inessential by Brent Simmons

How to be happy

For a while it seemed like the Internet was drowning in a tide of annoying crap.

Spam! Pop-under ads! Flash ads!

The day-to-day experience of working and living in this wonderful network was getting worse by the day.

So I took steps.

1. I switched from Eudora to Apple’s Mail app.

I did this reluctantly, and there are still some things I’d love to change about Mail, but I did it for one reason: Mail has intelligent spam filtering.

It lives up to its billing. It is all that.

On a bad day I see two spams. On a good day, none. Wow.

And I don’t have to manage a bunch of filters. (I had, no kidding, hundreds of spam filters in Eudora and I added more every day. And I was still drowning in spam.)

2. I switched from Internet Explorer to Chimera.

The first time a pop-under ad tried to appear, Chimera presented a dialog telling me that it could prevent pop-under ads from ever appearing. Did I want to let it do this for me?


No more pop-up or pop-under ads. None. Zero. So cool.

(I understand Mozilla has the same feature, by the way.)

3. I nuked Flash.

Oddly, none of the browsers on my machine gave me the option to turn off Flash.

So I found where it lived on disk and I trashed it.

I had discovered that the major use of Flash on the Web was for ads. Really annoying ads, with things that move and make noise. Super-yuck.

Have I missed Flash? Are there other uses for Flash I’m sad about missing out on?

Nope. I don’t miss Flash in the least tiny bit.