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vaqueroaero
4th Nov 2018, 09:08
Just enjoyed the delightful experience of eating breakfast at Orlando International Airport. Take my trash to the trash can and discover that I have to wave my hand over a sensor that in turn will open the door that will allow me to put my trash in the trash can. I'm holding bags in one hand and a trash covered tray in the other, so no free hands, so therefore I can't throw away my trash. Who in their right mind thought this was a great idea? Not to mention the cost of the stupid thing. What's wrong with a large container with a big hole in the top?

Whilst I'm at it.......supposedly spill/leak proof gas (petrol) cans. I have managed to prove on more than one occasion that that claim is utter bo***cks.

Gertrude the Wombat
4th Nov 2018, 09:17
Whilst I'm at it.......supposedly spill/leak proof gas (petrol) cans.
My mother tells me that when I was a toddler I broke a toy sold as "unbreakable". She got her money back.

SpringHeeledJack
4th Nov 2018, 09:19
Just because you can do something, doesn't mean you should do something.....As per usual (mostly) things aren't thought through beforehand and the advantage becomes a hindrance.

VP959
4th Nov 2018, 09:49
The idiots that put design before function need to be made to use the products they design under all conditions, then perhaps they might just start to see the error of their ways.

Years ago we bought a brand new house (never again, for a host of good reasons). It looked very nice, with internal door handles that were sleek stainless steel cylinders, and tap handles that were near-identical to the door handles in design. It didn't take long for us to discover that these handles were effectively inoperative if your hands were even slightly damp. Turning a tap off with wet hands was near impossible; you had to leave it running, dry your hands, dry the tap handle, and then you had half a chance of being able to turn it off. The same went for door handles, particularly the bathroom one. That would get damp enough from condensation after a shower to make it near-impossible to get out without wrapping a dry towel around the handle first.

Hydromet
4th Nov 2018, 09:51
I've often thought about starting a blog/website or some such called "What effing Einstein thought of this" where punters could post such examples, and others could name and shame the designers.

Pontius Navigator
4th Nov 2018, 09:52
My mother tells me that when I was a toddler I broke a toy sold as "unbreakable". She got her money back.
I had two 'unbreakable' toy soldiers, grenade throwers, which certainly proved unbreakable and regret not getting more (Gamages in High Holborn). I eventually sold them on eBay last year. I was tempted to use a hammer but chickened out ☺

WingNut60
4th Nov 2018, 10:00
My mother tells me that when I was a toddler I broke a toy sold as "unbreakable". She got her money back.

I used to own four anvils, but now I only have one.
I lost one and broke the other two.

BehindBlueEyes
4th Nov 2018, 10:13
Just enjoyed the delightful experience of eating breakfast at Orlando International Airport. Take my trash to the trash can and discover that I have to wave my hand over a sensor that in turn will open the door that will allow me to put my trash in the trash can. I'm holding bags in one hand and a trash covered tray in the other, so no free hands, so therefore I can't throw away my trash. Who in their right mind thought this was a great idea? Not to mention the cost of the stupid thing. What's wrong with a large container with a big hole in the top?

Whilst I'm at it.......supposedly spill/leak proof gas (petrol) cans. I have managed to prove on more than one occasion that that claim is utter bo***cks.

On the subject of useless technology at airports - and it’s been covered before on JB - Self Check In. My particular hated passion were the Virgin Atlantic ones at T3 LHW. There were these lovely members of staff standing around, smiling encouragingly, looking to steer victims to the machine. Spent 10 minutes typing in my details, only for the pile of **** to inform me, “booking not found” The lovely ladies then spent another 10 minutes helping me and doing exactly what I had just done, only to get the same reject answer, I was then offered apologies and taken to a check in desk to stand in front of a real person, who processed the whole thing without a hitch. If they can spare the staff to stand around to help, why can’t they be manning a desk and just doing it the traditional way?!

Are these SCI machines installed to ‘entertain’ travellers and keep them in a holding pen to prevent queues until a human can deal with them?

G-CPTN
4th Nov 2018, 11:34
If they can spare the staff to stand around to help, why can’t they be manning a desk and just doing it the traditional way?!
Firstly they don't want to upset their staff by simply making them redundant, and they don't want to upset their customers who will complain about the reduction in service.
By guiding customers into using the self-service facility, the staff will eventually accept that they are no longer needed and the customers will, likewise, accept the lack of staff.
Psychology and staff reduction by stealth.

Banks are the same . . .

Blues&twos
4th Nov 2018, 11:42
The building where my office is based is only a few years old and has automtic everything. It is incredibly irritating. Especially the automatic taps.
Try rinsing your contact lenses under a tap when you can't control the flow/temperature and when the tap will only come on if you have something very close to the sensor. Rrrggh.

Gertrude the Wombat
4th Nov 2018, 11:57
By guiding customers into using the self-service facility, the staff will eventually accept that they are no longer needed and the customers will, likewise, accept the lack of staff.
That's the theory. It might work a bit better if every experience with one of these machines wasn't totally different to any that you've ever used before, so you've got to learn all over again how to drive it. Which basically I can't be arsed to do if someone will do it for me, so I just stare at the machine in puzzlement until a member of staff comes and does it for me.

VP959
4th Nov 2018, 12:08
Regarding self-service machines, I was interested to see that a local newsagent has had a change of heart recently and re-built their check-out area, again. They had installed three or four self-service checkouts, and cut down to just a single till with an operator. The self-service machines were so slow, and caused such long queues, that they ended up having an operator by every one at busy periods to try and speed things up. Last time I went in there they had reverted to three manned tills and a single self-service checkout, with the self-service unit being restricted to card payments only.

There are places where self-service checkouts do seem to work well though. I prefer using them in the supermarket, as I like to be able to scan and pack things in the order I choose, not the order that the checkout operator chooses to slide things down to the packing area. These machines are generally pretty reliable, too, my only gripe is that there should be an option to turn off the annoying voice instructions for those that know how to use the things.

Gertrude the Wombat
4th Nov 2018, 12:28
Regarding self-service machines, I was interested to see that a local newsagent has had a change of heart recently and re-built their check-out area, again. They had installed three or four self-service checkouts, and cut down to just a single till with an operator. The self-service machines were so slow, and caused such long queues, that they ended up having an operator by every one at busy periods to try and speed things up. Last time I went in there they had reverted to three manned tills and a single self-service checkout, with the self-service unit being restricted to card payments only.
Our local Co-op has some self-service machines. Nobody uses them, because they never work. Yesterday however one woman got so bored with the queue to see a real till operator that she tried using the machine. Most of the way through her transaction it said "an operator has been called and will be with you shortly" and started flashing a red light.

Needless to say the till operators were busy operating the tills and continued to serve the long queue and ignore the flashing red light. Eventually the woman collected up her shopping, put it back in her basket, and rejoined the end of the queue for a real till, many places behind where she'd originally left it.

Our taxi company has done as your local newsagent - it used to be that you phoned up and had no choice but to try to navigate the voice recognition system - the only way to try to talk to a human being was to talk garbage at the automatic system until it gave up, which (a) took rather a long time, and (b) seemed to need different tactics each time you used it, so saying the same wrong thing to the same prompt didn't work twice.

It's been fixed, apparently I wasn't the only one asking around on social media for recommendations for a different taxi company. It now says "press 1 for our priority automated system, or 2 to join the queue for when an operator is available". Excellent. Press 2 and get hold music ... for about one and a half seconds, before the call is answered by a human and dealt with in the usual way.

Pontius Navigator
4th Nov 2018, 12:52
Waitrose self service is love hate - have to get customer services to release machine - hate. Scan products as we go round and get exactly to the offer vakue, say £50 - love.
Go to self -service till and get stuck, call assistant - hate.
Have voucher, have to call assist again!

I also wonder if they ever check that everything was scanned.

G-CPTN
4th Nov 2018, 12:58
I also wonder if they ever check that everything was scanned.
There is an initial check based on the weight of the scanned items placed on the 'output' side, and some establishments have CCTV monitoring - which might not catch occasional thefts but will record offenders for susequent monitoring and apprehending.

Krystal n chips
4th Nov 2018, 13:03
There are places where self-service checkouts do seem to work well though. I prefer using them in the supermarket, as I like to be able to scan and pack things in the order I choose, not the order that the checkout operator chooses to slide things down to the packing area. These machines are generally pretty reliable, too, my only gripe is that there should be an option to turn off the annoying voice instructions for those that know how to use the things.

It can be incredibly complex to unload your trolley, or basket items, onto the belt in the order you wish to pack them once the operator has scanned them.

Makes the title of this thread very apt really......

And not forgetting the operator being blameless for simply doing his / her job by scanning the items.......... blissfully unaware of your exacting loading plan......

G-CPTN
4th Nov 2018, 13:09
ALDI requires customers to reload their trolley and 'pack' elsewhere - though they do not permit the re-use of hand-baskets with customers expected to have bags ready.

sitigeltfel
4th Nov 2018, 13:32
There are places where self-service checkouts do seem to work well though. I prefer using them in the supermarket, as I like to be able to scan and pack things in the order I choose, not the order that the checkout operator chooses to slide things down to the packing area. These machines are generally pretty reliable, too, my only gripe is that there should be an option to turn off the annoying voice instructions for those that know how to use the things.

The bank of four self-service check-outs at my local Super-U are usually staffed by one of the same two women. I popped in the other day to buy a single item and when I got to the check-outs, the self-service ones were barred off. I had to join a queue of people with trolleys loaded full of stuff but they let me and my one item through first.

On the way back to my car I passed the employee smoking shelter, and guess which two members of staff were there puffing away?

charliegolf
4th Nov 2018, 13:45
I use Tesco a lot. I always use self-service. It is almost faultless; and keeps me clear of all the idiots who variously- chat on the phone whilst shopping; fail to recall that you will need some means of payment; picking up items with no barcode on them or 'forgetting' the ten extra items they waltz off to collect.

CG

ShotOne
4th Nov 2018, 14:31
How about the really clever train hand-wash sinks which dispense soap, water and hot air. Unfortunately mostly not in that order.

BehindBlueEyes
4th Nov 2018, 14:51
Waitrose self service is love hate - have to get customer services to release machine - hate. Scan products as we go round and get exactly to the offer vakue, say £50 - love.
Go to self -service till and get stuck, call assistant - hate.
Have voucher, have to call assist again!

I also wonder if they ever check that everything was scanned.
I’m with on you on this one PN. Love the self service facility. No more faffing about packing bags at the end. Able to check prices/deals as you go around etc. Even if I have to wait to get my alcohol age checked, it’s still much quicker.

Funnily enough, I’ve been using self scanning for several years in both Waitrose and Tesco’s. I have never been random checked in Waitrose; in Tescos I reckon I’m selected for the special treatment about every third visit. Usually, the staff member does a random 5 or 6 items but I must have looked particularly shifty on one occasion as the lad got every single item out of my trolley to check.

Gertrude the Wombat
4th Nov 2018, 15:58
How about the really clever train hand-wash sinks which dispense soap, water and hot air. Unfortunately mostly not in that order.
You don't want them in that order. You always want water first, to check that there is any. Well, you do if you've ever covered you hands with soap in (say) a pub loo, and then found no way of washing the soap off again, because the water wasn't working.

Pontius Navigator
4th Nov 2018, 16:22
GTW, and checking the air dryer actually works or use your trousers.

pax britanica
4th Nov 2018, 16:36
like the self service tills as long as they have adequate staff to help with the occasional problems
Sainsburys used to be the best but they have upgraded it without proper trialling and it has slipped behind the number 1 which is Tescos.

Waitrose is poor and M&S pitiful because they cannot keep the devices operating.

Worst of all is B&Q where some head office nitwit obviously didnt realise that the sensitive scales these devises need ar ok wi supermarkets where the variation in weights is modest but at B&Q out can but 7 litres of paint or a bag of cement weight 15 or so Kg and of course it just doesnt work when you folow it witha small paintbrush or light bulb or something very light .

Now what about self scanning.........

BehindBlueEyes
4th Nov 2018, 16:41
On the supermarket theme; why a security tag on a £5 hand held mixer or £10 bottle of wine but not on £12 box of dishwasher tablets or £20 bag of dog food?

Gertrude the Wombat
4th Nov 2018, 16:59
GTW, and checking the air dryer actually works or use your trousers.
Not bothered about that, hands dry in a couple of minutes anyway if you do nothing (unless it's well below freezing, in which case I would bother about drying my hands). But that soap was a bit of a b*gg*r.

PDR1
4th Nov 2018, 18:02
I've been a sainsburys self-scan customer for years, because it avoids the queues and lets you pack your bags as you go around. When I first used it I got a "rescan" (where they unpack your stuff and run it through the till to check for errors and honesty) twice in the first month, then twice in a few months, then maybe twice a year. The rescan selection was clearly random - I once got a rescan when I only had a loaf or bread and a bag of coffee (you'd expect it to favour the large trolley-loads if it *wasn't* random). I was a big fan of the system right up to the recent upgrade. The new system is EXTREMELY unreliable. By that I mean that you go to the store and it's only a 50-50 chance that it will be working. And it suffers problems while you're shopping. I got incensed about it and saw the store "techie" to ask wtf was happening, and was horrified to be told that unlike the old system this new one doesn't use local servers - the handsets are thin clients and everything goes to a server farm in somewhere like maidstone. Your handset is just a networked device that uses wifi to access the internet, and from there connect to the server. So very single scanning goes to the remote server farm. It also means that when tere is a problem there is absolutely cock-all the store staff can do about it - they can't even try to reboot/restart the server.

Personally I thing the gibbon who saw this as a suitable application for a thin-client architecture needs to be introduced to a nice warm bath and some razor blades.

Other views are available. They're wrong, but they are available...

PDR

Gertrude the Wombat
4th Nov 2018, 18:16
was horrified to be told that unlike the old system this new one doesn't use local servers
Now where have I heard that before ... ah yes, a certain political party, which may remain nameless, used to use a system with local databases, copied around from machine to machine as necessary, but has now moved to a centralised networked system.

Which means than when it falls over it falls over for the entire country, not just one ward or one committee room. And guess when this is most likely to happen? - yes, you've guessed it, when it most matters, on election day, when the system is having to cope with probably thousands of times its usual average load.

One might have imagined that the supplier would have thought of that, and arranged to scale up by an order of magnitude or two for that one day (isn't that what cloud services are supposed to be good at?), but apparently not.

ChrisVJ
4th Nov 2018, 20:16
Got to say I generally hated the self check outs but they have been getting better.

They have them in Home Depot and when there is a line at the other tills I can get through a self serve in about 90 seconds for two or three items. What I notice though is the lack of human contact. It's a kind of expectation thing. My big concern is that for a lot of older people this is almost the only human contact they have in their daily lives. It was already diminished hugely when we went from 'shops' to supermarkets.

419
4th Nov 2018, 21:00
Yesterday however one woman got so bored with the queue to see a real till operator that she tried using the machine. Most of the way through her transaction it said "an operator has been called and will be with you shortly" and started flashing a red light.

Needless to say the till operators were busy operating the tills and continued to serve the long queue and ignore the flashing red light. Eventually the woman collected up her shopping, put it back in her basket, and rejoined the end of the queue for a real till, many places behind where she'd originally left it.
Unless there is something in my shopping that I'm in desperate need of, when this has happened to me (usually at Waitrose), I simply leave the basket of shopping beside the flashing self service checkout and walk away.
Store staff have seen me do this and not asked me if there was a problem so it's probably something that happens on a regular basis.

Gertrude the Wombat
4th Nov 2018, 21:18
Unless there is something in my shopping that I'm in desperate need of ...
If you're in the local Co-op, as this incident was, you're desperate. If you're not desperate it can wait until the next time you're going to Tesco.

tdracer
4th Nov 2018, 22:57
I'm surprised to hear that the self checkouts in the UK are apparently so unreliable - it seems us backwards Yanks have that pretty much figured out. Personally, if I only have a few things I prefer the self checkout (if I have a cart full of stuff I'll go to the regular checkout). It's nearly always much faster, and while occasionally one of the checkouts is down, I can't recall a time when they were all down (or for that matter, more than one was down and they always have at least four).
Interestingly, the local Albertson used to have four self-checkouts (which I regularly used). They remodeled a couple years ago and got rid of all the self-checkouts and went completely with human checkout.

ea200
4th Nov 2018, 23:07
Push button taps in the toilet where the water pressure is way too high. Strand well back and press button to see if it chucks water all over the floor. Approach cautiously, water stops just as you get there. Try again a bit closer, get water all over trousers. Thrust hips at air dryer which doesn't work. They never do unless it's one of those blade devices and you can't get your trousers in there. You might as well dry your hands on your trousers in the first place.

Kiltrash
5th Nov 2018, 02:32
Every hotel room I use on my travels has a different coffee maker and sized bags. The instructions are pictorial and incomprehensible
What happened to a kettle, instant coffee and spoon?

clark y
5th Nov 2018, 02:38
This seems like the other thread on light bulbs.

Just picked up a new car, mid sized Toyota. The owners manual is 724 pages thick and the Nav/Audio manual is another 250 pages.

ramble on
5th Nov 2018, 03:30
Talking about Toyota’s - what is it with modern cars and NO external trunk latch? Drives me nuts.

PERFECT VERSION OF HELL - WHERE IDIOTIC DESIGNERS ARE MADE TO PLAY WITH THEIR IDIOTIC DESIGNS FOR ETERNITY

treadigraph
5th Nov 2018, 04:05
Push button taps in the toilet where the water pressure is way too high. Strand well back and press button to see if it chucks water all over the floor. Approach cautiously, water stops just as you get there. .
Given the frequency with which we (in the UK) are urged to save water, push button taps in some pub toilets irritate me - the water is still merrily flowing away while I am heading out of the door having washed and dried me jazz bands. Mind you there seem to be plenty of dick heads who are unable to turn manual taps off having completed their ablutions... probably the same ones who cannot successfully deposit their waste fluids in the receptacles provided.

Krystal n chips
5th Nov 2018, 04:46
Given the frequency with which we (in the UK) are urged to save water, push button taps in some pub toilets irritate me - the water is still merrily flowing away while I am heading out of the door having washed and dried me jazz bands. Mind you there seem to be plenty of dick heads who are unable to turn manual taps off having completed their ablutions... probably the same ones who cannot successfully deposit their waste fluids in the receptacles provided.

The same, eloquently and accurately defined individuals have one final act to prove they are as you say.....this involves putting their hands under two separate hand dryers, if conveniently located next to each other that is, which they often are and thereafter.....drying each hand individually whilst ensuring everybody has to wait until they condescend to finish their selfish indulgence !. ........................they probably drive a BMW / Audi or Merc as well.

Hydromet
5th Nov 2018, 06:36
Every hotel room I use on my travels has a different coffee maker and sized bags. The instructions are pictorial and incomprehensible
What happened to a kettle, instant coffee and spoon?

I hate that. I once resorted to calling housekeeping to show me how to drive the same thing, then later, at the same hotel, called them again to run the stupidly complicated bath/shower mixer.

PERFECT VERSION OF HELL - WHERE IDIOTIC DESIGNERS ARE MADE TO PLAY WITH THEIR IDIOTIC DESIGNS FOR ETERNITY ...and heaven is where one sits to watch them.

DaveReidUK
5th Nov 2018, 06:57
The same, eloquently and accurately defined individuals have one final act to prove they are as you say.....this involves putting their hands under two separate hand dryers, if conveniently located next to each other that is, which they often are

Could it be that the gentleman in question just doesn't want one hand to touch the other, because he knows where they've been ? :O

Pontius Navigator
5th Nov 2018, 07:00
There is an initial check based on the weight of the scanned items placed on the 'output' side, and some establishments have CCTV monitoring - which might not catch occasional thefts but will record offenders for susequent monitoring and apprehending.
No scales when you use a hand held scanner.

Pontius Navigator
5th Nov 2018, 07:13
What I notice though is the lack of human contact. It's a kind of expectation thing. My big concern is that for a lot of older people this is almost the only human contact they have in their daily lives.

I am an 'older' but not a 'lot of'. This contact drives me batty. I need to pay and want to get away from the GU. The checkout assistant is not my new best friend and I don't wish to hear the trials and tribulations on Mrs Xx in the queue ahead.

Pontius Navigator
5th Nov 2018, 07:20
This seems like the other thread on light bulbs.

Just picked up a new car, mid sized Toyota. The owners manual is 724 pages thick and the Nav/Audio manual is another 250 pages.
And the index? Are they lights, lamps or bulbs, or even LED ditto?

Pontius Navigator
5th Nov 2018, 07:30
If you're in the local Co-op, as this incident was, you're desperate. If you're not desperate it can wait until the next time you're going to Tesco.
Ah but that was the whole reason for the shop - paper and milk.

I got the paper and Mrs PN went for the milk and a few other items. Only as the heavy basket had been unloaded and scanned I asked where was the milk. Now having a long queue behind us (and 4 empty self-service tills) the solution is obvious. Mrs PN darts off to get the milk. When she returns I take the rest of the stuff to the car. Some minutes later Mrs PN emerges.

Carry0nLuggage
5th Nov 2018, 10:04
I am an 'older' but not a 'lot of'. This contact drives me batty. I need to pay and want to get away from the GU. The checkout assistant is not my new best friend and I don't wish to hear the trials and tribulations on Mrs Xx in the queue ahead.

I wish they'd all have a "One item, no chit-chat, no messing queue" for those times when shopping is an absolute necessity not a time filler.

Waitrose were rather clever in waiting for all the other chains to highlight all the problems with self service checkouts before introducing theirs. They are not perfect but certainly the slickest and none of this weighing the items nonsense, maybe their customers are more honest in general :E. WH Smiths are the worst. I often just abandon my shopping and go elsewhere, it takes too long to resolve any problems with their terminals.

Hydromet
5th Nov 2018, 10:37
I have never used a self-checkout. I have, however, rung the manager of a store from the end of the queue at the only manned check out. Not something that he'd experienced before, I suspect.

radeng
5th Nov 2018, 11:22
I never use self check out. I've got to know several of the check out staff at Tesco and always look for them. some of them are friendly ladies: two often have adjoining tills are the 'checkout chicks' according to them - good looking ladies in their 40s. Nice bit of human interaction: one has a daughter at Oxford university so I ask after her: the other has a 17 year son about to fitted with an implanted defibrillator with radio in it - and I spent the last 11 years of my working life doing systems engineering on such radios. Another is the daughter of a local radio amateur that I know, so I ask after him, too. Being pleasant to them means that will help when necessary.

RedhillPhil
5th Nov 2018, 12:05
It's not just the things per se. It's the instructions which are often written using words that ore somewhat out of context. I've (fairly) recently had a new central heating/hot water boiler fitted complete with a wireless controlled timer and thermostat. Reading the "how to programme your new wonder controller" booklet it kept mentioning "comfort times". If only the words were "heating periods" I would have twigged earlier. At the other end of the scale was my Tom-Tom sat-nav. Take out of box, switch on, go.

FakePilot
5th Nov 2018, 12:32
I'm pretty sure the only reason smartphones took so long to develop is that the Monarch being shown the device could chop off heads.

PDR1
5th Nov 2018, 13:48
Push button taps in the toilet where the water pressure is way too high. Strand well back and press button to see if it chucks water all over the floor. Approach cautiously, water stops just as you get there. Try again a bit closer, get water all over trousers. Thrust hips at air dryer which doesn't work. They never do unless it's one of those blade devices and you can't get your trousers in there. You might as well dry your hands on your trousers in the first place.

Hah! A jolly jape in the pub is to go into the gents, splash water on the front of your trousers and then come out exclaiming loudly:

"Is there some kind of knack to these dyson urinals???"

:)

PDR

PDR1
5th Nov 2018, 13:51
I'm surprised to hear that the self checkouts in the UK are apparently so unreliable - it seems us backwards Yanks have that pretty much figured out.

Self checkouts work fine in pretty well all the stores I use - it's just the handheld scanner systems (where you scan stuff as you go around) that give trouble IME.

If I have a bottle of wine in my shopping and a member of staff asks be to give proof of age I just do some mental arithmetic...

PDR

hiflymk3
5th Nov 2018, 14:10
Anything IKEA.

Pontius Navigator
5th Nov 2018, 14:20
Anything IKEA.
Flat pack with exactly the right number of 6mm, 8mm and 10mm screws. Drop one or use the wrong one and an overly long one then breaks the paper.

Krystal n chips
5th Nov 2018, 15:01
I am an 'older' but not a 'lot of'. This contact drives me batty. I need to pay and want to get away from the GU. The checkout assistant is not my new best friend and I don't wish to hear the trials and tribulations on Mrs Xx in the queue ahead.

Given your lack of social empathy, it's more than likely any checkout operator holds similar sentiments regarding your departure from the store.....albeit this could be rapidly expedited if the store were to put out a broadcast.....tannoy would prove a shade too evocative for you I feel..........to the effect pig farming families are welcome and eligible for a 50 % discount on any product they help produce.

Non-Driver
5th Nov 2018, 15:18
The building where my office is based is only a few years old and has automtic everything. It is incredibly irritating. Especially the automatic taps.
Try rinsing your contact lenses under a tap when you can't control the flow/temperature and when the tap will only come on if you have something very close to the sensor. Rrrggh.

You really shouldn't be doing that:

https://www.epa.gov/dwstandardsregulations/danger-using-tap-water-contact-lenses

Chesty Morgan
5th Nov 2018, 16:47
Just enjoyed the delightful experience of eating breakfast at Orlando International Airport. Take my trash to the trash can and discover that I have to wave my hand over a sensor that in turn will open the door that will allow me to put my trash in the trash can. I'm holding bags in one hand and a trash covered tray in the other, so no free hands, so therefore I can't throw away my trash. Who in their right mind thought this was a great idea? Not to mention the cost of the stupid thing. What's wrong with a large container with a big hole in the top?
It’s only light sensor. It doesn’t know a hand from a dildo. Why didn’t you just wave your tray at it?

Buster11
5th Nov 2018, 17:29
It's not the checkout operators that bother me (although Lidl's scanners seem to work very much faster than most other stores and not need each item's barcode to be accurately lined up) but the person at the front of the queue. Why on earth do people wait till they've packed every item they've bought before realising that they are going to have to pay? I thought women were supposed to be good at multi-tasking, but it surely can't be hard to get the card or the money ready while they're in the queue, or at least to initiate the paying process, whether card or cash, as soon as the bill appears. That way the packing can be done while the change is counted or the card reader's doing its thing. That's why I go for the self service checkout every time. I don't regard shopping as a social occasion but a neccessity.

TLDNMCL
5th Nov 2018, 17:31
I hate that. I once resorted to calling housekeeping to show me how to drive the same thing, then later, at the same hotel, called them again to run the stupidly complicated bath/shower mixer.

...and heaven is where one sits to watch them. Oh yes! I'm with you as far as the space shuttle shower operations go in hotels - do I push it, pull it, twist it, pull for water and twist for temperature or the opposite? Do I scald or freeze myself trying to find out? Then of course we have the ones which have a fixed head AND a hand held option, with yet more controls. The extractor fan cord which turns out to be the SOS alarm can be quite embarrassing too...

Hydromet
5th Nov 2018, 19:50
It’s only light sensor. It doesn’t know a hand from a dildo.

I know women like that.

Fareastdriver
5th Nov 2018, 20:35
Lidl's scanners seem to work very much faster than most other stores

Lidl and Aldi are the same. You are not supposed to pack your bags on the checkout; that is why the receiving area is so small. The procedure is to place your merchandise back in the trolley and after you have paid take the trollyload to the shelf at the back and pack your bags there.

Too advanced for some people.

West Coast
5th Nov 2018, 21:33
Simple things made stupidly complicated....


Like how many genders there are.


That should rile up some of the more “progressive” lefties here.

Gertrude the Wombat
5th Nov 2018, 21:48
Simple things made stupidly complicated....

Like how many genders there are.
The simple response, to decomplicate it, is "I don't care what people say they are" - that way you don't even need two.

(Possibly best not to say that out loud, though, in some company.)

axefurabz
5th Nov 2018, 21:53
My local health centre wants me to "arrive me" when I arrive. :confused:

racedo
5th Nov 2018, 22:41
The building where my office is based is only a few years old and has automtic everything. It is incredibly irritating. Especially the automatic taps.
Try rinsing your contact lenses under a tap when you can't control the flow/temperature and when the tap will only come on if you have something very close to the sensor. Rrrggh.

Tight wad..................... get proper saline water to do so rather than relying on local water company to have clean water coming through....

racedo
5th Nov 2018, 22:45
I also wonder if they ever check that everything was scanned.

Self Scanning is reckoned to lose up to 1% a day in takings depending on the store................... its why certain high value items are tagged.

racedo
5th Nov 2018, 22:49
On the supermarket theme; why a security tag on a £5 hand held mixer or £10 bottle of wine but not on £12 box of dishwasher tablets or £20 bag of dog food?


Size and try putting the later 2 under your jacket........................... you would look like a fat git................. well maybe fatter git in my case :)

racedo
5th Nov 2018, 23:02
I never use self check out. I've got to know several of the check out staff at Tesco and always look for them. some of them are friendly ladies: two often have adjoining tills are the 'checkout chicks' according to them - good looking ladies in their 40s. Nice bit of human interaction: one has a daughter at Oxford university so I ask after her: the other has a 17 year son about to fitted with an implanted defibrillator with radio in it - and I spent the last 11 years of my working life doing systems engineering on such radios. Another is the daughter of a local radio amateur that I know, so I ask after him, too. Being pleasant to them means that will help when necessary.

Yup do that as well.
One store had young Identical twin sisters working there................... as was always in at a specific time on a Friday one was there and always chatty. Went in one Sat afternoon and both sitting side by side.................. one reminded me she could lip read my "WTF" but thing my face probably said that as well which had them both laughing.
They said they often ensure they got tills next to each other to confuse the hell out of customers, or changed the names badges to confuse the supervisors.

Lidl have no self tills.

racedo
5th Nov 2018, 23:04
Simple things made stupidly complicated....
Like how many genders there are.
That should rile up some of the more “progressive” lefties here.

M / F / NIWTFTA should suffice

West Coast
5th Nov 2018, 23:27
The simple response, to decomplicate it, is "I don't care what people say they are" - that way you don't even need two.

(Possibly best not to say that out loud, though, in some company.)

Yes, one gets labeled for using the outdoor voice on this topic. Either way it’s blood silly that in some circles there’s twenty something genders.

ExSp33db1rd
6th Nov 2018, 00:20
........taken to a check in desk to stand in front of a real person,

As crew, itinerary changed, collect ( old fashioned ) tickets at the airport - check-in clerk said " the computer is down, I can't print your tickets so you won't be able to travel". The Flt. Eng. silently handed her his pen. We flew.

the stupidly complicated bath/shower mixer.

Yes, the complexity of so many various designs is overwhelming.

If I have a bottle of wine in my shopping and a member of staff asks be to give proof of age I just do some mental arithmetic...

Which they can't do. Last time I pointed out that she needed my money, to pay her salary, more than I needed her beer, put it down and walked out. Did she really think I was under 21, maybe I should have given her a kiss ! ( then been arrested for sexual harrassment )

Why on earth do people wait till they've packed every item they've bought before realising that they are going to have to pay? I thought women were supposed to be good at multi-tasking,

All the time rummaging around in the bottom of some voluminous bag, muttering .. " I know I brought it, it's in here somewhere "

"What sort of a day have you had so far ?"

One day I'll tell them, that'll stop that nonsense.

WingNut60
6th Nov 2018, 00:28
Yes, one gets labeled for using the outdoor voice on this topic. Either way it’s blood silly that in some circles there’s twenty something genders.

The problem arose when questionnaires started using "Gender", presumably as a euphemism for the information that was actually being elicited, which was "SEX".
Can't use THAT word in polite society now, can we.
But at least, with very few exceptions, there are only two to choose from.
And it's not open to self-interpretation.

ethicalconundrum
6th Nov 2018, 00:52
I restore vintage cars. Here's my offering.
Porsche 928, 944, 968 HVAC controls. A mechanical slider, translates motion to an electrical signal on a copper band, or wiper and contact. That electrical contact is used to open or close solenoids. Each solenoid has a vacuum valve on a manifold with vacuum supplied by cheap piece of plastic pipe from the intake. The vacuum signal is then sent to a diaphragm canister with a mechanical arm on it to move the various temp and air direction controls. About 15 single points of failure for each position of the HVAC. Yes, I'm aware that other cars use this too. Doesn''t make it right.

Krystal n chips
6th Nov 2018, 05:32
It's not the checkout operators that bother me (although Lidl's scanners seem to work very much faster than most other stores and not need each item's barcode to be accurately lined up) but the person at the front of the queue. Why on earth do people wait till they've packed every item they've bought before realising that they are going to have to pay? I thought women were supposed to be good at multi-tasking, but it surely can't be hard to get the card or the money ready while they're in the queue, or at least to initiate the paying process, whether card or cash, as soon as the bill appears. That way the packing can be done while the change is counted or the card reader's doing its thing. That's why I go for the self service checkout every time. I don't regard shopping as a social occasion but a neccessity.

There may be a reason which has escaped your notice as to why Lidl, and Aldi, have faster scanners.....such as having a limited product range in comparison to other retailers perhaps.?

However, in the finest traditions of JB, it's reassuring to learn the male of the species is faultless in comparison to the lesser species otherwise known as......women...who, it seems, are incapable of performing the process of shopping unless supervised by a male !

Then there's the mental arithmetic to consider

Clearly, with a trolley or even basket full of items, the chap will have worked out, whilst waiting in the queue, the precise amount if paying cash or have brandished his card ready to insert or swipe the moment the till displays the amount whilst simultaneously loading the bags......a load sheet may also be required for some at this point....with the goods purchased. Now that's multi-tasking for you !

Alas, given we've all shopped, and queued, over the years, and whilst I make no claims as to this being by no means a scientifically based analysis you understand, I have noticed that individuals of both genders, are both capable and incapable in equal measure when shopping. There have even been times, when, I have forgotten an item and dashed back to the aisle to collect it......dashed poor show for a chap there I know !..but, there again, I'm human and therefore fallible.

wowzz
6th Nov 2018, 07:04
"There may be a reason which has escaped your notice as to why Lidl, and Aldi, have faster scanners"
At a guess, 95% of products sold in these stores are own label, with packaging designed by the retailers. If you look at the packaging you will see that many of the bar codes 'wrap round' the packaging, or take up a significant proportion of the printed surface, allowing the barcodes to be easily read, whatever orientation the product is presented to the scanner, thus allowing for faster scanning.

Pontius Navigator
6th Nov 2018, 07:25
Self Scanning is reckoned to lose up to 1% a day in takings depending on the store................... its why certain high value items are tagged.
Chap, recently jailed, got a buzz from cheating the self-scan checkouts. He kept a number of reduced offer labels and would 're-price things. Got away with it for a time.

Innominate
6th Nov 2018, 11:49
Some 20+ years ago we were on holiday in Germany and shopped at Aldi, or possibly Lidl. This was before UK supermarkets used barcodes, and we were amazed at the speed with which the checkout operators keyed in the prices - particularly since none of the packets/tins/cartons had prices on them. Either they were making the prices up, had memorised them all, or the shop used a small number of standard prices - one price for tins, another for cartons, and so on. It would have been impossible for us to check that they'd done it correctly if we'd had more than a few items, since the receipt obviously didn't say what each price related to.

racedo
6th Nov 2018, 12:24
Some 20+ years ago we were on holiday in Germany and shopped at Aldi, or possibly Lidl. This was before UK supermarkets used barcodes, and we were amazed at the speed with which the checkout operators keyed in the prices - particularly since none of the packets/tins/cartons had prices on them. Either they were making the prices up, had memorised them all, or the shop used a small number of standard prices - one price for tins, another for cartons, and so on. It would have been impossible for us to check that they'd done it correctly if we'd had more than a few items, since the receipt obviously didn't say what each price related to.

They were required to memorise the prices and codes.
Remember Lidl and Aldi using UK examples do not employ Temporary workers like the rest of the retail Industry.................. they employ permanent staff with flexible hours if required.
In mid 1990's Aldi were paying £10 per hour for staff in Birmingham while pubs were paying £3.50................... this is why you see few teenagers working there, then and now.

cee cee
6th Nov 2018, 13:17
Just enjoyed the delightful experience of eating breakfast at Orlando International Airport. Take my trash to the trash can and discover that I have to wave my hand over a sensor that in turn will open the door that will allow me to put my trash in the trash can. I'm holding bags in one hand and a trash covered tray in the other, so no free hands, so therefore I can't throw away my trash. Who in their right mind thought this was a great idea? Not to mention the cost of the stupid thing. What's wrong with a large container with a big hole in the top?


I can make a stab at the thinking behind that desgn.

Firstly, the bin is indoors at a food court. That means that there will be significant amount of leftovers that gets thown into the bin. Someone suggested that the bin needs a door to keep the smell in. Manual versions of such bins where you need to push open the flap door to throw rubbish away are quite common around food courts.

The next step in the evolution came from some squeamish people who decided that they do not want to touch a public bin because GERMS! DISEASES! COOTIES! (which they put at the same risk as flesh eating bacteria). So the bin manufacturers kindly accomodated them with the non-touch, auto-opening bin; charging the premises ten times as much, and selling them as hygenic and technically advanced to the centre management.

At the end, it is considered a win-win-win: the manufacturer gets much higher revenues and profits, the centre management gets to sell their premises as being higher class and responding to the needs to fheir customers, and the customers think that they are protected from the scary germs (which they picked up anyway from the tabletops, chairs, escalator handrails, etc).

That would be in most people's minds what is known as progress and another fine example of how capitalism delivers what most people want more cheaply and efficiently.

[Hopefully I did not overdo the sarcasm and tipped over into the grumpy old codger category]

Mac the Knife
6th Nov 2018, 13:56
"....and the customers think that they are protected from the scary germs (which they picked up anyway from the tabletops, chairs, escalator handrails, etc..."

<applause>

Mac

ethicalconundrum
6th Nov 2018, 14:26
"....and the customers think that they are protected from the scary germs (which they picked up anyway from the tabletops, chairs, escalator handrails, etc..."

<applause>

Mac
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pq9hBEvFNlM

Yup,,,

RedhillPhil
6th Nov 2018, 18:16
How about having lunch?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jruLdkHhi4

Pontius Navigator
6th Nov 2018, 18:27
Innominate, 20+ is nearer to 40+ as large brand new Coop was not the first to use bar codes but was the first to use talking checkouts.

It was quite amusing to hear till 3 announce bottle of whiskey, party crackers, panties etc etc with 24 active tills all shouting out what Mrs McTavish had bought etc. Lasted a week.

The first bar code scanner was in Spalding or some such back water and opened by a friend who has been retired 25 years.

Hussar 54
6th Nov 2018, 20:11
Simple things made difficult, can I add my pet annoyance of the week ?

Not too long ago, we bought milk in glass bottles with a screw top - easy to open and close ; easy to wash and use for other things ; easily recycled if not needed.

These days, the only milk we are able to buy in our small village superette is in a plasticised box. You need scissors to open it and then can't reseal it. Once opened, and still fairly full, as soon as you grip it to put it away in the fridge or take it out of the fridge, the box collapses inwards and the milk pours outwards. And compared to glass, almost impossible to recycle as I understand it.

Grrrr.....

NRU74
6th Nov 2018, 20:19
Milk freezes well.
Save the earlier container (or use another) and freeze half of it.
Easy - or is that ‘facile’?

Hussar 54
6th Nov 2018, 20:31
Milk freezes well.
Save the earlier container (or use another) and freeze half of it.
Easy - or is that ‘facile’?


Oui....facile.

Good tip. But would just prefer our milk in a screw top bottle - admittedly, available at the hyper about 40kms away - but we just seem to spill milk every time we open and use a new box for the first couple of days, so maybe I'll just buy a funnel and then ( carefully, don't grip too tight !!! ) empty the box into an old cola bottle.

funfly
6th Nov 2018, 22:15
Isn't one of the main problems that people with no practical knowledge of a problem (often computer programmers) change something because it demonstrates (to themselves maybe) just how clever they are, Self driving cars is a good example, technology pursued for its own sake rather than to fill a need.

Hydromet
7th Nov 2018, 00:35
Isn't one of the main problems that people with no practical knowledge of a problem (often computer programmers) change something because it demonstrates (to themselves maybe) just how clever they are, Self driving cars is a good example, technology pursued for its own sake rather than to fill a need.

Forty years ago, this was called 'dog-dick' technology, because it's done for the same reason a dog licks his dick - because he can.

ethicalconundrum
7th Nov 2018, 00:38
Ancillary to the theme of this thread. There was a company a while back which compensated coders by the # of lines of code produced. It didn't take long for simple and elegant code to turn real ugly.

ExSp33db1rd
7th Nov 2018, 00:42
Child proof containers that only a 5 yr. old can open.

India Four Two
7th Nov 2018, 04:51
Talking of coding, this is pertinent. I sent an enquiry to a mod that I know, on behalf of a friend, who has been banned from all the fora on PPRuNe. Here is part of his reply:

Due to changes in the software which underlies PPRuNe, it is no longer possible for a "thread ban" to be issued, only a complete ban.

Hydromet
7th Nov 2018, 05:31
So is that an error in coding or an error in specification?

I've always regarded programmers as cerebral labourers - tell them exactly what needs to be done and you'll probably get it. Give them any latitude and you don't know what you'll get.

Pontius Navigator
7th Nov 2018, 07:25
Hussar, at least in UK most outlets use a screw top plastic bottles in sizes from 1/2 litre to 2 ltr. I even saw two glass bottles on a doorstep yesterday!

As for freezing milk, not tried it recently but you could not freeze the old style milk with cream on top. Now with homogenized full, semi, or low fat milks it may work better.

VP959
7th Nov 2018, 07:30
We've had our milk delivered in glass, reusable, bottles for many years now. I've never managed to understand why the Tetrapak became so successful, given the significant flaws in its design. Even when you've mastered the technique of opening a Tetrapak properly, it's still far too easy to spill the contents and the inability to adequately reseal it after first use is a major downside, IMHO.

Pontius Navigator
7th Nov 2018, 07:42
Remember that other wonderful attempt: the plastic bag of milk. Absolutely brilliant. A box of bags was almost 99% milk and virtually no wasted space. And that was its only advantage. You needed to decant to a jug or use a special jug that you put the bag in. It came in one size. Probably invented by someone that used to take a jug to the dairy every day.

treadigraph
7th Nov 2018, 12:28
Going back to one of the initial posts in this thread (and a cross thread with the concurrent Pubs thread)... had breakfast in Wetherspoons pub this morning; after two cups of coffee, used the facilites and, yes, the cold tap attempted to spray me with water... forewarned is forearmed and I managed to avoid the wet lap scenario...

Isn't one of the main problems that people with no practical knowledge of a problem (often computer programmers) change something because it demonstrates (to themselves maybe) just how clever they are, Self driving cars is a good example, technology pursued for its own sake rather than to fill a need.

New boss: "Why do you it like that?" "Cos we always done it like that." "Well from now on you're going to do it like this." "Doing it like this don't work as well as doing like that." "Who's in charge?*" I lasted a lot longer in the company than she did...

*spoken like Miranda Richardson in Black Adder II "Who's Queen?"

cee cee
7th Nov 2018, 13:00
plastic bag of milk. Absolutely brilliant.

Whoops, almost replied with a totally different product in mind. Good thing I googled it first. Others who have not seen such packaging may find these links useful:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milk_bag
Why Do Canadians Drink Milk in Bags? Mental Floss (http://mentalfloss.com/article/81468/why-do-canadians-drink-milk-bags)

What I thought you were talking about was what an ex-colleague described to me 20 years ago. He said that the milkman used to deliver, in addition to glass bottles (600ml) and paper cartons (1l and 2l), large bags of fresh milk (5l I think). He described them as similar to cask wine without the cardboard box but with the same pouring mechanism. He liked the size and packaging, having young children that drain the bags quickly. He was disappointed when the milkman stopped supplying them because a single torn bag during delivery eats up the profits.

Anyone else knows about these? It may have been available in Australia only.

Pontius Navigator
7th Nov 2018, 13:14
C C, quite so. However D2 had a dairy product allergy so we sourced goat's milk. The supplier provided it frozen in plastic bags. Very convenient in this case.

double_barrel
7th Nov 2018, 13:54
Self driving cars is a good example, technology pursued for its own sake rather than to fill a need.

You mean apart from the 1,250,000 people killed on the roads last year?

Planemike
7th Nov 2018, 14:02
You mean apart from the 1,250,000 people killed on the roads last year?

Who says they will not add to that number.......? (Take it the figure is world wide??)

Gertrude the Wombat
7th Nov 2018, 17:05
So is that an error in coding or an error in specification?

I've always regarded programmers as cerebral labourers - tell them exactly what needs to be done and you'll probably get it.
Well, eventually.

If I am asked to produce something that is obviously wrong I will question it. If asked again, I will question it again.

When asked the third time I've got a choice:

(1) shut up, do what I'm told, deliver the crap that the customer/employer is insisting on, and hope it doesn't kill anyone or end up as a failed project on my CV (the Bellman approach - "what I tell you three times is true")

(2) "Sorry mate, can't do that, against my professional code of conduct, those letters are after a name for a good reason and I want to keep them." And then a polite version of "you can stick your contract / job".