Day: August 24, 2020

An Unholy Alliance

It’s the beginning of the academic semester, and you know what that means–treble the traffic, empty shelves at the market, v e r y s l o w i n t e r n e t, and a veritable avalanche of documents.

The human female’s workplace is digitally buried under them.  There are documents created in Word, text files, images, Excel files, and documents originating from WordPerfect, that archaic yet powerful, functional, and easy to use linguasaur that the human female uses.  There are emails, texts, and scans from the copier.  Or there would be if the copier were still capable of scanning and sending a file, which it isn’t because, you know,  the phones are still out.

The common currency among all of these document types, the lingua franca, that which makes all things possible, is the pdf.  Most mortals believe that that stands for Portable Document Format, when it truth it means Pretty Darned Fantastic. Everyone can read them, they play well with printers (usualy) and are all-around fantastic to work with if one has a good, old version of bought-and-paid-for Adobe Acrobat.

However, unbeknownst to anyone, some while ago, seeking to expand my mischief to an ever-larger section of the populace, I entered into an agreement with Adobe and fed them a few of my clever ideas.

Which is why, therefore, one evening last week the human female was greeted by a cheery little pop-up on her screen. “An update to Acrobat is available. Install?” She raised an eyebrow at the human male who, engrossed in his own cyberworld, nodded. Moments later, the helpful pop-up informed the female that she was installing her brand-new-shiny version of Adobe Creative Cloud.

Ehehehe! By Thor’s over-inflated ego, this is one of my better inventions! No longer do users own their software, they merely rent it. Adobe and I get paid every year, and users are forced to choose/use/love/ a whole suite of pushy features. Truly, the new Adobe (A Diabolical, Obstreperous, Bundle of Excrement) is a sleek, black beauty.

So now the human female is “enjoying” her free 7-day trial, after which she will be forced to PAY for a program with the following bugs endearing new quirks:

–Gone is click-to-open. It’s been helpfully replaced by “click, select from a drop-down menu, click ‘open with Adobe Acrobat.'”

–Documents close for no reason, whether they are clicked, double clicked, or opened. They simply go “poof!” It’s funniest if this happens whenever “save” is clicked–or if the cursor even hovers over it!

–Documents with fillable fields are super-easy to make. And so fast! Just because many of the filled out forms get saved and sent with content that shows in a thumbnail but which is totally invisible in the saved or opened document is no reason to get cranky.

–The whole fillable-field feature gives me a happy, because I’ve seen to it that similar documents with fillable fields cannot be combined into a single pdf. Well, that’s not strictly true. One can combine them, but to save time, I’ve trained the software to assume that if you wanted the contents of a field to be such-and-so on the first page, you must wanted it in the same field on every page. The look on the human female’s face the first time she realized she had twenty pages of the same one-page form was priceless.

Human female, if you want collections of documents with fillables, you will now be forced to combine them into a portfolio, a work you have to say with your nose in the air, in a haughty tone of voice. (Drawing out the “o” is a nice effect.)

Oh, and by the way? Make sure you like how the pages are arranged in that portfooooolio, because you are never going to be able rearrange them.

–When one wants to make an Excel file into a pdf, if any changes have been made, Acrobat is now unable to comply at once. Instead, a new, second Excel file is created and must be saved first, ensuring that document directories fill up twice as fast.

The human female is learning to work her way around my new textual roadblocks, but I have a store of mischiefs ready to go, and I can drop a new one in at any time. On Friday, I tossed up the inscrutable error message “this document cannot be saved because a number is out of bounds,” and today when she was trying to send a newly-created file to coworkers, I gave her this:

Oh, and she has four more days of this fantastic functionality before she has to pay

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