@CherryStraw Very true. I do remember and also have been painfully aware of the flashback that occurs when saying anything remotely negative about Apple. It drives me nuts, particularly for the fact that regardless what Apple produces, sells, and eventually fosters as an outward appearance, it is still a huge multinational corporation now. And corporations are in business for profit, not for touchy-feely friendship (although fostering an image of such really does help the bottom line profit wise).
I haven't had too much experience with experience outside of Apple's Community Support, and what little I have had has only been this past year or two. Mostly on Reddit and another site I've forgotten. Aside from one or two somewhat “sniffy” responses, the majority have been in agreement to my complaints. All of which haven't changed in their subject all that much these past two years.
What I have found over the past five years is that when using the Apple Community, you can forget saying anything remotely derogatory about the company itself, its business practices, and sometimes the wording used when explaining a problem. Apple takes a brute force hard line against allowing such things, as it guards its brand like a pit bull. In other words, it censors with a capital “C” and if the question is valuable enough, they will even strip it of all complaints towards the company, leaving only the question or concern giving the random reader the illusion that the OP wrote it that way.
Apple spent a lot of money and time building or rebuilding that lovey-dovey, “we're all just friends here”, atmosphere around their name some twenty years ago. It wasn't too difficult being that Apple always had that going for them when Steve Jobs was originally at the helm. But they jettisoned him, only to have to beg him to come back after the board trashed the company the way it did.
And during those years while Jobs was at the helm once more, the company flourished because he reinstated and firmly believed in the original premise of, “it just works”. But now he is gone and won't be coming back—at least by any normal means. The company is massive, and now acts pretty much like any other company of it's size YET, it recognizes and continues to foster that “Apple aura”, even though it isn't nearly as true as the years have passed on.
That is probably why within the Apple Community forum's we don't see the kind of honest commentary that we might see elsewhere. I've also stopped trying to find answers there, particularly for those issues that are long-standing and have been complained about for years. Yet no response or promises of a fix from Apple appears. As for any suggestions to correct an issue, I have found that most often those suggestions are no better than the kind you get from your internet provider when the service takes a nose dive.
“Did you restart your computer,
Did you unplug your modem and plug it back in,
Did you wash your hands after blowing your nose,
Did you make certain the Moon was in Capricorn before trying any of the above?”
As for suggestions from the minions in the Apple Community Support forum is a crap shoot. My not being so technically oriented when it comes to computers of any kind, it is hard to parse some of the techeese that gets thrown at me. Especially when it is presented in a way that assumes I actually know what I'm doing, lol.
Anywho. It does sadden me, because I still feel that the system is a brilliant one and always had been. Nothing is without fault, and those who criticize it as if it should be perfect are missing that point. No system runs perfectly, not as long as humans lie at the bottom of all that coding. There comes a time when one must weigh the good against the bad and decide with that in mind. For me, the issue of leaving Apple for something else is still slightly out of balance favoring Apple, but not by much these days. And the keywords in that sentence are “for me”. It could be very different for someone else based on their experience, their length of time with Apple, and whether they are more or less computer-literate than your average user.
When Apple switched to Unix in 2000, it made it that much more accessible to those who wanted to get beneath the hood of the GUI and tinker about the way you might expect with a PC. That and the implementation of Services, Scripts, and Automator with the OS itself for those of us much less so. Of course, I had given those only cursory investigation, but in those times I had I found them very useful and capable. I still use those scripts today, as they appear right in the general GUI and function just as readily as any of the other Finder functions you would expect to use.
But this is where I sit today. Although, I've finally given to testing Strawberry this very week, the idea of having to leave the Apple ecosystem is frightening and angers me. Once again, out of corporate greed and Apple's practice of taking a heavy hand at those who try to call them out for contradictory practices, Apple is becoming no different from Microsoft or any other multinational. And that pisses me off to no end. The fact that Tim Cook is using the longstanding reputation that Apple was built upon to foster and grow as a company. Even though in practice, Apple is nothing at all like it was after Jobs brought it back from the brink of death. And that is sickening, just from the sheer deception and dishonesty of it all. Yet here we are. Millions of Apple users who have this buddy buddy like feeling of camaraderie towards the company fail to recognize something so basic, so fundamental. That fact is that relationship is a deceptive one, because in truth it all comes down to money and power. That friendship only exists if there is money involved, or hopes for it to be involved. In the end, when the chips are down, Apple is going to do whatever it needs to keep it profitable. You cannot trust anyone, not a company or an individual whose lowest common denominator in life and for all their decision-making comes down to profit, money, power, blah blah. To think otherwise either suggests naïveté or having fallen victim to the years of social programming that instill within us the belief that capitalism is as important as democracy itself. In fact, the two are one and the same for many of us now, and that is sad.
But hey, Apple is not the only major corporation doing that these days. Many of the long-standing companies, and I mean the very long-standing companies, are all doing the same. They're cheapening the production practices of their products, substituting and using inferior materials, weakening their quality control standards, etc. This seems to be the way of corporate practices, beginning roughly within the past ten years. Which of course points to a much larger issue we all should be concerned with, which is the darker side of capitalism.
The vast majority of westerners, or at least Americans, have been programmed to think of capitalism as this infinitely beneficial economic system that can do no wrong. That would indeed be nice if it were true, however there are no such animals in existence in the physical world. All things have their cycles, their ups, their zenith, and then their downward spiral and eventual death. In this case, we've moved into a form of capitalism that is anything but product and service based, at least in the way most would think of it. Our economy is no longer supportive or encouraging towards entrepreneurship. Yes, we are told that it is and always has been and always will be, but when you look at what has changed in government these past forty or so years you see a different picture. Instead, our laws, regulations, tax system etc., are and have been slowly skewed increasingly toward the very top of the income brackets, towards the big and massive corporations owned and managed by those in those brackets and so on.
Now it is more about capital investments, shifting and pulling money about, buying companies not for their product emphasis, but to extract more wealth by either laying off everyone, selling off the hard goods and patents, and profiting on that. That would only be the tip of the iceberg. Then there is big money in making wealth from money itself. If anyone was cognizant as an adult or thereabouts about 15 to 20 years ago when the signs of an impending financial implosion was to occur (which actually did) they would recognize it for what it was. That was a text book case of over deregulation, allowing financial services to cross over into formerly hands off territory, etc., and eventually it all fell apart. And as a reason, and excuse for those too simple or too bigoted to know better, It killed me to hear people accept the excuse that it was the faul of all the minorities who were taking out loans they couldn't afford... WTF? As if you could just walk into any financial institution, take a loan of your liking off the shelf, bring it to the register and then walk out with it. It really baffles me that people couldn't use their brains with this.
When I studied business in school I was taught that it was the finanical institutions themselves who were responsible and entrusted with safe guarding with a heavy hand the monies entrusted to them. Instead by the early 2000s shortly after deregulations were being enacted, they were giving it all away, because they knew they were going to sell off those loans within a months time anyway so let someone else deal with collecting on them. Hell, I was offered five times more than I needed for a mortgage, no money down, and no mortgage loan costs by HSBC. When I told the loan officer I was putting half down, and I didn't need, nor could afford a loan of that size she gaped at me. Telling me she hadn't had anyone put any money down, let alone half! Everyone was rolling all of those things into the loans themselves!
Anyway, I've digressed. But here we are, on the brink of some oncoming societal melt-down of a sort and all I care about right now is how I can get this damn imac working worth its cost. And so far, I am indeed very impressed with Strawberry. I only hope that it can grow in its support, particularly with those of us using Apple products.