Ever wonder what Web designers did before the Web existed?
This article gives us some insight.
Ever wonder what Web designers did before the Web existed?
This article gives us some insight.
In Springfield, Missouri, the Craigslist designers are ganging up on one local company.
You know, I once worked at a dysfunctional company. No, I mean crazy dysfunctional. It was run by a guy named Bob who went from selling printing services in the 1970s and 1980s (like business cards and whatnot) to building PCs in the 1990s. He was a scatterbrained, power-drunk mad professor with no technical skill or business acumen. His wife and a couple of employees loyal to his wife, who also worked there, kept the business afloat. Bob would rant and rave at employees, he would fire people at the drop of the hat (one woman brought in doughnuts every time she was fired). And I caught on in 1994 as a Clerk Friday, which meant I did some shipping/receiving, some filing, some accounts receivable (violating many Federal statutes given my training–“Here’s a printout of late customers. Here’s a phone”). The fellow and I once had an argument about my name, as he addressed me as Mark repeatedly and was confused when I corrected him. Then he fired me, and I didn’t come in to work for the celebratory doughnuts (since the woman was fired the same day), and he called me at home to ask where I was. We argued about whether he fired me or not, so I quit. “Without warning?” he asked. As you can tell by this run-on paragraph, I still get riled up about it. Also, it makes for some interesting asterisking if I’m ever asked if I’ve been fired.
So these kinds of companies can stay in business for years and decades. What a world.
Also, it makes me wonder what sort of market I’ve moved into here where good Web designers, or at least self-confident Web designers, start at $14 an hour.
I’m cruising a low-end user site, and a flashing, garish ad greets me:
Of course, they want the flashing border to capture your attention. You know what got mine immediately: misspelling the word receive.
I before E except after C except in a scam, I guess.
Dr. Dobb’s Journal conducted a survey and came up with 7 things developers think. Of course, they asked developers, so the developers answered, and CIOs are supposed to use these truths to define their IT strategies. Huh.
Here’s the abbreviated list from the magazine:
You want to know what those developers are really thinking? Here, let QA tell you:
There, now you know. And you can discard whatever a developer tells you and get on with business.
Shaktoolik: The feeling that you have when you have been going toward a place for so long that it seems that you will never get there.
Be sure to use that word in a meeting about the current project that keeps getting features added, changes made, and the client’s whimsy indulged while the release date recedes into the future.
In addition to another response to the St. Louis job listing I noted yesterday, we find another case of Craigslist backlash in Minnesota today. Is it cropping up everywhere, or are my loyal Minneapolitano readers joining in the fun?
First, the job posting:
To misquote Dwight Yoakum, apparently the responding designer ain’t that hungry yet.
But I wouldn’t expect to see that small company become a larger company anytime soon. One wonders what the full time salary would be if each project is $200? Maybe since their Web pages are served, they would go for the waiter minimum wage.
In the St. Louis area, another job seeker has lashed out at someone looking to hire. In this case, someone specific.
The job posting:
In the interest of full disclosure, I have had some dealings with the recruiting company in question, and, boy, they sure are recruiters over there.
In which the $60 an hour designer, or the person who would be a $60 an hour designer if anyone hired him or her, shows a stunning grasp of the English language. It sure left me speechless. Let’s see, what is that, 19 grammatical mistakes in the rant? I’m only skimming here.
Sounds like a lot of designers. Put them words in your pretty Web sites and see who notices. Probably nobody in IT but the QA you cannot afford since you’re paying the designers $60 an hour. Or would if they had their way.
UPDATE: The next day, the following response to the response appeared:
The recruiter, the friend of the recruiter, or another catty designer? You decide!
It’s called Debug the Flash/IE Integration!
Let’s talk about energy efficiency. It’s efficient not to put QA energy into a project and to push the costs and aggravations of errors onto the user. That’s proven economics law to many organizations.
Unfortunately, the user will go elsewhere. And children won’t learn how to save energy by hectoring their parents from EnergyHog.org.
Two weeks ago, an event occurred that altered the fundamental way we describe our locus within the space-time continuum. That event, the New Year, means that any Web site to which you added content since then needs to have an updated copyright date:
If you’re working in PHP, such as a blog, here’s a PHP script to make it dynamic.
Another thing to check is for any recurring contests on your sites, such as stories that you ask users to share, to make certain that your terms, conditions, and rules extend to the new calendar year.
Trisherino enumerates five things developers and designers could do to reduce the number of obvious issues testers will find: 5 Tips to Thwart Testers.
They’re obvious, and they’re pretty good ideas, but your organization will not follow them for long, even if your team catches on. Why? Because institutional memory is fluid. By the time you drum that into your developers’ and designers’ heads, they move onto a different teams or onto different companies. They will be replaced by people who are less expensive and less knowledgeable or they will be replaced with experienced sticks in the mud who know the right way to do things: their way.
And their way does not include to stooping to IE.
And so it goes.
The best you can hope for is to become such an archetypal nemesis to your developers and designers that they carry the fear of you beyond your team and company so that they do things the right way even when they’re somewhere else. Somewhere, some lucky QA professional will get a n00b on their team that does things right.
Someone on the twitter feed mentioned cartoontester.blogspot.com, so I have duly added it to the QA Merely Dislikes roll.
One of these days, I’ll have to run down that list and see how many of those blogs are still active.
Copyranter goes off on print and broadcast advertising. Warning, though: He talks a lot about how sex is used to sell things, particularly overseas, so the content might not be safe for work unless you work for an interactive agency, where that sort of thing is appreciated.
I think some HR people and consulting recruiters already have a little cabin fever in Minneapolis. Two recent job postings seem to indicate something ain’t right.
Job 1: A combination Web developer/shipping and receiving clerk/delivery driver:
Job 2: A Java development position whose consulting company recruiter is only phoning it in. The headline of the job posting is Date Resource:
Date resource is required: 01/11/2010
Anticipated end date: 05/30/2010
Location: Minneapolis, MN
The vendor is expected to thoroughly screen the candidate to ensure the Self Assessment form is accurately filled out. We have little patience for candidates who have overstated their skill level / experience We are looking for a highly qualified Web Services developer to join an on-going Wachovia, Wells integration project.
Note the admonishment to the recruiter that he or she should pay attention. You know my position on recruiters, particularly those who post on craigslist. You are in good hands, applicant.
Hey, speaking of bad craigslist ads, here’s a whole blog of them: You Suck at Craigslist.
Here’s a little hint on things to look for when your team decides on product names: Unfortunate Names blog.
Remember, someone has to pipe up and scotch the bad ideas, and the dreamers (read: the designers, the developers, the project managers, the client account managers, the clients) aren’t grounded enough to say, “Uh, guys? Flooz? That would make users floozies.”
Ah, what the hell, it’s an imported problem, so it’s not really a problem, eh?
(He said in a Canadian accent, implying another layer of international conspiracy, sending those conspiracy theorists into a tizzy. QA understands there is no international conspiracy, only entropy at work.)
A media player keeps timing out on me, delivering this error which sounds like it’s taunting me:
NaNNaNNaN! You can’t listen!
Sobe’s new contest misses it by that much:
“In the 10 Ring,” he explained to his foreign readers, refers to hitting a bullseye when target shooting. Sobe missed the frame slightly here when dropping their Flash application onto their Facebook page.
Want to know what else they did wrong with the contest entry?
Well, it was good enough to separate Sobe from its interactive budget. Carry on, then!
You, QA, probably won’t need this; however, you should share this with your barely-literate coworkers who put copy in front of users: 10 Words You Need To Stop Misspelling.
Courtesy the twitterverse.
Back in my interactive agency days, you’d better believe that we proofread everything, including the text ads going out to Google or Yahoo!
To prevent things like this:
You know, quality isn’t just making sure that things don’t blow up with certain click-and-key combinations. And people can and will screw up the simplest of things.
Someone else trolling craigslist jobs postings reacts to the common postings for jobs requiring 10 years of skill out of part time interns and offering a bit lower than the prevailing wage:
Sadly, I fear this person reads the craigslist job listings as serious and expresses his frustration at not being able to find a job through these listings. I hope this poster’s pride doesn’t lead to starvation if he cannot find a job with the salary he thinks he so richly deserves.
Me, I troll craigslist job postings just because they’re funny for the very reason stated here and because they’re often rife with errors that I can make fun of for your amusement.