Thursday, October 30, 2008

Simple Candidate Comparison

OK, I normally write about customer service in the computer world, but with the election coming up I thought it would be important to stray a little (OK a lot). I believe that an informed voter is the key to our countries future, but I also believe that the amount of data about each candidate is overwhelming for some. So here is my attempt at a non- biased simple comparison. Enjoy.

John McCain

Economy -- Cut taxes, reduce government spending.
Iraq -- Voted for 2003 invasion and backed troop surge.
Iran -- Wants a league of democracies to escalate economic sanctions, refuses to rule out military solution if necessary. No unconditional diplomacy.
National Security -- Believes his military background best equips him for national security.
Illegal Immigration -- Believes undocumented workers in the US should be put on program for citizenship.
Abortion -- Wants to overturn Roe v Wade
Climate change -- Says climate change is real and threatening.
Health Care -- Favors tax incentives to encourage people to have personal health insurance.

Barack Obama

Economy -- Would repeal Bush tax cuts. Wants to renegotiate free trade deals. Quoted as wanting to "spread the wealth."
Iraq -- Opposed the war and says there is "no military solution". Opposed surge.
Iran -- Would meet w/ leaders without preconditions. Believes they would change their behavior if given incentives.
National Security -- Wants increased national security funding to be allocated to areas at risk.
Illegal Immigration -- Wants US-Mexico border better protected and backs stricter penalties for employers who hire undocumented workers.
Abortion -- Wants women to make their own choices on abortion.
Climate change -- Wants US to lead a global effort to combat climate change. Would invest $150bn over 10 years for clean energy.
Healthcare -- Backs universal healthcare and wants insurers to be unable to refuse coverage because of pre-existing conditions.

Happy Voting!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A Friends Experience

A good friend of mine called me to tell me his experience with Dell over the weekend.

He was working on his computer when suddenly the display showed nothing but black. After checking his cables and trying to reboot, he still only had a black screen. The Dell was just over a year old and just out of warranty. So he called Dell support and a tech from India named "Bob" took his call. The tech had him on the phone for two hours and they were able to get a video signal. The tech wanted to do further troubleshooting and eventually had him taking components out of his computer. My friend told the tech he was not comfortable taking the computer apart, but was reassured that Dell would be liable for any damage. As the support call progressed and more and more components were removed and replaced, eventually the computer wouldn't boot up again. They tried several times after that and the computer never came back to life. The tech told my friend he was sorry and that (as they say) was that.

Well the next day my friend was upset (to say the least) but was surprised to receive a call from the tech stating that his supervisor had told him that Dell would extend his warranty due to the circumstances. My friend was told to take his computer to a local computer shop and Dell would pick up the bill. My friend got all of "Bobs" contact info and then took his computer to Circuit ****. After a day of diagnostics, my friend received a call stating that the motherboard was "dead." He then attempted to call (couldn't email) the tech to let him know what had been found. After a couple of days and many calls/ many voice mails he decided to call Dell's main support number and see if someone else could help. To make an already long story a little shorter, he was told that his computer was out of warranty and that no one could contact "Bob" and they were sorry but could not help.

So now my friend has paid for Dell to help break his computer, he is stuck with a diagnostic fee from Circuit ****, a bad motherboard and no word from "Bob."

This is a classic example of how todays large computer manufacturers lack the ability to give good service.

Any thoughts?