Don’t forget to accelerate!

Shame on you Yamaha! Take the case of a two young girls took out a personal water craft in the hopes of a having a quick fun ride in the West Palm Beat area of South Florida. Minutes later the two girls were involved in a tragic accident, colliding with another boat while traveling very fast. One of the girls suffered severe brain damage and other physical injuries, while the other young girl died at the scene.

According to this article posted by the Palm Beach Post, here is how the accident happened:

“The girls turned right in front of a boat. You know why?” said David Kleinberg, who represents Archer. “They couldn’t steer.”

Archer, who was driving, did exactly what any beginner would do when she decided to head back to Holly’s house, he said. She took her hand off the throttle to slow for the turn. What she didn’t know was that once she released the throttle, she couldn’t steer the water scooter, Kleinberg said.

“She did exactly what is intuitive and exactly what Yamaha said they were going to do,” he said. Instead of turning, the WaveRunner went straight, colliding with the boat.

Baker said 1986-2000 owner’s manuals warned that beginners were likely to release the throttle when headed toward an obstacle. “Don’t forget to accelerate,” it advised. In 2001, he said, the warning was inexplicably removed even though the danger still existed.

Yamaha was one of the last water scooter manufacturers to correct the steering problem. It did so in 2003. The girls were on a 2001 model.

“Unfortunately, it did not happen in time to help the Perez family or Samantha Archer, who suffered catastrophic injuries,” Baker said. “It was too little too late.”

Correct me if I’m wrong here, but there seems to be a lot of wrong going on here. Not only did Yamaha know about an existing defect that can result in death BTW, but they removed it from the manual after 2000, and decided to fix that defect 3 years later, while making models that had this defect during those 3 years.

Even if this poor girl were to read the manual, she wouldn’t have found out about this defect. Also, why would she assume that something that is that intuitive, like not speeding up when your about to hit a boat, would result in a death.

If this is the kind of quality Yamama is putting out, it will be the last time I buy/use/recommend a product from them. Besides I might do something very intuitive and end up dead.

Remember if you’re ever on a water scooter going very fast from Yamaha pre-2003 and you’re your about to hit another boat or a large object like a mountain per se; Don’t forget to accelerate!

It’s just like a game of chicken.

Top 10 bugs of 2010

Software Quality Systems has a list of the worst software defects of 2010.

See below:

1. Car manufacturers – review because of the braking system.
Review from the market of two new models of auto due to a malfunction in the anti-lock braking system (ABS)

2. Organs removed from the donor by mistake.
Faulty software has led to the removal of not those organs of 25 donors in the UK. Bug was in the software responsible for converting data that has been used to download the information about organs subject to transplantation.

3. Ministry of State Department prevented the online tax filing
Hundreds of people were unable to complete tax returns on the department’s website, because of a defect that led to the blocking of accounts of the Users.

4. Stock exchange
Stock Exchange hit by technical problems (simply glitches) during the first phase of migration to the new platform, trading on alternative platforms was resumed only an hour later (which naturally entailed significant losses for the stock exchange).

5. Software led to the stoppage of work of thousands of GPS receivers.
During the installation updates on the stations of ground control for satellite GPS, staff found the problem, leading to a two-week “blindness” of approximately 10,000 GPS receivers.

6. Defect of alarm in a mobile phone
Defect led to the alarm clock did not work properly installed manually. With automatic transition from summer to winter time (and vice versa) the time changes everywhere, but not in the functionality of an alarm clock.

7. Bug of 2010 has hit the credit cards
Defective microchip embedded in credit cards has made them useless, because he could not recognize 2010 as the date, making chaos in one of the European countries. Bug manifested itself for about 30 million credit cards.

8. Loss of private data in one of the social networks
Users have access to a private chat of their friends, but could also see requests for friendship sent to them.

9. Unauthorized access to a mobile phoneBug allows anyone to bypass the 4-digit PIN code to access the contacts and voice messages on your phone.

10. Bugs discovered a remote access to telephones for hackers

I wonder if this one will make this years list considering that this bug allows convicts to get out of jail.

Internet Explorer has lowerd my IQ

Now that the results are in, I can finally comment on this Telegragh article, “Internet Explorer users have below-average IQ“, which says:

It found that Internet Explorer users scored lower than average, while Chrome, Firefox and Safari users were very slightly above average. Camino, Opera and Internet Explorer with Chrome Frame were scored “exceptionally” high.“The study showed a substantial relationship between an individual’s cognitive ability and their choice of web browser,” AptiQuant concluded. “From the test results, it is a clear indication that individuals on the lower side of the IQ scale tend to resist a change/upgrade of their browsers.”

Some people have suggested that there may be other factors at work. Business Insider’s Matt Rosoff points out that since IE is the default browser for Windows PC users, anyone who doesn’t know how to download and install a new browser will be stuck with it – “which drags down the average”. And users of other browsers “include a disproportionate number of computer geeks”, which might bring their average up. Or, he admits, it might be that “IE users really are kind of dumb.”

Within the group of IE users, version 6 users score lowest, while users of version 8 do rather better.

The overall chart shows that Firefox has the smallest percentage of low-IQ users, and the largest of average or high-IQ users. A similar study five years ago found that users had broadly similar IQs.

I’m not suggesting anything from this article is actually true. I can’t really subscribe to the notion that people that are inclined to resist change reside on the lower side of the IQ scale.

However, I can see myself subscribing to the notion that people that are inclined to resist change when it comes to using Microsoft browsers, reside on the lower side of the IQ scale. However, this is highly judgemental and technologically presumptious.

I prefer to call these people masochists. There has to be some kind of super-unhealthy taste for suffering as you grapple with a catalog of bugs and viruses that have upward mobility. Earlier this year, Microsoft even announced that all versions of Internet Explorer were at risk of being hacked due to a flaw in the program. So is this article correct in it’s assumptions?

Well, Internet Explorer 6 was released on Aug. 27, 2001 which is approximately 9 years ago. I can’t really think of things that I use on a normal basis that I have had for over 9 years. After being labeled the least secure software on the planet, it’s hard to believe that this franchise is still so popular after it’s numerous failures in the upgrade department. With all the testing that i have to do, I find myself having to use 4 instances of Internet Explorer spread out across 3 different Operating Systems.

If you factor in regression testing, then I guess this makes this the most popular browser I use as well.

I’m sure you can draw your own conclusions from here.

For the more visual among us, here is a cool chart:
Cool Chart for the more visual among us

Disclaimer: This is not a IE6 rant but a rant about Internet Explorer in general. We all know IE6 should die. Even Microsoft knows IE6 should die. This point is moot.