Dear Mr Gates,

As an old Engineer I’d like to introduce you to an old acronym often mentioned in my education and work experiences. KISS – Keep It Simple Stupid. You and your Techies need to take note. For example, when I sign on to my computer doesn’t “WELCOME” me to my own computer – if anything thank me for using your lousy software. Why does it take two to three minutes to sign on to do anything? Certainly your folks would blame the providers between you and me, but that doesn’t wash. I get on line in about 10 seconds with my Ipad. What do they know that you don’t – maybe KISS? 

Powering off without “shutting down” with Microsoft is a Cardinal Sin . Ipad -just close the cover. Now Apple isn’t perfect. In the early 90s I was starting to write my engineering books and they didn’t “save” the writing I’d done. Then I’d see an image of a bomb (round icon with a burning fuse). That meant I’d lost all my work since I last saved my data! But it would seem that they now understand KISS – no bomb and when I sign on again they take me back to exactly where I was. 

Microsoft and Apple share the arrogance of updating without telling me why it’s needed, and sometimes making things worse. (Their is probably a choice somewhere in their maize to prevent that.) MS often makes my software obsolete – whether I like it or not, I have to buy new software or even a new computer! Then when I’m forced to buy new software/new computer my “group address” can’t be rolled over! Wonderful, just wonderful! What if Ford told me that parts are no longer available for my car so I can’t get it fixed?

Then there is your uncontrollable urge to make the software very complex. I’m sure that the Techies of the world enjoy every feature, alternative, option and choice. But KISS thinks that software should be like skiing – green, blue and black. Don’t people need to start on the green? Your apps start on the green and suddenly throw the customer (we are not “users”) into a black run!

Your approach should be labeled MIACAP – Make It As Complicated As Possible. That culture has naturally carried over to the internet. My recent efforts to buy a book being a good example. I know the title, I know the author I have a credit card so it should be KISS – but no! It is MIACAP. Why can’t I choose my book and check-out with my credit card> Heavens no, I need an “Account” and a “password” and I must look at poor pictures to figure out which have stop lights in them. One site didn’t even show me how to check out! MIACAP The email program I use has no less then seventy choices to ponder – not counting format choices  – Horse Pucky! 

Why not one option you missed – beginner, intermediate or expert. To paraphrase Mark Twain, If Bill Gates funeral were to occur tomorrow I would postpone all other recreation to attend.