figment0 and I had better really not talk about politics, because while we may inherently agree with each other, our manner of communicating same usually results in him saying something that raises my blood pressure to something insane before he finally gets around to saying what it is that he actually thinks about it. I can deal with this in text, sometimes. I can deal with this in person, sometimes. It is not a good thing over the telephone.
Work left me exhausted; walking home left me overheated. I was validating $ISSUE_SIDE_JOB all day. Not just what felt like all day, actually all day. Validating is where the computer randomizes the records for all the interviews from the last X number of days on a particular job, then I get to call numbers and talk to the person who did the survey, verify that they did the survey, and verify that up to 5 answers from the original survey got input correctly (and that they were asked this in the survey). I do this until 7% of the interviews are validated.
$ISSUE_SIDE_JOB had not been validated since the 25th, which meant that there were 420 interviews. Try finding 30 people out of 420 answering their phones this weekend. Better, try finding 30 households with both the people who got talked to at home (because $ISSUE_SIDE_JOB talks to at least two people), especially this weekend. Heh. Fortunately, there was no one particular person who was negatively memorable from doing that today.
Before I wound up actually able to do validations, though, there was some happy fun with the computer. Before we do validations, we call up the validation records from all the jobs we're supposed to validate, and sort them by percentage completed, to better prioritize what we're up to. There's a little script on the server that lets us select the jobs we're going to want the record for, lets us pick from some options, then prints up the report. Unfortunately, it has some bugs, and I found them. Turns out that if a job doesn't have any interviews, it chokes and throws you to the debugger instead of moving along gracefully. It doesn't tell you which job is causing the choke either. So I had to pull each report separately. That was fun, for values of "fun" that include "typing the same thing over and over, something that the computer should be able to do for you automatically". Turned out to be the long version of the Dendarii Brewing Company survey, which actually hadn't been dialed yet this month, so that makes sense that it would have no interviews. Two other surveys turned out to have funky errors that made me wind up talking to the debugger as well.
cRon, my favorite programming professor, had a catchphrase: "Don't kill the old lady!" That was shorthand for his lecture that the program should not do anything that would startle or discomfit the end-user, even in an error condition. This script failed that test badly. It didn't bluescreen, but I did get disconnected from the telnet session a few times, and what to do in the error condition was only intuitive because I'm a computer person. The old lady? So very killed.
I got to send an e-mail off to the guy in charge of such things, with copies to the shift ops supervisor mailing list, the monitor boss, and all the monitors. The bug was nicely documented, if I do say so myself. We have to run all e-mails out of the department (at least, all group e-mails) past the shift ops supervisor on duty first, to avoid being an embarrassment to the department. Stressy College Chick read over mine, and commented that the Top-Level Geek in question should love this, because he loves screen captures, and this was full of screen captures and assorted dry commentary. Any random monitor can report a problem. Not every random monitor can report a problem in the amount of detail that the IT department is going to want, because they aren't trained to know what details are relevant as second nature. And of those monitors who can do that, how many of them can look at the problem perkily because they're not the one who has to fix it?
The current topics of teasing from the incorrigible pair of Cute Geek Super and Rev. Nice Super (both of whom are relatively misnamed, actually) is this: I worship Satan. Satan is the father of both George W. Bush and Osama bin Laden. This means that I am also related to said Shrubbery. By the end of the day, this was getting old enough that I told them, "Stop being twits!" That's strong language from me. (Yes, they know that I don't actually worship Satan. However, since they delight in being twits, they tease me about worshiping Satan, because they know that I take it in stride -- at least when I'm not exhausted. I'm hoping that when they eventually learn that I'm not straight, they'll come up with something relatively original to tease me about on that topic.)