concept to publication

A formalist analysis of the literary genre of the Windows installation plaint; or, an agony in nine fits

Commenter Ajay on the Making Light Forum has deconstructed the genre:

I. Exordium. The narrator introduces himself, establishes his experience in computing (ethos) and exhorts the listeners to gather round.
II. Prolegomenon. Customarily, the hardware spec of the machine is outlined here.
III. Praeinstallatio. The narrator describes his initial attempt to install Windows.
IV. Contrainstallatio. The installation goes wrong.
V. Descendo. The narrator describes his increasingly desperate attempts to get things to go right.
VI. Depilatio. The narrator is reduced to despair and frustration.
VII. Inertio. The narrator sinks into a horrified stupor as his machine gurgles and clunks to itself for anything up to three days.
VIII. Peroratio. The narrator rises into fury as he describes how long and painful an experience the install was; which may be followed by
IX. Aptenodytes forsteri, the narrator switches to Linux.

via Boing Boing




Say what?


  1. So, maybe it’s time to switch to a MAC? I’ve often thought that Windoz users were closet masochists and I have never had a reason to change my mind.

  2. Oh no, not another round of the platform wars! (I’m ambidextrous, I work on both platforms, and I think there are good and bad things about both — upgrading your version of Windows is one of the bad things on that platform — but ultimately what matters is what you do, not what platform you’re on.)

  3. No, no, no..I never thought about be warlike (blandishes large apple of peace). Just making a suggestion….

  4. Typos, typos, (le sigh). I was trying to write that “I was not thinking of being warlike…”
    Unfortunately, when you have fumble fingers, it doesn’t matter what system you use.

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