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IT Calls of Shame

mr_spatula Re:Designed to fail (256 comments)

Ah yes, "My Computer." One of the best things MS ever did for support folk was to eliminate the "My" from that.

I remember I had a habit of saying things like "now go into my computer" -- which would be followed by "How in the hell am I suppose to get into YOUR computer?"

I learned very quickly to say "Double click on the icon labeled 'My Computer'" instead.

more than 2 years ago
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Why Are Fantasy World Accents British?

mr_spatula Obvious (516 comments)

Because there's no better fantasy shared by the common public than to escape to than one of rainy weather, bland food, a stifling bureaucracy, and one of the largest surveillance networks concieved of.

It's obviously a made-up world, with their shillings and their stones - one where cars wear boots... I mean, that's just pure insanity.

more than 2 years ago
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The Worst Job In the Digital World

mr_spatula I've done this - over third shift, no less (258 comments)

This was an unofficial duty that I had while working third shift at a web hosts - Granted, it was more researching complaints of abuse as well as law enforcement requests, but there were many users who had forum software that would get "overrun" with rather graphical posts. The company basically contracted out moderation services to these customers, and passed it off to third shift - We were to patrol these forums, and deal with objectionable content. Now, we didn't get $1 an hour, we DID at least get something that barely beat unemployment, but it still wasn't enough given the effect that the job had.

There were funnier sides to this, though.

We didn't have any great spam controls at the time other than PCRE filters... So one job was going through the hostmaster/postmaster emailboxes, and looking for spam patterns, and creating rules around them. The problem became how to prevent spam without blocking legitimate email that may be mentioning viagra or fisting. Having your female boss walk into a conversation in which you are discussing the fact that someone could legitimately be sending an email with the subject line of "fisting sluts" is always a good time.

Also, they wanted to launch an international video dating website - this was pretty early on, when the tech was new. Pretty standard dating site stuff at the time, except you could record your own video to include with it, with some "cutting-edge" webcam app. These videos had to be approved before they went live. And that job went to? Yep, me. I handled most of the backend server work and some custom PHP code, and this was my reward - Moderation.

This drove home a fundamental difference in how the genders handled dating sites at the time... The womens ads were generally approved, as they were almost always very tasteful- Fully clothed full body views, or simply a talking head, while they talked a bit about themselves, their interests, and what they want in a partner. This was what we encouraged, and was in accordance with guidelines. This part wasn't so bad - You got to hear a lot of fun stories from different cultures at best, and at worst, it would be in a language you didn't understand.

Now, that was the women. The men? Sure, they talked about themselves the same way, and had the same distribution of stories, but the overwhelming majority of the video was unclothed lower torso at best, and feverishly masturbating at worst. This was not a small percentage, it was BY FAR the majority. There's something seriously bizzare about hearing someone talk about loving walks on the beach or whatever, while there's a camera focused on an erection.

So that was third shift - click, penis, reject. click, pantless sweaty guy, reject. click, tasteful ad, approve. click, fat hairy abdomen and rapid motion, reject, and now eye bleach. And so on.

It was that and the spam filtering for the majority of third shift - A good solid 9 hours of offensive imagery, spam headers and penii, which lead to a rather warped view of the world outside of work.

more than 2 years ago
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First Trek Film Footage Unveiled

mr_spatula Re:Why do so many Trek personel (320 comments)

I would worry seriously about screwing it up - It's JJ Abrams. He was a writer for Armageddon. I do not see how that equates to anything beyond pure horror for Star Trek fans.

As a side note, it's always fun to call Star Trek "Star Track" when you are talking to the more hardcore fans.

more than 6 years ago

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