Can we please remember that M$ hasn’t completely taken over the world?

I just had to take four on-line safety courses here at Essex in order to get money from our research grant. I’ll spare you the horrors, although I did twitter on about of some of them as I went as a sanity saving device, and will share a couple:

“Keeping your workstation and office tidy is crucial to short-term and long-term health and wellbeing.” I am doomed.

[The] Irony of spending much of an hour wading through a tedious online lesson on risks of spending too long at the computer is not lost on me.

As if the exams themselves weren’t annoying enough (and trust me, they were), the people that assembled them implicitly assumed that everyone in the world is in Microsoft’s pocket. I eventually became so frustrated that when I’d verified that I’d passed them all, I sent the following along to the folks that put all this together:

While I’m here, I should mention that there were several pieces of media that seemed to assume that one was on a Windows box. Quite a few images (clip art, I assume) didn’t load on either a Linux box or a Mac. Also the PowerPoint in the “Working at height” lesson assumed that you had PowerPoint or some compatible viewer, which isn’t always going to be true.

None of these problems were fatal for me. There didn’t appear to be important content in any of the images that I couldn’t view, and I was able to view the PowerPoint file in another program. Still they were confusing and frustrating (especially at first), and it would presumably be fairly easy (if somewhat tedious) to convert them all to a more standard and open format.

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