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Gmail's New Compose

Google is doing it again! They're phasing out a feature-filled interface for a minimalist devoid-of-all-features screen, this time for composing messages in email. So now I have to navigate sub-menus to format my text, first click on the recipient email to change my own sender email, and view the compose window in a fraction of the screen space making it all the more difficult to compose large messages. I understand this might be useful for those who want the compose window to load fast, and use it just to send quick messages, but what if you want to take your time to write a newsletter or invitation or something that requires the additional formatting or options, then this is just making it worse!

You'd think they could at least leave an option for the old/advanced compose screen and let users choose which to use, but no, they're phasing it out for everyone! I'm honestly, for the first time since I started using Gmail many years ago, considering switching to a different email provider. It was OK when they completely ignored my usability feedback on YT and rolled in the new featureless design, but Gmail is an application I both need and use frequently. But it's free, so I shouldn't complain, right? Right. There's no easy way to complain to Google anyway, they've made sure of that, so I should just switch service without letting them know. Here's a picture of the old screen, with elements that are removed (red) and elements that will be harder to access (orange) in the new one highlighted. I highlighted the message area too because the new window has a tiny message area. It's totally useless.

Usability Missing On New Gmail Compose Interface

Shit like this makes me want to start my own email service. I'd run it non-profit. I'd take peoples feedback into consideration. I'd fund the service with user-based donations. Why doesn't a service like that exist already?? I'm not alone in my opinion either, looking around I see that 74% of LA Times readers agree. I hope Google actually listens this time around.

A Day Is Over

So I'm going undercover.

I Got Wrack

As the Doom fan that I am, I knew I had to buy this game as soon as I stumbled upon it. So I did, expecting greatness, looking forward to reliving my nostalgic moments with the game. It's still a game under development, and in buying the game I get access to early releases from this point onward. The download was quick, just 2-300MB in size, and here's what the game looks like:

Wrack Intro Screen

If you want more media just visit the site above. ;) First impressions of the game? Eh... not that great. It's still a development version so I'm not complaining, yet, but my first venture through the first level felt... boring. The enemies seemed flat and cartoony, not as sinister as they did in Doom, the environment both simple and atmospheric but at the same time a bit generic. The first level layout wasn't easily navigable, the one weapon ran out of ammo quickly, and shooting foes wasn't a very rewarding task in the first place since they just 'poofed' away when they died and just flared a bit when you hit them. No advanced or gritty death animations here. I also had to disable shadows and some other dynamic effect to make the game quit lagging on my computer, but that's entirely my fault since the computer I currently run isn't made for gaming at all.

So, those were my first impressions. I will play the game again. I will give the editor a try (that in particular seems like a great feature), and I will follow the development progress because I have, after all, not played very much and I'm probably missing out on a lot of greatness. Not to mention the fact that the screen above definitely promises a much brighter and entertaining future of this game. It will be fun seeing how it turns out! Then there's the fact that Bobby Prince made the soundtrack for this game (same guy that made the soundtrack for Doom). Not sure how many games he's made soundtracks for, but it's got to be special. Right? If you're a fan of Doom or FPS's in general, I'm not trying to dissuade you from buying this game. By all means, get it! Quick! Who knows when the price will rise tenfold or the benefits of buying the game in its early stages will no longer be beneficial. If you buy the game, they they'll also have more funds to throw into development, resulting an even better end-project. It's a win win siltation. I'll keep you posted.

Late Again

I went to bed around 2 yesterday, after an intense session of workshop revising that I should probably have started with earlier. Late. Damn. It's such a pointless lateness too in that I could have attempted the task at many other occasions. I should get to the root of my procrastinative tendencies and get rid of them, quick, cause they are interfering with my future! ARGH. Ok I'm done ranting, today is a good day. Have a good day! And if you have something that needs doing, do like Nike tells you: just do it.


Can't wait for this album to come out. :)

Week 12 - The Watery Week

So our water vanished, but you already know about that. It turns out the water froze in some pipes somewhere and there was a big leak. They fixed it provisionally, but it broke again, and they fixed it again. Tomorrow they'll start fixing the leak for real, and analyzing the water to see if it's drinkable or toxic. It has been smelling a bit odd and at times not looking as transparent as it usually does, so it probably isn't. They've been advising people through Internet and Radio to boil all water before drinking, and that we have. Our neighbor hadn't tuned in to either informational source before we told him, so I guess we'll know if the water was drinkable or not once he gets better (j/k, he's OK). What else? I fetched some inspiration from Doom & Pacman and made this. Also studies.

Is it just me or do I have less time to write stuff lately? Here's last week.

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