Hixie's Natural Log

2010-02-12 09:42 UTC Consistency

Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen, June 2009, when asked about HTML5: To the extent that an improved HTML standard accelerates innovation and consistent reach for web content, we’re very supportive. (context)

Adobe CTO Kevin Lynch, February 2010: Adobe supports HTML and its evolution. (context)

Adobe Evangelist Dave McCallister, July 2009: For Adobe, "open" is all aspects of communications and technologies. For us, those are open source, standards, and community. [...] We make sure that we talk to our communities, that we play with the standards groups, [...] We are actually one of the most open companies that are active. (context)

Someone whom I can't identify publicly, since he posted only on one of the secret W3C member lists, contributed to the following thread over the last few days: 1 2 3

Larry Masinter, Adobe, quoted in the minutes of yesterday's weekly phone status report for the HTML working group: do I need to repeat objections?

Net result: the latest publication of HTML5 is now blocked by Adobe, via an objection that has still not been made public (despite yesterday's promise to make it so).

With friends like these...

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2010-01-20 08:02 UTC T-Mobile makes no sense

For reasons that aren't material to this rant, I'm trying to get a T-Mobile SIM card set up with T-Mobile's ridiculously named "Even More Plus 500 Talk + Text + Web" plan. At this point I have a SIM card, and after much pain and suffering in phone conversations and online chat support, I have an account that is fully paid up.

Let's log in to the "My T-Mobile" site's "Billing & Payments" page to see how much I currenly owe:

Ok it says I owe $62.42 by 1/19/2010 (today) for service from 2/9/2010 - 3/8/2010 (next month). But it also says that my monthly charges for my previous bill are $127.42 due on 3/9/2010 (two months from now).

None of those numbers seem to add up to $59.99, which is what the "Even More Plus 500 Talk + Text + Web" plan is advertised as costing, but I suppose $62.42 could equal $59.99 if one were to imagine that T-Mobile felt they could put a few "fees" on there that for whatever reason could be assumed not to count. But what's with the $127.42? And what's with the due dates? Let's click "See details" to see details:

Up comes a page titled 'See bill summary'.

Wait, bill summary? I wanted details! And hold on, this page says my account balance is $0.00, and that I paid $62.42 on 1/20/10 (tomorrow). It also gives my monthly charges twice... once as $0.00, and once as $127.42! I guess if you average them it adds up to $63.71, which is similar to $62.42...

Oh look, the details are below the fold.

This says the next service period is $63.71, that they've received $62.42, that the previous balance was $63.71, and that they "adjusted" my account by $65.00 (the result of my calling billing support because they hadn't applied the $63.71 they actually charged me to my account), and apparently that all adds up to me owing $0.00... by 02/05/2010.

Clearly maths is not their strong point. Also not their strong point: being consistent about how they mark up dates. Or how they decide what dates are important.

Oh and... also not their strong point: matching reality. So far they've only actually charged me $63.71, once, though I have in fact tried to pay more than once (earlier today I also tried to pay the $62.42 that some of these pages claim I owe, though my bank has yet to see that charge).

Still, the $127.42 is a bit confusing. Let's see what the "View Bill" button under that number brings up.

Whaaaa!? FPEvenMorePlus 500TTW $119.98? What on earth is that? "Amount due 2/05/10: $127.42"? That completely contradicts the previous page! How much do I owe on that day, $0, or $127.42??

They say the way to work out how much you owe is to dial #225# from the phone, so let's try that... Ok, that says $0. I guess the phone would know best.

I give up trying to work out how much I owe; let's instead try to get the "Unlimited Data" working on this phone. I've heard rumours that one has to buy a $0 optional extra "Unlimited Web" service since otherwise the "Even More Plus Unlimited Web" is actually limited. Add additional services on this line... Internet & E-mail... Aha, here we go. "T-Mobile Smartphone Unlimited Web with FlexPay". That sounds promising. And it's free! Just like the rumours. Let's "buy" that and quickly review the charges:

Added plan and services... $0, yup. Unchanged plan and services... $59.99. Yup. So, the grand total is... $89.99. Wait, wait, hold on, let me recheck the maths here... $0... plus $59.99... carry the one... What??

Ok, ok, clearly it got confused. Let's close the browser and start over. Add additional services on this line... Internet & E-mail... "T-Mobile Smartphone Unlimited Web with FlexPay". And it says FREE. So we click it again, and let's see how much $59.99 + FREE equals this time:



I give up. I'll try calling them tomorrow.

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2010-01-07 00:33 UTC Phone "support"

I'm on hold with T-Mobile. The guy is very nice, but there's so much interference I can barely hear what he's saying half the time. Something about me having to pay a month in advance instead of at the end of the month (which I prefer anyway), and something about the order not going through for "reasons unknown" though he has already done "the credit check". Beats me why a credit check is necessary if I'm paying in advance without a contract, by the way, but that's another story. Same thing happened when I paid cash to buy a car recently. "We need to run a credit check". You knock yourself out.

Why can't all this stuff be done by e-mail? Really? I hate phones.

Time passes.

Hey check this out. The support guy gave up, and now I'm doing this all over again with sales! At least the connection is clearer now. Ok so I want the $59.99 plan, which of course comes with a $1.21 non-tax non-government "regulatory" fee and a $35 "activation" fee (given how hard this has been so far, I understand charging an activation fee, though I wonder if we could come to some arrangement wherein I get paid for my part in this ordeal also).

"Sir, what is your phone number?" Well, I don't know, aren't you supposed to tell me that? I mean, I don't have a phone, that's why I'm buying a phone. After trying to explain that I just gave them my Google Voice number — it's not connected to anything but at least they can leave me voicemail, I guess.

Ok, now we have to go through the terms of service... don't forget to opt out of the "you can't use the legal system if we screw you over" option.

"Actually sir, you can't have Flex Pay, you have to have Take Control." I have no idea what that sentence means. I wasn't aware I was trying to get either of those. What are you talking about. "Um..." time passes again "Ok it's going to be $59.99 plus $1.25 tax" (it's not a tax, that's a lie, but we'll let that slide) "so that's a total of $70." I'm going to briefly ignore the fact that those numbers don't add up, and ask where the activation fee went.

"Um... there's no activation fee with this plan."

"It's still the 500-minute, unlimited web, unlimited sms plan?"


"And how do I transfer an existing number to this SIM card?"

"Oh, uh, call technical support when you've received the SIM card. Yeah. We can't do that now but we can do that once we've taken your money, I'm sure."

I so have no idea what I've purchased.

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2009-10-23 08:11 UTC Zarro Boogs

October 2007: 4000 e-mails, 400 issues. October 2009: Zero e-mails, issues, and bugs.

We'll see how long that lasts...

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2009-09-21 22:25 UTC Different perspectives in the Web standards community, part 2

From the WHATWG IRC channel today, in a conversation about the goals of specifications:

I'm not sure 'matches reality' is always the most important goal

— Larry Masinter

(Sorry, logs were down at the time, so I can't provide a reference.)

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