Ur Doin IT Rong

Today's IT phone call...

The Problem: Company A has sent company B a spreadsheet, partially filled out, for B to complete and send back. But instead of sending the spreadsheet file, they seem to have printed it out, scanned the result, and sent the picture as an attachment.

Solution 1: Print out the graphic, write appropriate figures in the appropriate columns, borrow a scanner, scan in the annotated printout, and send it back as an attachment.

Problem with Solution 1: Don't know anyone who's got a scanner to borrow it from.

Solution 2: Load the graphic into MS Word and overlay some text onto the blank bits.

Problem with Solution 2: Don't know how to do this.

Solution 3: Load the graphic into a graphics package (Photoshop, Draw, even MS Paint) and insert text in the white spaces.

Problem with Solution 3: That's exactly what the company had been trying to do - with the pencil tool :-S. And it wasn't working too well. Don't know how to place text on a graphic.

Solution 4: Ask Company A why they did such and idiotic thing, and get them to send the actual spreadsheet document.

Problem with Solution 4: Don't want to risk offending Company A.

Solution 5: Copy out the graphic onto your own spreadsheet, fill in the blanks, and send the result by email.

And that's what they're doing, as I type.

Technology - the more it does, the more idiots can screw it up.


  1. Well, speaking on behalf of the idiot community, if tchnology would do what we meant and not what we said, we wouldn't have to keep bothering you. :-)

  2. Solution 6: Hire IT or get new IT people!

    Perhaps instead of worrying about idiots screwing up with technology, shouldn't we make technology that keeps the idiots from screwing, hopefully reducing their contributions to the gene pool?

  3. @Anonymous Female: if technology would do what we meant and not what we said

    Sounds good. Only one problem. It requires that the user knows what they mean.

    @Eroswings: shouldn't we make technology that keeps the idiots from screwing

    Hmm. Two small problems.

    (1) The technology would still need people to implement and maintain it. And seeing as these people would be mostly idiots, they'd screw it up.
    (2) There's nothing more ingenius than someone determined to do something stupid. Or as computer people say, "The more idiot proof you make the system, the smarter idiots get".