Web project part deux

If you have been following the saga, I have been working on a new, groovy and cool web community for my products.  Something pretty simple to start to build a community of practice.

I have complained in the past about the contractor we are using, who seems to do about 1/2 what I ask for, and then struggles with the big functionality components.  

I provided mockups, detailed use cases, “stories” for the key functions.  I have provided pixel perfect graphics and expansions on what I want, scratch that, NEED this community to look like and behave like.

Today, I got dressed down by our marcom person.  I am being too picky, and that these are merely stylistic issues.  Essentially that I need to back off on what I want.

I am not asking for miracles. I am not asking for Google like maturity. However I do know what I want, and I know how I want it to look. So, if I bitch that the graphic used for a button gets blurry because it doesn’t scale well when you increase the screen “magnification” it fucking matters to me. If I say that I don’t want text in the menu bars to have a shadow effect, it means I don’t want text in the menubar to have shadowing effects.

Am I being too demanding? I am the customer for once, and I expect it to be to my satisfaction. (of course, there is one HUGE piece of functionality that is almost 2 weeks late, without which, I can’t launch on 11/26) Grrrrrr.

Bad UI of the week: VMWare’s “my.vmware.com”

Continuing on the theme of bad UI, this week’s hall of shame goes to VMWare.  Sad, because they used to “get it”, or so it seemed to me.


I have long been a VMWare user.  I have (purchased) a license for Workstation and Fusion, the desktop products for virtualization on the PC and Mac platforms respectively.  On the PC Side, I use Workstation to segment software that seems invasive (Sales Logix, I am looking at you) from my main install.  On the Mac it is to use the (dwindling) PC only apps that I can’t live without.

The situation:

Two weeks ago, I took the plunge and upgraded to Mountain Lion (OS-X 10.8), and my version of Fusion wasn’t supported.  Off to the VMWare website.  In the past, I would just log in, and the option to view my licenses and download my entitled products was on the main page.

Now they have this my.vmware.com stuff.  I can find my licenses OK, but downloads?  It seemed I could only sign up for a demo version to download.  No amount of navigation got me there.  And yes, I know that using the demo version would work, but then you get harassed by their inside sales people.  Another story for another day.

I ended up searching, and finding the download page on the main site.  But still the my.vmware.com site kept trying to navigate me back to it.  Argh. Perhaps if I spent time on their site every week, it would make sense, but for my, the 2 or 3 visits a year, it was painful.

I am sure this will not be the last installment in UI ridiculousness.