Is probably leaning back in his chair right now, muttering "yes, we have now arrived, geneticists have finally agreed that Microsoft is superior to even genetics."
2204 posts • joined 26 Jul 2007
I'm sure that had a store in Covent Garden.
I think round about the time of Escom. Ha, Escom opened shops everywhere, thinking that people would continue to buy from them, even though the prices started to head northwards. Escom were indelibly engraved in my memory when I had to explain to a client (still a client to this day!) that the UART's they used in their hardware were different to those of other companies, which is one of those non-visible consequences of buying cheap. This was to do with faxing from a program which worked on other pc's, but not on Escom's. I had some fantastic diagnostic tools in those days which could (among other delights) display Post Codes when you stuck the board into a PCI slot.
Instead of testing the overall program as a "black box" to see whether it works, one writes code to test - if necessary - every single line of the code to make sure every line works as it should.
Simple example: Let's say I increment a counter every time an event occurs:-
i := i + 1;
If that counter exceeds the maximum allowed for that value, and i wraps-around then - well, the "black box" may still work, but there is an error in there which might only occur once every 248 days*. How do you test for that? Line-by-line analysis is easy, you ask the question: this line of code I've written, how can it fail?
Sometimes no fault is discernable, the code may go all around the houses, visiting every possible value before spitting out the correct value. Profiling the code will determine whether the counter has been simply incremented, or whether it was (say) decremented right through the entire integer range (with errors swallowed) to rest on the value above what it was last set to. There may never ever be an error, but the program spends a hell of a long time "thinking" before spitting out a result.
* I believe Boeing have a problem that manifests itself after that time period. Ok my explanation may be simplistic, but these kind of glitches are often as a result of something simple that someone has obverlooked.
Even that is contentious. Is it possible for the software to filter the list shown on the screen? How do you prove the list shown on the screen has not been filtered?
Plus not everyone will know to scroll down: Does the user interface enforce the entire list to be viewed before selection is allowed?
If the "Select" button doesn't function (which could be due to the software having been programmed with an ulterior motive in mind) then the voter's right of privacy is destroyed by the need to call someone to point out the problem with their Vote plainly visible on the screen.
Pencil And Paper Is The Only Option.
Cloud marketing implies you can lay-off all those well-qualified IT staff clogging up the Overheads on the company's annual figures.
Contrary to this, companies still need their IT staff.
However, whether they will be inclined to work in an administrative, rather than a technical capacity is another matter. Having to spend hours dealing with reset password requests is not my idea of a fullfilling day's work.
The 365 in Microsoft's product naming has been widely discussed.
But hang on a minute.
Is "Office" really the correct name for it?
In the New Normal shouldn't it be called Home xxx?
Microsoft can then at least claim that the 365 represents the number of days you should be spending at home, self-isolating.
Whoops, I'm guilty.
It's the lesser of other evils though, such as removing an earth pin from another plug and sticking that in, or using a screwdriver.
I've always regarded MK as the "bellwether" for mains electrical stuff - if they do something "then it must be ok".
(Reminds me of an advert of theirs they used to run in electrician's magazines which showed a big pile of discarded MK packaging in a corner. The slogan was "you can tell the quality of an electrician by the mess they make").
Reminds me of when I was working for the Signals Computing department of London Underground.
One day we had a delivery of stationery, which we chucked in the stationery cupboard without any further thought. A while later, someone opened the box to find that it was pre-printed cheques. They were intended for the Payrolls department.
Actually, security was pretty tight in our building. One day there was a bit of a queue to get in. A rather irate guy was arguing with the security guard on the door. "I cannot let you in as you don't have the correct pass, I'm going to have to report you to the building manager", to which the reply was "b b but I AM the building manager".
Email? Oh yes, this is about email. I liked Groupwise. You did however have to watch out for how ISDN was configured for these systems though as repeatedly dropping and picking up the line to process emails could be costly. Once an ISDN line is up it should be kept up for the minimum charging period.
Moved on to becoming a dealer for Mdaemon which addresses most of the issues others are including in this thread.
A lot of people say that the stuff they learned at school in maths is not real-worldly useful.
Many years ago I was approached by a well-known manufacturer of lock devices to supply them with a database which allocated and documented lock combinations to customers. Some combinations were not possible due to the holes weakening the lock. Historically they worked this out by trial and [expensive] error, but a quick pre-process using a bit of Pythagoras solved their problem automatically.
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