It CAN'T be Done
No, Not Never

Last Monday my identity was rejected at the San Francisco airport (SFO) and I'm glad I got there early because it took a while to convince them I was me.

I have always traveled using my nickname as opposed to the name on my driver's license and it looks like it's the end for Bob. *snif*

The attached clip from Boston Legal addresses the issue but my purpose for putting it up is not that. It is not Homeland Defense that gets up my nose. Watch the show and then read the rest of the post.

James Spader gives an impassioned speech about ignorance and the bureaucratic mind that actively pulls at reality, making it unravel. Why? Because it can.
Link to the Video via the Unofficial Apple Blog 'cause it isn't interdicted.

Last week somebody ran a query to create what amounts to address stickers for test booklets. There are over two hundred sixty thousand students. They didn't all get tested but the number of test booklets is still awesome in the fifth largest school district in the U.S.

The person who ran the query didn't quite get it right and left out a set of students that should have been included. These students are identified by a coded field in the DB2 table the district uses.

Instead of running another query and making a set of stickers for this group of students, they said "No" and made the staff of each school write the information on the booklets by hand. At our school it was several hundred.

This is the issue. One person running a report versus hundreds of people toiling for hours. One person adding a field to create unique records versus a confusing milkshake database. One person running an absentee report versus thirty thousand teachers writing postcards when a student fails to show up for class. One person creating a scheduling program that integrates with student records versus a huge whiteboard with post-it stickers for each subject and class that ends up costing hundreds of thousands of dollars in delays, conflicts, and repeated classes for which credit cannot be given and abominations like giving a student a schedule that has four math classes simultaneously.