When I was younger I was the IT person in the family. If something ever went wrong with our PC (and when didn’t it?) I was the one that had to go on and figure out the problem. More often than not I just formatted the hard drive and started over. That only worked for a few months before something would bog down the whole thing all over again. For this reason I hate using Windows based products. They just annoy the crap out of me. When you’ve been burned a couple times by something you grow tired of dealing with it.
About six years ago I made the [very expensive] jump to Apple with the purchase of a shiny new 15″ Mac Book Pro. When I opened the box I was immediately smitten. It was so new and fancy and the most expensive single item I’d ever bought myself. Yes, I had never paid more at one time for any one item than this computer and that was only six years ago. What can I say?
I hadn’t used an Apple computer since middle school so it took some practice to get the key strokes down and to figure out where everything was hiding. In the six years I’ve had it I haven’t installed a whole lot, it’s used mostly for web stuff and photo editing, but it has gotten slower over time. The last operating system upgrade I did was Snow Leopard. When Lion came out I didn’t see any particular reason to jump on board because everything was working just fine. This past week when Mountain Lion was released I figured, what the hell, and paid my $20 to move to the latest OS. I can’t be 100% sure but I’m 99.99999% positive that was a big mistake. What was a relatively smooth running machine has turned into a slow, twitchy, sometimes completely frozen object of annoyance. The most noticeable change for the worse is the fact that I can’t get Wi-Fi connectivity, especially if the computer has gone to sleep for any period of time. Greg has no problem connecting to the network but no matter what settings he changes and no matter how many times I play with the, very minimal, settings on my end nothing happens. The other annoying thing that occurs when I do happen to get online, but also sometimes unrelated to the internet, is that the entire system freezes and the fun little spinning beach ball shows up. Sometimes it clears itself quickly and things are moving again but in the time since I’ve “upgraded” to Mountain Lion I’ve had to do a hard shut down seven times. Seven. Do you know how many hard shut downs I used to do before this upgrade? Maybe seven IN A YEAR. And it probably wasn’t even that much.
Unlike what Greg will tell you I am not a hard core Steve Jobs/Apple nut. I like Apple products because they’re easy to use and don’t piss me off like Windows (I truly hate Windows, I am not being facetious), and I’ll gladly recommend them to anyone who has tired of fighting with Windows, but I don’t think they’re without flaws or room for improvement.
While searching through the support site on Apple.com I’ve come across others who are having the same problems as me and they have much newer computers, so I know it can’t be completely due to the age of my machine. There are a lot of suggestions of things to try that “really work!” and then a few minutes later a post saying “oops, nevermind, it’s still doing it.” which is disheartening. Reading through their suggestions I’m not even sure I understand what they’re talking about anyway. For once I’m at a complete loss as to what to do. I’m in the weeds and can’t find my way out. I’m sure Apple has their people on it, they’re looking for a fix for this bug, but what happens if they don’t? Sometimes I really dislike the fact that I’ve become so reliant on technology, I almost envy the Amish and their restrictions on its use. And then I look at my really nifty iPhone and my slightly outdated Mac Book Pro and can’t imagine my life without them.