Author Topic: modern life is rubbish  (Read 12249 times)

Mrs Pingu

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Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #75 on: 25 September, 2020, 05:23:27 pm »
After a particularly grim week I totted up this morning that this week I would have done 14 hours in meetings by midday today. It's no wonder I can't get any work done.

Then a bit later I got an email from a sales colleague in West Africa asking if I would be up for a trip to Paris in Nov/Dec to visit some customer he's trying to develop some business with.
Are you mad? I thought. Never mind the fact that Covid cases are escalating in Europe again, our current travel policy says you have to get permission from VP level for international travel and I suspect that's only handed out for site visits where we really need to dig ourselves or the customer out of a hole, not so that we can go and do some business development chit chat.
Do not clench. It only makes it worse.

TimC

  • Old blerk sometimes onabike.
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #76 on: 25 September, 2020, 05:26:55 pm »
I don’t think I’ve ever been to a meeting. I feel deprived.

Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #77 on: 25 September, 2020, 06:56:21 pm »
The silliest international meeting I've done was Perth (the Australian one), UK and Seattle. It was winding down to go home time on a Friday for the Aussies, early o'clock for me (and I had the day booked off as leave, so was back home at about the same time I would normally get into work) and the poor chap, on his own, in Seattle was falling asleep as it was silly late and still Thursday as far as he was concerned (or possibly very early Friday).
"No matter how slow you go, you're still lapping everybody on the couch."

ian

  • not a woman, not an american, not a vampire
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #78 on: 25 September, 2020, 07:43:25 pm »
My 'horizontal' combines San Francisco, Philadelphia, Beijing, Wellington, and London. They've yet to invent a time zone for that meeting that won't fuck me off. And 'horizontal.' There's only two things that I want to do horizontal and neither of them involves a teleconference. And if it did, at least one of them I'd charge people to watch.

Still, at least I don't have to get off my arse to be inconvienced. I once flew all the way to Johannesburg for what I believe our sales team said was a 'done deal' they just needed me to confirm 'a few things.' They neglected to confirm that the client had no money, nope, no funding at all. They were very cheerful about it. I got to shoot a gun, get impressively drunk, and buy a giant cuddly lion that got an entire business class bed to itself.

Come to think of it, that's a lot better shit than a Teams call.
Authoritarian Thought Leader, the Pol Pot of Powerpoint, the Stalin of Spreadsheets

andytheflyer

  • Andytheex-flyer.....
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #79 on: 26 September, 2020, 04:18:05 pm »
Many many years ago, when I was a fresh-faced young engineering geologist, the only one in a big multinational consulting engineers,  I walked into the Victoria St office one morning, and was intercepted by the travel lady, asking me for my passport.  Why?  You're going to Saudi tomorrow.  For a meeting.

Think I went out one day, back the next.  And that was in the days before free booze on BA.

Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #80 on: 26 September, 2020, 04:28:39 pm »
I flew to St Louis once to remove a ; from a configuration file.

Ironically that might have been sorted out in minutes, without me having to move from my spare bedroom, had the concept of Webex or other screen sharing systems been available then.
"Yes please" said Squirrel "biscuits are our favourite things."

Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #81 on: 26 September, 2020, 05:06:04 pm »
A friend got sent to Munich for a meeting. Out and back on the same day, so no luggage.
Then Eyjafjallajökull errupted.  :facepalm:
"No matter how slow you go, you're still lapping everybody on the couch."

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #82 on: 26 September, 2020, 05:17:39 pm »
I flew to St Louis once to remove a ; from a configuration file.

Ironically that might have been sorted out in minutes, without me having to move from my spare bedroom, had the concept of Webex or other screen sharing systems been available then.

Or ssh?  Or even telnet?
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

robgul

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Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #83 on: 26 September, 2020, 07:25:26 pm »
San Francisco for a 45 minute meeting at Wells Fargo (really!) - but did blag a further 5 days of holiday for the trip, I just paid a couple of nights in the hotel :thumbsup:

ElyDave

  • Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society member 263583
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #84 on: 26 September, 2020, 07:44:14 pm »
Indonesia for a two day audit. Spent longer travelling than being there
“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him.” –Charles Dickens

Mr Larrington

  • A bit ov a lyv wyr by slof standirds
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Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #85 on: 27 September, 2020, 11:09:00 am »
Software patch needed for urgent install on customer's IBM dinosaur mainframe*; in spite of ultra-careful checking of our (VAX-written) code for FORTRAN-77 compliance.  BOFH makes two copies on 9-track tapes and hand-crufts tinfoil hats for them.  Handed over to programmer who hotfoots it to LHR and thence to JFK.  On Concorde.  Sitting next to a Mr H Kissinger.  Thence to customer’s site in, IIRC, Rochester NY.

Ladies & Gedderbong, I was that BOFH.

* it worked on other customer's IBM dinosaur mainframes…
External Transparent Wall Inspection Operative & Mayor of Mortagne-au-Perche
Satisfying the Bloodlust of the Masses in Peacetime

ElyDave

  • Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society member 263583
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #86 on: 27 September, 2020, 01:24:44 pm »
BOFH?
“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him.” –Charles Dickens


T42

  • Old fool in a hurry
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #88 on: 27 September, 2020, 02:17:02 pm »
On French TV the abbreviation for Bora-Hansgrohe was BOH, which I read as Bastard Operator from Hell every time I saw it.  Kinda transferred itself to Sagan, too, esp when he LARTed Woot van Aert in the Stage 11 sprint.
But they never got to Carcassonne.

quixoticgeek

  • Mostly Harmless
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #89 on: 27 September, 2020, 03:22:39 pm »
A lot of the lights are on timers, so they come on and go off at random times, so the neighbours think we're in the throes of a really slow disco.

In the middle of frying breakfast late last night, the Kitchen light went out... I'd forgotten I had it on a timer... That was awkward, trying to get to the light switch, in a narrow kitchen, without burning my food.

Need to find better timings...

J
--
Beer, bikes, and backpacking
http://b.42q.eu/

Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #90 on: 27 September, 2020, 05:40:21 pm »
I flew to St Louis once to remove a ; from a configuration file.

Ironically that might have been sorted out in minutes, without me having to move from my spare bedroom, had the concept of Webex or other screen sharing systems been available then.

Or ssh?  Or even telnet?

Possibly, but that generally was never possible for our customers. Getting remote access wouldn't fly with their security teams.

It went something like this:-

When they ran out bit of our software it reported a syntax error with the config file. Every time we'd asked for the config file the customer had ftp'd it from the machine and emailed it to us and we found no problem with config file. Support were getting nowhere so they sent me to go on site.

When I got there I asked him to run it from the command line and it displayed the config file. Editing the config file showed the missing ; character. We added it and it worked fine.

I then asked the customer what he did when we asked him for a copy of the file. He opened up a new shell, checked the piece of paper taped to his desk for the IP address of that specific machine, ftp'd to that IP address, fetched the file and emailed it to us. I checked the IP of the machine we were ssh'd in to, it didn't match the piece of the paper. The piece of paper had the IP address of the corresponding Dev system, and on that machine the config file was correct, and that's the one that he'd been emailing us each time.

So, technically, it wasn't just flying to St Louis to add a ; to a config file, it was also to correct a single octet of an IP address on a piece of paper taped to a desk.

I was scheduled to be at that customer for 2 days to get to the bottom of this, having sorted this in the first 5 minutes we went through everything else he had questions on, including me demoing some of the newer bits of our software, but that only took about 2 hours. I gave him my cell phone number, told him I was in town for another day if he had any further problems and went off sightseeing (it wasn't worth rearragning my flights).

--

As for a different modern life is rubbish story.

I went to look at a nearby flat that was for sale, just to see if it was worth it. Upon entering the estate agent mumble something about the lights, luckily we didn't need them as it was bright daylight, but I saw the instructions for them.

There were no light switches anywhere upstairs, it was all controlled by an smartphone app. So the instructions for the EA for turning on the lights meant that the EA would have to:
* Join the right wireless network
* Download the app
* Let the app 'discover' the lights on the wireless network
* Use the app to turn the lights on.

Somehow this is a form of progress...
"Yes please" said Squirrel "biscuits are our favourite things."

quixoticgeek

  • Mostly Harmless
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #91 on: 27 September, 2020, 05:45:15 pm »

As for a different modern life is rubbish story.

I went to look at a nearby flat that was for sale, just to see if it was worth it. Upon entering the estate agent mumble something about the lights, luckily we didn't need them as it was bright daylight, but I saw the instructions for them.

There were no light switches anywhere upstairs, it was all controlled by an smartphone app. So the instructions for the EA for turning on the lights meant that the EA would have to:
* Join the right wireless network
* Download the app
* Let the app 'discover' the lights on the wireless network
* Use the app to turn the lights on.

Somehow this is a form of progress...

That's just shockingly bad design.

I have 'smart' lights throughout my flat, but for all of them, there is both a 'smart' switch, that I can use, and cos the original switches are on the wall, I can flip them off then back on again. I have tape over the wall switches, as I got fed up with guests using the wrong switch...

J
--
Beer, bikes, and backpacking
http://b.42q.eu/

archy

  • once asterix
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #92 on: 27 September, 2020, 05:55:06 pm »
I flew to St Louis once to remove a ; from a configuration file.

Ironically that might have been sorted out in minutes, without me having to move from my spare bedroom, had the concept of Webex or other screen sharing systems been available then.

One of my first jobs in IT was updating our code.  All the changes were designed, tested and implemented in Hong Kong or the USA, then we in our satellite state were sent printed instructions what to change which we did by retrieving code and typing the changes in.

This also happened when the antitrust regulators were due.  We'd to change all the code to remove certain freight pricing instructions until after the inspection, then we put the original code back. 

Our IT dept was a portakabin in the middle of a container park.  Very noisy.
what man calls civilization
always results in deserts

ElyDave

  • Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society member 263583
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #93 on: 27 September, 2020, 06:05:31 pm »
I've never been in IT, but one of my first jobs as a young chemical engineer was to replace a control system that was "Y2K non compliant" .

I know of at least one of those that is still in use running an oil terminal
“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him.” –Charles Dickens

barakta

  • Bastard lovechild of Yomiko Readman and Johnny 5
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #94 on: 27 September, 2020, 06:40:52 pm »
As for a different modern life is rubbish story.

I went to look at a nearby flat that was for sale, just to see if it was worth it. Upon entering the estate agent mumble something about the lights, luckily we didn't need them as it was bright daylight, but I saw the instructions for them.

There were no light switches anywhere upstairs, it was all controlled by an smartphone app. So the instructions for the EA for turning on the lights meant that the EA would have to:
* Join the right wireless network
* Download the app
* Let the app 'discover' the lights on the wireless network
* Use the app to turn the lights on.

Somehow this is a form of progress...

Welcome to the bane of my life in many public places.

Me: "Hi, your lights are flickering/bastard-bright, can you turn them off/down in this room/anywhere? There seem to be no light switches."

Them: "ERRR... Everything is centrally controlled. We can try and find out."

*time passes*

If I am lucky, someone comes back to say "We can turn the lights off in one place" and I have to wrangle special permission to go to that place.

More commonly I get: "Sorry, no, we can't change any lighting anywhere. Can't you just manage?"

And I have to either risk severe migraines, visual distortions and sometimes becoming ill enough that my vision starts cutting out and I fall over. Or I have to leave.

I will one day end up taking a disability discrimination legal case on this issue because lighting should be locally controllable and it's inexcusable for it not to be.

I can't understand why anyone would do this to a residential place. All my friends who have smart lights (which are often horrid flickery messes) also have actual light switches and can TURN THEM OFF.

See also rants x many about modern fucking building design, sensorily hostile and hideous.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #95 on: 27 September, 2020, 06:59:56 pm »
You forgot that time I helped a judge sellotape an envelope over a PIR sensor, in the hope the lights might time out...
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #96 on: 27 September, 2020, 07:05:03 pm »
While we're on the slow disco theme, about a quarter of the streetlights on the A38 between Rubery and the M5 roundabout are cycling on and off at ~5 second intervals, in the manner of an LED driver protecting itself from overload with a failed string.

It adds an extra element of excitement to using the overgrown-to-singletrack shared-use pavement[1] in the uphill-blinded-by-headlights direction.

I keep meaning to report it to the council, but I'd quite like to shoot some video of it first.


[1] Normally I wouldn't, but it's a useful way to avoid a nasty bit of climbing.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Basil

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Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #97 on: 27 September, 2020, 07:17:55 pm »
@Kim.  Gosh! do you cycle that section often?  I think the only time I rode the A38 beyond Rubbery Rubery was on my 1999 eclipse tour.

Stayed on the A38 for much of the following days, though.
Admission.  I'm actually not that fussed about cake.

Cudzoziemiec

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Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #98 on: 27 September, 2020, 08:45:17 pm »
While we're on the slow disco theme, about a quarter of the streetlights on the A38 between Rubery and the M5 roundabout are cycling on and off at ~5 second intervals, in the manner of an LED driver protecting itself from overload with a failed string.

It adds an extra element of excitement to using the overgrown-to-singletrack shared-use pavement[1] in the uphill-blinded-by-headlights direction.

I keep meaning to report it to the council, but I'd quite like to shoot some video of it first. bloody stupid designer


[1] Normally I wouldn't, but it's a useful way to avoid a nasty bit of climbing.
FFTY?
Riding a bike through a city is like navigating the collective neural pathways of a vast global mind.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: modern life is rubbish
« Reply #99 on: 27 September, 2020, 08:49:15 pm »
@Kim.  Gosh! do you cycle that section often?  I think the only time I rode the A38 beyond Rubbery Rubery was on my 1999 eclipse tour.

Not normally, but it's the most efficient way to get to/from the south-west corner of my veloviewer cluster.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...