Perhaps My Last Entry On Spark
Monday, August 15, 2011
It's been about two years since I joined spark people. I do not use it to track nutrition or fitness. I find it way too hard to do, between the use of a screen reader and the gluten free stuff.
I have learned so very much about this gluten free adventure from wonderful folks. I have been strengthened in my faith by my dear friends on three teams who share my love for Christ and my desire to serve Him more each day.
I have laughed a lot with you. I have received encouragement from many of you, and I hope I have encouraged som of you in return. I have vented frequently about gluten related issues, and recently about mice, and how hard it is to get rid of them!
I have been so blessed by so many. You mean a lot to me. But I can't stand this site any longer!!!!!
As many of you know, being totally blind, I use a screen reader called JAWS. Now, the cost of this ranges from $900-1300, depending on whether one wants two "free" upgrades. So, just using a different one for a while to see if it works isn't an easy option.
I have tried using both Internet Explorer and Firefox to see if the problems are less with one than with another. I haven't yet downloaded the adblocker from Firefox. But, there must be some things embedded in the programming which make the screen reader read things in an annoying way. It has gotten worse over the last several months, but about four or five weeks ago, it became totally unwieldy!
I would love to have someone listen to what I must listen to in order to just get to an article or a team. It makes things so awful that I avoid the site more and more. It's not the people; it's the site!
This site is all about motivation. Yet, as there are more and more articles about getting healthy, there is more and more bloat on the site. If the mission is to motivate, then there is way more extraneous stuff than needs to be here. I don't want bloat in my body or my lifestyle! I can't waste the amount of time it takes to get anything accomplished here.
I asked a friend about the mobile apps, and you can't get to teams, make a blog or anything useful to me. On the web, there are many sites which have a text only version available. Perhaps this would help. I don't know for sure, but it does seem to help navigation on other sites.
I do understand that ads pay for the site. But, there is just more and more every time I seem to log in. I used to know how long I had to hold down the down arrow key to get to a spark team or a blog. Now, that is totally unpredictable. This truly is a case of walking in my shoes to understand.
Now, I don't expect any site to alter its format for a tiny fraction of its users. That is unrealistic. I'm not going to lead a demonstration about it, or tell others that the site is useless. Obviously many love it, and for that I say praise God!
I'm posting this so those of you who have followed my irregular blog postings will understand why you don't see any, or why I seldom read your entries. I really will miss doing so, but, I'm pretty savvy about the gluten free stuff now, and I am also pretty health conscious about other things. I will miss the motivation of others, and the warmth and caring of all of you.
If you care to keep in touch some other way, post a note here or on my inbox. I'll grit my teeth and check back a few times. It's the people who make spark what it is, and that hasn't changed.
So, to all who have encouraged me, prayed for and with me, laughed with me about things like macaroni and cheese with blueberries (see the blog about not cooking this at home) or helped me out when I was frustrated, I say thanks. I also want you to know I will continue to pray for you, and wish you only losses in the weight or discouragement areas. I wish you health, humor, helpful friends and family, and happiness. May you all be blessed.
Kate/Kathy, depending on team