Monday, September 11, 2006

Sometimes it is all about simple...

We got new phones at work. They are very fancy with a big color screen and all. State of the art I guess.

But it was driving me nuts. The phone is sitting in the corner of my vision and colon in the time would just blink and blink - and when the time changed - bigger sort of blink. it kept drawing my eye to it. I found that very distracting.

My solution - turn the phone away so the screen isn't visible. It worked, but made it so I couldn't see the phone anymore until I turned it around. I couldn't answer the phone easily either.

Tyler Muth, a guy I work with, said something very smart. Very simple, but very smart. All he said was:

post-it note

Of course. A post-it note, it just covers the clock, no more blinking distraction. It is perfect.

Sometimes, it is all about simple....



Anonymous Anonymous said....

post-it note

And, unlike my own favorite all-purpose remedy, duct tape, it doesn't leave that nasty, sticky residue ....

Bob Shepard

Mon Sep 11, 02:17:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Peter Lewis said....

.. but duct tape really is splendid stuff... Duct Tape Madrigal in C Major

Mon Sep 11, 04:11:00 PM EDT  

Blogger David Aldridge said....

Hooray for me ... it's exactly what I thought of.

I have a cruise control light on my van that drives me crazy at night, as it does not respond to my turning down of all the other dashboard lights and is a very bright green. Post-it notes do the job very nicely (although being self-employed I actually have to buy them for the purpose. I always get the impression that the checkout person is thinking, "Dude, just steal them!")

Mon Sep 11, 04:43:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Gleisson Henrique said....

Just be careful not to write on the post-it while on the top of the screen. Otherwise you will ruin the screen of a U$350.00 phone! Believe me! I have seen it happened!

gleisson henrique

Mon Sep 11, 06:30:00 PM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

That's the post-it note with your voicemail access code on it, right?

Funny how the word "password" to me impies at least one alpha character, whereas an string used consisting of only numbers is either an access code or a PIN.

Maybe that's just a misconception of mine.

Tue Sep 12, 11:48:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

That's the post-it note with your voicemail access code on it, right?

I laughed when I saw that, because I forgot my access code a long long time ago. My voice mails come to my inbox as a wav file - I haven't "logged" into voice mail in years!

Tue Sep 12, 11:52:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Simple and Obvious...

Reminds me of a interface issue I came across quite a few years back. I was passing two co-workers discussing a interface problem they were having. I was moving pretty slow because I was on crutches and HIGH as a Kyte (pun Intended) on pain medicine - Bosses choice for me to be at work while recovering from knee surgery.

They were having a hard time on how to handle a particular feed. They started going down the path of complexity. They were discussing adding tons of code to handle this new requirement which was basically adding in header information for error handling (XML was just emerging - so not an option). Having worked with both of these individuals before, I knew this was just going to be a mess (I would probably be in charge of the feed at some point).

I said "why don't you just split it into 2 feeds". I just said what I thought was obvious, thinking maybe to get them to think of a different option. They looked at each other, then back at me and walked away without saying a word. Ended up being exactly what they needed.

Tue Sep 12, 02:54:00 PM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

You know its just a matter of time before the display on your phone says

Windows Vista powered by SQL Server 2005

Tue Sep 12, 04:56:00 PM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

At least you guys didn't get Cisco phones and at least you aren't plugging them on your blog!

Tue Sep 12, 05:25:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

A big "eh?" to the last comment - they are cisco phones (see link to picture...)

Tue Sep 12, 05:28:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Ivan said....

our phones are voip. they simply don't work. a very typical error is when the caller can't hear you, but you can hear them! mine reboots all the time for no reason. i sometimes wish modern technology would just leave me alone.

Tue Sep 12, 05:37:00 PM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

"I used to dream of the day when my computer would be as eay to use as my phone. It has happened, I no longer know how to use my phone." -Bjorn Stroustrup

Tue Sep 12, 07:04:00 PM EDT  

Anonymous Marcus said....

I remember years ago my mother needed a new radioclock. She wanted one how "does not throw the seconds". We found out she was annoyed by those where the 'colon in the time would just blink and blink'.

Wed Sep 13, 02:46:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Tanmoy said....

I guess Tylor would have watched Macgyver - The guy comes up with good tricks to fixing things ..

Wed Sep 13, 05:08:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

What bugged me about the Cisco phones in my last office was the time counter when you were making a call. Maybe an attempt at increasing productivity by the company? Certainly made you very aware of how much time a call was taking...

Thu Sep 14, 07:32:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Stupid question: What's the purpose of the screen? Can you see others? (I assume they would need some sort of a camerara on their end)

Thu Sep 14, 10:51:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

The screen is the user interface. To change settings, retrieve voice mail, and have pretty pictures appear as your background.

I occasionally can figure out how to use it to make a phone call on it. Took me a while to realize I had to logon to my phone to have it actually receive calls! Figured that out when I got a voice mail in my inbox - when I had been sitting next to the phone for the morning...

almost makes me wish for my first work phone again. It was rotary, and we had a switchboard in the front office of the building. At lunchtime I often had to wait to make a call as all of the outgoing lines were used :)

Thu Sep 14, 11:01:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Sounds like a end-user training issue:)

Thu Sep 14, 11:15:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

Could well be - I skipped the training for the new phones.

However, on friday there is training for the new travel system we will be using - that, that one I will be attending (given how much I use it :)

Thu Sep 14, 11:23:00 AM EDT  

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Mon Apr 23, 06:11:00 AM EDT  

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