[linux-elitists] OK, I went off today

Heather star@betelgeuse.starshine.org
Tue Jul 27 17:11:02 PDT 1999


> I was extremely peeved with frustration for my alma mater (I'm in grad
> school) about their "upgrade" of the ESET (electronic student, electronic
> teacher) system used to log homework submissions. Originally, it was a
> command-line program with a primitive web interface. Now it requires
> fscking javascript and ONLY supports MSIE and Netscape (though I did
> successfully submit homework by hacking Omniweb once <g>).

You go, girl!  And if they try to fight back, point them to my favorite
rant on the subject of over-optimizing for the web ... it's not mine but
it's great stuff:

	"This page optimized for ..."
                         - arguing with customers -
	http://www.htmlhelp.com/feature/art2.htm

(It's so great it was rescued long after its author left the school he was
at when he wrote it.  :)

Among other things it points out why any claim of great percentages 
of The Target Audience Browsers is statistically worthless bull s***.

I ranted out last month about how horrible American Airline's site was in
lynx - let's see if I remember how it went...

I asked them to imagine that their cashier/bag check entryway had been
remodelled by one of these wild supermodern interior decorators, with the
ductowrk and pipes showing, neon lighting at strange angles, with the usual
"travel to exotic locales" ad blocking the path of customers with luggage.
Okay, maybe it is cool from a certain point of view, and maaaaaaaaaaaybe 
some designer would actually make a bunch of bucks on a deal like that.
But frankly, most customers would be given the creeps.

Oh yeah I almost forgot to mention the transformers flickering at -just-about-
the speed most people read a paragraph.  In other words any ordinary joe who
has to start at the beginning to read a paragraph can never finish one.

(I said that because their frontis page, which javascripties of course skip,
is littered with search engine spam.  Even the page which one is led to is
littered with unALT'd [INLINE]s, and the forms are all worthless because of
their javascript.)

At the best the feel would be that of some snooty restaurant, I can't fly
(er I mean dine) if I don't have a tie and tails.  Or in the feminine case
a formal skirt which restricts leg movement.  My money's as green and my 
VISA's as gold as the next guy.

And they have the gall to be posting accesibility data behind an interface
that blind-disabled types cannot read.

Anyways it was longer than that but there's the fun part.  You guessed it.
No response at all from these lamers.

> Anyway, below is my rant, sent to my advisor, the dean, my instructor, and
> one of the support staff. This has escalated from prior, politer issues
> taken up with everyone BUT the dean.
> 
> -- 
> _Deirdre   *   http://www.linuxcabal.net   *   http://www.deirdre.net
> Indeed, when I design my killer language, the identifiers "foo" and "bar"
> will be reserved words, never used, and not even mentioned in the 
> reference manual.  Any program using one will simply dump core without 
> comment. Multitudes will rejoice. -- Tim Peters
> 
> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> Date: Tue, 27 Jul 1999 15:07:28 -0700 (PDT)
> From: Deirdre Saoirse <deirdre@deirdre.net>
> To: Kevin R. Richardson <kevinr@scis.acast.nova.edu>
> Cc: whartman@scis.acast.nova.edu, kimsd@scis.acast.nova.edu,
>      lieblein@scis.acast.nova.edu, savinod@scis.acast.nova.edu
> Subject: Problems: ESET & extreme frustration with the SCIS program direction
> 
> I don't know who wrote your upload code, but there's something wrong with
> it. It makes netscape dump core on my machine (I have previously
> professionally written html upload support in Python, Java and Javascript,
> therefore I can say for certain it's not my browser as I have tested that 
> file uploads do indeed work with my browser, which is Netscape 4.61 on
> LinuxPPC). 
> 
> Ergo, I have not been able to formally submit assignments. Even so, they
> were only accepted in .doc, .ppt and .xls formats, which I consider
> unacceptable. Note that the MacOS doesn't HAVE file format extensions, so
> how do you guarantee those? Why should I have to pay Bill Gates money in
> order to submit homework? Isn't this about education? What in the world
> makes a .doc format more "educated" than a text file? Why not allow html,
> which allows formatting, but doesn't have the proprietary tax?
> 
> What means am I to use? The old command-line eset is alas gone.
> 
> I'm getting more and more frustrated with this and am considering
> resigning from the program if the move toward Windows-only proprietary
> protocols continues. I joined the program BECAUSE it wasn't
> platform-specific.
> 
> It's *because* of my involvement in this program that I became a Unix
> geek. I distinctly recall having to fly to Ft. Lauderdale TO LEARN
> UNIX so that I could succed in the program. The irony is that you're not
> letting me USE those skills. You're not even giving me the option!
> 
> Now I work in Unix all day, every day. And I'm being penalized? It doesn't
> make sense. *I* grew, but the school seems to be in retrograde motion.
> 
> -- 
> _Deirdre   *   http://www.linuxcabal.net   *   http://www.deirdre.net
> Indeed, when I design my killer language, the identifiers "foo" and "bar"
> will be reserved words, never used, and not even mentioned in the 
> reference manual.  Any program using one will simply dump core without 
> comment. Multitudes will rejoice. -- Tim Peters
> 
> 
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