Written by Jeff Vorva
The number eight hasn’t been so great in the world of gizmos.
It started last summer, when I bought a new laptop and the salesman was telling me how great the new Windows 8 was.
The salesman lied.
Windows 8 is the work of the devil.
It is garbage.
It might be cool for those who have touch screens, but I don’t have a touch screen and it is not very friendly to us who have to live without.
As a temporary relief, I was able to download something that would allow me to have my home screen look like a regular computer and not some coloring book.
Even with that small improvement, it does a lot of funky things. Sometimes when you move your fingers across the touchpad it goes into a different mode and you have to look for the start area to go back to what you are doing. Sometimes you hit the ‘r’ key and the “run” screen comes up. It does a lot of what you don’t want it to do and it’s frustrating.
Meanwhile, I discovered one tip that saves some aggravation. Hit the Windows symbol and escape and that usually fixes that stuff. But it comes back. And comes back. And comes back.
Lest you think this is a generational thing and I’m being and old fogey, my two kids in high school hate it, too, but not with the fervor that I do.
There are plenty of critics on the internet about it.
And, while I am writing a negative column on this, I am not nearly as nasty as a person who wrote a long message in a Microsoft forum titled “Windows 8 SUCKS AND I HATE IT.’’
“WHO DESIGNED THIS ****???” this person wrote. “A MONKEY?”
Then the person seemingly calmed down because he or she stopped using all capital letters and added “No, a monkey could do it better. Somebody shoot the guy who thought of this…’’
Then this person came up with a stinging insult that should make the wonks who invented this tripe weep buckets of tears.
“This is worse than Vista!”
That brings us to another eight to hate.
The Apple iOS8 system, which is the recently upgraded system that runs the bazillions of iPhones out there, is such a lemon that the Apple folks pulled it off the market and updated it with an iOS8.0.1 update.
In some cases, the new update is causing the phone portion of the phones not to work. Now it’s time for iOS8.0.2.
I really can’t get worked up about this because, unlike some people, including my kids, I am not the type to update my phone system right away. I am usually one of the last to update because I usually don’t care about all the new whistles and bells. So I’m still in heaven with iOS 7.
My son, T.J., is complaining that iOS8 “lags” and my daughter, Lauren, doesn’t like how much it drains the battery.
Like the Windows8 debacle, the iOS 8 has plenty of online critics using unkind language to describe it.
Now that iPhones are in their sixth generation, it won’t be took long before the seventh comes along. But when it’s time for the iPhone8 to debut, maybe the geniuses at Apple will change the name.
Shedding light on e-books
Last week’s column featured a theory on e-books messing up your sleep patterns by a medical correspondent named Stephen Adams, citing the blue lights on the e-books’ screens as the cause. Adams was quoted by Ruth and Larry Kuhn of Oak Lawn, who run a book shop and pointed out that reading real books at night rather than e-books is better for your sleep.
It didn’t take long for Bob Friedman, a marketing director for ASF Lightware Solutions in Merrick, N.Y., to chime in.
“Your article correctly notes the problem of blue light impairing sleep,” he wrote in an e-mail. “However, the problem is not e-books. The problem is the blue light emitted by LEDs using in smartphones, tablets and book lights. So, if you’re using a printed book with a typical LED booklight, you’ll still be having blue light shining in your eyes and disturbing your sleep!”
Then Mr. Friedman made a savvy marketing move by hawking his product.
“Our Beam N Read LED Hands Free Lights come with blue-light blocking filters to eliminate this problem,” he wrote. “Without the snap-on filters, a Beam N Read LED Light, like other LED lights, shines a lot of blue light. With the orange or red filters attached, blue light is filtered out. Beam N Read are the only reading lights that address the blue light problem.
“So you can read an E-book on a Kindle (non-backlit or with the back lighting turned off) and you won’t have a problem with blue light. Beam N Read lights are worn around the neck and can be used with e-readers and printed books plus soft materials that can’t support a clip-on light like newspapers, newsletters, and a handwritten letter from mom.’’
I am letting this shameless plug go through because I can’t say no to a man promoting reading newspapers and letters from mom. The website for more information is www.readinglight.com.
And someone from ASF needs to give Bob a bonus for a job well done.