Here's an interesting thread on the worst pieces software that people have used. I was lucky to avoid most of these: many Norton/Symantec products, Lotus Notes and Symphony, Novell Netware, Windows up through 95, OS2 Warp, Word, WordPerfect and Wordstar, and AOL.
There's also a thread there about good software (it mostly focuses on editors).
It wasn't terribly romantic, but did get us out from potentially oppressive family obligations. No regrets.
FWIW: I actually got the best advice I have to pass on to undergraduates from the photographer before the ceremony. Parphrasing, he said "in another lifetime I was a botany professor". Undergraduates freak because they think they are making decisions that will bind them forever (of course, they will, but not that badly). So, I make sure they leave my office knowing that what they do at 22 isn't that big of a deal.
David Hensel sent a sculpture in to a jury show at London's Royal Academy of Arts.
The slate base (with a small boxwood support) was separated from the sculpture in shipping.
Both were thus considered as individual submissions based on their merits. There were 9,000 submissions.
The base and support pairing got in. The sculpture did not.
They Royal Academy denies making a mistake, and asserts that the the base and support - which took 5 hours to make - was "thought to have merit". The sculpture (of a realistic human head laughing) took 2 months to make.
BTW: the piece by Lionel Shriver uses one of those English-English words that us American-English speakers don't see much: plinth. I'm not sure I've ever even seen it used anywhere outside of that old Faces tune.
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