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  Friday, May 16, 2003

Off to Dallas in the morning for STC-Con. Blogging by mail sporadically.


5:37:55 PM    Questions? Comments? Flames? []

I just talked with a nice lady named Elizabeth at Charter Communication, inquiring about the increase in the monthly rate for my cable internet service. Here are two interesting observations:

  • She couldn't understand why I wouldn't give her my social security number to identify myself. She thought they asked for it to help protect me, the customer. I explained they have the number for credit purposes, not identification. Charter, like many other companies, doesn't get it--your SSN should be confined to the finance department, and not even available to customer service agents.
  • She made no effort to retain me as a customer of the Charter Pipeline service. None. Even when I explained I could get twice the speed from DSL, so why should I pay more for additional speed over cable, much less pay more for getting nothing more? No offer for greater speed, no offer to hold the price. She was just oh, so happy to cancel that service.

Didn't it used to be that if you called a company to cancel service they'd try to make you an offer? A lower rate on your credit card, a better deal on cell phone service? What happened? Isn't anyone reading the news about incipient deflation?

2:28:10 PM    Questions? Comments? Flames? []

SCO's Linux Jihad. Linux Journal: SCO to Reveal Allegedly Copied Code.  [Dan Gillmor's eJournal]

And here's OSI's dissection of SCO's claims, from Eric Raymond and Rob Landley: OSI Position Paper on the SCO-vs.-IBM Complaint

12:37:54 PM    Questions? Comments? Flames? []

"Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." 

Thomas A. Edison. [Quotes of the Day]

Which sounds a bit like saying that you make your own luck.

A few months back, an unemployed techie was moaning on a mailing list about having such bad luck that she couldn't find a job. I replied that "there's no such thing as luck," and got raked over the coals by several correspondents who insisted that luck/fate/karma were all the same thing and most certainly existed and guided their lives. I still disagree. The concepts are not equivalent; for example, karma does not equate to predestiny--it's simply a statement of cause-and-effect. To me, people who others see as lucky simply have the ability to see and seize opportunity, and to even make their own opportunities--lemonade from lemons. Those who appear to have bad luck simply can't get out of their own way. That doesn't mean there's some hidden force ("Lady Luck") that makes or breaks us.

But that's just my opinion; I could be wrong.

8:09:52 AM    Questions? Comments? Flames? []

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