen of death
That appears randomly
Dumping memory somewhere

And killing my computer slowly
As I watch in real time

Powerless to stop
How it eats all my work
That I have failed to back up

One day I counted how many times
I ran into computer errors

70 percent of the time when I open Microsoft
Something goes wrong

Sometimes I want to shoot my computer
Put it out of its misery

As I curse up a blue storm
The computer looks at me

With an evil grin
It continues to fuck with my head

Nothing but silence from it
And all the other computers in the world

They smile knowing that they have tortured me
Yet again

Mission accomplished.

Computer Blues (revised)

Sometimes I think
My computer is plotting against me

And only me
Trying deliberately to drive me mad

My computer knows when I am busy
Then it throws a hissy fit

Refuses to boot up
Crashes constantly

Looses data that it had the day before
Or five minutes before
Or refuses to save the data

Just fucks with me
As it loves toying with me

Making me yell and scream
At my damn computer screen

Cursing up a blue stream of blue curses
As the blue screen of death
Marches across the dark blue screen

Smiling at me
As I beg it

To do what
it is supposed to do

Just once I beg it
Do what you are supposed to

Open the document once
Not twenty times

Do not not respond
In endless loops of opening

Not responding refusing to close
Until I respond to the error code

Please Mr. Computer
Quit playing games

Play my music
Don’t wipe out the sound
On the fifth attempt to play music

Don’t take an half hour to load Microsoft products
Don’t freeze up on opening ITUNES or Groove or Spotify

Don’t give me computer haiku error messages
That only make sense to computer geeks

Such as general error reading files
Who the ***** is this damn general
And why is NSA reading my files

Or can’t save the file
Or can’t save the an open file
When it just did ten times in a role

And in Microsoft excel
Refusing to move the cursor
Just freezing in place for a moment

And all the other gobblygook messages
That pop up every five minutes it seems
As the computer slowly drives me mad

Flashing the final insult
User driven mad
Mission accomplished

More Computer Blues

Sometimes I think
My computer is plotting against me
Trying deliberately to drive me mad

My computer knows when I am busy
Then it throws a hissy fit

Refuses to boot up
Crashes constantly
Looses data that it had the day before

Just fucks with me
As it loves toying with me
Making me yell and scream
At my damn TV

Smiling at me
As I beg it
To do what
it is supposed to do

Plead to the Computer Gods

Today I woke up
As I usually do

To yet another mystifying morning
Of unspecified computer errors

Could not get the computer to work
Then when I finally got it to work
After an half an hour

Microsoft word did not load
And when it did
I finally located my work
From yesterday

I had to find it in the roaming file
Who knows?

Only to find
That most of what I wrote
Had vanished into the ether

No explanation no warning
It was there saved yesterday
And now gone for ever

Once I did an experiment
Tracking computer errors for a week
75% of the time I encountered errors

Most of the time simple
Screen freezes no response message
Then when I recovered the program
The data was gone

Microsoft has yet to respond
to my e-mail
I suppose I need to do it again

But today I will close with a prayer
To the Computer Gods
Just once I would like
You to do what you are supposed to do

Open my documents
Save my work
And not give me any errors
Crashes or other unspecified problems

Is that too much to ask
Oh, Computer Gods

Just once
Do what you are supposed to do
That is all I ask of you

Prayer for Computer (send to Microsoft)

Every morning
I start my day

Cursing my damn computer
Been doing this for 30 some years

Since I bought my first computer
The Atari back in the 80’s

There is always something
Once I spilled coffee
On my first computer
The screen fizzled

Then green 666 appears
Endless repetition
Of the evil number from revelations

Freaked me out
It was 1984 after all
Was my computer making a political point?

Then of course
Endless blue screens of death
Fatal error reading disk drive

And my favorite computer error haiku
General Failure Reading Disk Drive
Begging the unanswerable question
Who is this General Failure
And why is he reading my disk drive

Years ago a computer techie
Told me the secret
that they don’t want you to know

99% of computer problems
Can be solved by rebooting
And 99% of the time
No one knows what went wrong
Or how to fix it
And so it goes and goes

Endless computer meltdowns
Mostly harmless

A couple of malware incidents
Once my computer was possessed
By evil malware that kept opening

And once I had an early version
Of ransom wear

My computer warned me
A dangerous virus had infected
My computer
Pay us money to fix it now

Had to take my computer to the shop
Reformate the hard drive
To remove that computer bug

But once my computer just died
Loosing half my recent data

Just because it wanted to
No reason given

So today instead of cursing up a blue storm
Of my own personal blue screen of death
I offer this short prayer to the computer gods

Today just for today
When I turn you on

I want you to do what you are supposed to do
Everything works

Everything is fast
And no more damn computer error haiku
Just do your fucking job

Dear Microsoft

Latest Found Poem

Hope you are amused by these and you have my permission to publish them

But more importantly I hope you can see that your dictation program needs a lot of work. It is still about 50 percent accurate with sometimes hilarious unintended consequences.

Also I usually have to click it on and off up to ten times before I get a stable enough connection to get it to work.

Hope you can fix it! Would be nice if it worked.

Here’s the poem

Today’s plan
go for John

Cup in my car
Woke up

Feeling Tom Carl Karma
Hanging out with Amber


Who the fuck is Amber anyway?
And why does she keep popping up
Is Microsoft trying to tell me something?

End comment

Dictation is so chu danger
have some more cell phones
till acting weird

But It is good
working To get to work

today’s plan
go for John coach canpell

go to temple
Anthony Con Nam
for Angela too

Register the properties for sale

Look at Panels today
but that will probably

have to be next week sometime
Maybe Monday Or Tuesday
Port Wednesday

Want to go tonight
he’s only children

next week
so would want
to mail down the dates
this morning like we discussed

The rest of Microsoft plans
Will write this up
And send it to Microsoft
Essential found
and I’m standing in

More feed back from today’s dictation trials.

I was trying to write down some recent music I downloaded. Here are the results for two of the entries in my daily journal. I offer these as further examples that your dictation product is not working.

Rachmaninov Symphonic dances was transcribed as
“F*** man enough so funny dances” Only thing accurate was the word “dances” Rachmaninov does contain the word Man so that is partly right
Symphonic could sound like funny I suppose

Rachmaninov contains 11 letters, F****man enough contains 15 letters. Three letters were correctly transcribed but not in the right order.

Symphonic was transcribed as So Funny Symphonic contains 8 letters, so funny contains 8 letters, only three letters in common S,Y and N

Statistical analysis
24 words in dictation three words one given name
24 words in transcription seven words only one word was correctly transcribed
6 letters were correctly transcribed.
Or a 25 percent success rate or 75% failure rate

Second Example:

Beethoven Cello Sonatas (22 letters three words)

Painter mang Cho sonatas (22 letters four words)

The words Beethoven and Painter have one common letter
The word cello and mang Cho have one common letter
Sonatas was accurately transcribed

Statistical analysis five letters out of 22 were accurately transcribed, or in other words 17 were mistakenly transcribed. Or a 29 percent accuracy rate.

So far the accuracy rate has been hovering between 30 to 70 percent. It is a word for word issue. Sometimes not often the entire paragraph is correct, more often than not, half if correct half is gibberish. I have had fun writing found poems out of the verbatim transcripts, some of which I shared earlier, and above.

Microsoft Problems Redux

Tried to get the new dictation program to work and gave up, scheduled a service call Sunday with detailed feedback. Also send Microsoft my Microsoft sucks document.

Felt good to get it off my chest. The problem with Microsoft is the same problem most big companies have, they have lousy customer service and they put out shoddy products and don’t really worry about competition until they get their asses whopped by someone who pays attention to the customers and put out a superior product at a better price and really cares that their products work as advertised every single time. With Microsoft they are so focused on the latest thing they don’t go back and fix the bugs in their everyday products. And they ignore customer complaints.

What a contrast with word press and with doutrope. Both have superior customer service and I love the products because they fix my issue quickly, professionally and with kindness.

The one time Microsoft commented it was a snarky comment, “ dude focus on one problem at a time and we don’t time to dig into your complaints.”

Finally got the dictation program to work.
The dictation still does not work

sizzling hot coffee destroys my computer

sizzling hot coffee
fizzing away

killing my computer
fizz, snap, pop

as the coffee splashes
on the computer

666 says the computer
sizzle this says
the cup of coffee

Fake Software

Fake software
Is everywhere these days

In Asia and elsewhere
Half the software in use
are illegal copies

the real deal is expensive
and difficult to use

the copies are cheap
and mostly work

although viruses lurk
in every copy

and my Microsoft company
checks up on me

whenever I use my software
off line I get a message

telling me they can’t verify
that it is me

so, log on immediately
or else they imply

Thanks Microsoft


Seems to always not find
My music I downloaded from a CD

ITUNES for your concern

And so, it goes
The constant battle
Against the fake software

But the fake software battle
Can’t be won
For in this age of fake things
Everything ultimately becomes

Just another fake thing
In a world of fake things

Greatest Computer Software in the World
Another company
At the dawn of the computer era

Discovered the same secret
In the modern fake world

It does not matter
That your product

Is over priced and does not work
Is buggy and filled with errors

Just hire the right marketing geniuses
And soon the world
Will become convinced
That they have to have your product

True computer geeks
Loudly complain

That it is the worst software
In the world
And I have proof

One day I counted the number of times
I encountered errors using their software

60 percent of the time
I encountered some error

Some minor just hanging up
For no reason

Others major errors
Requiring me to reboot
Several times
Before I got a stable connection

Then it would work for a while
Until it did not any more

I sent my results to the company
But they never respond

Truly the worst software
In the world

But who cares about that
Marketing is king
In this world of fake things

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