Misc Entries

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I have no friends

15 Jul 2010

I have no friends

Back in March I signed up for an account on Venmo because people said it was going to be a game changer. I thought I’d give it a go and planned to take a second look when time permitted. I haven’t found the time, but since signing up my only other experience with them has been a weekly email to remind me that:

  • I have received no money
  • I have sent no money
  • I have no friends
  • I am not active
  • I need to make these emails stop showing up… but who has the time?

I don’t mind that status emails like this get sent out, but in this scenario.. it’s just not valuable. Is it necessary to communicate that nothing has happened?1 To be fair, Venmo is in beta and is working out the kinks. They are far from the only service that does this, they just happen to be the one that triggered this post (which I will be pointing them to). :-)

There’s a ton of information being sent to people’s inboxes every day. When we decide to communicate with our users, we should be mindful of the value of the information as well as how and when we ask for their attention. Is the email useful? Is it actionable? Or is it just undesired noise?

1 Context is fundamental here. If you’re a sales manager and your sales team has had zero sales… this might be valuable information.

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Macintosh Platform can not support our site

6 Jun 2010

Macintosh Platform can not support our site

Our healthcare provider’s employer web interface for making online payments is using the latest in web technology…

My favorite is that the, “Macintosh Platform can not support the site” versus… they haven’t taken the time to support the Macintosh platform.

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mySIGN-IN

3 Jun 2010

mySIGN-IN

While attempting to pay my cable internet bill… I found myself faced with Comcast’s sign in screen. I can’t help but wonder how much effort went into branding their sign in process with mySIGN-IN. Does their online account system really need a branded name (that you then have to explain what it is?) when they could probably suffice with, “Sign into your Comcast online account.” Not only that, someone had to design the graphics. Someone(s) had to approve the lower case “my” and the all-caps SIGN-IN. I’m baffled. The end-result? I wasn’t able to sign in with my email and password… and am now waiting for them to send me a PIN via snail-mail, which is something I’ll write about another time.

Photo  |  Misc

Switching internet providers

21 Jan 2010

Switching internet providers

This discussion between Carlos and I took place on Campfire last week. As you can see, our internet connection is now much faster.

One of gripes with our old building was that we only had a few DSL options to choose from. Our internet at work was always sluggish. When we found our new place we were pleased to find out that we could switch over to Comcast Business as an internet provider. We were also able to move our phone lines to them, which means we’ve consolidated three bills into one… and the best part? We’re saving $50/month now.

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