So Microsoft announced that MS Paint was going to go the way of Outlook Express — i.e. die because they just aren’t interested in maintaining the old horse anymore, and it’s to the glue factory it will go.
Then, 24 hours later, after a storm of protest from longtime Paint users, Microsoft backtracked and said that Paint wasn’t going to disappear completely; it would just not be included in future releases of their operating software — it would have to be downloaded as a separate operation.
What bullshit is this? I’ve written before that Microsoft’s corporate strategy team, if they have one, should get a kick in the teeth for fucking over longtime customers just at the behest of Engineering who, despite Dilbert’s efforts, should never, ever be allowed to set policy. And product longevity is precisely what should be decided by Marketing, not by Engineering or Production, because the people most affected will be customers — and despite Dilbert, again, Engineering doesn’t understand customers.
I’ll spell it out for Microsoft (and I won’t need SpellCheck either): you guys are a bunch of fucking idiots.
There are millions of software users who don’t need sophisticated software to address their everyday needs. This is true whether it’s word processing (people who are only interested in writing letters, papers or novels), doing basic budget preparation (households and small businesses) correspondence (people writing simple letters or memos to a few people), and basic photo / picture editing (family photos, articles, blogs) . In other words, LetterPerfect 1.0, Lotus 1-2-3 v.3, Outlook Express… and Paint. In Microsoft parlance, it’s not the bloated juggernaut known as MS Office, it’s the MS Works crowd. And just to repeat the original thought: there are millions and millions of such people and I, one of the earliest Microsoft PC customers, am one of them.
I fucking hate Outlook, Office and (just to be fair) Adobe Photoshop. They’re all too much for my needs, and I’m sick of having to learn to go through a multi-step process just to be able to do something that used to be a one-click operation.
My only comfort is that I’m no longer young, and my time to have to deal with all this nonsense is shrinking. But it gives me no comfort whatsoever to think that Microsoft believes that this is the reason not to worry about me — that I and my kind are a shrinking market, which gives them the right to fuck us, and ignore us.