Friday, August 29, 2003

Computer Adjustments

This has been a week of adjustments to new computer programs at the college I work at. It did not go well for most. The new records system does not seem to have been created by people who efficiently want to get the job done. Records are hard to access in the sense that it takes a bunch of clicks and the filling in of three to four blanks to accomplish what one would expect to do in a couple of clicks. The pathways are not those that those of limited computer ability would follow. To make it all worse, following some quick training, the system was expected to work under high pressure get the job done fast, fast, fast conditions. It failed. Under more relaxed conditions I found it worked falwlessly subjec to its ineffcient structure. The result is that by not making it easy for the non-computer folks [not me] it will languish when it could have been a real triumph.

Why do people do things in this backward way? We have come so far in making computers friendly, we emphasize it; then some just go the other way and spoil the work.

Sunday, August 17, 2003

power outages...

I am amazed that things like power outages are connected to political figures. Congressman Dingell pointed out that we had no power outages like the recent one during the Clinton administration. That is the kind of remark that makes it hard for people to generate respect for the political process and political people. People on the networks were also so bent out of shape that Bush was not at the White House for damage control during the outage. If he were there could he have driven to NYC with a flashlight? The engineers are the problem solvers in this. That an engineer in the power system is on the job is a milion times more important than where any of our political fgiures were.

I remember when Clinton came to view the Grand Forks damage from a flood in 1997. Grand Forks could have done something with the money it cost to tranport him and his crowd. Being here was truely useless, except to media people who need a story to be said to be doing their jobs.