Wednesday 25 June 2008

Just another day at work

I awoke this morning feeling amazingly tired... so much so that I could hardly get out of bed. This is strange only because it wasn't that late when I went to bed last night! The more sleep I get the more I seem to need! The good news is that the fledgling 'poorly eye' pain that I had (usually the precursor to a bout of Optic Neuritis) has gone away and there doesn't seem to be any problems with my vision (touch wood).

I was quite early leaving the house so I decided that rather than battling and melting with the tube I'd get a bus into town (and hopefully catch some more shut-eye). Unfortunately I hadn't bargained for the buses running slow and the bus I got was really overcrowded and no seat to be had (not even for me and The Stick). I changed onto a 453 at New Cross Gate (that takes me to Piccadilly instead of leaving me at Whitehall) and happily got a seat; only to have me spine bent out of shape by an extremely large person, who instead of taking one of the dozens of empty pairs of seats (and thereby forcing someone to perch next to them) decided to sit next to me and squash me into the window. All in all a pretty rubbish journey.

I enjoyed my morning at work as the Youngest Lad has now joined us full time and it was up to me to outline his duties and responsibilities and teach him all he needs to know about office life (which is quite a lot as he is only eighteen and this is his first job!). I have high hopes for him as he seems pretty bright, is eager to learn and asked lots of questions which shows he is interested.

The afternoon was not so good as the email system broke down (again) and the IT guy was in meetings (again) so nobody knew what was wrong with it (again) and it never got fixed (again). This meant nothing I was waiting for turned up and nothing I wanted to send places could leave.

How on earth did we ever get anything done before email? I know the time existed, I remember when I first got email at work; there was one account on one computer which had to be dialled up twice a day to check for mail. At that time there were only a couple of PCs and you had to book time on them! The function of spreadsheets was carried out longhand on enormous graphed pieces of A3 paper and any documents were written long hand and sent for typing. If you really needed to speak to someone you phoned them and if you really wanted to communicate with your colleagues you sent a memo. Everyone had a pigeon hole from where they collected post and memos (and there was a lot more post before there was email).

When we first got a PC on every desk and email (to which there was much resistance from older staff I remember) the email only sent and received once an hour on the hour. Projects I worked on experimented with using Extranets (kind of limited secure access versions of the internet). These should still exist in my opinion and cut our reliance on email. Email is overloaded. Our server receives somthing like 7,000 emails a day of which about 85% are spam!

Hopefully the email will have been fixed overnight and all will be back to normal tomorrow!