It really annoys me how (at least, in my experience) the sales cycle seems to trivialize the value of product development engineers. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard someone say, “If it wasn’t for Sales, we wouldn’t be drawing paychecks.” Guess what - if Sales had no product to sell, they wouldn’t be drawing paychecks either.

I also find it pretty annoying how Sales (again, in my experience) can sell a feature that doesn’t exist on a product that isn’t complete and somehow it’s the engineer’s fault for “not having that done on time.” Hey, man, I can run out and sell a flying car fueled by water, but anyone will tell you I haven’t got a leg to stand on when I bitch out General Motors asking why that isn’t quite done yet because the customer is expecting it.

One of these days someone will figure out that Sales and Engineering actually need to co-exist. Neither is more important than the other. Engineering needs to react to the needs that the Sales folks have - when a feature needs to be added to a product, that information needs to be seriously considered by Engineering (before it gets sold to a customer). Sales needs to stop promising things that Engineering can’t deliver and then turning around and blaming Engineering for not delivering something that can’t be delivered.

Until then, though… I’m thinking I need to put up some concertina wire around my cubicle.

media, movies comments edit

Why can’t Hollywood make movies that look cool and have a good plot?

Went to see UltraViolet this weekend because I couldn’t stay away from the cool factor. Plus, being a Milla fan, I had to see her in this super-techno-fied world that the previews had pimped so well.

Dammit!

The visuals were beautiful. Stunning, really. Graphically, it’s everything I hoped it would be. Gorgeous effects. Awesome fight scenes. It reminded me of the first time I saw the effects for the first Matrix movie - it was just cool. (Yeah, it was overly CG. Some folks might not be into that and bitch that it’s “not real enough.” I dig CG effects and ate it up.)

That said, what happened to the plot? I mean, seriously, where was the QA department on this thing? Did they actually have test screenings?

The idea is that, sometime in the indefinite future, this virus got out and basically created vampires (“hemophages” in the movie). The government worked to wipe them out rather than looking for a cure. Sounds good, right? Then they introduce this kid who is… uh… some sort of weapon or something (supposedly) and we get caught up in Milla trying to save the kid and fight the government simultaneously, all the while looking for a cure for the hemophage virus… I won’t spoil the mediocre plot twist.

The point is, all this is happening in 88 minutes, so it’s moving altogether too fast. Fast enough that I really didn’t get a chance to care about why this person was shooting this other person. Fast enough that I had no idea who this rival gang was or why I should be afraid of them, and definitely fast enough that there was no import when they got wiped out by a single person.

Interesting premise, but it reminded me a lot of Underworld

  • great principle, cool world, horrendous execution. We left confused and feeling like we got ripped off. Except for the “Milla Factor” (she was hot - the whole time, Milla was just hot), I want my money back.

Skip this one, folks, lest you feel duped out of your $7.50. Instead, go buy a copy of Equilibrium and soak up what UltraViolet could have been.

It’s been pretty stressful at work, so I took this weekend to play.

Friday night Jenn and I went to the Winter Hawks game. They only really “showed up” in the final ten minutes of the game, so I was a little bored and, frankly, pissed off until then, but they ended up winning 3-0 (yeah, scoreless until the last ten minutes) so it wasn’t too terrible. Plus we got to see a bunch of friends of ours that we don’t normally see, so that was good.

Saturday is usually chores with some gaming thrown in, but like I said, it was playtime. Stu, Tif, Jenn, and I headed out to play laser tag for a bit, which we totally kicked ass at. (Considering the competition averaged about 12 years old, not terribly surprising, but a couple of them were animals.) Played a couple of games of that and felt we got our exercise for the day.

We followed that up by a trip to the movies to see UltraViolet. Ugh. I reviewed that earlier, but the quick answer is: skip it. Looks beautiful, sucks donkey. Dammit.

Jenn and I rounded off the night by a trip to the Corillian “Casino Night” event. I didn’t anticipate too much about this one, but it turned out to be a total blast. Talked to some folks from work that I don’t normally talk to and hung out much of the night with Chris and Julie, Chris teaching Julie, Jenn, and me how to play craps (much more fun than I thought). Neither Jenn nor I won anything, and we both lost our “money,” but it was awesome and we’ll definitely make the next one. Hopefully we can convince Stu and Tiff to go as well.

Sunday Stu came over and we blasted out some Paper Mario. About seven hours of that and we had made quite a bit of progress. Lots of fun - I haven’t played much of that sort of game and I’m really digging it.

I have the 24 game and we’ll probably fire that up in the next couple of weeks after we finish Paper Mario. I find I need to focus on one game at a time or I forget what’s going on.

Good times this weekend, and helpful in recovery for the week.