Every Single Technology Thing That’s Frustrated Me This Week

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Feature image via Shutterstock.

There is a misconception that sometimes even I buy into: based on my job title here, my status as a nerd, etc., that technology behaves well around me at all times. That I’m good at all the technology. That I love technology for every single task and think technology is our salvation. While this week I did use Fiverr to get something transcribed, and that went really well for me, that’s about the only thing about technology this week that didn’t make me want to defenestrate my computer/anything I own with circuit boards. Here is a list of literally everything that frustrated me about technology this week, from apps to industry to games. Now excuse me while I turn off my computer for the entire weekend.

Scrivener Launched a Mobile App Right After I Switched

I used. Scrivener. For. Years. YEARS. And for YEARS they promised a syncable mobile app. And for YEARS I waited. I put so much effort into cram-jamming my creative workflow into Scrivener’s toolset. I wrote the first draft of my first novel in Scrivener. And I loved it. Mostly. But I couldn’t get past the cluttered look and the total lack of understanding that sometimes writing happens when you’re not perched in front of your computer. So I switched to Ulysses. And then, three months after that happens, SCRIVENER LAUNCHES THEIR MOBILE APP?!? Ugggghhhhh. Well at least Ulysses also launched WordPress support. This isn’t really a judgement call on either app, mostly just complete and total frustration at my timing.

Try Scrivener’s iOS app, it’s $20. Ulysses is about the same.


This Game Is So Hard

mars-rover-gamee-screenshot

Seriously, it is. NASA released this Mars Rover game and the highest I’ve been able to score is a 34, and that was beginners luck. Since then, mostly my score has been 7. WHY AM I SO BAD AT COMPUTER GAMES GOSH WHY CAN’T EVERYTHING JUST BE A TABLETOP GAME TO ME?? *tosses computer up in the air*

Mars Rover is free for iOS and Android, and you can also play on your computer.


Why Can’t I Easily Watch The Olympics Without A Television?

Remember London? How they had that bright pink app? Sure, you still needed to log in with a family member’s cable subscription, but at least it didn’t seem so overwhelming and at least it was all in one place. But the Rio App, while it seems great, only has results and no options for watching. Why are people making spreadsheets to figure out what to watch? JUST EMAIL ME WHEN THE USWNT IS PLAYING OKAY WITH LIKE A LINK TO A LIVESTREAM OF THE GAME? (Oh, um. Never mind. Laura Mandanas did that for all of us.)

The closest thing I can find to easy is SlingTV, which is internet television. There’s a 7 day free trial, so if you’re feeling one event in particular, you can totally grab a free trial and then cancel. However. $20 per month will get you a package with ESPN and a $25 per month package will get you the one with NBC. So ugggghhhhhh maybe it’s worth it to pay for a month to watch the Olympics without having to cobble together a plan involving someone’s Xfinity log-in and maybe a sports bar. GOSH WHY IS EVERYTHING FRUSTRATING? *purposefully pours tea on my computer*

Also if that’s not frustrating enough, speaking of television, Comcast is arguing that they should be able to charge customers to not sell their data.


This Headline Is Wildly Overstating Success

Screen Shot 2016-08-04 at 8.18.34 PM

Wouldn’t it be nice if we actually lived in a world where this headline was at all accurate? WELL WE DON’T. It’s true that Apple has pretty much fixed the pay gap between men and women working for their company, but women made 99.6 cents to the dollar. The bigger issue is that somehow, in 2016, Apple’s workforce is still only 32% female and their leadership team and their executives are actually whiter than before. Here is a more accurate headline about Apple’s current numbers:

Screen Shot 2016-08-04 at 8.22.27 PM


I Will Never Have a Vive And That Is Seriously Impacting My Ability To Remain On the Cutting Edge

Here’s the reality of writing about technology on the budget of a writer: I can’t cover hardware and I can’t review cutting edge new things. And that’s because I can’t afford to pay for them. And not a day goes by that I don’t think about how I wish I could be writing more in-depth pieces about using virtual reality as a queer woman. I wish desperately that I could write you all pieces like this about products like these:

https://vimeo.com/176061417

The barrier for entry is so high sometimes, and I feel like all the tech vloggers are dudes. Do you know how much I want to be the person that can tell all y’all queers about the progress and drawbacks of all the new ish? Also this MetaWorld thing looks really cool and it would mean I could hang out with all of us who can’t make it to A-Camp 7.5 this Fall


There Are No Good Calendar Apps That Work For Me Right now

Do you know what I wanted to do this week? My fiancée has been asking me to find her a replacement for Sunrise since it shuttered earlier this year. I wanted to write you a post about Calendar apps to replace it. And do you know why I haven’t? BECAUSE I HATE ALL OF THEM! I haven’t found one single calendar app that I can comfortably recommend to the queer internet OR my fiancée because I use it for two seconds, declare it dead to me and uninstall it. Cal is the closest thing to good, and it’s mobile only. Google Calendar’s app is pretty frickin’ sweet, but I wish there was a desktop version I’m sure the calendar software that costs $50 is awesome, but see above frustrating thing. You know what I’ve done instead? For most of 2016, I’ve been using a Passion Planner. That’s a paper planner, y’all. I’ve taken inspiration from Studyblr and I’ve gotten myself a set of 20 candy-color Staedtler markers and I’ve not looked back. Sometimes I am not the tech person. This is one of those times.

What technology are you uggggghing over this week?

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A.E. Osworth is part-time Faculty at The New School, where they teach undergraduates the art of digital storytelling. Their novel, We Are Watching Eliza Bright, about a game developer dealing with harassment (and narrated collectively by a fictional subreddit), is forthcoming from Grand Central Publishing (April 2021) and is available for pre-order now. They have an eight-year freelancing career and you can find their work on Autostraddle (where they used to be the Geekery Editor), Guernica, Quartz, Electric Lit, Paper Darts, Mashable, and drDoctor, among others.

A.E. has written 543 articles for us.

19 Comments

  1. Okay, YES about the Google calendar thing. I use my Google calendar for lots of things – although last year I switched to paper for the school year because I was teaching so many different classes with different to-do-lists that I needed something more *me* – and the app on my phone (Android) is so sleek and perfect, and the web version is…not. Wtf, Google.

  2. I am GAAAHHH over the fact that people can make apps for iOS + Mac + Windows + Android, but people can’t seem to make a matching Linux app. C’mon! Well, I guess they’re using LLVM but… Gosh darnit, I can’t afford a new Mac!

    Also upgrading Linux this week has been sad. I don’t have enough internets.

  3. I’m frustrated with the fact that my tracfone (or is that trashfone?) stopped working because they discontinued service to my measly little 2G android phone without so much as a warning text that service would be discontinued! Just pulled out my phone today to use it, and POOF! *no service*. I had to log into my tracfone account to find out what happened. GRRRRRRR!!!

  4. NBCOlympics.com has a link under “Schedule” where you can see what’s currently streaming and upcoming!

    However, if you’re on the West Coast they geoblock the popular livestreams until they’ve aired in primetime. Which doesn’t matter for most of the sports I care about but I wanted to watch beach volleyball for reasons tonight…

  5. I don’t know if this helps, but the Germans have up to six parallel live streams to cover absolutely everything during the olympics.
    You do need a VPN to circumnavigate the geoblocking, though, but that’s super simple.
    Here are the links:
    http://rio.zdf.de/live/
    http://rio.sportschau.de/rio2016/live/index.html
    There are two channels that alternate days for the olympic programming, ARD and ZDF, so you might have to check with the other link if one doesn’t show a schedule for the day. They also offer everything in browser format, for smart TVs and have simple apps that stream absolutely everything.
    Germans are paying about 20 Euros for a mandatory, entirely nonsenical public broadcast fee, every month, for as long as we live, and this is part of how they put it to use.It’s entirely for free and there oughtn’t even to be any commercials on the streams or sites.
    Do consider the time zone differences when perusing the schedules (we’re six hours ahead of the Eastern seaboard), though.
    Also, while it’s good and easy it’s obviously going to be in German, so, if this bothers you too much, maybe check with the Aussies or Brits if their public programming channels aren’t going to be a bit more forthcoming, than the US ones.
    I’m super relieved that I don’t have to set up my TV and can just airplay over the ipad, as per the usual.

  6. I’m ughhhing over the unreliable wi-fi on the Megabus. I wanted to try and get something done on the bus to see my girlfriend last Friday night. My (new) phone seemed like it was connected to the wi-fi, but it wasn’t. And my computer wouldn’t even connect to it. Thank gods for Mario Kart DS. :D

    Also, Ali, I totally get it about the calendar situation. I used Sunrise both on my computer and my phone and was heartbroken when they said they were going to shut it down. My girlfriend suggested I use Fantastical 2 for iOS, and although it’s $5, it’s worth it. It’s easy for me to see both of our calendars and put new events in, all of that. And I also use a paper planner :)

  7. I’m currently obsessed with Virtual Reality so I’m going to second your frustration that it’s not accessible to masses (yet!). I just want everyone to have VR so we can all be VR friends. MetaWorld looks ace. I got to use the Vive and it is probably the most exciting technological thing I have done ever in my life. The couch where I was crashing had a Vive because my friend just started a VR renting business, so I guess my major frustration is that now that I have my own apartment I have lost access to the virtual world (for the time being).

  8. So at work I’m using this ancient Lenovo Thinkpad with like…maybe 4 gigs of RAM but probably more like 2, and it’s running Windows 7, and somehow my boss doesn’t realize that the thing is not functional enough to handle doing ANYTHING to an Excel file with upwards of 300000 data points, let alone the kind of analysis I need to do.

    THIS IS A TECH COMPANY AND YET NOBODY UNDERSTANDS WHY MY COMPUTER KEEPS CRASHING WHEN I ASK EXCEL TO FIND THE AVERAGE OF 300000 VALUES.

    (also in my free time I’m trying to teach myself to write iOS apps and Swift is kicking my ass.)

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