QuickBooks Online and the un-dismissable guide

A while back I switched from using QuickBooks for Mac 2012, to using QuickBooks Online. The online service includes a Mac app, which is little more than an HTML wrapper. As such, it suffers horribly from caching issues, but that’s for another article. For today’s rant, let’s look at what’s permanently pinned to the bottom of the Mac app’s window:

This is a “Show Me How” guide, that includes three tutorials in which the app will walk you through the process of creating an invoice, customizing a report and adding a user.

I already know how to do all that, so I’d simply like to dismiss this window, since even when collapsed, the “Show Me How” label obscures controls like the “Reconcile” button.

Chatting with the friendly Twitter people @QBCares, I’ve learned that you actually have to go through the tutorials before the guide is dismissable.

Unlike every other product I’ve used that offered a guide, there’s no option to simply “skip” it!

It’s confirmed—Garmin is out the game

A couple of days ago, I wrote about Garmin losing their way in UI/UX design. Then yesterday, I tweeted a feature request feature request to them.

Garmin is one of those companies whose tweets all end with a weird sort of abbreviated signature of the person tweeting—“^AJ” from Bank of America, or in this case, “*CG” from Garmin. I’ve always wondered whether these companies are all outsourcing their social media to the same provider, or are all using the same “hook-up-Twitter-to-your-customer-support” platform.

Either way, a common characteristic of these companies is that you’ll never get anything done through Twitter, and that was the case here. “CG”, rather than passing on the feature suggestion, pointed me to a web form where I can “submit my ideas to their engineers”. (I might have an idea now why design has suffered at Garmin…)

The suggestion form at Garmin asks me to categorize my idea, and, get ready for it, here are the options:

As a consumer, I’m asked to pick whether my idea relates to “On the Road”, “Into Sports” or “On the Go”? Seriously, what’s the difference between those? And do they expect a consumer to even know what “OEM” means?

I find myself wondering whether it even matters which category I pick. With choices like these, surely it can’t. And if it doesn’t, why show me this in the first place?

After submitting your idea, Garmin are diligent about making it abundantly clear that (a) you’re not going to hear back from them, and (b) don’t try following up.

Good job, Garmin. You’ve officially lost it.

Meeting UFC champion Fabricio Werdum

Fabricio Werdum is currently the interim heavyweight champion of the UFC, and calls California home. Several years ago, though, he lived in Madrid, Spain, where he ran one of Spain’s first Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu academies.

As a three-time world champion in BJJ, he was as famous in our circles back then, as he is in the Mixed-Martial Arts world today. So it was huge surprise when I walked onto the mats at my first-ever European BJJ Championship, to find that Fabricio himself would be the referee of the match!

Nervous in the moment, and still a novice at the Spanish language, I extended my hand and intended to say, “It’s an honor to meet you!”

But instead, as these things go, I screwed up the Spanish and standing there with my white-belt proclaimed, “Hola Fabricio. Es realmente un honor conocerme!”—which translated means:

Hello Fabricio—It’s truly an honor for you to meet me.

He sort of looked down for a moment, and said, “Yeah, let’s get this thing started.” And that ended my one and only conversation with current UFC heavyweight champion, Fabricio Werdum.