The Nikon Software Problem

(news & commentary)

Okay, View NX-i is available to download. Hey, what happened to View NX2? Oh, it’s still available. 

In case you haven’t figured it out, View NX-i is a beta that isn’t labeled beta. Apparently Nikon took too much flack over the Capture NX-D beta so they’ve altered their approach to introducing a new, incompatible software product this time. Unfortunately, putting the pig in a different dress doesn’t make it prettier.

The Facebook connection is disabled in the current download I received, though Nikon has promised to get it working soon (technically, yesterday, but who’s counting? ;~). Likewise, the image processing and editing features for stills aren’t there yet, either, and won’t be until September. And in a giant bargain with the devil, installing View NX-i uninstalls View NX2, which does have still image processing features. So you’re really going to have to want to move forward into Nikon’s software future in order to commit to the NX-i and NX-D team. 

At this point in time, I simply can’t recommend that anyone install View NX-i. For that matter, I can’t really recommend any Nikon software any more. That’s because Nikon has littered the road with far too many buggy dead ends (anyone remember Picture Project?) and seems to have no real clear view of where they’re going and why. And in paving that road, they seem to like to open it up for traffic before they finish. Heck, Nikon can’t even get their Web page for downloading the software from repeating the same information four times before you get to License Agreement and download button.

Which brings me to the License Agreement: you don’t own the product. You can only legally download it onto one computer. Oh, what the heck, let’s go all in on bashing Nikon: if I can only download one copy to one of my computers, why does the license agreement say that I must reproduce the Nikon copyright (sic) notice on each copy? Really? What bottom level intern copied the legal boiler plate to create that oddity? And it’s not the only one.

Nikon does suggest that "If you would like to resume using ViewNX 2 after trying ViewNX-i, uninstall ViewNX-i and re-install ViewNX 2.” I’ll save you a step: don’t install View NX-i. 

Oh, and can someone at Nikon figure out if there’s a space between the product name and NX or not? Half the time there is, half the time there isn’t. This is indicative of Nikon’s overall attention to QA, actually: lots of little details seem to be beyond their ability to control at the moment. All it takes is one little decision from the top: space between product name and NX, or no space between product name and NX. Of course, that might mean that they have to actually figure out what NX stands for. ;~)  My vote is for "Next failed eXperiment.” 

Yeah, this is harsh. Funny thing is that concept-wise, View NX-i seems a bit more centered to what a user needs than was View NX2. It’s as if Nikon finally figured out that maybe they needed one thing that was a hub between the camera and all photo outputs or uses (at one time they had three separate software products doing this). Likewise, someone finally figured out that Facebook and YouTube were important, though they seemed to have missed Twitter, Flickr, Instagram, Snapchat, and about a hundred other popular places images need to go.  

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