After XP

By:A.C.

Those of you who have read the post about the end of Windows XP might be wondering what happened after I was forced to change my computer in April.

Remember what I wrote in the previous post? Check what your needs are. I already had a webcam, optical mouse, an older style flat screen monitor, printer, all connected by USB or cable to the computer.

To replace all those peripherals would be expensive, as well as wasteful because the technology still worked perfectly well. Admittedly my monitor and mouse meant I could not wave at the screen, or use a finger to navigate, but then is it important for me to wave at the screen rather than click a mouse?

I also had Office Software that was quite expensive just a few years back, and I wanted that to work as well. So I purchased a slim line desktop which plugged into all those peripherals, and my software, apart from one or two programmes all worked fine

On starting up Windows 8, for the first time, one is forced to make a Microsoft account. If you have a Hotmail address for example, then that is your Microsoft account.

Using that account to sign into your computer means you will go online, and be “seen” immediately at various social media. That is, if you happen to subscribe to those types of media platforms like Skype, Twitter, Facebook etc. Some people may want that facility.

Others may want to be invisible or offline. Not everyone is happy to skip down the Global Village Street greeting everyone they meet. As I do not do that in real life why should I feel obliged to do that in cyberspace?
I found out how to just sign–in to my computer on a local password, and ignore the Microsoft Account, and stay offline and only connect when I want to.

Maybe I am just an old reactionary who values privacy, and time to myself, but It does seem to me, that if one is constantly connected in cyberspace, there is no real peace. That connection does appear to foster an addiction of sorts, by texting, updating, checking, commenting, and adding comments, words and photos to a whole stream of ‘stuff’. Or indeed, playing possibly addictive games that are more normally seen in a casino, or engaging in so–called “fun” gaming like bingo.

All of this could, of course, have serious results for one’s bank balance. Not to mention the online “otherworld” adventure games and personas that many take on – and pay for in order to advance through the various levels.

This constant connection and ease of usage must create some anger, frustration, anxiety or worry. It is this assumption of desire in connectivity that is the root of my comment.

I positively endorse the “good side” of cyberspace, its technology, and all the inventiveness, innovation, academic sharing of knowledge and research, finding goods and services, telehealth, telemedicine and monitoring services that are so vital to all of us, and all of which will continue to grow and innovate in the future along with all the equipment necessary for that development.

There seems to be an assumption by the big Corporations that everybody wants this wi-fi world of instant connectedness to all the different media, and that one’s life is somehow made stronger and better by using the easy tools they provide. Whenever someone says there is a “free lunch”, have fun, enjoy yourselves – I am reminded there is no such thing as a free lunch.

Facebook is not free or altruistic. Like many dotcom companies it works by selling targeted advertising.
I want to use my connection to the Internet when I want, and how I want.

For those of us who live on frugal means, getting online is all very well if one can afford the cable or broadband costs, the tablet, phone, pad, or computer to get online in the first place.

This then begs the question why the Government is so keen to promote claims for welfare or benefits through this type of online form–filling?

This brings me back to the great savings I made, by opting for the “old –fashioned” desktop.

Windows 8 assumed I would be ok and willing to use its One Drive service and send thumbnail photographs and a link to the recipient who has to then visit their website online to view the uploaded pictures. (Other services like Google do the same).

I was not happy to do that, because I know that my family and friends, like many humans, have a very busy life, and they just cannot be bothered to check yet another link to view photo’s sent to them amongst the dozens they already get.

I know that if they get the photo opening in front of them without having to download it, they treat it like a card in the post.

I have already learned how to disable the deeply integrated OneDrive, and found ways around the e-mail software that forces use of OneDrive for photographs.

That is one good aspect of all the shared knowledge in cyberspace, in that I have learned how to circumvent this deliberate, and in my case, unwanted integration in Windows 8.

My personal opinion is simple: if you like all the connectivity, socialising, media contact, and spend a great deal of time online, gaming, or spending hours in video cyberworlds, and are not that bothered about where you send your personal files, or who is ultimately reading or scanning your stuff “ out there” , then Windows 8 definitely has its appeal.

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1 Response to After XP

  1. AC says:

    It would appear that the BBC Programme Click agree. Check this clip on their Website for those who do not want to be ” seen online” all the time.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p01yqhm1

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