The “Lion” version of the Macintosh operating system removed what was, to me, a very important feature — the arrows at either end of scrollbars. I found this out when I bought a new laptop, which I’m using now to write this piece, and discovered the omission. I wrote a blog post about it at the time, and was told by Mac advocates not to worry that I would discover better ways to do the same thing. That didn’t happen, but since I don’t use the laptop that often, I muddled along without the arrows.
Then, late last year, I updated my Mac desktop to the latest model. It has a nicer screen, is a little slimmer, has a faster CPU, faster disk, etc. This time I couldn’t side-step the missing scroll arrows. And since this is my main work machine, muddling along meant less productivity. More lost trains-of-thought as I have to locate the scroll thumb and delicately move it up or down small amounts to get the text to scroll by two or three lines. The scroll arrows are always in the same place, and you click once to move by one line. No care required.
Finally, last week, I decided it was time to actually find the “better way” the people spoke of earlier. Only to discover it didn’t exist. After hearing from lots of users in the comments, the best approach people have come up with is to use the arrow keys on the keyboard. But that’s no answer. If I have to lift my hand of the mouse, find the keyboard, and find the arrow keys (does it even have arrow keys, I never use them).
All this makes me wonder if the people at Apple actually use Macs, and if they do, do they hate themselves? Certainly someone there must have depended on the arrows as a way of fine-tuning the vertical position of text on the screen? As I do.
So a few times every day I lose my train of thought because I use a new Mac instead of an old one. I can’t figure out for the life of me why they would take features out of their products. I would say it might be to get us to leave their platform and use Windows, but they’re playing even worse tricks on their users.