How not to run an online questionnaire



  • The outbound flight on my summer holidays had a large delay, we missed the connecting flight, there were strikes at air control in Madrid, and we had to wait 5 hours in a disorganized queue before we could speak to an airline representative. Ok, that's the WTF called Iberia. But then, once I had returned, I got an email from them asking me to participate in an online questionnaire about customer satisfaction. I was highly motivated, so I filled it in, as honest as I could. Then came the obligatory last page, where they ask if you've got anything else to add. So I started to type up my complaints. First problem, a 255 character limit. Ok, I made it brief. And hit submit. Then this appeared: http://www.box.net/shared/nbvoga89r7 (sorry for the crappy box.net link)

    I was very tempted to add something containing '; drop tables...



  • TRWTF is linking to a transition page that requires Javascript to do the equivalent of <img src="...">. (At least there is the "download" button which is a direct link, though pops up as a save prompt rather than actually display the image.)



    Nice SQL, too. validandoupdate?



  • @lolwtf said:

    TRWTF is linking to a transition page that requires Javascript to do the equivalent of <img src="...">. (At least there is the "download" button which is a direct link, though pops up as a save prompt rather than actually display the image.)



    Nice SQL, too. validandoupdate?
    It uses flash...



  • Please use imgur.com when posting screenshots, its a simple no-nonsense image hosting.

    Also, whats the URL of the online questionaire? I wanna see it.



  • @Shinhan said:

    Also, whats the URL of the online questionaire? I wanna destroy their database.

    FTFY



  • @lolwtf said:

    Nice SQL, too. validandoupdate?
    "validando" is Spanish for "validating", I think. How it got at the start of the query, I don't know.



  • @TGV said:

    I was very tempted to add something containing '; drop tables...

    Do it. It's the only way they'll learn.



  • @Lingerance said:

    [quote user="lolwtf"]TRWTF is linking to a transition page that requires Javascript to do the equivalent of <img src="...">. (At least there is the "download" button which is a direct link, though pops up as a save prompt rather than actually display the image.)



    Nice SQL, too. validandoupdate?
    It uses flash...[/quote]

    Flash is pretty much a subset of JavaScript nowadays. Have you ever seen anyone include it in a page by just using object tags anymore?



  • @MiffTheFox said:

    Flash is pretty much a subset of JavaScript nowadays. Have you ever seen anyone include it in a page by just using object tags anymore?
    A subset?  I believe you mean "dependent upon", which would make it more like a superset.



  • On a related note, has anyone else run into this? I recently had a tech support incident with my cable provider. At the end of the call, the person on the other end said they were going to send me a survey via email, and would I consider filling it out? I said yes, and he then asked, "If you had to rate me on a scale of 1 to 10 for my performance today, how would you rate me?" He had been very hard to understand and didn't seem to know what he was talking about, so I said honestly that I would probably rate him about a 4. He then said, "Please keep in mind that on our scale, a 7 is like a 0."

    I had to stop and ask what the hell he was talking about. He kept saying over and over again that "a seven is a zero." So I said, "So you mean your scale is really -7 to 3, then?" He didn't have any idea what I was talking about. But he wanted to make sure I understood him. He asked, "So can I count on you to give me a 7 or higher?" To which I responded that no, he could not.

    So he wants me to take a survey via email later (which he never sent), but then asks me how I'm going to fill it out now. But then tells me that he lied about the scale it was on. And then insists that I give him a particular score. WTF? Has anyone else run into this?



  • @dcardani said:

    Has anyone else run into this?
    I haven't personally ran into this (probably due to 1. not calling tech support in about 3 years and 2. not being located in the US), but I've heard this from several people (with a few different variations, eg. the scale being 5-point from bad to outstanding, with anything not outstanding actually meaning failure).



  • The real WTF is using MySQL on Windows.



  • @dcardani said:

    On a related note, has anyone else run into this? I recently had a tech support incident with my cable provider. At the end of the call, the person on the other end said they were going to send me a survey via email, and would I consider filling it out? I said yes, and he then asked, "If you had to rate me on a scale of 1 to 10 for my performance today, how would you rate me?" He had been very hard to understand and didn't seem to know what he was talking about, so I said honestly that I would probably rate him about a 4. He then said, "Please keep in mind that on our scale, a 7 is like a 0."

    I had to stop and ask what the hell he was talking about. He kept saying over and over again that "a seven is a zero." So I said, "So you mean your scale is really -7 to 3, then?" He didn't have any idea what I was talking about. But he wanted to make sure I understood him. He asked, "So can I count on you to give me a 7 or higher?" To which I responded that no, he could not.

    So he wants me to take a survey via email later (which he never sent), but then asks me how I'm going to fill it out now. But then tells me that he lied about the scale it was on. And then insists that I give him a particular score. WTF? Has anyone else run into this?

    His compensation is tied to the scores he gets, therefore he will do anything to make them higher.  I worked in training for a long time a while back and we found that it was pretty easy to severely influence scores with a few simple sentences.  It turned out that an individual's scores were more closely correlated to his skill in manipulating the evaluation than his actual performance.  We finally decided that you can either get honest feedback or make it count towards compensation, but not both.  The funny thing is that we chose to make it count towards compensation instead of preserving good feedback.  Apparently a manager's job is much easier when they simply run a few statistics instead of actually evaluating their employees.


  • @Shortjob said:

    The real WTF is using MySQL on Windows.

    As opposed to paying out the ass for a SQL Server license?



  • @toth said:

    @Shortjob said:
    The real WTF is using MySQL on Windows.
    As opposed to paying out the ass for a SQL Server license?

    Even the free, as in no cost version of SQL Server is better than MySQL



  • @serguey123 said:

    @toth said:

    @Shortjob said:
    The real WTF is using MySQL on Windows.
    As opposed to paying out the ass for a SQL Server license?

    Even the free, as in no cost version of SQL Server is better than MySQL

    Ok, I admit I know next to nothing about the differences between the various DBMSes--I've used SQL Server for work and MySQL for personal development projects. What exactly is the WTF about MySQL? Well, okay, I admit I was surprised to learn that only the InnoDB engine (I believe) supports foreign keys, which is a pretty big WTF...



  • @dcardani said:

    So he wants me to take a survey via email later (which he never sent), but then asks me how I'm going to fill it out now.

    This is called a "survey prep", and I'm pretty sure it's absolutely forbidden by his employer.  I work for a callcenter company, and if anyone did that here they'd be fired pretty damn quick.
    The only thing more forbidden than a "survey prep" is a survey not actually filled in by the customer but a co-worker does it, or you do it yoursefl, which will get you fired upon it being discovered, no exceptions.

    Why?  Because oftentimes salary (or at least some part of it, call it a "bonus") is based on survey returns.  The reason you never got the survey is because he didn't want you to drag his average down.

    @dcardani said:

     

    WTF? Has anyone else run into this?

     

    Only about every single day...  If I could get away with murder, I have a few candidates.

    @dcardani said:

    "Please keep in mind that on our scale, a 7 is like a 0."

    Usually it's a "B5T2" system, where the bottom 5 are "poor" and the top 2 are "good".
    That means 0-5 = "YOU SUCK!", 5-8 = "C'mon, do it right, plx" and 9-10 = "Nice jorb there, Homestar"

    Of course, I have no idea how they operate, it just seems to be an unofficial trade standard for callcenters. Generally speaking, yeah, a 7 wold be enough to get you by without being yelled at, but a 6 might earn you a little slap on the wrist if you accumulate a lot of them.

    Oh boy, I'm so happy have absolutely nothing to do with that crap any more.  I just keep my head down, write my software and try not to get too involved in office politics.



  • @toth said:

    @serguey123 said:

    @toth said:

    @Shortjob said:
    The real WTF is using MySQL on Windows.
    As opposed to paying out the ass for a SQL Server license?

    Even the free, as in no cost version of SQL Server is better than MySQL

    Ok, I admit I know next to nothing about the differences between the various DBMSes--I've used SQL Server for work and MySQL for personal development projects. What exactly is the WTF about MySQL? Well, okay, I admit I was surprised to learn that only the InnoDB engine (I believe) supports foreign keys, which is a pretty big WTF...

    You kind of answered that on your own, also read the articles by our kind overlord, Alex



  • @serguey123 said:

    [quote user="toth"][quote user="serguey123"]

    [quote user="toth"][quote user="Shortjob"]The real WTF is using MySQL on Windows.

    As opposed to paying out the ass for a SQL Server license?[/quote]

    Even the free, as in no cost version of SQL Server is better than MySQL

    [/quote] Ok, I admit I know next to nothing about the differences between the various DBMSes--I've used SQL Server for work and MySQL for personal development projects. What exactly is the WTF about MySQL? Well, okay, I admit I was surprised to learn that only the InnoDB engine (I believe) supports foreign keys, which is a pretty big WTF...[/quote]

    You kind of answered that on your own, also read the articles by our kind overlord, Alex

    [/quote]

    Ah, I remember my first encounter with MySQL...

    Upon first look: "Oh, this problem is easy to fix, just add an ON DELETE CASCADE."

    Months later on a different project with a different database backend: "Referential integrity? What a fantastic new idea!"



  • @serguey123 said:

    @toth said:

    @serguey123 said:

    @toth said:

    @Shortjob said:
    The real WTF is using MySQL on Windows.
    As opposed to paying out the ass for a SQL Server license?

    Even the free, as in no cost version of SQL Server is better than MySQL

    Ok, I admit I know next to nothing about the differences between the various DBMSes--I've used SQL Server for work and MySQL for personal development projects. What exactly is the WTF about MySQL? Well, okay, I admit I was surprised to learn that only the InnoDB engine (I believe) supports foreign keys, which is a pretty big WTF...

    You kind of answered that on your own, also read the articles by our kind overlord, Alex

    Yeah, I just Googled some more about it, and holy shit, I didn't realize it was so bad. So far, my uses have been quite simple, so I guess that's why I've missed many of them.

    So is PostGre better?



  • @toth said:

    @serguey123 said:

    @toth said:

    @Shortjob said:
    The real WTF is using MySQL on Windows.
    As opposed to paying out the ass for a SQL Server license?

    Even the free, as in no cost version of SQL Server is better than MySQL

    Ok, I admit I know next to nothing about the differences between the various DBMSes--I've used SQL Server for work and MySQL for personal development projects. What exactly is the WTF about MySQL? Well, okay, I admit I was surprised to learn that only the InnoDB engine (I believe) supports foreign keys, which is a pretty big WTF...

    MySQL is actually tons better than it used to be. Of course, it used to be a complete piece of trash. It's still WTF-y, but not really any more than any other DB server.

    The weird part is that it became the "go-to" database for websites when it was a complete piece of trash... I have no idea how that happened.



  • @toth said:

    Yeah, I just Googled some more about it, and holy shit, I didn't realize it was so bad. So far, my uses have been quite simple, so I guess that's why I've missed many of them.

    So is PostGre better?

    I don't use PostGre myself so I can't make an informed opinion, as blakey pointed out they have made a lot of improvement to all db system, read this link with that in mind as is circa 2008 but is hilarious as well as informative, the comments are great and some are from 2010, also there is a link there to a wiki comparing MySQL and PostGre.

    I think is valid as is comparing the system as they were in that instant of time but it has a lot of comedic effect as well

    I don't know why people would use MySQL at that time, not that I would like to use it know.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    The weird part is that it became the "go-to" database for websites when it was a complete piece of trash... I have no idea how that happened.
     

    The price tag may have had something to do with it.



  • @Someone You Know said:

    @blakeyrat said:

    The weird part is that it became the "go-to" database for websites when it was a complete piece of trash... I have no idea how that happened.
     

    The price tag may have had something to do with it.

    I have said it before and I'll say it again, the no cost version of MS SQL Server is/was better than MySQL.



  • @serguey123 said:

    @Someone You Know said:

    @blakeyrat said:

    The weird part is that it became the "go-to" database for websites when it was a complete piece of trash... I have no idea how that happened.
     

    The price tag may have had something to do with it.

    I have said it before and I'll say it again, the no cost version of MS SQL Server is/was better than MySQL.

    To be fair, the no-cost version of MS SQL Server didn't exist in the timeframe I'm talking about. (When platforms like Joomla, WordPress, etc were getting started.)

    But Firebird and PostGRE SQL were both around at the time, and neither of them gained any traction, despite being vastly superior to MySQL. Obviously, once MySQL gained the traction, it got shoved on low-cost hosting providers like Dreamhost and Pair, and snowballed to popularity. What I don't get is why those PHP dev teams picked MySQL in the first place.



  • MySQL scales "down" way better. As in, for a tiny toy database, even Postgres (Not "Postgre", btw), not too mention SQLEXPRESS has quite a large overhead in terms of system resources used.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    The weird part is that it became the "go-to" database for websites when it was a complete piece of trash... I have no idea how that happened.
    I have a feeling PHP might have something to do with it, but don't ask me to explain it.



  • @Zecc said:

    @blakeyrat said:

    The weird part is that it became the "go-to" database for websites when it was a complete piece of trash... I have no idea how that happened.
    I have a feeling PHP might have something to do with it, but don't ask me to explain it.

    So the root of all evil is PHP?, who would have thought?



  • @serguey123 said:

    So the root of all evil is PHP?, who would have thought?
    Nah, that's a bit out of context. Truthfully, what the good book really says, is that the love of PHP is the root of all evil.

    Therefore, it's totally okay to use PHP as long as you hate it.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    @serguey123 said:

    @Someone You Know said:

    @blakeyrat said:

    The weird part is that it became the "go-to" database for websites when it was a complete piece of trash... I have no idea how that happened.
     

    The price tag may have had something to do with it.

    I have said it before and I'll say it again, the no cost version of MS SQL Server is/was better than MySQL.

    To be fair, the no-cost version of MS SQL Server didn't exist in the timeframe I'm talking about. (When platforms like Joomla, WordPress, etc were getting started.)
    The no-cost version of MS SQL predates Joomla and WordPress by five years.  The fact that it only runs on Windows is the primary reason open source projects avoid it.


  • @Jaime said:

    The no-cost version of MS SQL predates Joomla and WordPress by five years.  The fact that it only runs on Windows is the primary reason open source projects avoid it.
    Or, less pejoratively, can't use it.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    MySQL is actually tons better than it used to be. Of course, it used to be a complete piece of trash. It's still WTF-y, but not really any more than any other DB server.

    The weird part is that it became the "go-to" database for websites when it was a complete piece of trash... I have no idea how that happened.

    It's very simple: in an environment where SELECT statements vastly outnumber INSERT or UPDATE statements, and referential integrity can easily be enforced at the application level (ie. a BBS or CMS), it is by far the fastest database around. For its intended purpose of being a storage backend for a low-complexity website, it's never been a piece of trash. It only becomes a WTF if you try to use it for something else.


  • @Carnildo said:

    @blakeyrat said:
    MySQL is actually tons better than it used to be. Of course, it used to be a complete piece of trash. It's still WTF-y, but not really any more than any other DB server.

    The weird part is that it became the "go-to" database for websites when it was a complete piece of trash... I have no idea how that happened.

    It's very simple: in an environment where SELECT statements vastly outnumber INSERT or UPDATE statements, and referential integrity can easily be enforced at the application level (ie. a BBS or CMS), it is by far the fastest database around. For its intended purpose of being a storage backend for a low-complexity website, it's never been a piece of trash. It only becomes a WTF if you try to use it for something else.
    Then why doesn't it dominate TCP-H [url=http://www.tpc.org/tpch/results/tpch_price_perf_results.asp]benchmark results[/url]?  Ten years ago Microsoft SQL Server owned all of the top ten slots in price for performance, MySQL has only recently started to show up at all.  It's always interesting when a $6000.00 per processor database product beats a free one in price/performance.  The current #1 slot shows that if you have $35,000.00, you are better off spending $12,000.00 on software and $23,000.00 on hardware than running MySQL on $35,000.00 worth of hardware.  The number three slot shows that MySQL on $35,000.00 worth of hardware gets you 70% of the performance of the equivalent cost SQL Server solution.  This is a pure desicion support benchmark, all SELECTs.


  • @Jaime said:

    It's always interesting when a $6000.00 per processor database product beats a free one in price/performance.  The current #1 slot shows that if you have $35,000.00, you are better off spending $12,000.00 on software and $23,000.00 on hardware than running MySQL on $35,000.00 worth of hardware.  The number three slot shows that MySQL on $35,000.00 worth of hardware gets you 70% of the performance of the equivalent cost SQL Server solution.  This is a pure desicion support benchmark, all SELECTs.

    But if you have $0.00 budget, you can use only free stuff. Of free stuff, Postgres is most powerful, but most annoying to use, and having a noticeable "minimal hardware requirement" in terms of RAM use and disk needs. Then you have MySQL, that can be made to run in 64MB of RAM, and provides relatively decent functionality. And if all you have is your grandpa's 286... guess SQLite it is?



  • @bannedfromcoding said:

    But if you have $0.00 budget, you can use only free stuff.

    Where do you get your free hardware? And your free hosting? And your free time?

    BTW: been there, done that; in my case the answers were existing PC, not, and less and less.



  • @b-redeker said:

    @bannedfromcoding said:

    But if you have $0.00 budget, you can use only free stuff.

    Where do you get your free hardware? And your free hosting? And your free time?

    BTW: been there, done that; in my case the answers were existing PC, not, and less and less.

    The trick to free hardware is to abuse your position as "default family tech support."  If you're not secretly hosting CoD games on your grandmother's PC, you're not using the resources available to you.



  • @HighlyPaidContractor said:

     If you're not secretly hosting CoD games on your grandmother's PC, you're not using the resources available to you.

    This would would be a neat trick, seeing as she passed away 15 years ago. But I like your thinking.



  • @b-redeker said:

    @HighlyPaidContractor said:

     If you're not secretly hosting CoD games on your grandmother's PC, you're not using the resources available to you.

    This would would be a neat trick, seeing as she passed away 15 years ago. But I like your thinking.

    My condolences.  My grandmother died when I was 10.  The remaining one, however, teaches computer classes at the local JCC.  She likes to keep her hardware current, even if all she uses it for is email and organizing her recipes.

    I'd be lying if I said I didn't once have a set of Counter-Strike servers running on a client's hardware.  Hook it up to the network monitor, and you even have someone rebooting it for you when it fails.


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