Maurizio – Omnologos

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Archive for July 2007

The Joy of Outsourcing

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Clients tells existing service provider’s call-centre he is moving his customs elsewhere, and he is refusing to pay any penalty for that, finally fed up with their proven incompetence at service provision after 3 months of attempts.

Call-centre employee duly notes down all necessary details. End of call.

No arguing, no attempt at winning the customer back, no hassle at all.

Ah, the joy of outsourcing!

Written by omnologos

2007/Jul/16 at 06:56:02

Posted in Outsourcing

Grey-sky Hubris on The Economist

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If the effect of clouds on climate is “obscure” and “little is currently known about where [aerosols] end up in the atmosphere” (as recognised on The Economist’s “Grey-sky thinking”, July 5, 2007), what kind of hubris is necessary to state, as at the beginning of the article, that “the general trends [of climate] are clear”?

Late-XIX-century physics looked pretty much complete too, apart from the obscure problem of black-body radiation, solved by Planck in 1900 by discovering the hitherto completely unknown world of quantum physics.

Written by omnologos

2007/Jul/14 at 05:25:17

NATO’s Historical Blunders

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Sarah Chayes may be right in defending NATO’s contribution to the war in Afghanistan, and in pointing out the USA “snubbing” of its allies immediately after 9/11.

But one cannot blame the situation on a callous/gung-ho American administration.

NATO was in fact not snubbed at all during the Kosovo conflict. The USA did their utmost to present and conduct that campaign as part of the larger NATO umbrella.

Unfortunately, few if any of the other members of the alliance seemed to understand much about military strategy, and they all preferred to play their own form of national politics.

The result was a nightmare for the American commanders, evidently more at ease with fighting an enemy than having to accommodate all the quirky requests and vetos of their own allies.

Having then shown itself excessively argumentative to the point of being almost ineffectual, little wonder NATO was mistrusted by the USA at the beginning of the latest Afghan conflict.

Written by omnologos

2007/Jul/13 at 11:31:55

Recover from Live Earth – Join Apocaholics Anonymous

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Apocaholics Anonymous

(April 20, 2007) Hi, I’m Gary and I’m a recovering Apocaholic. I am currently Apocalypse free for nearly 18 years. I left the church of the Religious Apocalypse in 1976, over 30 years ago, and I resigned from the secular church of the Financial Apocalypse in 1989. Yes, I still feel the urge to proclaim the end of all things, from time to time, but I white-knuckle my way to a history book for a little perspective, and then I breathe easier. If you wish to join AA, the only requirement is that you give up the adrenaline rush of media-fed fantasies.

Since I spoke to you last on this subject, in 1994, we have survived “Bankruptcy 1995” (the original epidemic of Hockey Stock charts), the Big Bang in Hong Kong, years of Y2K scare stories, a SARS epidemic, Mad Cow disease, Bird Flu, a real threat on 9/11, Triple Deficits (Budget, Trade and Balance of Payments), wars in Serbia/Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan, Deflation in 2003, Inflation since then, The Perfect Storms of 2005 (Katrina, Rita and Wilma, the 3 Witches of the Bermuda Triangle), and today’s reigning fears of Global Warming, $200 Oil and the Sub-prime Housing Loan Crisis Implosion […]

Written by omnologos

2007/Jul/06 at 20:52:35

The Three Leaning Towers Of Pisa

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While the Leaning Tower of Pisa’s Piazza dei Miracoli is world-famous, its just-as-leaning Pisan siblings are virtually unknown.

One is the Bell Tower of the Chiesa di San Nicola:

Leaning tower of the Chiesa di San Nicola in Pisa

It is half a mile south from the Leaning Tower. It is actually an almost identical twin, albeit attached to its church and with the columnade on the inside.

The other church tower that failed to remain vertical is a few miles to the east, by the Chiesa di San Michele degli Scalzi.

Leaning Tower of the Chiesa di San Michele degli Scalzi in Pisa

In this case, the whole church is leaning to one side too. Apparently, the builders noticed there was something odd about their work, and completed the bell tower with light bricks instead of the heavy stones they had started with.

Written by omnologos

2007/Jul/04 at 22:21:08