Page 129 of 130 FirstFirst ... 2979119127128129130 LastLast
Results 3,841 to 3,870 of 3874

Thread: Some Non-trivial Things That Annoy Me.

  1. #3841
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    The Great NorthWet
    Posts
    14,327
    The forum has been pretty much unavailable for two full days. First the security warnings, then something about NGINX.

    This place has too few members already. Some who got frustrated the past two days will never be back. That's really got me irritated.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  2. #3842
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Falls Church, VA (near Washington, DC)
    Posts
    8,577
    Once again I hate voice-activated telephone menus with a purple passion. This morning I made three calls seeking customer service for a shipping overcharge on one of my prescriptions from the military pharmacy, and on each one I had to blunder through these menus before getting a live person. They ask you to describe in a few words what the problem is, and the machines frequently are unable to interpret what I am saying. I know it is supposed to cost less than having more live operators, but when it works so poorly I wonder about that. Once I got through to the operators they were courteous and helpful. In some cases English was not their first language, and they had accents that made them difficult to understand over lo-fi telephone circuits that muffled the consonants abominably.

  3. #3843
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Nowhere (middle)
    Posts
    36,940
    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    The forum has been pretty much unavailable for two full days. First the security warnings, then something about NGINX.

    This place has too few members already. Some who got frustrated the past two days will never be back. That's really got me irritated.
    Same. I was starting to wonder if the Forum had given up the ghost.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  4. #3844
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Clear Lake City, TX
    Posts
    12,486
    Quote Originally Posted by Hornblower View Post
    Once again I hate voice-activated telephone menus with a purple passion. This morning I made three calls seeking customer service for a shipping overcharge on one of my prescriptions from the military pharmacy, and on each one I had to blunder through these menus before getting a live person. ...
    You are not alone. And Google has responded.

    https://www.google.com/search?source...10._JZtO0E-vSw

    There are multiple websites (and an app) that can help you get to a human faster. (The quality of the human interface is not guaranteed.)
    Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by ignorance or stupidity.
    Isaac Asimov

    You know, the very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common. They don’t alter their views to fit the facts. They alter the facts to fit their views.
    Doctor Who

    Moderation will be in purple.
    Rules for Posting to This Board

  5. #3845
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    3,139
    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    Same. I was starting to wonder if the Forum had given up the ghost.
    I was envisioning the U.S.S. CosmoQuest suffering a hull breach. All crewmembers shouted alarms and sent damage control reports to the bridge, which calmly told everyone that despite taking a direct hit to the certificate update Pamela was outside patching the hull and would everyone please go back to their stations and stop running in circles.


    .
    Last edited by Roger E. Moore; 2019-Jun-12 at 12:05 PM.
    There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.
    — Mark Twain, Life on the Mississippi (1883)

  6. #3846
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    3,139
    Quote Originally Posted by Hornblower View Post
    Once again I hate voice-activated telephone menus with a purple passion.
    Robot voices on the phone are a tool of the devil. Prove me wrong.
    There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.
    — Mark Twain, Life on the Mississippi (1883)

  7. #3847
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    Posts
    10
    Yeah! When somebody is trying to dictate smth using Google Translator voice

  8. #3848
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    16,163
    Saying “I want to speak with a human” over and over again usually gets you to one in my experience.
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
    Every mission makes our dreams reality
    And our destiny begins with you and me
    Through all space and time, the achievement of mankind
    As we sail the sea of discovery, on heroes’ wings we fly!

  9. #3849
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    3,139
    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    Saying “I want to speak with a human” over and over again usually gets you to one in my experience.
    Repeatedly hitting "0" (zero) also works sometimes.
    There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.
    — Mark Twain, Life on the Mississippi (1883)

  10. #3850
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    18,329
    Fairly trivial: My home internet, phone and TV service went out yesterday. Less trivial: Effects and implications.

    Usually if my internet goes out it comes back pretty quickly, either minutes, or perhaps an hour or so (presumably the time for a repair crew to fix the problem), but this kept going on. When I finally decided to call with my cell phone, I noticed the battery was dead, and I needed to recharge.

    Eventually I found out there was a fairly widespread outage. It lasted all night but came up sometime this morning.

    The less trivial aspect is noticing how dependent one becomes on these things. I would do trivial things (like trying to ask for a cooking timer or check the weather) and of course it wouldn't work. For a time I wondered if this were a problem just at my house (since generally widespread problems are resolved quickly), and whether that would mean I wouldn't have access for days, and thought through the implications of that. For instance, I use the internet for some non-trivial tasks, like bill paying, and would have to see what I would need to pay other ways.

    The increasing level of internet dependency is a bit scary.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

    I say there is an invisible elf in my backyard. How do you prove that I am wrong?

    The Leif Ericson Cruiser

  11. #3851
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    The Great NorthWet
    Posts
    14,327
    Oh my yes. I was pretty surprised how nervous it made me when this forum was unavailable for a day or two.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  12. #3852
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Sioux Falls, SD
    Posts
    8,784
    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    Fairly trivial: My home internet, phone and TV service went out yesterday. Less trivial: Effects and implications.

    Usually if my internet goes out it comes back pretty quickly, either minutes, or perhaps an hour or so (presumably the time for a repair crew to fix the problem), but this kept going on. When I finally decided to call with my cell phone, I noticed the battery was dead, and I needed to recharge.

    Eventually I found out there was a fairly widespread outage. It lasted all night but came up sometime this morning.

    The less trivial aspect is noticing how dependent one becomes on these things. I would do trivial things (like trying to ask for a cooking timer or check the weather) and of course it wouldn't work. For a time I wondered if this were a problem just at my house (since generally widespread problems are resolved quickly), and whether that would mean I wouldn't have access for days, and thought through the implications of that. For instance, I use the internet for some non-trivial tasks, like bill paying, and would have to see what I would need to pay other ways.

    The increasing level of internet dependency is a bit scary.
    We had a similar issue a few weeks ago. When I got home from work, we discovered that the Internet was down. I tried rebooting the cable modem and wifi router, to no avail. I was just about to call Midco (our ISP), when my wife said she wanted to go out for dinner rather than cook something that night, so I figured I'd just call when we got back.

    As we entered the restaurant, I noticed a paper taped to the door which read, in part, "Due to our Internet being down, we are unable to process gift cards at the moment." So maybe it's not just us, I decided.

    Turned out a road construction crew had accidentally severed a fiber-optic bundle. Took a few hours for them to get everybody's service restored.

    On a related note - since so often when there's a problem (or even routine maintenance), we're told to reboot the cable modem and wifi router anyway, I now have those two devices plugged into a "smart" outlet. The outlet can itself detect if it has a working Internet connection, and will automatically shut down and restart those two devices (at increasingly longer intervals) until the service comes back. If I want to, I can command the outlet to do a manual reboot from my computer (or phone) - as long as the WiFi is still working, of course - so no more crawling under the desk to unplug power cables.
    Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn

  13. #3853
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    The beautiful north coast (Ohio)
    Posts
    48,925
    Quote Originally Posted by SeanF View Post
    On a related note - since so often when there's a problem (or even routine maintenance), we're told to reboot the cable modem and wifi router anyway, I now have those two devices plugged into a "smart" outlet. The outlet can itself detect if it has a working Internet connection, and will automatically shut down and restart those two devices (at increasingly longer intervals) until the service comes back. If I want to, I can command the outlet to do a manual reboot from my computer (or phone) - as long as the WiFi is still working, of course - so no more crawling under the desk to unplug power cables.
    Wow, that's clever. I never heard of such a device. I might have to look into that.
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

    All moderation in purple - The rules

  14. #3854
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Sioux Falls, SD
    Posts
    8,784
    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    Wow, that's clever. I never heard of such a device. I might have to look into that.
    Just so you know, it was a DIY project. An Arduino, a couple of relays, and some wiring and programming were required.

    I'm debating about seeing if I can add bluetooth connectivity to it, in order to allow for forcing a manual reboot even if the WiFi is down. Might be overkill, though, since if the WiFi is down, it will reboot itself eventually. The real reason for the manual option in the first place is because sometimes a reboot is called for when the Internet connection is there but flaky or inconsistent, and the auto-reboot isn't sophisticated enough for that type of situation. I'd be able to force the reboot over WiFi in that case.
    Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn

  15. #3855
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Olympia, WA
    Posts
    30,775
    I was a chaperone on Simon's field trip today. I woke up at 7:47, needing to get Irene to the babysitter's and Simon to school by 8:30. His bus to the trip was caught in traffic because of an accident and was fairly late. So I needn't have rushed the way I did and could have, say, gotten something to bring for lunch. And then when we got home about twenty minutes ago, I pulled into the office parking lot instead of coming right home, because I'm upgrading my tablet, and the replacement was supposed to come today. It didn't, and then the van wouldn't start when I got back in to drive it around to our parking lot.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  16. #3856
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    954
    Our Internet connection was so slow for the last two days that it was unusable - supposedly a state -wide issue with the network my provider uses. Luckily the phone was still working.

    It is always amazing how much I have come to consider instant access to the world via the Internet as normal and feel cut-off when it fails.

  17. #3857
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    British Columbia
    Posts
    2,920
    Yes, I've made a point of going paperless on every account that lets me. Some of it's automated, some requires that I access it regularly. I don't quite get twitchy if the internet fails, but it is a bit annoying.

  18. #3858
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Olympia, WA
    Posts
    30,775
    To be honest, most of my talking-to-adults during the day is online, and that's one of the two things I miss most. The other is being able to entertain the kids without getting up to put in discs!
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  19. #3859
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    11,378
    I had a personal disaster:

    My eyesight isn't what it used to be. High blood pressure, skipping heartbeat...etc.

    But I always had my books.

    Nicholas Basbanes once called the love of books A Gentle Madness.

    In his book Patience and Fortitude he talks about books ruined by water IIRC.

    Thus my story begins. Water and I don't get along, you see. Water always seems to know where my favorite books are.

    A long time ago, my Dad once bought me a book on galaxies at a yard sale. I had it propped against the wall up by the bed. Just under a window with an air conditioner. It rained one night, the water found a way in--and soaked the book. I've never heard of a water leak forming directly over a trash can, have you?

    After my parents died, I moved to a townhome. Workmen put my simple refrigerator in place of one that had a water and ice maker. After finding a floor full of water, I moved my refridge, to notice that the water hose that went to the previous tenant's reefer was simply tied in a knot.

    The poor dear had an aneurysm.

    That was leak number two.

    Oh, and...by the way---my refer' crapped out about a year ago. No replacement. But I endured.

    Leak number three came when a water hose from my washer also suffered a case of atherosclerosis, and dutifully spilled its contents. The following winter, I cut the water off above the replacement hose, so as to not have the problem again. The washer never did anything but buzz when everything was turned back on.

    But, I coped.

    The fourth leak was the worst...for a long time that is.

    The one day of the year I was a hundred miles from home, the water heater went.

    The trip was to my Aunt's house. (Sister to my late mother). The only part of the conversation I had with her that I remember, was of her asking me how things were going:

    "Annie, everything would be all right if things would just quit tearing up."

    Some ******* up there heard me....of that I'm convinced. I had put some print outs on the kitchen floor, temporarily, before I went on the trip.

    Soaked.

    My Aunt? Yeah--she's dead too, now.

    But the toilets are the worst. The bottom floor toilet gave me fits, and the plumber never could get it sealed.

    But what happened to me this past Monday was pure disaster.

    I worked all night Sunday. I took two sleeping pills and headed for bed around Nine Monday morning. Around 1:30 PM (same day) I awoke to the sound of water gushing.

    "Is that rain, I said to myself?"

    Of course not.

    The hose to the upstairs toilet went. The two upper bedrooms have carpeting soaked, and a slow motion collapse of the sheet rock ceiling of the first floor began, and water started ruining my many, precious books...panels landing on my little toy ships---crushing them.

    I'm in credit card hell, all but maxed out after health scares and a woman two doors down who left--but whose debt remains with me. I live in a swamp now, hot and humid. Water got into the central heat/AC that I didn't use much, due to freon leaks.

    Something similar happened to poor Henry Petroski, who came home to a house full of water.

    Ironically, he is an engineer specializing in failure analysis.

    I know that because a magazine called AMERICAN SCIENTIST (Sigma Xi of which he is a Member) had an article of his in it: https://www.americanscientist.org/ma.../2019/may-june

    At least that didn't get wet.

    It was in my car.


    ************************************************** ***********************************

    I've got a 2,700 buck deductible. But I'm actually afraid to tell the insurance man. Down here insurance and home repair folks all have these side deals, where they get inspector buds to force people out of their homes to force their hand.

    Home repair rip-offs abound.

    My late father was a sucker for them, by the by.

    Once, some shyster told him "we had some asphault left over from a job site, and we were wondering if..."

    Oldest scam in the book. My Dad was thinking he'd pour some down in one of the holes, pay him 50 bucks, or something.
    He was a simple man.

    Next thing you know, the dude gets in several trucks--lays asphalt on mud (no gravel--that having been shoved aside). A big mound blocks the drive--and bossman wants his $6,000. I came by and told him he'd get his money when the job was finished.

    And then there was the vinyl siding man who put his product on the eaves of my Dad's brick house and charged him for what a house fully clad in siding would have cost.

    Trust no one.

    If you ever leave home, have the water cut off to your house. No wait--that might kill the water heater.

    Check hoses. Never have upstairs plumbing of any kind. I never used my upstairs toilet. Maybe the lack of use weakened the hose, or some cleaning products that go in the tank could have eaten away at it.

    If only I had woke up sooner--or turned the little knob off to one side--that would have prevented everything.

    The whole idea of upstairs plumbing is insane. If it leaks--where is that water going to go? In heating cooling vents, of course.

    If I ever come into a lot of money, I'm going to have my own house built.

    The house will be on a hill. Walls two feet of steel. Shelves everywhere on the first floor.

    In a separate building, down a hill and slightly below, will be kitchen, bathroom, Central air--all in a way that allows workmen to fix things without actually going into the house proper, where they can make snide comments about your starship models.

    The bathroom will have a drain, so if plumbing fails, the water can't pool, and goes outside, down the blanking hill instead. Vents ABOVE the bathroom--in the bloody ceiling where it should go.

  20. #3860
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    3,139
    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    I had a personal disaster:
    Oh. My. Lord.
    There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.
    — Mark Twain, Life on the Mississippi (1883)

  21. #3861
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Nowhere (middle)
    Posts
    36,940
    Coincidentally a water leak in our basement tonight. Fortunately not major, just a misaligned AC drainage pipe.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  22. #3862
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    11,378

  23. #3863
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    British Columbia
    Posts
    2,920
    What Roger E. Moore said. Yikes.

  24. #3864
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Nowhere (middle)
    Posts
    36,940
    My nephew Jacob is going on a 2 week hiking trip out of state with the Scouts. Philmont, it's called. My sister and I helped him pack his bags very carefully and made sure he had all the meds he needs daily, sorted and labeled and easily accessible to him, for both the trip to Philmont and the ensuing hike.

    My very EX-Brother-In-Law, who's going with him, almost screwed it up entirely.

    This morning my XBIL calls my sister this AM before sun-up and before wake-up in a panic, looking for my nephew's daily medicine. Can't find it at all. He has searched through my nephew's hiking backpack and come up empty. So my sister asks if he looked in his small travel bag. Nope. A few minutes later he calls back. No, not there. She asks if he looked in the outside pocket where she had packed it for Jacob yesterday. "Uhhhh... no." So she advises him (with great restraint) to do so.

    A few minutes later.... No, it's not there. Now, XBIL is working himself into a bigger and bigger panic. Jacob is anxiety prone, very sensitive to moods and is already worked up about not finding his meds, and XBIL is certainly making him worse with his own expressively dramatic freakout.

    So now XBIL is in a full frenzy. He's working Jacob into a frenzy. My Mom says a prayer to St. Anthony. My sister gets out Jacob's meds, starts sorting them, with an eye to driving to Indianapolis (35 minutes) to deliver a second set of meds. Just then, XBIL calls back.

    Turns out, my brilliant former relative had taken the meds out of Jacob's bag last night, and put them in his own pack "for safe keeping". All that drama and emotional energy, putting my poor nephew through all that anxiety and panic, because he had done something totally unnecessary (trusting his judgement to be better than anyone else's of course) and then lost track of the fact that he'd done it. Which is typical of his behavior.

    I just want to smack the face off XBIL's narcissistic, impulsive, irresponsible head sometimes. And Jacob is with him* for the next 2 weeks, most of which will be spent in the middle of the wilderness.

    Oof!


    *The only saving grace is that XBIL won't be the only adult with him. The Scoutmaster will take control of Jacob's meds once they arrive in Philmont. That's the only reason my sister did not pull Jacob from this venture entirely. The ONLY reason.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  25. #3865
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    British Columbia
    Posts
    2,920
    A few months ago I brought my pickup back to the dealer to have recall work done. The problem was a software bug that might cause the vehicle to downshift to first gear, at any time. Which could be disastrous. The fix was an update of the software. Today I received another notice that I had to bring it back to remedy the same problem. They had installed the wrong software.

    All of which reminds me of something I read many years ago: If civil engineers worked to the same standard as software engineers, a single woodpecker could destroy all of civilization.

  26. #3866
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    The Great NorthWet
    Posts
    14,327
    About a year ago, I took my pickup in to have the driver's airbag replaced. You're in luck, they said, we can do the passenger's side too!

    Six months later, I got another notice and had to have them both replaced again.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  27. #3867
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    954
    I was saddened to read that, for all intents and purposes, Mad Magazine has come to an end. Admittedly I have probably not seen a new issue since the end of the 20th Century but I really enjoyed it back in the 1960's & 1970's. I have still got a few paperback copies of 'The best of Mad', 'Don Martin on ---'. etc hidden away. They still raise a smile when I run across them.

    I guess that this current age is not conducive to these types of magazines. I can only resort to Cicero -"'o tempora! o mores!". (Cue ravings of old man - "Back in my day", "You kids get off my lawn" etc)

    Here a couple of articles from the NY Times.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/12/o...d=277638680713

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/05/b...pgtype=Article

  28. #3868
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Norfolk UK and some of me is in Northern France
    Posts
    8,471
    Quote Originally Posted by ozduck View Post
    I was saddened to read that, for all intents and purposes, Mad Magazine has come to an end. Admittedly I have probably not seen a new issue since the end of the 20th Century but I really enjoyed it back in the 1960's & 1970's. I have still got a few paperback copies of 'The best of Mad', 'Don Martin on ---'. etc hidden away. They still raise a smile when I run across them.

    I guess that this current age is not conducive to these types of magazines. I can only resort to Cicero -"'o tempora! o mores!". (Cue ravings of old man - "Back in my day", "You kids get off my lawn" etc)

    Here a couple of articles from the NY Times.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/12/o...d=277638680713

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/05/b...pgtype=Article
    I share those memories and that sentiment. It is possible that nostalgia is not what it was but also possible that we are seeing changing times in a more profound sense. On a positive note Private Eye just celebrated its 1500 issue although one of its founders, ie the other founder, Christopher Booker has died. Mind you he blotted his copy book wrt man made global warming. Of course we lost Punch a long time ago. But that was an even more ancient manifestation of satire as a weapon speaking truth to power. I read that there are few political cartoonists left earning their crusts, the ubiquitous social media are blamed.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  29. #3869
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    The Great NorthWet
    Posts
    14,327
    Mad's less successful rival Cracked transformed itself into a website, but that's gone seriously downhill in the past year or so. Half the time the pages won't load.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  30. #3870
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    No longer near Grover's Mill
    Posts
    4,813
    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Mad's less successful rival Cracked transformed itself into a website, but that's gone seriously downhill in the past year or so. Half the time the pages won't load.
    Apparently, they had a lot of talent depart, both voluntarily and not, since Scripps bought them in 2016.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •