* Posts by Melanie Winiger

113 publicly visible posts • joined 6 Jan 2010


UK flights disrupted by 'technical issue' with air traffic computer system

Melanie Winiger

Re: It's DNS

Ha! I shouldn't laugh. We had a DNS problem 2 weeks ago. My ears are still ringing...

British Airways flights grounded due to glitch in flight planning app

Melanie Winiger

Strange time to do an upgrade

Isn't it Xmas Freeze time due to peak passenger volumes?


BA Flight plans used to be done in-house decades ago on a system called SWORD. I worked with some of the guys - very professional.

Tata on trial: Outsourcer 'discriminated' against non-Asian workers, claim American staff

Melanie Winiger

Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose - it's still happening and not even a pandemic with the difficulty of international travel is going to stop it.

"When you deal with India, it always ends in tears" Middle East Airline Captain to me.

With H-1B workers not exactly rushing to America this year, Uncle Sam plans to spend millions home-growing IT staff

Melanie Winiger

We're our own worse enemies: if IT staff were regulated like Licenced Aircraft Engineers with international standards, that would help enormously.

Instead of just relying on someone's copy-paste blurb on their CV coupled with a fake degree certificate...

India's peak IT body tells outsourcers to check contract cancellation fine print while Coronavirus reigns

Melanie Winiger

True "Why do you need a Laptop Dad?" is a phrase I'm starting to hear from the genius know-alls that are called "my late teenage kids"

Melanie Winiger

Re: It is always bad when the contracts come out

Lovely phrase - forgive my ignorance after all these years, but I'm going to put it in my "Useful Quotes" folder:

"contracts should be carefully written and then put in a drawer, with both parties acting in good faith based on the spirit of the agreement."

Off somewhere nice on holibobs? Not if you're flying British Airways: IT 'systems issue' smacks UK airports once again

Melanie Winiger

My guess is their TCS designed ESB failed. AFAIK BA don't use native Amadeus Altea FM for Departure Control functions.

They have their own bespoke front end built onto the standard Amadeus product.

So other airlines weren't affected.

Quite what they are doing making (reported elsewhere) config changes during the summer peak is anyone's guess.

Everyone I know at BA (good people, VERY good people) has left/been sold off so I can't get any actual information.

Which says a lot about IT at BA.

Deck the halls with ... oh, no. DXC tells staff they may not have a job in the New Year

Melanie Winiger

A slow death

Just leave.

Than me later

Microsoft reveals terrible trio of bugs that knocked out Azure, Office 362.5 multi-factor auth logins for 14 hours

Melanie Winiger

Next time, buy a Mainframe. -)

Details of 600,000 foreign visitors to UK go up in smoke thanks to shonky border database

Melanie Winiger

Can't we get to the Root Cause? Blame the Iron Lady

It was Mrs Thatcher's Government who abolished outbound Passport checks from the UK in the late 1980s to get rid of those dreadful unionised staff.

Well done to all concerned!

That minutes-long power glitch? It's going to cost British Airways £80m, IAG investors told

Melanie Winiger

Exactly. I have no doubt the lack of experienced staff was a factor in the recovery time.

British Airways poised to shed 1,000 jobs to Capita

Melanie Winiger

Re: What Does BA Mean?

I want to fly with James O'Shea!!

As you stare at the dead British Airways website, remember the hundreds of tech staff it laid off

Melanie Winiger

You reap what you sow

I worked at Big Airways in the 1980s when the IT department led the way with advanced GUIs for Inventory Control, pioneered ticketless travel for Shuttle passengers and other innovations.

When you lose control, outsource your core PSS (Passenger Service System), treat programming like building an Ikea wardrobe and the competition is beating you on pure ticket price, then you get an endgame like this.

Franken-firm DXC Technology is born today, the fun begins...

Melanie Winiger


Thank goodness I left HP years ago.

Passport and binary tree code, please: CompSci quizzes at US border just business as usual

Melanie Winiger

Standard of staff

Personally, I found the professionals in Immigration and Security to be in TLV.

EWR/JFK/LAX/MIA - no, they might have a weapon, but they didn't necessarily have brains.

Post-Brexit five-year UK work visas planned – report

Melanie Winiger

Plan B


I'm claiming Asylum in Nigeria. Just look at all those Visa applications from there!

Power cut crashes Delta's worldwide flight update systems

Melanie Winiger

Mainframe OK.

The z/TPF mainframe stayed up - it was unaffected.

All the decentralised systems (Flight Info displays, kiosks, online check-in etc.) failed.

Source: TPFers Group on Facebook.


Not scoring points and would never gloat over the failings/disasters of others - all too aware that the next operational failure could be in my own back garden.

Bomb-disposal robot violently disposes of Dallas cop-killer gunman

Melanie Winiger

Yep. This robot usage sets a precedent.

There was no chance of the shooter being taken alive. But I have severe doubts about the endgame in this case.

I only hope TCS don't write the controlling software for the robots.

BA 'offers' IT bods extra leave, flexible working - unpaid of course

Melanie Winiger

TCS code?

What is going on at BA?


WHO loaded that code just before the busiest weekend of the year?

PCS: We'll ballot Hewlett Packard Enterprise members over job cuts

Melanie Winiger

It's all they know

All they know is how to cut costs. Innovation? Hmmmm....

Big Blue's big iron daddy Gene Amdahl dies aged 92

Melanie Winiger


Amdahl was a legend from the days when IT was run by people who actually knew how to program a computer instead of Excel merchants, Accountants, "Project Managers" with zero technical knowledge and a plethora of subcontinent workers. I have no problem with the latter driving down my Terms and Conditions. That's life. But I do have a problem dealing with the amount of blatantly fake CVs I see.

Was it better then?

On balance, yes it was.

We got more stuff done, we had less meetings. We learnt everyday.

And we didn't have to waste time filling in time sheets or producing cost-benefit analyses to do the bleeding obvious.


Maybe I am.

RIP Gene. They don't make them like you these days...

HP: Yes, we plan to axe another 7,100 European staffers

Melanie Winiger

Amazing AC

I learnt something new:

"People doing the same work in UK, Holland etc, quite often with having less knowledge, earn 3-4 times more than we do"

I think you earn a lot more than someone "with having less knowledge" (sic) in other parts of the world e.g. the Indian sub-continent.

Don't gloat about your piitance of a salary.

Yahoo! web! traffic! BIGGER! THAN! GOOGLE! in! July!

Melanie Winiger

I will save you the trouble

Read what Ms. M has done.

Not just a few complaints.

000s. See the Stats thread which is what this El Reg article is about


Melanie Winiger

Marissa and Flickr

She is destroying Flickr for serious photographers in an attempt to make the Stats look better.

Google for Flickr Help Forum to see some of the damage.

The site doesn't work quickly or conveniently anymore.

But who cares, the Statistics look good...

British IT consultant talks of his three years as an Iraqi hostage

Melanie Winiger

What a story!

Not sure I'd have coped so well. At least he's got a girlfriend and doing what he wants - I wish him the best.

Cupertino man jailed for exporting tech to China

Melanie Winiger

Re: Should have shipped it to the UK ...

China Airlines is Taiwan - but that's close enough now there are direct flights between the two :-)

But seriously, I think this guy didn't have a good enough lawyer. I can't believe the technology was *that* sensitive.

Wikipedia failing to recruit any new admins

Melanie Winiger

Fad over

Without going into the Technical details, I tried to edit a Wiki Page which was blatantly incorrect.

I was over-ruled by the Admin.

I'm not bothering again.

Border Agency comes out with another e-Borders deadline

Melanie Winiger

My prediction?

Fingerprinting to come.

"UNABLE TO PROCESS" when someone with 4 fingers and 1 eye arrives at Immigration.

'Young people don't want to become like us', say IT pros

Melanie Winiger

"In the good old days"

"In the good old days" when you programmed for the company you worked for, isof for an outsourced multi-national, I felt a connection with the company and enjoyed the work.

Now - after been outsourced, bankrupted, bought, sold and bought again, I feel like a pawn in a beancounters' chess game.

The technical side is still fun, but those accountants and their multiple time-reporting systems have made the overall job like swimming in treacle.

RBS collapse details revealed: Arrow points to defective part

Melanie Winiger

As others have said

"The RBS spokesman stated that "the software error occurred on a UK-based piece of software" but declined to give details on where the staff overseeing the software were based."

"UK-based piece of software"


I obviously don't work in marketing because only a Spin Doctor could come up with nonsense like that.

Natwest, RBS: When will bank glitch be fixed? Probably not today

Melanie Winiger

Got the solution


Works for me everytime.

What? That's not how a mainframe works?


I am an old mainframer and I'm caught between thinking "there for the grace of God go I" and "you got what you deserve you bunch of non-technical beancounters for outsourcing something you had no clue about".

Melanie Winiger

As Bill Gates said

"Show me the code"

I would like to see it!!!

Oracle staffer accused of sex-for-favours in Singapore

Melanie Winiger

Apologies for Gay reference

Sorry AC:

"Re: Really?

Grow up, Melanie."

I am growing up. I'm in my 30s now:


If you want my autograph, check out my Homepage.

Melanie Winiger


"Ng Boon Gay" - probably not the 3rd one...

HP and SAP: What we need is a MASHED UP cloud

Melanie Winiger

Cloud this, cloud that, been there, done that.

Hybrid cloud, Converged cloud, cloud solutions etc.

Can't we just call it a mainframe with Time Sharing Option? .-)

Euro 2012: England is semi-final probability

Melanie Winiger

Erm, am I allowed to write this?

Has Dr. McHale used any racial factors in his statistical analysis when analysing the English Team?

1,000 Foxconn iPad workers trash dorms in riot against guards

Melanie Winiger

Joke altert

At least they didn't call the Army in.

Hackers expose 6.5 MILLION 'LinkedIn passwords'

Melanie Winiger

Possible problem

If your LinkedIn password is the same as your Paypal, Gmail or Amazon account, you could be in trouble.

But if somone wants to change my photo on my LinkedIn page to Mickey Mouse, not a problem.

Facebook's ONLY failure: Expectations management

Melanie Winiger

Stupid Facebook Revenue Question

Facebook Value?

I use Firefox with Adblocker Version x.

I don't see any adverts at all on Facebook.

So how can Facebook get any revenue from me clicking an Advert when it doesn't exist?

Sure they know my name and Date of Birth, but they won't get me to click on their Adverts because I can't.

The Great Border Agency IT Crash: Just who was responsible?

Melanie Winiger

Almost restored my faith in democracy!


Q153 Chair: What is the company?

Rob Whiteman: I would rather not say.

Q154 Chair: I am sorry, Mr Whiteman; this is a Select Committee of the House-

Rob Whiteman: It is Atos


HP taps VC to run software unit

Melanie Winiger

One rule for some...

Try getting an internal job transfer if you're an ordinary worker.

15 Sharepoints to update

400 e-mails to various exotic Eastern parts of the world

6 simultaneous escalations when nothing is done

Guess the rest....

UPS death in Pulsant data centre knocks out websites

Melanie Winiger

3 little words

"during planned maintenance"

Well, we all have a few bar-room stories there...

Proviso: I'm an old mainframe systems programmer, so naturally biased .-)

Waterstones stores surrender to Amazonian invaders

Melanie Winiger

It's the begining of the end.

Whilst moving house recently, I gave away 00s of books.

I felt sad, but I liken it to ditching my father's old 78rpm records and LPs.

Times are changing and our children won't be reading as much paper as we did.

They will be reading their news on tablets and their favourite books on e-readers.

Now pass me my Horlicks and slippers, I'm going for an afternoon sleep, I'm that old.

Heathrow CIO pledges seamless future with £1.5bn collaborative system

Melanie Winiger

What's that English saying?

"You can't fit a quart into a pint pot".

And that's Heathrow Airport - a pint pot.

We don't run our systems at 99% capacity - because there is no contingency.

You need to run an airport with space for contingency.

All it takes is an aircraft blowing a tyre at LHR and the resultant chaos lasts all day.

US, Australia may share SmartGates

Melanie Winiger

A rather large exaggeration

This claim is hyperbole.

"She also praised the Passenger Name Record (PNR) data program as having helped to prevent thousands of “individuals with potential ties to terrorism” from entering the US."

What does happen daily is that passengers who've forgotten to renew their Green Cards get refused boarding for a flight to the USA. Typical profile: 50+ years of age, lived in USA for years, and "just forgot". In the old days, we would call the Embassy and ask for an exemption. Nowadays, we just offload them.

These are not "individuals with potential ties to terrorism", but I suspect they are being included in the numbers...the days we do find someone suspicious are few and far between. And normally that's just someone with the same name/birthdate as a listed name.

Copyfighters jumpstart MPs' probe into Blighty's IP law

Melanie Winiger

Post deleted

I thought it was "Cockfighters jumpstart MPs"

UK Border Agency servers go titsup, thousands grounded

Melanie Winiger

What changed?

Let me guess at a "Route Cause Analysis":

Software upgrade to record the DNA and urine specifications for non-EU resident Kent Strawberry Pickers Temporary Summer Visas went wrong.

That kind of thing...

Basic instinct: how we used to code

Melanie Winiger

Classy article

310 GOTO 340

It feels "strange" to write that now as if I've gone back in time to an ancient civilisation...

Stray SMS leads to aborted landing

Melanie Winiger

Well handled

I'm biased, but NO OTHER INDUSTRY reports its incidents so openly as the Aviation Industry.

Google for AAIB and see all the UK incidents

If this had been a boat or a bus, you'd never have heard of it.

And if it had been a medical incident, well, the Doctor would have "buried it". Literally...

Well done to the crew for handling it well.