Kathy A. Graff

Why I Don't Do Windoze

In the early 1990's, just before the transition to a new career in IT, I not only used Microsoft QuickBASIC for custom programs, but recommended it to a number of clients and associates. It worked on Macintosh and PC computers and since Microsoft was a major player, it seemed to be a responsible decision.

I discovered that a 32 bit clean interpreter for Macintosh computers was not available after I replaced my Macintosh SE (a great little machine, it worked like a champ until it was stolen) with a Classic II. Ever resourceful, I compensated by booting into 24 or 32 bit mode as needed. As you all know, QuickBASIC was dropped for VisualBASIC, and, to make a long story short, I felt very bad that I recommended QuickBASIC to others.

In addition, the loss of work adversely affected my diet. Anyone (Ivan, Karl, JP, Steve?) who still has a copy of the photograph taken in the early 1990's of a group of student consultants posing with a cardboard "WILL CODE FOR FOOD" sign please let me know!

Meanwhile, Perl scripts that predate my QuickBASIC programming experience are still in daily use on the multi-user servers at the academic institution where I worked.

The moral:   Choose software/hardware that lasts rather than trying to keep up with the latest fashions. For the most part this means stick with Open Source.

Summer 2004

Later I was considered fairly skilled at supporting Windows™ computers and PC's in general. I backed off when I realized that the way I was operating was by asking the question 'what is the most stupid, idiotic way someone would do that' and finding that most of the time it was the right answer.

March 17, 2005 - has Microsoft changed? Apparently not.