(Note: This post first appeared on Sunday, May 7, 2006 on Another Monkey. The problem was probably just what I stated here: an ad making excessive demands on a old, slow computer with an old, slow connection. I haven't seen this ad in a while, but boy, was it annoying.)
Is it just me, or is anyone else running into performance problems whenever they hit the new Ask.com ad? It's a little sidebar ad that uses a moving image of blurred search results flashing by while text pushing Ask.com floats over it. Unfortunately, my poor little computer on my poor little dialup connection has a hard time processing these graphics and performance slows to a crawl. If I have multiple pages open that contain this ad, or multiple copies of the ad on a single page, my browser may lock up or my computer may crash.
I know, I know. My computer is a little old 1999 (pre-Y2k!) Compaq Presario 7478 that has been upgraded only once, with the addition of a huge amount of RAM. (For some reason this PC came with a laughably small amount of RAM and I couldn't even upgrade to whatever the latest version of AOL was back in 2001 without the addition of another memory...thing.) And I'm still on dialup. Hey, what can I say? I'm a late adopter, and I'd rather hold onto my money and buy this year's latest and greatest computer at next year's discount prices.
I've never tried Ask.com. I still have a bad taste in my mouth from its previous incarnation as Ask Jeeves. Ask Jeeves was heavily touted as being the closest thing to AI that you would find in a search engine, but most of my searches resulted in a stock series of non-answers, including the infamous "Would you like to buy a book about ____?" As long as this annoying ad is bogging down my computer I don't think I'll be doing many searches over at Ask.com.