It seems that Spam bots don’t take time off for Christmas. Come the Robot Uprising we won’t get time off either.
Our anti-spam software stats show that of 41,501 emails processed 41,025 were automatically deleted as Spam. It’s the 476 that weren’t that concern me. Presumably most were automated messages from server to person but someone out there actually got up on Crimbo Day and did something work related enough to email someone here.
I find that a little sad.
I’m chucking out some old PCs. As per standard security procedure 2.1.1.a/wkward I have to remove the hard drive and arrange to have it destroyed. i.e. put it in a box until it’s forgotten about and then put it in the bin.
Some stealing stealer has only gone and stolen all the screwdrivers….and it wasn’t me! I suspect that the guilty party is using the stolen screwdriver to commit terrible crimes against humanity. Crimes such as vandalism or car theft. Maybe even (dun dun dah) murder.
Can I borrow a Phillips screwdriver please?
Here at “someone else’s lilypad” it’s all about cost. This costs X but we only get Y back. That’s fine, it’s a business and we’ve got to make money. Why then is it so difficult to get a straight answer about how much something costs from the people who buy things?
Witness this exchange.
Captain Spendy: We’re spending a darn fortune on ink cartridges. It needs to stop dammit.
Big Boss: Yes, I agree. Mr hoverFrog, what are the alternatives?
Me: How much do we spend? How much do we use? There are several options but it all boils down to the capital outlay and the cost per print. You want a decent return on the investment.
Captain Spendy: I dunno.
Me: Let me know when you do.
Captain Spendy: I’ve found a colour laser printer I like. Here are the specs. *makes some laser zappy sounds as I take the page from him*
Me: OK. *glances at printout from Rip Off PC Company That We Don’t Use Anymore* Um this works out at 59p per page of colour printing. How does that compare with what you spend now?
Captain Spendy: I dunno.
Me: Let me know when you do.
I can see this going on all day. I may have to kill someone soon.
An earlier Metro tells a tale of global warming out of control. It seems that we are all doomed to toast to death as the planet heats up. Does this change the way that you plan on living your life? Are you going to switch off the lights when you leave a room? How about walking to work or catching the bus instead of driving? Do you plan on recycling more than you do now?
Do you even believe that global warming is a problem?
Have a read of this.
The data from several recent Gallup studies suggest that Americans’ religious behavior is highly correlated with beliefs about evolution. Those who attend church frequently are much less likely to believe in evolution than are those who seldom or never attend. That Republicans tend to be frequent churchgoers helps explain their doubts about evolution.
The data indicate some seeming confusion on the part of Americans on this issue. About a quarter of Americans say they believe both in evolution’s explanation that humans evolved over millions of years and in the creationist explanation that humans were created as is about 10,000 years ago.
Now thinking about how human beings came to exist on Earth, do you, personally, believe in evolution, or not?
|2007 May 21-24
It’s close but education seems to be winning out over superstition by a small margin.
Apparently we in England are much less likely to suffer from fundamentalist opinions but I’m not so sure. To me evolution offers the best explanation for the origin and development of life on this planet. It disturbs me that schools in England are being pressurised into teaching creationist dogma in science classes rather than the most up to date scientific knowledge. See here or here for more information.
Personally I’d like to see religious education taught as mythology rather than as morality and as fact. In fact I think the world would be considerably better off without religion of any kind.
Yesterday I had an eggsam for my OU course. I must say that I felt scrambled by the time it was over. I was even tempted to poach some answers from the guy in front. I worked eggtra hard to get my answers down in the three hours and I even took regular breaks to ensure that I didn’t crack. I was eggstatic when the invigilator said we should put down out pens. My poor finger had a blister from all my writing. It was eggstruciating.
No, seriously I had the exam for my MT262: Putting computer systems to work course yesterday. It went reasonably well I think. I’m sure that I’ve got enough to pass but I ran out of time so I didn’t do my usual self check to estimate my score.
After the exam I wandered round Pompey for a few hours waiting for The Hildy to finish work and meet me for a very late lunch. Sadly I gave up and purchased some food from Spud Lady in Commercial Road. This was a good plan except that it made me sleepy and I then had to look at DVDs to keep myself awake. Hence the six new DVDs that I brought home.
Speaking of which, don’t bother watching Ghost Rider. Nicolas Cage used up all his acting skill in Leaving Los Vegas but persists on working. The story is full of holes, the comic book nature of which is taken just that step too far to be entertaining. Sadly the special effects don’t make up for a bad film. It should either have been darker and had a decent moral message to it to it or lighter and played for laughs. Of course the former would require an actor with talent and that man isn’t Nicolas Cage.
I also picked up a copy of Hairspray, not the new version but the 1988 version with Ricki Lake in the lead role. As with most things that John Waters writes this film is a bit off the wall but there is a deeper message behind all the silliness.
Anyway, it’s half term next week and I’m on holiday. Have fun and try not to miss me too much.
The Caterwauls who I share an office with are talking…again! They really need to shush! The current topic is “Lesbians”. OK, I wasn’t listening so I don’t know how they got onto this topic but now I’ve been dragged in to it and asked my opinion. This is never a good idea because now I’ve been very rude to The Caterwauls. I’ve mocked their inability to see past the most basic of stereotypes.
It serves them right for saying things like “All lesbans* look a bit different from women, don’t they?” and “You can spot a lesban* because they are ugly and have short hair”.
I’m afraid that I’ve accidentally taken my irritation out on them and implied that I know of at least one lesbian in the office. I don’t really as I am far too irritable to actually speak to anyone in the office so it is very unlikely that a secret lesbian would actually confide in me.
All the other places that I’ve ever worked have had a pretty average distribution of sexual preference. Most of them had one or two ‘out’ homosexuals and the gossip machine implicated a couple more. The last place I worked even had a lesbian wedding. It was great fun even though the kids had me running around like a headless chicken trying to stop them breaking the sound equipment. Perhaps the office here is the opposite end of the spectrum to when I worked at social services. Almost everyone in social services was gay. I think it was part of the equal opportunities policy.
I’m not even sure why it’s so interesting to The Caterwauls. Apart from gossip what does it matter what two consenting adults choose to get up to in their free time?
*They can’t bring themselves to say lesbian and have made up this new word.
As I may have mentioned I recently moved house to le château de grenouille. Part of the harrowing experience that is moving house involves sorting out all the utilities and services that we, as consumers, have bought into. Most companies have excellent and efficient procedures in place to ensure that the process of moving house is straightforward and efficient.
- The Hung Council credited my Council Tax to the new address and sent me a bill that arrived the day after I moved in;
- Gritish Bas sorted out my bills, transferred credits and sent me a lovely “Welcome to your new home” pack..which was dull so I threw it away..but that’s beside the point;
- Both water companies just changed the address on the bill and reissued it to the new address.
Why then can’t BT and Tiscali be as efficient.
Tiscali cut my broadband connection off on 6th September when they should have cut it off on the 17th. This was irritating but I figure that you’re allowed one mistake as long as you say sorry. The call centre didn’t say sorry, in fact I’m not certain what they said as the call centre staff had such thick accents that I had trouble understanding them.
Worse than cutting me off early they have so far failed utterly to reconnect me. I’ve had to endure six long weeks without a broadband connection at home. I’m reminded of poor Drunken Spaniel and how she endured a similar issue.
BT have also failed to live up to their part of the contract to supply me with a telephone service. On Monday 8th my phone mysteriously stopped working. I rang the free phone number from my mobile (which I’m now told isn’t actually free) for an hour in order to report the fault. They told me that it would be fixed within 24 hours. Fair enough, thought I, sometimes things break. 24 hours later I rang them back, the phone is still as dead as a dodo. Every day for the past week has had me calling back to query why my phone still isn’t working. Apparently it’ll only take another 24 hours.
Well I’ve watched 24 and if Jack Bauer can do all the things he does in that show then BT can certainly fix one little fault. It’s hardly too much to ask is it?
Anyway, I lost my rag at them both on Friday and cancelled them both. I’m going with Virgin and a cable service for my phone and broadband and I’m getting some TV chucked in for the same price.
If you have my Tiscali email address please delete it. I’ll get a new one next week and will probably let you know what it is eventually.
….it could be bunnies.
Having taken the decision to buy le château de grenouille (my 5 bedroom house that I shall be moving into on Monday) and sell l’étang de grenouille (the current home of the EU surplus box mountain) I have come to appreciate the benefits of good and efficient customer service….or rather I would have appreciated it if I’d had any. I’ve been having trouble trying to understand how such diverse groups of people as estate agents, solicitors, and Internet service providers can all be so utterly crap.
It isn’t like they all work for the post office or anything. I can understand how a monopoly can degenerate in service level to the lowest possible point. Lack of competition breeds apathy. If you don’t have a choice but to use a service then it really doesn’t matter how well or how poorly they treat you.
However for a company that operates in a normal competitive environment an upset customer will likely take their custom to a competitor and slag off the poor company to anyone who will listen. Why then do they all seem to be so rubbish?
hoverFrog’s First Law of Customer Service Apathy
A company will naturally gravitate to the same level of service as it’s competitors.
hoverFrog’s Second Law of Customer Service Apathy
A company with sufficient customers to meet it’s payroll needs will cease to value them.
hoverFrog’s Third Law of Customer Service Apathy
The motivation of an employee is inversely proportional to the number of departments in the office where they work.
I was planning on moving house on Friday. I mean my house does look like an explosion at a box factory. We’re even using the stronger boxes as furniture.
Unfortunately my solicitor has forgotten to deal with one or two vital points including a Deed of Covenant and the signature of a witness on a document that they have had for two months. The buyers of my humble abode have a solicitor even less competent than mine because they have forgotten to order the Drainage and Water searches that they should have ordered as soon as they were instructed.
Everyone is angry. The people we are buying from are angry because they want to move and no one is telling them what the delay is. We’re angry because everyone we deal with seems to have lime jelly for brains. The buyer of my house are angry because he is in London and needs to drive back one night to sign a piece of paper that he could have had ages ago. His mum is angry, I’m not sure why, maybe she’s clingy but that’s beside the point. The only people who aren’t angry are the estate agents who will soon be paid a vast sum of money for doing very little. This is making me angry. Even the kids are angry. OK, we took their beds down and they have to sleep on the floor but I’m sure that is some jelly brained solicitors fault somehow.
I may hulk out tomorrow.
Plus I now have to buy some food….and some alcohol.
I apologise in advance for rude and/or cutting comments that I may come out with in the next ten days. I may just stick to egg related blogs to be on the safe side.
I’m going to bed now to stew in my own suppressed rage.