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Cox Crow

Asking the Stupid Questions Since 1971
 Friday, August 09, 2002


Brian Tiemann on interacting with text, via markpasc.blog:

It's amazing to me how thin a line there is between "software that tries so hard to be 'smart' that it interferes with your workflow" and "software that does what you tend to want".

Quinn "The Eskimo!" documented some classic human interface subtleties. My personal favorite, because it is so annoying on other GUIs, is the Disappearing Cursor.

He used to have a discussion of the cursor blink rate, but that's no longer there.

12:13:34 PM # Google It!
categories: Dear Microsoft, Low-Hanging Fruit

Getting to Know You

Mark Pascal wants an
[i]nteractive web access log analyzer: instead of getting a static set of reports, build queries like "referrers of all the 404s" or "requested URLs of all the hits referred by Google," and get tables and charts dynamically generated. I know it takes a while to crunch that kinda data, so this would be good for exhibiting or attaining one's grok-in-fullness status wrt data structures. [via Phil Pearson]

We're using a product that kinda-sorta does that. It requires Oracle, and has some issues with large data sets, but works reasonably well.

11:38:59 AM # Google It!
categories: System Administration

A Matter of Life

Mary Wehmeier elaborates on what being on call means to a clinical pharmacist.
[G]etting dressed at 3:15 AM and driving 15 miles to the pharmacy to mix and make an IV for a patient in need-- and get the Rx out and deliver it in less than 90 minutes.

As I unhelpfully pointed out to an irate client who was displeased with our 15 minute response time: his problem was not a matter of life and death. It was very important to him, but there was no demonstrable impact on his business at 04:00 EST, and nobody died. We were not in the medical business.

On the other hand, alert project managers shouldn't let the sleep-deprived deal with the clients.

10:04:08 AM # Google It!
categories: System Administration