home comments edit

The minor issues with the painting we had done have gone from “no problem, it’ll be fixed” status to “mediocre fiasco.”

I’m hesitant to say it’s the company, as the crew chief that I always talk to is nice and realizes things need to get done. I think I got a bad crew.

What I expect when I delegate a task to someone (be it at work, someone I contract to do a job, etc.), is that I can describe the task well enough that certain minor detail points can be inferred by a worker’s intuition.

For example, with the paint thing… When the guy came out to give me the estimate, I pointed out the trim around my front door as being a particular trouble spot. It was flaking and looked kind of shabby. That was one of the primary reasons I wanted the paint redone. They came and pressure washed to get the flaking paint off. Then the paint crew showed up and… just painted right over the top without sanding or anything, so now you can see the outline of where the old paint was and where it flaked off. It’s not smooth or anything.

I pointed out that there were some issues on the trim and a couple of spots in particular. Those particular issues were fixed, but all of the other issues weren’t even touched. Like it wasn’t about doing the job right so much as getting done quickly and getting out of there. “Oh, he just said this tiny patch was a problem - maybe he won’t see the rest of the patches surrounding it never got fixed!”

Maybe it comes down to a work ethic issue. When I do something, I do my best to get it complete and correct the first time. If a review of the work needs to happen, I don’t want people to find glaring issues. I take pride in what I do. That doesn’t seem to be the case for a lot of people nowadays. A minimum amount of effort goes in - just enough to call the task “done” - and then off to the next task. If someone reviews it, only the exact, specific points that got noticed will be fixed - no further review on the part of the worker to see if there are any other issues will be done.

This absolutely, positively never happened with the sprinkler system. Those guys had things totally under control. It was a premium price for a premium job and I consider it money well spent. I’m having a problem saying the same about the paint right now.

I think what irritates me the most is the coordination of things. Having to call and follow up on everything, make notes, take pictures, leave voicemails, send emails, and pursue the job until it’s done.

This actually extends beyond the painting. I’m tired of coordinating wedding stuff. Try to get two groomsmen - just two! - to a tux rental place for a 10 minute fitting at the same time. Try it! I love these guys, but the back and forth of “I have a doctor’s appointment” and “I can’t make it Tuesday, Thursday, or Friday because I have to be at this other place” and “Maybe next Wednesday if we go between 4:52p and 5:17p” crap was beyond frustrating. (In the end, everyone gets to go get fitted on their own time. I’m not coordinating it.)

I told Jenn today that I’m done coordinating things. Done. Between now and the end of the year, I’m not coordinating anything. No more wedding stuff, no holiday stuff, no family gatherings - I’m done. I’m all coordinated out. I get enough cat-herding in at work and I don’t need to be dealing with the sixteen different places all the different families feel we need to be on Christmas Day to have breakfast or lunch or open gifts or stop by and visit or whatever. I’m tired of trying to figure out where we’re all getting together to eat Thanksgiving dinner at and how we can make it around to see everyone on that one single day. (As though our families don’t all live locally and get seen almost weekly anyway.) Parents and grandparents and cousins and aunts and uncles and cats and rats and elephants - I’m done.

Anyway, I’m meeting with the crew chief and the crew on Monday. The crew chief will call me that morning to figure out a time. Then I can physically walk them around and point at all of these things that I figure professional painters should see anyway, but maybe I have bionic vision or something. Regardless, I think I see a light at the end of the tunnel.

web comments edit

Fought with this one for quite some time today. We use a lot of client-side validation for input fields in the products I work on. While we repeat that validation on the server (as is the way with ASP.NET validation), the client-side validation is important to give the customer earlier feedback about invalid input.

Our products are written to work in a multilingual capacity so the validation expressions need to support characters above and beyond ASCII. That’s great, but it also means we have some work to do to get the regular expressions to work the same on the client as they do on the server. I’ve blogged about this issue before.

ECMAScript standards indicate you use Unicode escape sequences to put these extended characters into regular expressions. So rather than literally putting é right in the expression, you put the equivalent Unicode escape sequence: \u00e9.

Safari 2.0.4 doesn’t seem to handle Unicode escape sequences in its regular expression engine. It understands that code \u00e9 is equivalent to the literal character é, but if you ask in a regular expression if they match, they don’t.

From what I can tell, there is no workaround. It just doesn’t get Unicode escape sequences in JavaScript regular expressions.

I’ve put together some tests to illustrate the point. Browsers that handle the issue correctly will read “true” for all cases; Safari 2.0.4 fails on the Regex tests.

\u00e9 == é: Test Not Run

\u0041 == A: Test Not Run

Regex "\u00e9" matches "é": Test Not Run

Regex "\u0041" matches "A": Test Not Run

home comments edit

Yesterday my trim got repainted because it was looking sort of nasty and flaking off a bit. Taking a little pride in ownership, I decided it was about time to spruce the place up.

I had to stay home all day because part of the repaint included the front door, which hung open almost all day so the painters had access to it and so it would dry nicely around the edges. At the end, I did a walkthrough and looked at the job. Looked nice and clean. Awesome.

Jenn was out with some friends last night so she didn’t get to see the paint. She went out this morning to check it out.

Oh boy.

Under the soffits where they painted, all the paint looked like it was bubbling or dripping. You can see near the garage where it actually did drip and got on my vinyl trim. That definitely wasn’t there during the walkthrough.

I called the painters up and let them know what I’m seeing. They’re coming back out today to see about fixing it up. Why does this stuff always have to be a pain? I guess I should be happy; at least they’re not leaving me in the lurch. We’ll have to see how this goes.

Other minor news - I think the house has settled in the last couple of years and the door to the cats’ room (which remains open all the time, and which I had to close yesterday so the beasts didn’t escape through the open front door) really won’t close anymore. The top of the door rubs on the door frame. It was a little snug before, but now it’s just crazy. Looks like I’ve got something else to fix.

General Ramblings comments edit

This weekend was a nice relaxing one, which is a good thing, since we’ve got our weekends pretty much booked solid between now and the wedding. It’s amazing the number of things that you really can’t do in the evening when you get home from work.

Saturday Jenn and I picked up a fairly difficult puzzle from the store and spent some time together watching movies and doing the puzzle. It was nice to not have to run around and do things, and we enjoyed spending some time together working on the puzzle. It’s been a while since we just sat and worked on something like that.

Sunday Jenn got bored, which is pretty normal for Jenn. Jenn, bless her heart, is a very binary sort of person. She’s either hungry or full, but never in between. She’s either entertained or bored, but never in between. Sunday was a “bored” day, so we started talking about different things to do. We ended up going to Bike N’ Hike and Bike Gallery to look at different bikes (since we don’t actually own any).

Bikes are damn expensive.

Granted, I haven’t had a bike since I was a kid, so I really had no concept of how much bikes cost, but I was thinking maybe a couple hundred bucks, tops. Turns out you can get a super low-end bike for that, but if you want to ride it in any reasonable capacity, you’re probably looking at the $300 mark. Plus helmets. Plus a bike rack for the car so you can take the bikes out to a place to ride. I don’t see us starting this one up for less than $750, which is far more than I anticipated. Needless to say, while the trip was educational, it ended in disappointment for Jenn as we did not get bikes. Perhaps later in the year, or early next year. The wedding and the sprinkler system and the house repainting and all that… too much drain on the budget for bikes right now.

After we got home from the bike hunt, I finally sat down to play some Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter, which I got for my birthday but hadn’t cracked it out of the plastic wrap yet because of the whole broken Xbox 360 debacle.

GRAW rocks. It really does. It’s just hard. Super hard. See, I’m used to the first-person shooter like Halo where you just bust in with your machine gun and start blasting away. GRAW requires you to peek around the corner and scout stuff out. If you just run in, you’re going to get killed. That’s not a bad thing, it’s just a different way to play and it takes a little getting used to. On the other hand, it forces you to get more into the game and pay more attention to what’s going on. You can’t barrel around the corner, you actually have to stop and plan your route to the destination because you don’t want to walk through ambush points or anything. Totally sweet.

Anyway, I played that for a couple of hours while Jenn entertained herself putting together the flower girl basket for the wedding. Fine and dandy.

Had some dinner, watched V for Vendetta (decent, but somehow… lacking… maybe I just wasn’t into it at the time), and went to bed a half hour early.

The house painters are here this morning, doing their thing. Technically they’re just painting the trim since I have vinyl siding. Of course, I have to be here, since the front door needs to be painted and I’m not just going to leave the house unlocked all day. Sooooo… working from home.