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Remember this? - How to Plan a Computer Disaster
Originally Posted by Wayne
In the old days our computer systems were written from scratch and tailored to the customer.
Don't change or simplify your business to fit a standard package but rather commission custom software or (best) modify an existing package extensively.
Then packaged software became available.
Everyone bought a package and then modified it extensively to suit their needs - only to find the more they modified, the bigger the mess became.
We have now reached the stage where we buy packaged software and don't modify it - we change our company to fit the package.
Quite an interesting evolution, don't you think?
What perplexes me about all this is that crunching complexity is
a computer's forte. It's what they do best. Back in those dim,
distant, dark nights when I slaved away at some basic program-
ming in to the wee small hours, I could spend hours running
a routine against a large database in a gut-grinding effort to
have the routine work against every record in the database
and every conditional option within the flat file database fields.
Call them bugs or syntax errors or whatever, it was necessary
to keep at it until it worked. And only when it worked by more
and more testing, was it actually used.
Talent4 monumental muck ups have only themselves to blame.
You've almost there, Perry, in understanding what's happening.
Let's just copy and paste a bit from your reply:
In a small program there might be 50 conditional statements which would take a small time to test.
Originally Posted by Perry
A larger program might have 500 conditional statements - and take a lot longer to test.
You get the picture?
The speed of the computer doesn't matter - the number of conditional statements (and alternative paths) pushes the development (and testing) time out.
Try thinking about 500,000 conditional statements.
And when you alter/fix one, you discover a previous one is now causing errors.
It sounds like the teachers have many unique conditions involved in their pay calculations.
And they wanted them all working on day one.
And a self-imposed deadline.
Switching off the old working payroll system can't be blamed on Talent2.
That was a Education Dept decision.
A rather poor one as it has turned out.
I have my doubts that the teachers contract has 500,000 variables - it just isn't that complex. Seems even the simple stuff is missing - paying teachers who don't work there anymore, pay an out of pocket expense that doesn't exist (to a teacher in another school out of your budget), not paying teachers who started this year.
I agree that CPU speed does not matter, in this case. However, conditional
Originally Posted by Bob Kane
instructions are not that hard to write, once one has the knack of them.
My inclination is towards a comment made by an earlier poster: the project
was not properly scoped. Or perhaps there was no non-negotiable cut-off
date for requirements?
Nothing kills a budget or a vexes a programmer in extremis, more than having
the requirements changed after scripting has started. I dimly recall that the
success of the Wanganui Police Computer was partly attributed to the cut-
off date for requirements being absolutely and rigidly enforced.
Who should we sue?
I had to laugh today:
PPTA could not confirm who the action would be taken against - the Education Ministry, Australian company Talent2, or both.
The teachers might have to sue their own school boards!
"It is an unusual situation in that traditionally any action would be taken against a school's board as the employer, but in this case the boards are just as frustrated with Novopay as their staff,'' Roberts said.
the boards and school admin (admin staff and Principal) are piggy in the middle but no teacher blames them. Many Principals and admin staff are getting mucked around with pays also.
Last edited by muppet; 27-02-2013 at 08:38 PM.
As I said in an earlier post, our school board has taken the decision to take money from the classroom resources budget to pay our principal and admin clerk for a small portion of the overtime they have been putting in because of this problem. Similar things will be happening in a thousand or more schools over the country. Money going over stressed staff that should be spent on books and classroom computers.
Originally Posted by Perry
Don't be fooled people, it's our kids education that is suffering because of this cock-up!
Last edited by muppet; 27-02-2013 at 08:39 PM.
. . certainly is wont be those behind the idea,
be they politicians or bureaucrats or Talent4 . . .
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