August 8th, 2007



There are an AWFUL lot of clueless mail admins out there. Let me give them a clue:

It is not acceptable, in this day and age, to send out a bounce message if you cannot deliver a message.

If you cannot verify the message's deliverability before you accept it, then your system does not deserve to be connected to the net.

The commonly accepted technical definition of email spam is that it is Unsolicited Bulk Email.
  • Email - your bounce message is certainly that.
  • Unsolicited - I certainly did nothing to indicate I wanted to hear from you, and
  • Bulk - you're sending out gazillions of these bounces.
Yes, that's another 100+ since I started composing this message.

Order tracking amusement

OK, my new shiny has been dispatched. The supplier up in Leicester sent me an email last night to tell me so, complete with UPS tracking code.

Whee, can't wait!

Oh, where is it, where is it, where is it?!

Is it here yet?

No sign of the UPS van yet, so off to the UPS site to enter the tracking code.

Ah, yes, there it ... is .....
Package Progress 
Location 	Date 	Local Time 	Description 
PA,  US 	08/08/2007 	1:36 	EXPORT SCAN 
	08/08/2007 	0:09 	ARRIVAL SCAN 
MA,  US 	07/08/2007 	22:48 	DEPARTURE SCAN 
	07/08/2007 	20:33 	ARRIVAL SCAN 
MA,  US 	07/08/2007 	19:55 	DEPARTURE SCAN 
	07/08/2007 	19:32 	ORIGIN SCAN 
	07/08/2007 	19:12 	ORIGIN SCAN 
	07/08/2007 	18:51 	ORIGIN SCAN 
Pardon me while I boggle slightly. No, not at the fact that I'm being shipped a package from the US. No, at the fact that it's got to the stage that a supplier will source a package from the US for a single order, and get it shipped directly to me, and that I would be totally unaware without having checked with UPS.

New shiny approaches

Hmm, it seems to be here.

Package Progress 
Location 	Date 	Local Time 	Description 
GB 	08/08/2007 	15:10 	IN TRANSIT 
PA,  US 	08/08/2007 	10:09 	DEPARTURE SCAN 
	08/08/2007 	1:36 	EXPORT SCAN 
I'm quite amused by the latest two times. 10:09 local time Philadelphia is 15:09 local time East Midlands. So the apparent time taken to cross the Atlantic is 1 minute.

Either that, or the actual time is between 01:36 and 10:09 Philadelphia time, which is much more plausible. 8.5 hours from being scanned aboard an aircraft to being scanned out of it at the far end is very plausible indeed.