Leah's Thoughts
Saturday, November 27, 2004
 
Update
I heard from D2L on Thursday, but their offer kind of sucked. My dad looked over it, and had a few suggestions for them to change. So I emailed them with the ideas, and haven't heard back. I'm sure they will just throw it out the window without a second glance. Oh well. My dad and I had a nice chat about in yesterday, and he feels the same way that I do, "everything happens for a reason". So if I don't get the job, or at least a better offer, there is a reason for it, and soon I will know what it is.

Just to let everyone know, I am heading to Europe tomorrow, till the 6th of December, so I probably won't be posting anything for a while. If I do get some internet connection while I am not at work. I will make sure to let you know that I arrived safe.

Have a good week. :)

Wednesday, November 24, 2004
 
Crappy day
Since there is no one online to talk to, I guess I will just write it here.

Today was a pretty crappy day, aside from the whether. I got a call from D2L, and I know what you're thinking, well I wasn't turned down for the job. Instead they want me to come in tomorrow at 3:30pm. Well I can't make that since I am suppose to have plans. So my mom's solutions was to call tonight, and leave a message that I couldn't come in, then she could call me back tomorrow. Yay for telephone tag. This was during her 15 min. session of continuous yelling at me, because it isn't fair for them to ask me to come in at 3:30pm, since I have another job. Like it's my fault that they asked me to come it. I don't need to be yelled at because she thinks they are "fucking stupid".

It doesn't help that now everyone is trying to talk me out of even considering the job. My mom keeps bouncing back and forth between "it's a good idea" and "you are out of your mind". Today my boss tried to persuade me by telling me I will be spending about $15,000 a year just to commute to work and back. If that's the case, then I should be only considering this job if they pay me at least $45,000 or more. Fine, maybe I will just tell them that I don't want the job. What does it matter that I don't like the job I have now, that I can't do half the stuff they want? Nothing. As long as everyone else is happy. Maybe I won't call them tomorrow to rearrange the meeting, maybe I just won't go. That would make everyone happy.

Plus since I am leaving on Sunday, my mom has said that I have to let them know my decision before I leave, which means that I have to let them know by 5pm on Friday. Great. I thought that I would at least get some time to think it over. Now I don't even get that. I would like to take the job, if offered, but maybe I should just listen to everyone and just turn them down.

 
Why you should not use Microsoft Word as an HTML Editor
I am suppose to be writing some java script for a web page on my company web site. I was sent the demo of what it would look like, in Word, and was asked what format I would like it in. First off, aren't all web pages in HTML or did I miss something. I replied with HTML, and said that I could easily make it. I get a reply saying that it was easy to create, as the Save as HTML menu option was used. Normally this wouldn't be a problem, but it has a form on it. Have you ever tried this with a form? It doesn't work. It looks like the form is there, but you cannot click on any of the edit buttons. Also the HTML is so messed up with things that Word puts in, that it was hard to even know where to start to put the java script. The woman who makes the web site for the company is making me a proper HTML page.


Friday, November 19, 2004
 
Relieved a little...
I was starting to get a little worried this morning, as D2L hadn't called my references yet. The only reason why I knew that was because C.B. didn't have a call yet (we work in the same room). I figured they would be calling some time today, only because last week, I had my interview on Wednesday (I was the first one), and I was told about the second interview on Friday by 3:30pm. I figured there would be less people in the second interview than in the first, so they should start calling references today.

Around 10:30am, D2L called and C.B. talked to them about me, well in the programming office, so I couldn't hear her. lol She told me everything they talked about after. I don't know if I really wanted to hear it or not. I still have to wait another couple of days till I hear about it.

I am really ready for a change. I am starting to realize that I really don't know what's going on in this job. Well that's the case half of the time. LimsLink is quite a complicated program, and I don't understand it past the basic functions. This makes it really hard to test it when they are adding all these new features on that I have no idea how to even set them up.

Also I have been given this test outline that I have to fix up. It says that most of the tests don't have to be done, because they were tested in previous versions. Well now I have to write more than that, and figure out when they were tested. It wouldn't be so hard, if they actually had documentation that had the dates on it. All I can find are the documents from previous versions that say the same thing as this one. GRR. Programming isn't any help either, because they don't know which functions have been updated, so I might have to rewrite this whole thing and then retest everything. That is going to take a while to do.

I am so ready to go home now. I have had this dumb cold, at least I think it is a cold, since the beginning of the month. Every once and a while it makes me feel really run down, I even had a fever today. I just wish that it would clear up, so that I can feel health again. I hope that I don't have allergies. My brother developed allergies in the past couple of years. I just want to be healthy, or at least feel healthy for my trip. I guess if this isn't cleared up by the time I get back, I will have to go see the doctor to make sure that it is just a cold, and nothing more serious.


Wednesday, November 17, 2004
 
Second interview thoughts
Today I had my second interview at Desire2Learn. The first interview was with Susanne, HR, and Greg, QC Manager. Today was again with Susanne, but also with Bill, who is in charge of development and QC.

I learned a lot about the company, and the procedures they follow as well. They don't have many procedures setup yet, but they are working on it. The one thing that I thought when Bill was telling me this, is that procedures don't always make things better. You should see some of the things we have to go through, just to get some people to follow procedures.

While I was at the office, this time it was at the development office, I saw this woman that I recognized. It took me a few min. before I could figure out from where. It's funny how small the world is, but I am almost certain that she is friends with J.'s old boss. It looked like her anyway. C., J.'s boss, had a graduation party, and I think that's where I remember this woman from. (I have to keep reminding myself as I am typing, that we are no longer girls, we are women, and I have to refer to other woman as such) I have asked J. to ask C. if she has heard anything about working there.

The big difference between working there and working here, is the pay and the number of hours. Currently I am working 35 hours a week for... well I don't really want to say how much, we'll just say that I make enough. Now most of the people who have left here said they were leaving for more money. The funny thing is, they are usually working for more hours, and if they were working those hours here, would be making the same amount of money. I don't know how many times my mom has pointed this out. So I am taking this into consideration.

Now I was told that they work 40 hour weeks, flex hours with the core hours being 10am to 3pm. I can even work on weekends if I decide to. HA HA They have also said that the range for this position, for starting is high 30s to low 40s. Looking at this increase of pay (which lets you know that I make less than high 30s), but the increase of hours. I could still make an increase of at least $0.35 per hour, if you make high 30s = $35,000. I will just have to see what they are actually going to offer me, and see if it is worth it.


Monday, November 15, 2004
 
Why I like working at Labtronics
I just went in to talk to my manager, as I now have a second interview with Desire2Learn, and I had to tell him. Although he already knew, as my mom told him at the Christmas party during a conversation they were having. I have a 15 min. meeting with him, on what I should ask, and what I should look for while I am there, to see if I actually would like to work there.

Here is some of the things that I should ask while I am there

  1. What type of procedures do they use for testing?
  2. Is the testing most structural or free?
  3. What are my duties? Does my job just include testing or writing
    documents as well?
  4. Ask for a tour and to see where I will be working. This way I can see
    if it is the type of environment that I want to work in.


Here are some things that I should consider before taking the job (some of these are my ideas too)

  1. Salary. I won't take the job if they offer my equal to or less than
    what I am making now, as I will have to either commute, or move to take this
    job.
  2. The commute itself. There is now a new road that I can take that will
    allow me to miss most of Hwy 7 to get there, but I will still have to drive
    45 min. one way to get there. I have worked out how much that will be in
    gas, and it will probably cost me about $100 a month in gas, where as now,
    it only costs me about $50.
  3. The work environment (already mentioned above)
  4. The work atmosphere
  5. What other people think about working there, I will have to get in touch
    with someone in QC to see what they think about the job.
  6. The contract, there maybe some weird stuff in it that I don't agree to
  7. Will I get more/different experience working there?


I think I will make another pros and cons list with this new information, and as soon as I find out how much I could possibly be making, and post it again. Is it wrong that I feel guilty about this interview?


Sunday, November 14, 2004
 
Spam
Anyone who has an email address has heard of spam. It is the annoying messages you get in your inbox that you never asked to receive. My favorite ones, that I get, are to increase the size of my "member". Funny thing is, I'm female, and my email address starts with Princess. Guess companies don't really care about who they are sending it to, they just want to get the message out there.

I have now heard about this new system that someone wants to put in place, charging people to send email. It would only be $0.01 per email, and if the person you send it to responds to it, the sender doesn't have to pay. Sure this sounds like a good idea, but it probably won't work.

What about charging the recipient? Yes this sounds even more crazy, but this is what is happening to me. Like most people out there I have a cell phone, with text messaging. I loved the text messaging feature up until this week. Early this week, I received SPAM on my phone. I know what your thinking, who cares, right. Well receiving this little piece of spam on my phone cost me $0.15. I feel a little ripped off about this. I figured it was only $0.15, so I would let it go. Then last night, I received another spam message. Now the system is down, so I can't check if I have to pay for this one, but I decided to take action. I emailed my phone company to complain. Why should I have to pay to receive messages that I don't want? Why do I need spam from the states telling me I can get my degree cheap there, when I already have my degree? And I don't care about the stock market. I really hope this doesn't happen again, or I might be forced to change my cell phone number, that would be a huge pain.

Friday, November 12, 2004
 
The thinking or lack there of, of our programmers
A bug had been found in one of our programs, causing some troubles over in
Europe.

Here is the problem:
The program is looking for either True or False at one point, well in German
it is no longer True or False. The program looks only for False, and
assumes everything else to be true. So now, no matter what is sent back in
German, it will never be False.

Solution:
1 = True
0 = False.

You think you would have thought of that since we are selling some of our
products to other countries


Thursday, November 11, 2004
 
Best Movie Ever
What do you get when you mix:

1. One of my favorite movies
2. One of my favorite directors
3. One of my favorite actors?

The new Charlie and the Chocolate movie to open July 2005 directed by Tim
Burton and staring Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka.



Wednesday, November 10, 2004
 
Job interview...
yes I know, I keep posting about it, but it was today, so this should be it.

I had my interview today at 9:30am, but I wasn't sure how long it would take
me to get there or to find it, so I got up at 6:30am, to make sure I left
before 8am. I ended up leaving a little after 8am, so I booked it. I got
to the gas station that is a little over half way, and realized that it was
about 15 minutes to 9am, and the gas was 74.5, so I decided to fill up. I
still got there by 9am. So it really doesn't take that long to get there
from here.

The interview was about an hour. After my mom asked me how it went, and it
got me to thinking, how do you really tell an interview went well. Sure I
answered most of their questions, and they wrote down a lot of stuff, but
what does that really mean? I think I did well, but they might think I was
talking out of my ass. I guess it was a good sign that I was the first
interview of the group. Does this mean that they really liked what they saw
at the job fair? Who knows. They are doing second interviews next week,
and I have to wait till the end of this week to find out anything, maybe
even Monday.

If I do end up getting a second interview, I guess I have figured out the
trick to interviews. You have to go in there without any expectations. I'm
still not sure if I want this job or not. I really did like the place,
after being there today, but I can't decide if I want to leave Labtronics
now or not. So I wasn't nervous going into it, because at this point it
would be nice to get a job offer, but I'm not hoping for one. Maybe that is
the trick, not letting on how much you want the job. That's what I did at
Equitrac, and I didn't get the offer there.

We'll see....


Tuesday, November 09, 2004
 
Tomorrow
So there is one day now till my interview at Desire2Learn. I still have yet to decide whether I want to work there or not. I guess right now, I am just trying to get a job offer so I know that I can find jobs. Two of the most important people in my life, seem to have very different ideas on whether I should take the job or not, if I am offered one.

I decided on making a pros and cons list to taking the job, and each point is worth a different amount of points, on a scale of 1 to 5. I'm not going to post the point values, but here is what I have come up with:

Pros for taking job

Cons for taking job


This is all I can think of right now for my list, I will add more when I think of them

Monday, November 08, 2004
 
Trip Phase One Complete
I have decided to make a Pros and Cons list for this trip, since for some
reason I feel really guilty about it and I don't know why. Here are some of
the things I have come up with

1. I am currently employed, and have two projects to help release. I feel
really guilty about leaving in the middle of the release of one of the
projects. The good news is, is that my two managers have talked it over,
and think that it will not be pushed back because of my leaving. Also I can
help out in the other office, and try to fix/verify some of the bugs that
they are seeing that we are not. (This is what I have called phase one, now
complete)

2. Another thing that I am guilty about is that it is my dad and I going on
the trip, and we are leaving my mom home all alone. It is kind of mean of
us to do, but really it is more of a business trip than anything. We are
planning on spending 2 days in the BV office, driving one day to see another
work related person for a day, then taking another day to drive back. On
the way back we will be going trough Luxemburg, since my dad has never been
there. So out of the maybe 7 days we will be there, we will be working 3
and driving 2. I'm sure my mom wouldn't really have fun on this trip.

3. I am totally feeling guilty about J.. We have finally started
getting our relationship back on track, and I will be leaving for a week. I
know nothing is going to happen while I am gone, he has promised me, but I
am just worried that there won't be anything to come back to. I don't want
this to ruin things between us. We can barely make it 2 days apart, let
alone 7. Well if he is still here when I get back, I will know that we are
still meant to be together, which is what I hope. Also it will get us use
to how long it will be between visits if he leaves the province to go to
grad school.

4. The one thing that I am worried about is that I don't have a passport
right now, mine expired. It wouldn't be so bad, because it usually takes up
to 10 working days, or 2 weeks, but they are on strike. I don't want to
book this trip and find out at the last minuet that I can't go because I
don't have my passport yet. Lets cross out fingers and hope it all works
out.

5. The one good thing that I can see getting out of this trip, is my anger.
I have become a really angry person the last couple of years, and I not get
totally disgusted with myself from time to time. I think this trip will
help me to be happy again. Maybe some time away from everything will help
me clear my head, and figure my life out.

Now that I think about it, I am getting quite excited about this trip. I
love to fly, and given any reason to, I will!! It will be good to go back
to Germany. I actually have family in Austria (I know this is not Germany,
but it was still a really good trip).

I will have to make sure I have lots of batteries for my camera, and make
sure my storage card is empty, so I can take lots of pictures.


 
Trip to Europe
My dad and I were talking a couple of weeks ago about a trip he was taking to the European office, and I had mentioned that I wanted to go. Well he has decided that he is going the first week of December.

I have still told him that I want to go, but there are still some things that make me not want to go. Sure it is a business trip, and technically I will only be taking 2 days off. My manager says that there really isn't any work that I can do over there that will benifit this office, so I might just have to take the whole week off. He is looking into the schedule to see if it will be possible for me to take the week off without delaying the release of our two large projects. I would feel really bad if I went, and things were delayed. This is why I have left it in his hands to decide if I can go or not. He is very impressed that I would ask like this, he says that most people would just say they are going on vacation and that would be it. Since I am basically working here as a favour to him, I didn't think that it would be right.

My dad is also worried about this job interview that is coming up. What if he books the trip for us, and I end up getting a job. I told him that I wasn't sure if I was going to take it, and besides, I can always tell the other company that I can't start work till after.

I also don't want to leave J. for 8 days. It is hard enough for me to go 2 days without seeing him. I'm sure it will be ok, I just don't want to mess things up between us by going and leaving him for this long. We will just have to talk it over, and see how we feel about it.

 
Job interview...
Do you know how hard it is to get ahold of someone at work when they work 9am - 5pm, and you also work 9am - 5pm. So I called Desire2Learn, and the woman I was suppose to speak with about the job interview was on her lunch, when I was calling during my lunch. She called me back around 3:30pm. I talked to my dad about it today, and he said that I could use the phone in the programmer's office to call her, during office hours. I really think he wants me to get this job, well any job, so I can move on from Labtronics and get a "real job" as he calls it.

I'm still not sure if I should take the job, if offered, or not. Everyone seems to have a different oppinion on the topic, and I just can't decide. I mean it would be good to have another job, but it is in Kitchener. There is nothing wrong with Kitchener, but it would take me 45min to an hour to get there everyday. I don't know. J. thinks that I should just stay at my current job for 2 years, well I think he means more like 2.5 years. I can understand why. There are many good things about staying here. I am pretty sure that I already wrote all of this.

I think I will check this when I get home, and if I come up with any new ideas for staying or leaving Labtronics, then I will post them. Until I have decided, any inpyut from anyone, would be welcomed.

I just talked to Christine on the phone, and we have verified that my interview is on Wednesday at 9:30am. It should take about 1.5 hours, that's a really long interview. I should be able to make it back to work for noon at the latest.

*I couldn't get spell checking to work, so there may be some mistakes in here*

Friday, November 05, 2004
 
Job Interview...
Well yesterday I got a call from Desire2Learn about a job interview. I had given them my resume at a job fair in September, and figured that they had forgotten about me since then. I didn't actually get the message till this morning, as they called my house, which is weird, because I am sure my cell phone number is on my resume.

So you would think I would be excited about this... another job interview... a chance to get away from Labtronics, but I don't know how I feel about this. I had this master plan to stay here till next September, then who knows what would happen. Mind you, it's not like I have to job or anything. My mom thinks I should go for the interview. At least I will get more experience with job interviews, right? I would just feel bad leaving Labtronics right now, since I have work for me here till March (or later, because nothing is released on time here). I guess I will go. It sounds like they are doing mass interviews, and I am one of the firsts to go, but still I'm sure there will be plenty of people who will be more qualified than me.

For those of you who think that I am putting myself down, I'm not really. I don't have that much experience here, and plus if I get my hopes up like I did the last time, it will be even harder if (yes I said if) I don't get the job.

Even if I am offered the job, I will have to weigh the fact that right now, sure I only make about $35,000 a year, but I don't have any expenses. I hardly ever drive my car to work, which means I hardly ever have to fill it with gas. If I do get this job in Kitchener, I will have to drive to Kitchener ever day, which will increase my gas bill a lot. Although I will finally get some real experience away from Labtronics, which is what I need.

I guess I will go and talk it over with my manager today, to let him know that I am going for a job interview, since he is going to have to hire a replacement.

Well, wish me luck.

Oh yeah, I have also heard that they aren't a great place to work, so I guess we will see what kind of vibe I get while I am there.

Thursday, November 04, 2004
 
Here we go again...
And I wonder why I have so much stress in my life..

I was just handed another project to start and release. By start, I mean write a test plan and a test outline. Then I have to follow both, and upon successful completion of both, release the project.

Now the project is similar to the last one I released, only it works with a third-party program, that I don't know how to work. This wouldn't be so bad, but there are no specifications for the stuff I am writing/testing, and there is no documentation for the third-party program.

At least I am learning what to look for in a company that I want to work for. I need a company that not only makes SOPs (standard operating procedures), but follows them. It is great that we have all these SOPs in place, but no one ever follows them. Good luck getting anyone to follow the new QC stages we want to implement. I just hope I find out the release date of this project before it is one day till it is to be released. grrr


(BTW, thanks again sweetie for the two new games, Evil Genius and C.S.I. Dark Motive. I can't wait to play them. You are the best!)

Wednesday, November 03, 2004
 
Time change in my car...
As of 8:45am, this morning, I officially have the time changed in my car. (about 3 days after it was suppose to be changed)

Now you would think that setting the time would be simple, especially when you have three buttons in your car that say [H] for hour, [M] for minute, and [Set], for what I thought was set. So I tried every possible combination with these three buttons. I tried with the radio on, with the radio off, with the clock on, and with the clock off. None of these worked. I got frustrated and decided that I had had enough, and actually got out the owner's manual. Well I skimmed through the section on the radio, but didn't see anything about it. So I checked the appendix, where there was a reference to Clock, it was the clock that my car doesn't have. I decided to read the section on the radio, word for word. What do you know, there was no mention of these buttons, and no mention on how to change the time. Stupid Toyota. You would think that they would mention it somewhere, instead of assuming that everyone would figure it out. I mean I have a computer science degree, and I couldn't figure it out. I decided that the internet would be the next logical place to look, but there was no help on the internet, on or off the Toyota site. So after about 2 hours of looking, and thinking that my clock would be wrong for about 6 months, I emailed Toyota, to see if someone there could help me.

This morning, I decided to give it another shot, and had a great thought. Maybe I have to press the button that turns the clock on and off, and the set button before I could change the time. After some messing around, I noticed that I had changed the minutes, instead of the hour. After a few more button pressing, and holding random buttons, I got the hours to change, by what I thought was holding the clock, set, and hour buttons all together. So I tried to do the minutes, but every time I tried to change the minutes, they would just change back to 00. After about 5 minutes of this, I finally realized, that Set wasn't for Set at all. It was for RESET. Why the heck do I need a button that resets the minutes to 00? Oh well, at least the time is now correct in my car, lets just hope I remember this for Spring Forward.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004
 
Winter time officially
This past weekend, we turned the time back. This is a nice thing in theory,
I got an hour more of sleep, but lets think of what a pain it is to actually
turn back the clocks. First of all you have to turn them back. How many
people actually remember how to change all the pieces of technology they
have? Ok, so the only thing that I don't know how to change is the clock in
my car. This isn't too much of a pain, since the owner's manual is always
in the car. Now that all the clocks have been set back. Think about the
poor people who were at work Saturday night at 2am, when the time officially
changes. I'm not sure how this works everywhere, but I remember last year
when we were working, our shift ended at 3am, but since the time changed at
2am, we had to stay an extra hour. Like working till 3am isn't bad enough.

Now my main cause for concern is that I just walked passed the door, and it
is already getting dark out. It is going to be dark by the time I get home.
Now I don't know about you, but when it is dark out, I don't really feel
like doing much of anything. This is going to be a struggle to actually get
to the gym now. Now earlier nights, mean earlier mornings. This is also a
pain, I don't want it bright out when I get up. I was enjoying the fact
that it was just light enough to see some of my backyard by the time I made
it down stairs for breakfast. Now it is this light out before I am even out
of bed. GRR. At least I now have curtains, so I don't really have to worry
about the sun in my eyes in the morning.

I think the worst part of this whole "Turning back the clocks" is that we
will eventually have to turn the forward an hour. Why can't we just leave
them alone? We have Leap Years to adjust for the fact that a year is
actually 365.25 days long, why mess with the time too.

Why does only MOST of Canada have to do this? I know the changing of the
clocks had something to do with the war, but really, are we in the middle of
a war? Not really. Stupid Bush. I don't think it is fair that
Saskatchewan doesn't have to move their clocks. Maybe I should move there.
:)

Well this is my little rant about the changing of the clocks. Where most
people welcome the extra hour, I can just hear them now complaining about 6
months from now, when the world takes that hour back. I say, you can keep
your extra hour, it only messes me up anyway.




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