Friday, September 07, 2007

The iPod Touch

iPod Touch: how the Jesus Phone was really John the Baptist | Reg Hardware

"What the introduction of the iPod Touch implies is that you can keep your beautiful, small, low-end or mid-range phone. The Touch will take care of music, and once it has Bluetooth, the rest. Long live the PDA!"

Strangely I was thinking about this too. With the Touch I could ditch my ugly N85 "slow as f*ck," "prone to crashing when receiving SMS" brick phone and go back to a nice looking phone that does that sort of thing rather well, say the Nokia 8600 then use the Touch for wifi browsing, video and music. Sorted. Though maybe wait until Apple bring something out with more memory. I mean 16gig max for something that does video! You're kidding me.

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Tuesday, September 04, 2007

A Sad Tale of Woe - The Muppets Strike Back


It is Early March and a work email arrives instructing me to register my assets (ooh err) on the asset register intranet site otherwise support may refuse to support me.  Thus I logon to find that my laptop seems to there already, as the asset number looks about right* and I am unable to change it anyway I assume** it is all ok.

* yeah ok I should have checked, see next point.
** at this point I have not quite yet reached that paranoic understanding that at this place of work no assumptions can be made about anything at any time.

Fast forward to the week before last...

Wed - Power lead for laptop somehow breaks and laptop totally powers down.

Thurs-Tues - I go on holiday.

Wed - phone support to get a support reference (otherwise the support people in the actual office won't talk to me). Get told that the barcode I have given for the laptop is not registered as an asset to me and that they won't give me a reference until it is. Explain to them that I am unable to access to corporate network to do this. Am again told to register it. It is also suggested I order a new power adaptor but point out that (a) we don't know for sure it is the power adaptor and (b) I am unable to do this without access to the network. I then give up and put the phone down as politely as I am able.  I now venture into the office (I can only use onfe of the london offices as the others won't touch my aged laptop from a company they assimiliated) to attampt to gain a power adaptor to at least try to diagnose the fault.  Get in and am told that without a reference they can't talk to me. It is also mentioned that they don't have any spares anyway. It is now I phone my project manager to inform him I may not be able to do any work for some time.

Luckily I spot someone I know with the same laptop model as me and he lets me use his power adaptor for an hour or so. This allows me to log on to the asset system and determine that my laptop is registered with the wrong barcode. I find I am unable to change it. I then phone support who give me another number to call and the option to choose. I get through via this method and the person on the other end sounds suspiciousy familiar. Who also infoms me that it is the wrong number. I hang on and persuade them to deal with me and they take me through the whole process of de-registering the incorrect asset and registering the correct one. Am told it will take up to 45 days (?!?!?!?) - I thought she said 4to5 but she does actually confirm as up to 45 - to get through the system but that support will still talk to me if I quote the reference of the asset request.

So I phone support and quote the asset reference and get told that no it won't suffice! But get told I need to order a new lead first so am forwarded onto someone in provisioning who takes me through the process of getting an order sorted. The system then tells me that I will be emailed when it arrives. I point out that I may not get the email as my laptop will have died out by then (it can take a few days to arrive), am told that there it nothing they can do so I hang up and phone back support yet again.

I manage to persuade the support analyst (sic) to go outside his boundaries and register the fault (outside his boundaries to help me?). I now have the precious reference code in which I can now talk to someone in person. Yay. Go upstairs (so close yet so far) and talk to the suport guy who now confirms there are no spares. He suggests a number of options to me, all of which I have tried. He admits I am a bit stuffed. 

Remembering that there may be another option I now go off to the HQ (its about three tube stops down the road) and ask the concierge of the hotdesking area if there is a bin of abandoned adaptor leads. Huzzah there is. I now rifle through this and after about 5 minutes find one that fits. I have power. Power!

Thursday - get a call from support asking if I'd like a new laptop as a result of the fault reference I now have (faulty power lead = new laptop apparently) I say "yeah go on then" well my current one is over 2yrs old and basically not supported by most of the company's support people so I figure a new one is a good thing.

Friday - get a voicemail from the office down the road saying there is a "package" for me. So I shuffle off and go get it. It looks like a laptop. When I get back I open it and find that lo it is a lpatop. Quite a nice HP one by the way. I find I am unable to logon to it so I....wait for support. I explain it is a swap out and they get me to try all sorts of different login options. All fail. Then I am asked for the barcode which is then wielded against me because it is not registered to me and thus they cannot do anything. I ask where the support office in the HQ is. At first they say there isn't one but I do point out that surely (surely) the HQ have real-life support people they admit they don't know. Quite frankly at this point I wonder if they know anything at all.

I pop off to reception and they tell me where support is. I now take the laptop to them and explain the situation and give them the ref number. They tell me that the problem is that it needs to be setup properly (imaged with the corp build I expect) but they won't be able to do it that day. So they suggest monday and a time is arranged. They are reasonably friendly and explain that they used to do this sort of thing on goodwill but now that they've been "outsourced" they have no goodwill left. I can see their point.

Two hours later I an told that they can't actually help me monday as the issue is in someone else's work queue and they are not allowed to transfer it (rules is rules and all that shite) but am told the contact's email address. So I email them and arrange to go see them on monday so I can pick it up thursday (they won't be able to sort it in one day).

So - I have two laptops. One is effectively a dud and the other, had I not had the forethought to ask around would also be a dud. Had I followed the process - I would have gone at least three days without being able to work. More in fact as it is Tuesday now and the new laptop is being imaged and the replacement power adaptor has yet to arrive. In fact the support guys I spoke to earlier had a good laugh that the corporate answer to a faulty power lead is to replace the laptop.

I have found none of this helpful, straightforward or inspiring.

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Sunday, September 02, 2007

Long Weekend to CHO

Gin Fizz
Originally uploaded by brockleyboyo.
..Charlottesville, Virginia that is. For 4 nights. Madness.

I want that one!

The Canon EOS40D gets announced. Mmmmmmm.

Canon UK - EOS 40D - SEP 07

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The 2007 International Pub Crawl

Originally uploaded by brockleyboyo.
..another year, another kerry/robbo birthday international pub crawl.

The Paul/Anita housewarming...

Chanpagne in the fridge
Originally uploaded by brockleyboyo. the 'burbs with a "The Good Life" theme. More pictures on flickr