[conspire] Powerpoint FAIL!

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Wed Mar 25 21:37:32 PDT 2009

As always, this is mail sent to me and Eric as co-authors of
"How to Ask Questions the Smart Way" -- ironically an Internet essay on
how to consult technical help resources effectively -- in this case
under the mistaken impression that we're a helpdesk for Cygwin.  How did
he come to do that?  By navigating on the Cygwin site's help pages to
http://cygwin.com/problems.html, _ignoring_ where it says not to be
really stupid by sending the co-authors Cygwin help questions, and doing
exactly that.

The attached Powerpoint was only a bit over 1/2 megabyte, which albeit
ghastly is, in truth, quite svelte by PPT standards.  

Man, I really pity helpdesk workers who have to deal every day with
customers whose idea of problem reporting is to send screenshots
(wrapped in Powerpoint documents or otherwise).[1]

I've considering writing a separate, short essay trying to explain to
people why sending screenshots (instead of real problem reports) just
wastes everyone's time, but the problem is that the people who'd need to
read it, wouldn't, even if I could convince them, which probably
wouldn't happen either.

[1] Actually, I did once have that indignity visited on me while helping
customers with new installations of VA $WHATEVER's proprietary fork of 
SourceForge.  A client at $FAMOUS_CHENEY_FIRM sent me screenshots in
lieu of useful data, and seriously expected me to solve her problem.
Also, topping uselessness with obscurity, those 100 MB or so of
screenshots were in the form of enormous MS-Windows bitmap files.  Gack!

----- Forwarded message from Mail Delivery System <Mailer-Daemon at linuxmafia.com> -----

[Most of the original's multipart-alternative MIME flotsam stripped.]

Date: Thu, 26 Mar 2009 08:48:02 +0530
Subject: Problem in installing Cygwin
From: T G <tellgo1 at gmail.com>
To: esr at thyrsus.com, respond-auto at linuxmafia.com

 Hello Sir,

I am facing a problem in installing Cygwin. I have attached PPt file
containing snapshots while installing

Please help me if you can

==T G

Content-Type: application/vnd.ms-powerpoint; name="problem.ppt"
Content-Disposition: attachment; filename="problem.ppt"
Content-Transfer-Encoding: base64
X-Attachment-Id: f_fsq5keub0


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