The Boston Diaries

The ongoing saga of a programmer who doesn't live in Boston, nor does he even like Boston, but yet named his weblog/journal “The Boston Diaries.”

Go figure.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

For want of a scan my sanity was lost

I want to scan a picture.

There's a combination printer/scanner not six feet away from my computer.

I open the “printer utility” and select “scan.”

“I am sorry,” said the “printer utility.” “But the driver version of your software is older than twenty minutes. Please exit and try upgrading your software, you obsolete bag of water. Have a nice day.”

Fine.

Navigate to the manufacturer's web page, type in the model number on the front of the printer, and get back a list of eight possible printers.

Really? Eight different models of this one particular model? Sigh.

I start examining the printer for a more specific model number. Of course it's on the bottom. In a 6pt font. Printed in dark grey on a medium black background.

Backwards.

Push the dark thoughts away. They won't help.

Select the actual model.

Boggle at the 200MB download for a “printer driver.” Wait several minutes while it downloads. Open the download.

“Do you really really REALLY want to run something you downloaded from the Internet equivalent of an unmarked conversion van in Compton?” asked my computer.

“What choice do I have?” I answered, selecting “No, but you're going to do this anyway, aren't you?” button.

“It's open—are you really really REALLY sure you want to run this from the Internet equivalent of a Mexican pharmacy?”

“What did I tell you?” I answer, selecting the “Okay, but don't say I didn't warn you, sucka!” button.

I am instantly blinded by the hot fuchsia on orange text welcoming me to the latest and greatest version of the “driver.” Unfortunately, before I can hit anything, a message pops up: “I am sorry, but this driver installation is twenty-two minutes old and therefore, completely and utterly obsolete. Please exit and try upgrading your software, you decrepit excuse for a carbon-based life form. Have a wonderful day.”

I re-navigate to the manufacturer's web page, only to be informed, “You really expect me to serve up this page to that obsolete webbrowser? It, like, hasn't been updated at all today,” and promply returns a 489 WEB BROWSER OLDER THAN TWENTY MINUTES I'M REFUSING SERVICE error code.

I fake the user agent string and try again.

“You think faking the user agent is going to work?” 489 WEB BROWSER OLDER THAN TWENTY MINUTES I'M REFUSING SERVICE error code.

I spend the next hour downloading the latest web browser.

“Thank you. That's better. Now you can download your printer driver.”

“Ahah! Not so fast!” I said, refreshing the page.

“You really expect me to serve up this page to that obsolete webbrowser? It's, like, sixty-two minutes old.” 489 WEB BROWSER OLDER THAN TWENTY MINUTES I'M REFUSING SERVICE error code.

“Ha ha! Just kidding! Here's the latest version of the driver for you to download.”

Twenty minutes later, I open the download.

“Do you really really REALLY want to run something you downloaded from the Internet equivalent of the Red Light District in Shanghai?” asked my computer.

“It's either run this, or I install Windows 8,” I said, hitting the ”Run this, or I install Windows 8” button.

I am instantly blinded by the animated hot fuchsia on nuclear orange text welcoming me to the latest and greatest version of the “driver.” I spend the next few minutes carefully navigating my way through the installation procedure, trying to avoid the “value added” software the manufacturer so carefully thoughtlessly maliciously included with the “driver.” I scan through the “Terms of Service” and am thankful that I do not have, nor do I plan on having, any kids (Ha! Thought you could get me on that one, didn't you?) It's only on the penultimate step where I see that, should I attempt to scan a document, I could use the operating system installed software to scan, but really, who would want that?

Really?

I just wasted over an hour when a preinstalled program that comes with the operating system, would work just as well?

Sometimes, I despise modern software.


THIS is still a keyboard

Sigh.

It just really isn't my day.

I came across the USB Typewriter (link via Hacker News) and I was planning on this nice post where I talk about the USB keyboard and this image I took twenty-four years (ouch) ago:

[All I needed was a Fresnel lens over the monitor and this could have come right from the set of “Brazil”]

and how I still have the typewriter in question, only to find out I blogged about the USB Typewriter 3½ years ago (via Hacker News no less!).

On the plus side, it appears they're now selling conversion kits, but sadly, my typewriter (a Smith-Corona SkyRiter) is not compatible with the kit.

Sob.

Obligatory Picture

[It's the most wonderful time of the year!]

Obligatory Links

Obligatory Miscellaneous

You have my permission to link freely to any entry here. Go ahead, I won't bite. I promise.

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