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# Monday, March 30, 2009

Hello Mr. Osborn, how are you today….How's the weather there in…Iowa"….Please hold while I look up your information…Sorry sir, my computer is really slow today….Hold on while I go talk to my supervisor…..

Okay, I'm an introvert, I'll admit that, but isn't it time that email is elevated to the status of the phone call? In my opinion an email is simply an asynchronous phone call when it comes to business related conversations. I'm busy throughout the day and I'm sure everyone else is too, but I do have a few minutes of down time here and there when I'm waiting for data to load or a project to build and I utilize that time to get some other tasks done. What I don't have time for during a build process is to sit on hold or wait for a receptionist to look up some information. The weather is either too hot or too cold and I'm sure your kids are great. Oh, you're computer is slow? No, I don't want the credit protection plan. Half the time I am probably going to get someone's voicemail anyways, so why not just send them my questions in an email in the first place. Sure in some cases a phone call can be quicker or the urgency requires a phone call, but in most cases a few emails will suffice and it allows me to space out the time into the random free minutes I have throughout the day. Sure I could just put you on hold every time my build finishes and take you off hold when I am waiting on data to load, but most likely you would find that extremely rude.

The problem I am running into is that apparently other individuals don't consider an email on the same level as a phone call. Don't get me wrong, I don't expect an immediate reply, but there are a few things that I would like to be able to start expecting.

  • If you're out of the office for more than a day, I would like to receive an out of office reply.
  • If I send you an email before 2pm on a work day, I would at least like to get an email before 5pm saying that you are looking into it and when you will be getting back to me.
  • If there's a document you need me to sign, then scan it and email it to me. If I don't have the time to call you then I sure don't have the time to stop by your office.
  • Don't send any data like a credit card number or social security number to me in an email unencrypted. If you need that information then you won yourself a phone call (or I'll decide it wasn't that important).

Is that too hard to expect? Obviously there will always be exceptions, but I would say that they are pretty simple to adhere to. The great thing about email is that people don't really want to type very much, which is great because I don't really want to read very much, so they keep their answers as concise as possible. I think most people want that phone call initiated because they feel they are going to have to do a lot of explaining, but it is most likely the case that I'm not going to retain the big long explanation you provide over the phone, so just answer my question via email which I have most likely phrased in the form of a yes or no question and save us both some time.

Seriously, am I way off base here?



Monday, March 30, 2009 6:54:31 PM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Comments [0] - Trackback - Save to - Digg This! - Follow me on Twitter
# Saturday, March 28, 2009


Well I got a little bored this evening and started to play around with the Microsoft Surface SDK. Nothing too exciting in this first iteration, but I wired it up to my Twitter account and started pulling down new tweets every couple of minutes. With a little styling I was able to get each of the messages to look like a handwritten Post It note. The messages are created using the ScatterView control which is a Microsoft Surface specific WPF control that allows each item to be picked up, dragged, resized, and even thrown around the screen. Microsoft uses this control a lot during demos of the Surface, wiring it up to pictures to provide a table full of photos type environment. Why is this a $12,500 Twitter client? Well because that is how much it is going to cost you to get a MS Surface, or $15,000 for the developer version. Though, if you buy one in the next 15 minutes, I'll throw in this nifty Twitter client for free.

Saturday, March 28, 2009 10:09:13 PM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Comments [0] - Trackback - Save to - Digg This! - Follow me on Twitter
Microsoft Surface | Twitter | WPF
# Thursday, February 12, 2009

Well after a bit of work and some help from this blog post, I was able to get the Microsoft Surface SDK working on my 64bit Vista machine. The documentation for the SDK says that it needs to run on 32bit Vista but Steven Robbins seems to have figured out the steps to get around that. Now that I have it up and running I hope to put up a few blog posts on doing Surface development and hopefully I won't run into any issues using 64bit. If anyone would like to donate me the money to buy an actual Surface unit I would be grateful, but until then the Surface simulator appears to be a decent environment that allows you to hook up multiple mice to act as different finger touches. The below sample application comes with the sdk and allows you to select a picture to create a puzzle out of and then put the puzzle together. I can't wait to get my hands dirty and create a Surface application of my own.

Thursday, February 12, 2009 8:20:29 PM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Comments [0] - Trackback - Save to - Digg This! - Follow me on Twitter
Development | Microsoft Surface

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