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lost their minds

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by John Larkin, Mar 2, 2004.

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  1. John Larkin

    John Larkin Guest

    The Intersil web site consists of nothing but blocks that say "load
    the plugin." No thanks.

    The Cal Micro site just keeps loading stuff forever; the screen stays

    At Agilent, if you click 'samples', it says 'you must register'; so I
    did... and it only took 5 tries to get it right! 'Company division'
    was mandatory, so I invented World Headquarters. Then I had to log in;
    that worked OK. Then when I clicked 'samples', it said 'you must

    Webmasters can be the most expensive employees anybody ever hired.

  2. Chris Carlen

    Chris Carlen Guest

    I regularly send bitching emails to websites about this kind of
    stupidity. In the case of Perkin Elmer, I received multiple emails from
    execs up to a high level promising to improve things. I quickly
    ensured them that I wasn't just trying to flame them, but I really hoped
    they would get better, for everyone concerned.

    I did it to Intersil once too, after they built a website for housewives
    looking for new dishes. I said "you're products are for engineers, not
    artists!" They understood, and it got better. Perhaps now they have

    But what really bugs me is the use of complications when not necessary,
    such as Java, javascript, and other scripts and stuff when plain HTML
    would do just fine.

    Right now I'm bitching about Xilinx's WebPACK software, the newer
    versions of which build an HTML fitter report, with embedded Java code!
    What the heck is wrong with plain text? Then of course it has bugs in
    it making it do stupid things like crash and hang. I could have just
    read the text. I can't believe stuff like this.

    I have to think that what it about is some slick young programmer
    wanting to impress hos boss with all the jargon he can spew at review
    time. That and another factor: the mindless developer phenomenon.
    That's when the development tools enable web and other program
    development with little to no knowledge of the programming language,
    good programming techniques, or anything else resembling thinking. Drag
    and drop tools like the ones Microsoft and Macrovision provide, enable
    this sort of thing. Just goes along with the overall proliferation of
    mindless computing in general, brought about mainly by Windows, of course.

    I'm beginning to think computers shouldn't be allowed in the hands of
    non technically competent folks. Appliances for the masses, but not PCs.

    Heh, heh. I guess I am ranting.

    I always make sure to question whether some hip and slick new way of
    doing things is really an improvement over an older simpler way.
    Sometimes it is, sometimes not. But to use some complex technology just
    because it can be done that way, when it could be done in a simpler way,
    is really dumb. Yet it happens all the time.

    Good day!
  3. Hear, hear!

    I have a very simple rule about this kind of thing:

    "If I have to register to see data sheets, they've lost a customer."

    There are enough manufacturers making parts that it is highly unlikely
    that losing access to one supplier will have a significant impact on my

    I understand that there may be a need to place "vaporware" parts under
    non-disclosure but I feel there is simply no justification for requiring
    registering to view a basic product line.

    If I absolutely *know* that I need a part from one of these suppliers,
    then I will register but I never use real information. I also make it a
    point to find the contact email for the sales department and download a
    big chunk of my anger onto them. I don't know if it affects policy at
    all but it certainly makes ME feel better.
  4. John Larkin

    John Larkin Guest

    I did email Agilent about the problem. Two days later I had the
    samples, FedEx from Germany, made in Maylasia.

  5. N. Thornton

    N. Thornton Guest

    Yeah, I get this all the time. And once you do finally get feedback
    from a company its often just idiotic. Webidiots are probably costing
    the country billions. There was some survey I forget done a while ago
    that said something like 75% of internet purchase attempts are
    abandoned before completion... yet it doesnt seem to occur to
    companies to wonder why, and have a few people try to shop, see what
    the problems are and sort them out.

    We could pobably sit and list the stupidities commonly made. OK:
    graphic only front pages,
    pages of products with no prices listed,
    replies to email enquiries that dont make any sense (very common), and
    dont answer the question (fairly common),
    sites that dont address basic questions that any buyer would want to
    know, and provide no way to get in touch with them to find out,
    absence of obviously necessary dimension information,
    absence of obviously necessary care information, such as whether the
    thing is machine washable or not,
    absence of quantity per unit info
    and occasionally even absence of any meaningful indication of even
    what the thing is!
    Asking for a long list of irrelevant information, common error
    Insisting on a phone number - give them a false one till I have some
    reason to trust them to some extent

    Regards, NT
  6. I read in that Chris Carlen <[email protected]_FIELD.ea
    You see a lot of it here. 'How can I flash an LED?' 'Use a PIC.'
  7. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    In some ways a PIC is simpler.
    Comparing to (for example) a transistor multivibrator, it probably
    has tens of thousands times the number of parts.
    But it wouldn't be hard to pay more for the parts than you'd pay for
    a low-end PIC.

    Programming can be nearly free, with many PICs.

    For websites, things are a bit different.
    Adding javascript, flash, java, active-x - all require varying levels
    of trust, and remove functionality for some (the blind, those not using
    specific browsers).
  8. Boris Mohar

    Boris Mohar Guest

    And the stupidest to boot. Not to mention black background with dark blue
    text on some.

    Try Maxim website. Waste an afternoon if you haven't cried lately and really
    need that chip. Than again they do offer a phone number. Something than
    many would like to do away with.

    Here just fill in this FORM and don't forget your mother's maiden name.
  9. I read in that Boris Mohar <borism_-void-
    Or, in these days of GM, your father's. (;-)
  10. Bob Stephens

    Bob Stephens Guest

    What I can't believe is that there are still websites who attempt to charge
    for viewing OEM data sheets. Does anyone actually sucker for this?

  11. Bob Stephens

    Bob Stephens Guest

    And don't forget the ubiquitous magenta text on a vermillion background!
    16 million colors and they find the only two that don't contrast.
  12. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    It's to go with the annoying tendancy of some makers to delete the
    datasheets off their website, immediately after EOLing the part.
    Trying to find data for a part in a several year old product, you can
    rapidly run into needing datasheets.
  13. That's not true. Only if someone asks, I want to flash it 3 times,
    then wait for 2 seconds, then 4 long flashes followed by 2 short
    flashes, and then stop.

    How can I flash a led? Buy a flashing led ;)
  14. What about the annoying search engines on a manufacturers website,
    that can't find their *own* parts that are still alive.
  15. We would also accept:

    Use an LM555 (including almost correct schematic)

    Back in '82 I used a chip called the LM3909 (followed by multiple
    posts on the death of same)

    Best regards,
    Spehro Pefhany
  16. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    That too.
    Or the makers that want you to sign NDAs before seeing product datasheets.

    The most annoying website I came across recently was the one on my new
    ADSL router.
    It wouldn't load fully under netscape, and gave the impression that
    you'd got the password wrong, as it kept just presenting the page to
    input your ISPs userID and password.

    Fortunately, it allowed FTP upload to alter the web interface.
  17. The test shoppers are people in the IT department, who already "know" how to
    make the system work.
  18. John Larkin

    John Larkin Guest

    You mean like when you have to search for ERA1 to see ERA-1?

    Some web sites, especially from Japanese companies for some reason,
    have a thing you can click, maybe "transformers", that takes you to a
    huge list of part-numbered PDF files. After that, you're on your own.

    Others (often European?) have entire slow-to-load pages that merely
    give you two choices in a product tree... sometimes only one!

    The worst is when you have to search for parts (or "solutions") by
    application, and not by function.

  19. Ben Bradley

    Ben Bradley Guest

    In, John Woodgate
    Perhaps it's fallout from the dot.bomb. If web designers just had
    the host serve up HTML pages, they'd be done in no time and out of a
    Speaking of ranting, what bugs me is seeing the word 'PIC' used
    here on SED as a general term for microcontroller, or as if it were
    the only type of microcontroller available. Microchip couldn't buy
    better advertising. At this rate they'll sell a 'PIC' for each LED
    manufactured. :-/
  20. N. Thornton

    N. Thornton Guest

    A pic was recommended to turn a filament bulb on and off, not long ago.

    Regards, NT
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