Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Unprofessional professionals

Well I just learned the hard way how difficult it is to find good help. We needed to tile the bathroom of one of our apartment units because it had was no solid flooring to keep water from running through. We thought we had found someone who would do a good job, but he had a backlog of work. When he called us and was ready, we didn't have time to doubt check all the fine points of what we expected and in general failed to do our due diligence regarding the bid. Now the job is done and we have to get him to fix all the things we think he should have done the first time. He did do a poor job by any standards, but I should have made those standards very explicit from the beginning. I have been reading about outsourcing your less productive tasks, but after this I don't know how I can trust someone to do a good job. Right now I'm thinking I'll have to tile the kitchen myself. It certainly wouldn't be any worse than the job done by a "professional."

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Baby steps: Quicken

Well, I would like to get to the point of saying insightful things that people are interested in. So lets take baby steps. First I will say things. Then I will build up to insightful things. Lastly, I will try to understand what people are interested in. So here it goes.

Last year I took my taxes to the Accountant and found that if I had stored my finances in Quicken that he could just take my Quicken file and get most of my information form there without me having to explain, on paper, all my finances. So I did a major project over several months to move my finances into Quicken from GNUCash. It was a lot of work now that Quicken doesn't support native QIF imports. I found some importers, but they just didn't work out for me.

So by the end of 2006 I had a full year of finances ready to take to the accountant. It was so nice. I explained some of the stranger items, handed him my tax documents and my Quicken file and that was it. No worrying about whether he saw this or that, it is all right there. Now mind you I trust my accountant to account for everything in the file or ask me about it, but then again, I wouldn't use an accountant I couldn't trust.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

No More Polyphasic

Well, I got a job doing support for managed services at a local datacenter. That forced me to end my polyphasic sleep experiment. It'll be a good opportunity remember what it is like to sleep in a big chunk, although I do think I'll go back when I eventually move to full time consulting.

I won't have that to write about, but I do plan on writing at least weekly and improve my blogging skills. Lately I have been thinking about business processes especially in IT and the importance of documentation, auditing, and automation of those processes. So I may write about that. We'll just have to wait and see.

I personally have a great need to actually try things I think of to generate a proper opinion, but perhaps we'll forgo that because I don't have the time to fully explore many of my ideas.