105 posts • joined 17 Jun 2009
Re: Credit cards ?
Ironically, Nationwide is one of the few with a core banking platform designed and built this decade. Almost all the rest are derived from the last century. This doesn't make them immune from failure of course, nor from the challenges of managing all the interconnected systems, but at least they don't have to treat the whole lot as the IT banking equivalent of Buckaroo.
Life is easier with XP
The last thing certain government want is the mass movement away from an insecure operating system for which they have many zero day exploits.
"Please keep supporting it, some of our favourite espionage and control targets still depend upon Windows XP."
Isn't having a TEM in there instead of some "scanning probe" variant somewhat ironic given the facility is named after Binnig and Rohrer ?
I'm sure if my lab had been as well equipped as this, I would have got some better results. Would have kept wots-her-name from bursting in and turning the lights on/off whilst I was in the middle of an experiment.
They are all at it, trying to position the old flagship stuff as still relevant in the face of new entrant flash arrays where you can get good performance without a specialist machine to tune and spin it over loads of spindles. Yes there's the capacity thing, but then you still don't need the expensive flagship beast, just a bit bucket.
The solution (to storage vendor revenue cliffs) apparently is flogging software licences for virtualising access to all this.
Wow, storage is dull.
Yes and No
The contract has not been managed by any of those suppliers...it was managed (or otherwise) by the DWP. If this is a failure, it is a management failure (as almost all IT project failures are)
All led by Iain Useless-Smith, who was too thin skinned to take advice, and too stupid and stubborn to back off the promised go-live date of the end of April. If he had sucked up the embarrassment of a delay to October, UC might have gone live with some coherent functionality and not be the cancelled £500 million failure which it will eventually become.
Appeals process a sham, sherlock
As any fule kno, the parking operators' appeals process is a tactic to get to to engage, admit who you are, that you drove the car, you parked there, and that they have valid contact details for you.
Typical advice from Pepipoo, Money Saving Expert etc is to ignore them completely. This was successful for me a couple of years ago when I got a ticket despite having parked properly. Sequence of threatening and finally desperate letters, followed by them giving up. Not sure if introduction of POOPLA has made any difference to this, IANAL etc.
I'm not in favour of people parking where they like, but private parking co's have killed the golden goose by pursuing the money rather than acting reasonably or fairly.
Silly valuations don't come from them
Its the vampire squid and other banktards who, in a coke-fuelled haze, over rate these companies and pump up the valuations. All fees, all the time.
Of course the bubble bursts when they move to another target. Its not that the CEO has destroyed the real value/utility of their company - it was never there to start with.
Sounds like appraisal time around here....
Re: How simple does it need to be?
Assume you want the 'Joke' icon. For nothing if not the 'if you are working you are in the tax system' line, that was a killer...
Keep an eye on him
He might have been turned and be attempting to get elected as vice president of the BCS...
Waste of energy
Burning gas to make electricity is an appalling waste, squandering a clean primary source which can be used much more effectively for direct heating of house and factories.
But then the private energy companies couldn't ream, sorry, reap the rewards of offering emergency power at extortionate spot prices. Much more lucrative and lower risk than building plant which takes 10 years to start turning a profit.
The Lincolnshire Poacher never had these problems....
Queue up here to dance
on the grave of the Government Gateway.
No its all secure actually.
No they are all wrong, my bank's website tells me:-
"Chip and PIN increases card payment security to help prevent fraud. Card fraud at the point of sale is reduced significantly by ensuring the card is genuine and that the user is the authorised owner of the card"
so the card must be genuine and used by the authorised owner. It ensures it !
Nice try though
At least they made some attempt at graceful degradation of their service, rather than throwing the hands up in the air if it can't reach 20 different "nice to have" systems, and reporting some cutesy or hipster "ooops come back later" message.
Now for a bit of testing and rework to get the fallback barebones service working properly...
Anyone who thinks mistakes don't happen probably doesn't work in IT, and anyone who can't empathize with those involved has probably never worked on the sharp end.
The key elements are communication and speed/effectiveness of recovery. Comms have been fairly good so far and it sounds like recovery is well on the way.
The multitude of VBA and other abominations which teams and departments rely upon means quite a bit of lock-in.
Re: no backup of the schedule?
More likely they did take some routine backup which included the database but had never exercised a full recovery back to service of the application given this failure mode, followed by successful completion of the batch schedule.
Investment in the backbone?
Backbone? Guess they don't mean "having the guts to admit to making mistakes and having not properly understood the risks involved with outsourcing".
This situation really does sound like someone pretty high up in the executive chain responsible for operations needs to be fired. And I mean "fired" rather than helped into a taxi holding a massive payoff cheque.
a lot of low volume probs were sorted by an OTA update about 4-6 weeks ago - worth going through the menus to find and apply it.
i have one and its great as my first smartphone, glad i didn't spend 3-4 times more,
Single logical system
Typically there is redundant hardware, sometime OS and other system software too. But above that there is a single logical version of the application and data. You can have as much tin as you, but as many copies of the data as you liked are all the same. You screw up one, you screw up them all. Payment comes in from BACS or FP into the payments engine and is replicated at disk or app level.
Redundant systems developed and deployed in isolation to a common set of requirements is an extremely expensive option only available to mission critical systems - which excludes our retail banks apparently.
Re: Hardware failure?
I've worked at one retail bank in this country who does maintenance during a weekday afternoon-evening slot.
Well they launched some new payments facility on mobile, and those payments go might go share some infrastructure as the batch or other payments, they could have a knock-on effect.
For example perhaps there is a much higher volume than predicted. Or those mobile payments result in a much higher CPU cost or transaction time through the shared payments processing engine. Or connections to external interfaces e.g. for faster payments.
Don't have an inside information though, these are just guesses.
My money on
My guess.....Batch screw up, big back log of transactions to post, have some data remediation to get them to post correctly (don't know if they run a batch or real time banking system). Processing capacity requirement to do this is competing with online processing hence flaky online bank (plus peak load due to people checking if they are OK). Faster payments single immediate payments probably ok as not batch interfaces unlike BACS and internal transfers...
Anyone care to comment ? Via an anon posting from those in the know would be interesting, once you get out of the office of course....
Meh, mere statutes and acts of parliament, they can be safely ignored by the free.
Sounds like my experience with SAP.....
Buying a box with a promising picture on the side, but opening it to find it just a kit of parts and some vague instructions.
Still at least with Lego you have fun building something which actually works in the end.
Dear Fund Manager
Please don't plough my precious pension fund into this crud. You screwed up last time with that internet bubble in 1999-2002 - remember ? Stick it all in tobacco and guns instead...
[this open letter does not constitute general investment advice]
Re: Protected ?
Ah true enough I wasn't thinking about civilian public data which needs to be protected. Mind you, I would worry about the impact of aggregation if you start storing a lot of data on the phone, in the UK this can mean the protective marking gets bumped up a level.
Another concern is the ability to access and modify the data in a secure manner, that is to say the context in which you use a smartphone is often public or semi-public. Casual shoulder surfing of mobile devices seems to be fairly common.
Woop dee doo, "Protected" just means keep your voice down a bit whilst talking about it at the pub.
Performance tip before you do this.
Possibly cheaper to emove the cruft and tune the code and queries before you rip out your infrastructure and buy new tin.
Still, its impressive to say they are funding consultants to do this work for free - that sounds like an awful lot of cash assuming they do the whole job. I wonder how they recoup that.....every year....
I don't see the 18 month warranty being that popular though - offering a move from a mature Oracle or DB2 database, to HANA, and then off to Sybase or whatever SAP have got on a shelf in the back room. Where are my organisation's skills in that 3rd backend database going to come from.
Make him look like a perv
Smear his reputation to provide plausible background to a bizarre death. Use his network connections to visit some dodgy sites online in the period before his death, and then stage his demise in the same manner.
Public interest/concern weakened, easier to sweep away the death of someone serving his country without too many questions being asked.
Can we have figures after a suitably long soak test, i.e. not fresh-from-the-box ?
They can do it as soon they want
With their profit margins, they can start being 'nice' to people as soon as they want. Its a matter of will and determination versus greed and shareholder value. They don't need another $10 extra from the shiny-shiny brigade.
Early Xara FTW
I remember using the early x86 ports of Xara: jaw-droppingly fast, small, and better quality compared to my experience of CorelDraw.
Wordwise, meh, not interesting to me as a 10 year old kid but the sideways expansion board and disc doctor are still happy memories.
Missing some detail...
Range ? Charge time ? Effective MPG ?
Range of colours ?
Draw me a graph !
What would be really useful would be an indication of total cost versus pages printed. e.g. Assume you keep the device for 5 years, it comes with an X page cartridge included, and additional cartridges cost Y and Z (colour/B&W). What is the most economical assuming 10,100,500,1000 pages per month ?
Demo disk, big whoop
Interesting article and well written and original. But one gripe...
Yet again the 'Apple did this' line gets mismorphed into "Apple invented this and all credit to Steve Jobs' genius'.
Actually any mass-market computer worth its salt in those days had a demo disk, and one which the sales people used. The fact IBM didn't is merely a marker of how little they understood of how retail customers bought machine, not that Apple had the unique insight and mastery which is somehow projected 25 years hence to their retail outlets (which *are* pretty good but who couldn't support those storefronts on *those* profit margins?).
Its bizarreness is the challenge
Toronto isn't the correct solution.
And yes the Jeopardy format means some of the 'questions' which the contestants have to get end up being very clunky. I'm not a fan of the show at all.
But when you watch Jeopardy you can understand why its a very difficult challenge to meet with a computer compared to the ease which humans can do it. There are some youtube videos which explain this well and make you realise how impressive the whole thing is.
dicky dell switch ?
didn't he present "world of sport" in the 70s and 80s ?
Sharepoint - a running joke
Around here there is a running joke answer to someone asking you where the document/whatever you created is: on Sharepoint. Much hilarity, because the metadata is rubbish, and the search slow and inflexible.
Mind you, it was worse when there was no search index available.
Yeah, yeah, it can do everything under the sun and its just the crap way we've implemented it, but still....
Yep certainly shifting product
No doubt they are doing well and creating and shifting products a plenty - good luck to them if they can get people to pay the premium prices...
I suspect your view on the publicity angle is spot-on though, I wouldn't expect anything different.
Be Back Soon ?
Amazing that such a big cap company doesn't provide continuous availability through their online sales channel...
Don't tell me, its to build the excitement etc etc, but to me it just looks like even their web site is consumer grade....
Incompetence, meet Evil.
Only key cutting ?
If you can't also repair shoes with this device, it'll never catch on...
You are part of the elites, and you are screwing us, the common people.
I'm sure you could...
I'm sure you could care less about that, but I wonder if you could *not *care less about bootlegging ?
Pedantic minds want to know.
A+++++++++ lobbying, would use again. Cash arrived well packed.
- Opportunity selfie: Martian winds have given the spunky ol' rover a spring cleaning
- Spanish village called 'Kill the Jews' mulls rebranding exercise
- NASA finds first Earth-sized planet in a habitable zone around star
- New Facebook phone app allows you to stalk your mates
- Battle of the Linux clouds! Linode DOUBLES RAM to take on Digital Ocean