Tickets of fail.



  • As an employee of a company generally referred to as Big Green (or so one of the presentations I attended called it due to our "greenness", we actually go by a different primary colour) we get to use the "high-quality" enterprise level software that vendors once independent of us produced, and now we continue to produce the absolute joy they are. I could talk about the database client (flower pad!) that pretends to do email and most users erroneously presume it's actually an email client, until they use it, but I'll talk about our super-duper friendly and bug free ticketing system instead.

    Now when you initially create a ticket in the system (Ilovit Desk Help) there are some required fields, like the ID of the user calling (which is different from the user that created the ticket, myself or my co-workers, for example) and their last name which is auto-filled in if you press tab after you fill the ID in (this much is at least sane). However, some of our users tend to forget that ID (since they don't use it much) and so we use their last name instead, which won't fill the ID field if you tab out, instead you have to hit enter which actually tells IDH to send the ticket out, but fails because it's missing other fields.

    Another set of required fields are 5 drop-down menus, each populated by the previous (and the first by the user ID). IDH actually has a very good memory and will keenly refuse to forget the contents of these menus after such tasking events, like filling in the description of the ticket, adding a note, looking up the user's data and so forth. However, refilling the information in these fields is not that difficult, they (like most other applications with drop down menus) will select the item that matches whatever you're typing in the field. Which greatly speeds up having to fill that information once over the course of the ticket. The administrators being the kind folk they also decided to prefix all these entires, meaning you get to type in the prefix that is shared by all the entires from each section. Example:

    Possible entries for:

    1: [***-application, ***-software, ***-hardware, ***-operation, ***-etc]

    2: [application_A_to_M, application_N_to_Z] [other, software_A_to_M, software_N_to_Z] [other, network_sw, network_hw], ...

    3: (for software_A_to_M) MS_WIN_2000, MS_WIN_95, MS_WIN_98, MS_WIN_98e, MS_WINDOWS_NT, MS_WINDOWS_3_11, MS_WINDOWS_XP

    (I forgot to mention, they're also very consistent with the naming convention)

    In case you haven't quite grasped what those fields are for, it's so they know what the ticket is for. Like if it's a phone issue: Network > network software > phone (desk phones) --or-- Hardware > handheld > handheld.

    Also, every note we add (other than the description) may have a special marker attached to it, which can perform different functions, like pending_begin to mark that we're passing it off to a different company, so out billing clock should be stopped. These are all prefixed in a nice drop-down menu, we only use about 3 of the 80 or so available though.

    Now on to the wonderful Web 1+1/2.-30 interface (it's powered by frames and violates REST), which is actually called ManageLater or ChangeLater, or HelpLater depending on which version of the interface you're using. The differences between those interfaces is beyond the scope of this document. Mostly since we use IDH I haven't much to say about ManageLater. Except for the fact that it will lock after every action for (10 to 300) seconds, unless you click this one button and accidentally close the window it makes, then it locks forever and you have to use IDH to unlock it. Since all the resolvers use ManagerLater we occasionally get calls to unlock a ticket for them. You can also cause the ticket to go "boo-boo!" if you do something not-supported like use the browser's back, forward, home, refresh or stop buttons.

    Thus concludes my brief overview of out wonderful ticketing system produced by our benevolent Big Green Tabulating International Corp. This message has intentionally be left unblank. Sorry for the inconvenience, but we have run out of orange ink, black will have to make due.



  • @Lingerance said:

    As an employee of a company generally referred to as Big Green

    You got a job with the Jolly Green Giant?  O_o

     

    Well, anyway, congrats on getting a job!

     

    Most ticketing systems suck horribly.  In fact, I don't know that I've encountered one that didn't suffer from some series of horrible design flaws which can only be blamed on very low-quality LSD.  I don't even bother counting shit like violating REST, using Javascript in the most torturous way possible or ignoring every convention of the web, such as the back button or bookmarks or the ability to open multiple tabs or...



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    @Lingerance said:

    As an employee of a company generally referred to as Big Green

    You got a job with the Jolly Green Giant?  O_o

     

     No, IBM or "big blue:"

     

    or so one of the presentations I attended called it due to our "greenness", we actually go by a different primary colour

     



  • You got a job with Big Red?  I love that chewing gum!

     



  • @WhiskeyJack said:

    You got a job with Big Red?  I love that chewing gum!

    Eww, not me!  It tastes like cinnamon and pain.

     

    Besides, Big Red isn't a Canadian company.  No, I bet it's something like "Big Pink" (T-mobile?)....  wait, isn't "Big Brown" a nickname for UPS?  They have lots of international operations, so they would definitely have offices in Canada. 



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    @WhiskeyJack said:

    You got a job with Big Red?  I love that chewing gum!

    Eww, not me!  It tastes like cinnamon and pain.

     

    Besides, Big Red isn't a Canadian company.  No, I bet it's something like "Big Pink" (T-mobile?)....  wait, isn't "Big Brown" a nickname for UPS?  They have lots of international operations, so they would definitely have offices in Canada. 

    Firstly, T-mobile is magenta, not pink. They're quite protective of their color and we dont want a T-* employee to stumble across this thread and start to cry.

    Secondly... Since when are pink and brown primary colors?


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @j6cubic said:

    Secondly... Since when are pink and brown primary colors?

     For that matter, since when is green?



  • @Weng said:

    @j6cubic said:

    Secondly... Since when are pink and brown primary colors?

     For that matter, since when is green?

     

    Since Newton's prism experiments? 



  • @Weng said:

    @j6cubic said:

    Secondly... Since when are pink and brown primary colors?

    For that matter, since when is green?

    Green is a primary color, fool.  It's yellow that is the fraud! 



  • @j6cubic said:

    Firstly, T-mobile is magenta, not pink.

    You know, you know an awful lot about pink for someone who claims it was just an accident from a red shirt getting mixed in with the whites...

     

    @j6cubic said:

    Since when are pink and brown primary colors?

    Primary colors are a principle the biological specimen observing the light, not of light itself.  I assume that since the OP was Canadian he must have different color receptors than humans and from that I extrapolated to pink and brown.



  • @Weng said:

    @j6cubic said:

    Secondly... Since when are pink and brown primary colors?

     For that matter, since when is green?

    I admit, you got me there... But then again, I already admitted that in my tag. What's a primary color depends on the color space. In the RGB color space, red green and blue are the primary colors. In CMYK, they obviously aren't. If we loo at the real world (or take something like XYZ as our color space), primary colors are entirely things of definition. If I can use a set of colors to describe a useful range of derived colors by mixing, the colors I chose are primary colors for my model.

    For example, RYB (red/yellow/blue) is one old set of primary colors even though RYB can't be used to describe all colors. It has since been superseded by RGB (additive) and CMY (substractive), the latter of which has been refined into CMYK when it turned out that evenly mixing cyan, magenta and yellow does not result in black, at least not when printing. The there's another model that uses four primary colors: Red, green, blue and yellow.

    In the end it boils down to what you're used to working with. The notion of yellow being a primary color will be more familiar to someone working with print media or traditional art than to someone working with, say, CSS. And in the end everyone's right: What's a primary color and what's not depends entirely on color space and definition. If you really want to work with it you can certainly use brown, orange and pink as primary colors for your color model. It's not going to be a particulary versatile model but it's entirely possible.

    I think in the interest of serving common usage we should agree on RGBY as the "usual" primary colors and admit that Lingerance might also work for Big Yellow.



  •  Let this thread stand as stark testament to what happens when someone tries to pack a WTF with so much cutesy fluff that you can barely even tell what it's supposed to be about.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    @j6cubic said:

    Firstly, T-mobile is magenta, not pink.

    You know, you know an awful lot about pink for someone who claims it was just an accident from a red shirt getting mixed in with the whites...

    I know an awful lot about the Deutsche Telekom AG and their T-baggery. Ugh, sometimes I wish I knew less about that company and their favourite color.

    Also, everyone knows that redshirts don't make things pink, they make bloody heaps on the floor.



  • @j6cubic said:

    I know an awful lot about the Deutsche Telekom AG and their T-baggery. Ugh, sometimes I wish I knew less about that company and their favourite color.

    Care to share?  I have been considering switching to T-mobile recently as they seem like the best GSM provider in the US.  Would AT&T really be better?  T-mobile seems to have very good data plans and good service (so long as you are in a metro area). 



  • @Zylon said:

    Let this thread stand as stark testament to what happens when someone tries to pack a WTF with so much cutesy fluff that you can barely even tell what it's supposed to be about.

    I think it's more that it was "another ticket WTF".  Not that it was bad by any means, but most of us have heard several ticket WTFs here and probably experienced a few in our day, so we all latched on to the cutesy bits and had fun with it.  I don't think there's anything wrong with that, really.  One of the cool places about the forums is that you never know where a thread will end up, and so long as it is flamebaiting or namecalling it's usually good. 



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    @j6cubic said:

    I know an awful lot about the Deutsche Telekom AG and their T-baggery. Ugh, sometimes I wish I knew less about that company and their favourite color.

    Care to share?  I have been considering switching to T-mobile recently as they seem like the best GSM provider in the US.  Would AT&T really be better?  T-mobile seems to have very good data plans and good service (so long as you are in a metro area). 

    Not much that would be useful for you; I'm from Germany and the German telco market is much more competitive and thus very much different from the American one*.

    Essentially they have a color mark on their shade of magenta and will holler if they perceive a company using a similar color as remotely competitive. It's well within their rights but has earned them a some bad PR. You might remember that this April Engadget got in a pissing match with
    them over the color. That's just about average for them: Some mobile
    phone site uses magenta, DTAG gets on their case, the website uses
    some other color and DTAG is happy.

    DTAG is also fiercely protective of the "T-" prefix; when the internet really took off in Germany they forced several sites with names like "T-Beutel" ("T-bag"; a site about tea, IIRC) off the net because they felt it was too close to their corporate identity.

    In short they're mostly an average telco (apart from being the biggest one in Germany – when the German telephone network was privatised they inherited it) but they're extremely protective of their corporate identity. Successfully, I might add; both their color and the "T-" prefix make most Germans think "this is a Telekom product".

     

    * An average German entry-level plan would look like that (numbers from E-Plus Zehnsation Web plan): 0.10 €/min to all networks, 10 €/month base price, 25 € up-front price, 50 free SMS/month; data 0,0586 € per 10 kB. Incoming calls and SMS are free, as with every plan.
    Of course there are other plans for different needs; I go with a prepaid plan with 0.09 €/min or SMS everywhere but expensive data (guess what I don't use) and there's even one with similar rated where you get ten free music downloads per month. 60 €/month buy you a flatrate.



  • @j6cubic said:

    You might remember that this April Engadget got in a pissing match with
    them over the color.

    Ah, okay, I remember that.  Figured it was just stupid lawyers being stupid lawyers.

     

    @j6cubic said:

    An average German entry-level plan would look like that (numbers from E-Plus Zehnsation Web plan): 0.10 €/min to all networks, 10 €/month base price, 25 € up-front price, 50 free SMS/month; data 0,0586 € per 10 kB. Incoming calls and SMS are free, as with every plan.
    Of course there are other plans for different needs; I go with a prepaid plan with 0.09 €/min or SMS everywhere but expensive data (guess what I don't use) and there's even one with similar rated where you get ten free music downloads per month. 60 €/month buy you a flatrate.

    Right now I have Verizon Wireless and pay $80 /month for unlimited SMS/MMS, unlimited calls to other Verizon Wireless customers, unlimited night and weekend calls to any number in the US and 900 "anytime" minutes.  Verizon has a great network and great 3G service, but they have a standardized firmware package they load on all of their phones which really sucks.  Also, since they are CDMA their selection of phones tends to be restricted.

     

    On T-mobile $80 /month would probably buy unlimited SMS/MMS, unlimited calls to my 5 most-called numbers, unlimited night and weekend calls to any US number and 500 "anytime" minutes, so it's not really any more competitive than Verizon, and T-mobile has less nationwide coverage than VZW.  Incoming minutes are billed by mobile companies in the US which is a mixed blessing --  one nice side effect of having incoming minutes billed by mobile
    carriers is that telemarketers are prohibited from calling you.  My family is all on VZW and with me on it all calls are free.  However, if I switch to T-mobile they will be billed for calling me since it is non-VZW but I won't be billed for calling them since they will be in my "top 5" most-called numbers.  I mostly talk to them on nights and weekends, though, so it's not likely to be a problem.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    Right now I have Verizon Wireless and pay $80 /month for unlimited SMS/MMS, unlimited calls to other Verizon Wireless customers, unlimited night and weekend calls to any number in the US and 900 "anytime" minutes.  Verizon has a great network and great 3G service, but they have a standardized firmware package they load on all of their phones which really sucks.  Also, since they are CDMA their selection of phones tends to be restricted.
    I know I've mentioned a few things in the channel, but I have T-Mobile and I pay just under $50/month (including a corporate discount) for 300 minutes, 400 texts, unlimited minutes to my faves, unlimited nights and weekends, and unlimited internet (that's only $6/month), but the internet is slow as shit and I have a crappy phone browser.  If you want massive amounts of minutes for pretty much nothing, I found T-Mobile was the way to go, but I didn't investigate Verizon or Sprint because I wanted GSM (T-Mobile, AT&T, Cincinnati Bell).

    The strength of each network is going to vary from city to city.  Consumer Reports did an investigation a couple of years ago, and I'm sure Boston was on the list, though Cincinnati wasn't.  They found Verizon to be the best overall nationwide, followed by Alltel, T-Mobile, Sprint, and AT&T in that order.  Look in the second half of 2006, though I'm sure the data is ancient by now.

    AT&T was Cingular at the time, I believe.



  • @belgariontheking said:

    The strength of each network is going to vary from city to city.  Consumer Reports did an investigation a couple of years ago, and I'm sure Boston was on the list, though Cincinnati wasn't.  They found Verizon to be the best overall nationwide, followed by Alltel, T-Mobile, Sprint, and AT&T in that order.  Look in the second half of 2006, though I'm sure the data is ancient by now.

    AT&T was Cingular at the time, I believe.

    In my experience, Verizon has the best network, period.  I've been all over the US and the only places I didn't have a great signal were very remote or dead zones like in a valley.  I have never had a dropped call due to the Verizon network (any dropped calls I have ever had have been because of crappy PBXes in corporate call centers).  Before Verizon I had a local CDMA carrier that was bought out by Alltel and their coverage was decent, but I was shocked at how much better Verizon was.  Of course, Verizon owns Alltel now so that only means better service for Verizon and former Alltel customers as the networks are integrated.  I've heard some horror stories about AT&T and have been wary of going with them.

     

    From people I've talked to about T-mobile, the service is excellent in metro areas and their 3G is fast, although it's even more restricted in where it works than their 2G.  My family lives in the somewhat rural Midwest and from the looks of it I would have mediocre-to-no service there, but I'm only there two or three weeks a year and it seems like the service is still good enough for my needs.  I really would prefer sticking with VZW because their network is great.  They've announced plans to allow non-Verizon phones onto their network, but who knows when that will go into effect.  And even if it does, the choice of CDMA phones is rather mediocre, compared to GSM.  CDMA is mostly a US-only standard and the only two nationwide service carriers are Verizon and Sprint, the latter of which is headed for complete bankruptcy.  That means you aren't going to have much choice in non-Verizon CDMA phones, anyway.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    Incoming minutes are billed by mobile companies in the US which is a mixed blessing --  one nice side effect of having incoming minutes billed by mobile
    carriers is that telemarketers are prohibited from calling you.

    I think they aren't in Germany but I never heard of anyone getting called by one on the mobile. Might have to do with the fact that people are only going to have time for a sales talk when they're at home – and then they can use the home number anyway. Also, landline-to-mobile is usually more expensive than landline-to-landline (home plans, of course; don't know how it's for business clients).

    Not having to pay for incoming is very useful to homeless people – a cheap mobile with a prepaid card can go a long way and you are much more likely to get at least some kind of job when you have a phone number. Regular unemployed people profit, as well, since even with regular plans they can still receive calls for a while (usually one month) even when defaulting on their payments.

     

    As for the thread going off topic: So? It's an interesting discussion. An interesting OT thread is worth ten on-topic threads that never made it past ten replies.



  • @j6cubic said:

    Might have to do with the fact that people are only going to have time for a sales talk when they're at home – and then they can use the home number anyway.

    It's more and more common in the US to not have a landline.  Personally, I have never had landline phone service, only cellular.   I think something like half of people now only have cell service, but don't quote me on that.

     

    @j6cubic said:

    Also, landline-to-mobile is usually more expensive than landline-to-landline (home plans, of course; don't know how it's for business clients).

    That's a bit odd, although it might be the same case in the US (just not so straightforward).  Landline billing in the US typically has 3 parts: local, inter-exchange and long distance.  Inter-exchange may be the rate used for calling a local cellular number from a landline, depending on the carriers involved.  Non-local billing in the US is actually quite a complex fuckaree, so there may be more involved than just this.

     

    @j6cubic said:

    Not having to pay for incoming is very useful to homeless people – a cheap mobile with a prepaid card can go a long way and you are much more likely to get at least some kind of job when you have a phone number.

    The homeless people who sit on the sidewalk in front of my building begging for change and trying to sell "oxycontin" pills that look suspiciously like Advil are frequently talking on the cellphone.  The best, though, had to be the couple of homeless people sitting around a laptop listening to iTunes.



  • @WhiskeyJack said:

    You got a job with Big Red?  I love that chewing gum!

     


    Personally I prefer Big Pink. It's the only gum with the breath-freshening power of ham.


  •  @morbiuswilters said:

    @j6cubic said:

    Might have to do with the fact that people are only going to have time for a sales talk when they're at home – and then they can use the home number anyway.

    It's more and more common in the US to not have a landline.  Personally, I have never had landline phone service, only cellular.   I think something like half of people now only have cell service, but don't quote me on that.

     

    It's more and more common in the Netherlands too, but most people I know want an ADSL internet connection, so that's why they have a landline. Cable internet most often means that the person doesn't have a landline because cellular is cheaper.

    @j6cubic said:

    Also, landline-to-mobile is usually more expensive than landline-to-landline (home plans, of course; don't know how it's for business clients).

    That's a bit odd, although it might be the same case in the US (just not so straightforward).  Landline billing in the US typically has 3 parts: local, inter-exchange and long distance.  Inter-exchange may be the rate used for calling a local cellular number from a landline, depending on the carriers involved.  Non-local billing in the US is actually quite a complex fuckaree, so there may be more involved than just this.

     

    Might have something to do with the free incoming calls in Europe. It might also have something to do with the size of the US: remember that the US has the scale of Europe, and calling between european countries is way too expensive (with Vodaphone I pay 1 euro starting costs on all calls in a foreign country, and that doesn't go on my 'free' minutes). Calling to mobile phones is a bit cheaper than 'long-distance' (EU-EU country).


    @j6cubic said:

    Not having to pay for incoming is very useful to homeless people – a cheap mobile with a prepaid card can go a long way and you are much more likely to get at least some kind of job when you have a phone number.

    The homeless people who sit on the sidewalk in front of my building begging for change and trying to sell "oxycontin" pills that look suspiciously like Advil are frequently talking on the cellphone.  The best, though, had to be the couple of homeless people sitting around a laptop listening to iTunes.

    I remember the 'homeless' guy that used to limp with his leg on the train station, and walking perfectly normal otherwise. And the overheard phone conversation that he got 300 euro's a day!.


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