Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Name Change - and a Story!

The truth is, I had contemplated a name change for the blog for some time, but now is the right time (see more below).  The new name might look familiar to some of you, as it was the working title of a comprehensive book on all forms of gambling I wrote and tried to publish back in the nineties.  It was sort of an “idiot’s guide” to both the games of skill and the games of chance, and while well-written (my agent said so), it appeared that the world wasn’t ready for such a book.  Then, a year later, “The Idiot’s Guide to Gambling” hit the shelves, and it was apparent that world was ready for such a book, just not from me.

The story behind the “Wanna Bet?” comes from fourth grade.  There was this kid (we’ll call him Willie for now) who was always challenging anything anybody said.  If you said, “The Beatles are the first band to ever have five #1 hits in a row,” he’d sneer and say,

“Oh yeah?  Wanna bet?”

And you’d say sure and you’d bet a nickel and then you’d go look it up (this is before the Internet, kids…we had these things called libraries…kinda fun…ask your parents), and then Willie would get all huffy and say, “Well, double or nothing…I bet you the sky is blue, wanna bet?…” or some other nonsense crap that everyone knew was true like “I’ll bet you two and two is four, huh, wanna bet?” and the whole point is that Willie was always wrong and NEVER paid off, ever.

So the “wanna bet?” thing hung with me all through childhood and into adulthood (last month or so) and even today I get jumpy when I hear someone start out “Oh yeah…?” although nowadays they’re most likely to say, “Oh yeah, well f**k you!” which isn’t really all that different.

Now, I told you that story to tell you this one.  Obviously, I hate it when people tell you they’re right, insist that they’re right, and then, when you politely point out they’re full of it, they never pay off (financially or in other ways that would be somewhat satisfying to your soul).  Take AVAST, the “free” anti-virus software.  Please.

I’ve been using AVAST for almost 6 years now.  I like the program, especially the free part.  It does what it’s supposed to, is frequently updated with the latest threats, and…no problems, really.  I will continue to use it, but…a recent issue makes my blood boil.  It involves the newest release, version 7.something.

The long story short is that there’s a bug between AVAST and MS Outlook – it checks my email fine, but it won’t “let go” causing you to close the program with the ol’ CTRL-ALT-DEL (which brings up Task Manager where you close it un-automatically) and then you can re-open Outlook and use it normally.  Not a biggie (although every time new mail comes in it happens again, lather, rinse, repeat).  Still, I brought it to their attention at Customer Support.

Their first response (from Level 2, whatever that is), 3 days later, suggested that I make certain that I had the latest release of the program.  Wha?????  That WAS the problem.  So, I went to the forums to see if this was an isolated problem and no, it isn’t.  Several users reported similar hangs using Outlook, so in my response I told Customer Service this fact, and that maybe this is something that Level THREE might be interested in.  Their response (another 3 days) suggested this:
·       Uninstall the software
·       Clear cookies
·       Turn off firewall
·       Reinstall new software (which, in a bit of irony, he sent me a link to version 6, which didn’t go to version six as I hoped, but version 7…the buggy one).
Now, I did this knowing full well what was going to happen, and when it did, I emailed Customer Support (after getting stuck and doing the CTRL-ALT-DEL thing) and DEMANDED that they ACKNOWLEDGE that they in fact, do indeed, yes, no question about it, have a bug.

Three days later, they did so, kinda.  Bad news:  they’re not going to fix it until the NEXT update, which will be they have no idea when. 

So it’s on to Filehippo to see if I can find a copy of version 6.  I’m sure I’ll find one, and have
the last laugh on AVAST.  And I’m sure I won’t have any more problems with their Customer Support staff.

Wanna Bet?

Oh yeah, I have a new book coming out shortly, about Blackjack, not poker, hence the name change.

1 comment:

  1. Insult to Injury Dept: I downloaded version 6...or what I thought was version 6, from FileHippo. When I ran the file, it said "version 7." Undaunted, I downloaded an EARLIER THAN THAT version...and when it executed, it automatically knew there was a newer version and went and got that, so...I'm stuck with sucky version 7.