November 23rd, 2005


Internet Hall of Shame nominee number 5,762

You'd think that a high-class outfit like E*Trade would pay attention to things like this.

click me!

This is what E*Trade's site looks like in my browser. My browser isn't anything special (IE 6) and there's nothing wrong with it. The "problem" is that I use a color scheme other than the default Window's color scheme (with its white application background).

The real problem is that the E*Trade developers do use the Windows default color scheme and don't bother to see what the site looks like for other users. The fix is really simple. Either a line in their cascading style sheet document (BODY { background-color: white; color: black }) or sticking bgcolor=white in their pages' <body> tags (the CSS route is preferable -- that's why we use CSS: make a change once in the style sheet file and it's reflected in all of the pages that reference the file).

The root cause is developer laziness and an "all the world is like me" attitude. It's bad enough when developers assume that "everyone runs the latest IE", but to assume that everyone runs Windows with the default color scheme is just ... poor. I wonder how awful the site looks in Mozilla and Opera?
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Help Wanted

I have (officially, now) a job opening. If you are (or anyone you know is) a network engineer who would like the challenge of working for me on a big honkin' network in the 2nd poorest city in the nation, please apply!

Wait, that didn't come out right. The challenge is working in Hartford, not working for me. Um, at least I think the challenge is Hartford. Read the rest of my blog and decide for your self.

Any way, I don't have anyone in mind for this job. Unlike the last two hires, there is no candidate waiting in the wings. In the hope of drawing some more applicants I posted it to Craig's list. Hopefully I have not violated some rule of City hiring that will result in my being keel-hauled.

Speaking of City hiring rules, because of the union affiliation of this position (HMEA - the Hartford Municipal Employees Association) Personnel requires that applicants have a four year degree. If you have an associates they'll give you partial credit and let you pass. The damned thing about this is that of the five most recent present and past network engineers who have worked on the network, only one could get this job. The other four either got their training in the military or went to trade school.

So, if working on a sprawling network in a mid-sized city for decent pay (and excellent benefits) sounds like your cup of tea, please get in touch with me to throw your hat in the ring.
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