bog blog

5.2.25 7 :: ux is the end of the rush meta–sequence. It might the end of its writing. The themes intentionally grow unobvious, which must discourage. I like the poetic style developed, I intend application to experience (7 is exploration) to see what appears.
5.2.2 The Slits have reformed and are doing a world tour of Lancashire. I’ll have to get up there.
5.1.19 I’m close to finding appropriate language to write something sensible on JH Prynne’s recent revolutionary poetry.
5.1.10 I can’t deny I’ve been avoiding using Office XP, because my experience has been Microsoft always manage to make their end user applications appear easy to use and actually be pretty well impossible to use. This is why I switched to Open Office some time ago, even though that has some serious flaws as well; at least it’s usable. Both are free to me; I buy MSDN for professional reasons, and get Office free with it.

I’m being reminded of this today; I want to get an overview of Outlook XP, and the obvious thing to do is to bring up the help contents page. Is this easy? Stupid question! First of all, you’ve got to get rid of the universally derided paperclip (what a proof of abuse of monopoly!), which expects you to type in a question so it can carefully misunderstand it (why the hell don’t they license Google technology, for God’s sake?). Once I’ve got rid of that stupidity, it displays its Help Home Page. Does this Help Home Page give access to the Help File contents? Does it hell. It doesn’t seem to have occurred to the idiots who designed this crap that the reason why information collections have had a contents for 600 years is because some people actually find it useful? Morons.

Outlook can’t apply a couple of email processing rules, so I want to check out my recently imported folders and do some tidying up. But the Manage Folder menu entry has vanished. If I understand what they were trying to do, it’d make it so much easier to do what I wanted to do, so why the **** do they conceal everything? Good God, even if I turn that paperclip back on and tell it to show me the contents page, it won’t.

The experience of looking again at this drivel utterly confirms my decision to move to Open Office. And I haven’t even glanced at any other application in the Office XP suite!

I really can’t understand how a company can make a thoroughly usable Operating System can make a unusable Office suite, especially since Operating Systems are so much complex than applications like Office.

I just thought, sod it, I’ll try the paperclip interface. I just spent about ten minutes getting answers to questions I didn’t ask, and nothing about the question I did ask. I still haven’t got a clue what’t happened to the Office 2000 Manage Folder command, which I want to use. It did tell me that I couldn’t delete a standard folder, which is not only not surprising, but entirely irrelevant, since I want to delete one I’ve created. This product is dire. If it was’t free, I’d ask for my money back, and the time I’ve wasted because they have deliberately made it unusable.

Fuck that customer. Office XP is appalling; I can’t use such anti–productivity crap.
5.1.9 Every so often, I get reminded at just how appalling Microsoft Office products can be. Right now, I'm trying to upgrade from Outlook 2000 to Outlook XP, because a prospective client wants to ask some questions about it. All I want to do is import the account settings I’ve already exported from 2000. But guess what? Yup, Microsoft have fucked up. Outlook XP allows you to import these settings, but, erm, it won’t allow you to tell it where they are. So it has to guess where the file might be, and, of course, it gets it wrong. In other words, you can’t actually import existing account settings. As usual, the idiots who designed this software have assumed they know best, and, as usual, they’ve been too lazy to do any of this bothersome thinking stuff. It would be so simple to get right. I don’t know what planet the marketing droids live on, but it’s it clearly not one inhabited by intelligent people. What a bunch of willies.
4.12.10 Cambridge is a superb place for poetry right now. There’s the magnificent Prynne; I’m reading “Biting The Air”; it’s incredible how he’s broken context to get rid of most of the literal meaning to leave the raw combining of words to create the poetic effect; he’s got poetry not merely to use some techniques of music, but to work like music. That’s stunning, to me. There’s Drew Milne, who's poems are a sequence of spotlights on ideas, he highlights so much in so few words, he leaves it to the listener to assemble the connections. There are so many more good voices in the colleges and in the town from that tradition: Rob Mengham, Richard Burns, Tom Raworth, Peter Riley.
4.11.9 The shambolic English court system strikes again! It turns out I was ‘taken to court’ in July 2003, and I’ve only just found out about it. Talk about intense and incredible incompetence. No one phoned, no one emailed, nothing. They didn’t bother to use their preferred symbol of waste, the archaic and collapsing postal service. What a bunch of tossers. This rot has being going on for a century and all those idiot savants working in it just let it be. And that’s the best possible interpretation of their behaviour. uncivil law might be about to get another extension.

Bit of an odd few days. It started with being stood up. I’d booked the best restaurant in Lincolnshire (Harry’s Place). Turned up. She didn’t. I’ve received no excuse, no explanation, no apology. Not nice.

Over the last few days I’ve been putting together one of my thoroughly non–serious bits of music, and it’s gone rather well. It had a difficult start. The rhythm took time to gel.

Then, tonight, I went along to the CAMBRIDGE Series of modernist poetry readings. This has been fantastic. Unfortunately, my stomach decided to rumble. Loud. Think Hippopotamus loud. It was immensely embarrassing. I felt so uncomfortable I left during the first reading. My apologies to the poet.

4.9.8 I like the language in my poetry, but the subjects, especially in the short poems, seem to have become unidimensional. They say little, well. This has been bought to my attention by (my translation of) “We Drunken Here”. But to force additional themes into a poem is to create crap. I suspect I need to make my life—or at least my sources of inspiration—a little richer. This needs thought.
4.9.6 My damn stupid cat has taken to sleeping on the car engine. I drove off this morning, and fortunately heard the terrified miaows, so stopped; she’d made it to the battery and was cowering there. She’s stupid because she’s still going into the engine despite the experience; I’ll just have to check them before I drive for now.
4.7.11 Odd: lots of people are listening to Rock (Of The Early Eight) Is (400 downloads from many different addresses in the last 10 days). Even more odd: according to the logs, lots of people are trying to run perl scripts called email, contact, and so on. Er, what’s wrong with the instructions on the contact page? Others follow it. I don’t want to put perl (or here) scripts up; I’d have to hardcode an email address; I distrust clever spammers. Or maybe it’s spammers trying to use the non–existent scripts!
4.7.7 I dreamt a Water poem last night: André got Jeremy Prynne to give a spontaneous tutorial. The exercise: ‘catch an experience that caused you to feel pride for an event in history’. I wrote Cold War (remember, a theme is to get a poem written). Some of the poem flowed away as I awoke; I’ve fixed a couple of problems.

I’ve never met Prynne, he’s a myth to me. I dreamt he was my age, with thinning ginger hair. This is wrong.
4.6.21 Right, I’ve got the stock answer:

Creativity’s a cat, it never bloody cooperates unless it's hungry, then it yowls in the middle of the night and wakes you up.
4.6.19 Found this:

Since it’s called Mumbai, not Bombay,
shouldn’t “Bollywood” be “Mollywood”,
and Molly would what?

And some naughty computer talk:
fork (you)

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