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By ReallyEvilCanine (Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 03:06:13 AM EST) A Day in the Life, bastards, idiots, incompetents, ignoramuses, WTF, pie (all tags)

You learn to live with buzzwords. You get used to Aunt Betty asking how much upgrading to Net 2.0 will cost. You try not to shake your head When Uncle Bill asks about changing providers in order to get Rich Content. You explain to your friend's techno-tard father that even though there are things to be said for a net fridge that after a week he's going to get tired of programming in every one of his purchases and that even if there was a barcode scanner, it would still take more time than it's worth. And no, Cousin Lucy, I know the commercial said how great a wireless home router is but you live in a one-bedroom flat and connect with a modem. You don't need a router and it can't do all the great things for you that the commercial promised.

When administrators fall for the latest buzzwords and ideas, things are different. It's all about performance, anything to speed communication up. I agree. I used to be able to read the text files while they downloaded faster than my 300baud modem could pull them from a BBS. Speed is good. $OurBigApp used to take up to 20 seconds to pull up certain screens; we got that down to a norm of 2-3 seconds on a good connection, normally comprising <50KB of data. That's apparently not fast or small enough. Companies with really remote offices have big latency problems, especially when stuck using 1000km of copper to the next CO or connecting via satellite.

Lenny's got latency problems. Serious latency problems. His remote offices ping no better than 450ms and we normally require a max of 250ms. Lenny had an idea:

We research in the internet and run into some vendor's web application acceleration product that cliams it can help to accerate $YourBigApp connections to overcome the network latency.

Lenny has no idea about what "web acceleration" is nor how it works, but a few companies are telling him they have it and it works. They're even claiming it works specifically with $OurBigApp. We, on the other hand, don't necessarily agree. Lenny was probably drooling as he filed his ticket.

x-posted to the blog, sans poll which no one ever votes in anyway.

1. Does web application acceleration techonolgy will befenit connected users to overcome the network latency issue?
2. Are there any vendors products that you certified or recommended to overcome network latency issues.
3. In the case of international link, it is not possible to reduce the latency. What is your recommendation to deal with network latency issue that may cause connected client not working well?
Lenny's got buzzword fever. I figure I might as well answer this one completely and then rewrite it into an FAQ for our Knowledge Base. He oughta be real happy; I'll teach him about this stuff and save him some money
Dear Lenny,

Claims of functionality by third parties must be backed and proven by them. We don't support them.

Web accelerators work by three basic means: caching, compression and pre-fetch. Caching of images is acceptable but for obvious reasons, caching of the rest of the dynamic application does little good. Most of our images are very small and are already cached by the local browser.

$OurBigApp already allows compression at the server; a compressed file can't be further compressed. Pre-fetch relies on background loading of links or expected next accesses. Theoretically an accelerator could be designed and tuned for $OurBigApp to load certain elements in the background, but the accelerator would have to determine which fields were such elements in the first place. Since the values for a child elements will differ based on the parent, it would be nearly impossible for most fields to be pre-fetched.

Latency is the tough one. You could use the non-rich client for high-latency offices since there's no interim communication between it and the server. You can modify the default application time-out and keep-alive settings as well as those of the Web server.

At the client level, Microsoft provides information on editing TCP/IP registry entries at;en-us;158474. The time-out and keep-alive settings should be adjusted ; default values and explanations are given on the site.

Love, REC

Now how much more helpful could I have been?

In my mail this morning was low score notification. Lenny gave me 3s across the board and wrote a long complaint that I hadn't given him an acceptable web acceleration solution.

I write to the monkey asking if $BigNetCo and $OtherNetCo Web accelerators are support and he didn't answer about each one. Then he say accelerator won't work but $BigNetCo and $OtherNetCo say it does! He only give link to Microsoft but they can't fix latency. We need acceleration!
My merit-based bonus is taking another hit because of another fuckwit. The only revenge available to me is saving enough money to buy his company's products and then... not buy them.
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A Day in the Life | 12 comments (12 topical, 0 hidden)
Dear Technical Support by DesiredUsername (4.00 / 5) #1 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 03:40:17 AM EST
Two-thirds of my 1280x1024 screen is taken up by a single diary intro.

A Loyal Customer


Dear Loyal Customer

Root Cause 17

Love Technical Support

Now accepting suggestions for a new sigline

QA report: Defect not confirmed by ReallyEvilCanine (4.00 / 3) #5 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 04:02:08 AM EST
Tested at 1600x1200, vertical usage only 40% of screen. Customer needs to upgrade equipment.

the internet: amplifier of stupidity -- discordia

[ Parent ]
Rating: 2 by Rogerborg (2.00 / 0) #6 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 04:56:15 AM EST
Monkey neglected to pay for and install equipment upgrade.

Metus amatores matrum compescit, non clementia.
[ Parent ]
Also, by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #9 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 05:13:41 AM EST
monkey neglected to hire a set of porters to carry said equipment around to where I want it.

I've already got enough pixels, I just use them to render the screen more smoothly.

[ Parent ]
Indeed by anonimouse (2.00 / 0) #10 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 06:18:22 AM EST
Husi should only be viewed with the following products:

here, or for the more impoverished, here.

Girls come and go but a mortgage is for 25 years -- JtL
[ Parent ]
Haahahah, that's hilarious by Rogerborg (4.00 / 3) #2 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 03:42:22 AM EST
I mean, that your pay is dependent on keeping fuckwits happy, but you're apparently more concerned with some snooty higher concept of telling them the truth.  I always wondered what happened to Wesley Crusher.

Metus amatores matrum compescit, non clementia.
Don't think I didn't consider this by ReallyEvilCanine (4.00 / 3) #4 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 03:58:57 AM EST
Tickets are peer- and management-reviewed for style and accuracy.

I had no idea that this guy was so hell-bent on getting a Web accelerator. I thought I would make him happy by saving him a load of money for useful items that he was about to throw away something utterly useless.

How was I to know he's in middle management?

the internet: amplifier of stupidity -- discordia

[ Parent ]
Probably by ucblockhead (2.00 / 0) #11 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 06:48:19 AM EST
His boss marched into his cube and said "Our customers are complaining! Do something about the latency now! I don't want any excuses!"
[ucblockhead is] useless and subhuman
[ Parent ]
Oh come on by TPD (4.00 / 2) #3 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 03:57:35 AM EST
if it's taking any longer than (latency + datasize/bandwidth) to load your developers are just being lazy ;).

why sit, when you can sit and swivel with The Ab-SwivellerTM
Exactly! by Rogerborg (4.00 / 1) #7 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 04:59:01 AM EST
Can they just use a 5GL language like Prolog that works backwards from that constraint in order to produce an algorithm that solves for it?

Metus amatores matrum compescit, non clementia.
[ Parent ]
I’m luckey by duxup (2.00 / 0) #8 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 05:05:24 AM EST

My boss’s reaction to such situations is more often than not Customer X complained about you, but they’re idiots so nobody is worrying about it.

This is because that I’m lucky that my bosses actually understand the situation, and even that is rare because most of the time the customers actually listen to me.   Not because I’m particularly smart, mostly because our product can be a bit confusing and I think it scares people.

I have run across some wide area network optimization hardware that is surprisingly powerful.  Of course they don’t just rely on compression and pre-fetching.  The more advanced devices on the surface seem to do a handful of what I would think of as minor optimization actions and it is surprising how well they add up.   A few folks I’ve seen have saved a ton of time and $$$ to the point where I wonder why everyone doesn’t buy these things.  Of course that is measured by overall network traffic and improved performance over multiple applications, and some guy who couldn’t troubleshoot his own network might not see a big improvement, if he knew how to find it in the first place ;)


I think by ucblockhead (2.00 / 0) #12 Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 06:49:14 AM EST
You should have recommended AJAX.
[ucblockhead is] useless and subhuman
A Day in the Life | 12 comments (12 topical, 0 hidden)