What were they thinking? …

March 10, 2015

My work system was recently “upgraded” to Office 2013. Notice I highlighted “upgraded” because that is a very, very loose definition of what happened. My main focus here is Outlook.

There are some improvements, and some nice features that make it a little nicer to use, but in general it’s a major backward step from Outlook 2010, and there is one major, very important, and vitally usable feature that has gone missing in the name of “upgrading”. I’m referring to “unified search”. On a windows 7 machine, with office 2010, you can use the search function in the bottom of the start menu in Windows, and it will find all documents, including emails, that contain the key word you are searching for.

That has been removed, and now, with office 2013 on the machine, Windows 7 (and I believe 8.1 also but I’ll never use that) won’t find or show emails.

What the? …

That was probably the most heavily used function on my system. My documents and emails are my resource library to find information about our systems and customers, especially when looking for something like an issue that you think you may have dealt with before … now where was that email?

I am no fan of Microsoft, but am forced by corporate (at the moment) to use a PC, and have developed my workstyle to use this feature heavily. In fact I rely on it more than my own memory (which is pretty dodgy to say the least). So now, in the name of an “upgrade”, I’ve lost a major useful feature in my day to day work life. What a pain in the neck.

So while I was googling to try and find a way to fix this scenario (don’t mind the odd hack here and there), it came to mind that maybe we have done, or do, the same thing.

Have we taken away something you need, use or like in our software or controllers? I can think of a few things we’ve done that have upset customers, but I’d love to hear from the punter out there slogging away building systems exactly what it is that we’ve done that makes us look like Microsoft and their Outlook “upgrade”.

Throw them at me folks – warts and all.



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