Peace For All

November 15, 2006

Why there are so few pictures in this blog

Filed under: Boeing, Meta (this site), Work — Devlin Bentley @ 10:06 am

Anyone who read my blog from last year (hosted on blogger.com) knows that in general I like posting lots of pictures.

Why so few pictures this time around?  Well, work place policy.

Boeing does not allow Cameras at work.  Secret documents and all that.  Mind you, we have laptops that are taken home every night and we are given USB memory keys, so I think that the fear is more from accidental information leaks than from anything else.  A company has to trust its employees (if it doesn’t, that is a separate article about corporate stupidity… Thankfully Boeing does), but that does not mean it is going to put faith in its employee’s ability to perfectly frame a photography shot!

October 20, 2006

The ultimate work productivity enhancer!

Filed under: Life in general, Work — Devlin Bentley @ 11:05 am

Want to seem like you are ALWAYS up on reading your email? Want to impress people and get that read receipt back to them within seconds of your receiving their message?

Create the following filter in outlook:

Apply this rule after the message arrives
where my name is in the To or Cc box
mark it as read

Your perceived productivity will skyrocket!

(Note: I am NOT suggesting that anybody actually do this! For one thing, everyone will wonder why you have read all of their messages and not responded to any of them…)

September 25, 2006

Safeco: Employees? Important? Why?

Filed under: technology, Work — Devlin Bentley @ 1:26 pm

So Rosia gets a new laptop from Safeco so she can be a more mobile employee.

They give her one of their “good” machines.

It is a Thinkpad T23.  AKA about a 5 year old machine.

Pentium 3, 1.1Ghz!   512MB of ram (originally shipped with 256…)  running Windows 2000.

I do not mean to insult the Pentium 3, which has been upgraded and re-branded as the  Pentium M and is now the Core Duo, aka Intel’s Last Great Hope, and all of which are amazingly efficient and well performing processors.

Nor would I want to insult Windows 2000, which is a lovely OS that demonstrated that Microsoft can make a real OS, but unfortunately was horribly disfigured to create that monstrosity known as Windows XP.

No, what I am upset at is that a company can be so ignorant as to give its developers 5 year old machines.  Rosia tells me that some of the other Thinkpads there are even slower, and are so loaded down with crud that opening a single email in Outlook can take well over a minute.

If that isn’t a productivity killer, I don’t know what is.  Imagine spending an entire hour just clicking through your email each morning.  Not actually reading any of it, not responding to any o it, but an hour just clicking one by one through them.

In contrast, I also received a Laptop from my employer.  In my case, Boeing.  I got Boeing’s lowest end laptop, a Dell D600 with a mere 1.4 Ghz Pentium M processor and only a gigabyte of RAM.

Oh woe is me.    This is Boeing’s lowest end machine, and they are slowly being phased out of service.  Their highest end machine is a dual CPU monstrosity that has hundreds of gigabytes of HD space, a 512MB video card, and weighs over 9 pounds.

Actually I am kind of thankful that I did not recieve that machine!

For reference, Boeing uses Dell as their primary computer supplier (mostly it seems because Boeing can boss Dell around and has all sorts of cool custom configuration things going on), and most of Dell’s laptops are rather meh.  Well I say this coming from last years internship working with the Windows Tablet PC team…. Working with the shiniest newest laptops every day raised the bar for what it takes to impress me now.

June 20, 2006

I hate it when web forms strip newlines

Filed under: Boeing, Programming, technology — Devlin Bentley @ 10:24 am

As a professional author (at least I was for a small part of my life), I know the value of proper white space. Paragraphs are not only a technical aspect of English; they are also part of the art of writing.

(Bleck, the last sentence in that paragraph is not good at all.)

When I submit comments or help requests, I put effort into it to make sure that who ever is on the receiving end can read my question or comment easily.  I break up paragraphs by topic, and I even have a closing line.

Thusly (my word of the day), I am irritated when a webform goes and strips newlines from my comment.  I also feel sorry for whoever has to read my 4 or so paragraph question, now all strung together into one large and ugly paragraph.

Yes, I realize that stripping newlines is done because it is the trivial solution to a problem.  A lot of storage formats consider newlines to be syntaxically significant, and apparently the 50 or so characters in ASCII that are unused are not good candidates for some reason.  Mostly newlines are used as a delimiter to make reading a plaintext dump of the data easier, which can make debugging (and other activities) go a bit more smoothly, but this still doesn’t excuse the fact that the result is software that was programmed for the programmer and not for the end users!

June 19, 2006

Yah a better mouse!

Filed under: Boeing, Work — Devlin Bentley @ 2:24 pm

I have a better mouse now, yah!

I still miss my mouse from home through. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 buttons of goodness.

Work

Filed under: Boeing, Work — Devlin Bentley @ 11:57 am

I need to make a new category for Boeing.

Much different environment that at MS, way to many people for everyone to have their own office. Actually my cubical is rather large, but the chair sucks (cannot scoot in with it, who thins that making arms on chairs so high that the chair cannot be scooted in is a good idea?) and I need to requisition a new mouse.

Boeing recently switched over to giving employees limited accounts rather than admin privileges, spyware and government secrets do not mix well.

Some things are very organized here, amazingly so. Other things are kind of weird. Like trash cans. There was no trash can at my desk, the office manager kindly was able to get me one, someone had ordered some and forgotten to pick them up.

Whiteboards are a scarce resource. People keep stealing them, so now they are also special order. Ick.

Boeing recently upgraded to Dell D600 laptops, kind of weird. Where did they GET D600s from? The D600 is an incredibly common (and rather good) model of laptop, in fact Microsoft has 20 or 30 of them just laying in a pile in the lab I frequented, but umm, heh, the D600 is kind of old. 2+ years old. Mind you CPU speed increases have been somewhat minimalistic in that time frame (Hey look, lets shove more cores on the die, alright!), and a 1.6Ghz Pentium M is nothing to sneeze at, the Pentium M (or D, depending on when you talk to Intel 😉 is a darn good processor.

I am just wondering where they got the stock from!

Edit:  Catagories added

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