Staring at the Progress Bar

I used to make my living as a computer graphic designer. I was pretty good at it. I designed ads for Winston Tires (not around anymore) and designed the box for TurboTax (that’s still with us). What I hated about the process was the computer. Being totally reliant on technology to get the work done is frustrating. Mostly, it was the progress bar.

You know how it goes. Here’s the situation right now. I’ve decided to update and add a few videos to my iPad. So I hook everything up through iTunes and then the bane of my existence appears. The progress bar. It inches forward, sucking the life from me.

I should walk away, but I can’t. It’s hypnotic. I stare at it, watching the percentage creep forward. I can literally stand there for hours. It’s so pointless. Finally, head upstairs and take a shower because I needed to go out soon. That broke the trance. Once I was away from the progress bar, I could actually progress with my life.

Writing doesn’t have quite as much of that. First off, the file sizes are so small, there’s only a glimpse of a progress bar. Also, I can print out pages or switch to long hand and still be productive. Take that technology.

If you’re stuck with something that is technology dependent, I feel for you. No one likes the progress bar. The best advice I can give you is make sure your other outlets (creative or otherwise) don’t rely on batteries, updates, or Internet.

Tim Kane