Project-iM@S

Community => General chatter => Topic started by: Setsuna on September 10, 2015, 01:31:56 pm

Title: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 10, 2015, 01:31:56 pm
This is mostly a mini blog thing I want to write, mostly because I'm thoroughly convinced that I haven't met anyone with such a weird set of events happen yet.

I imagine some of you know who I am, but I don't generally let my history be known (too much) but for the purposes of this, I'll document some of the weirder things that have happened.

2005 - Stabbing. I lived through that one.
2007 - Found out that I was subject to a hit (person apprehended outside my house) due to a story I ran (Back when I was a journalist)
2008 - Got shot at while travelling home - Took out my newspaper.
2012 - Vertigo incident that was apparently a few inches away from doing major brain damage. This also resulted in a very bad fall down about three flights of stairs.
2013 - Cancer incident, requiring surgery on right hand.
2015 - Fire breaks out, rescue woman from fire, only made the police report.

There's more, but apparently every so often, my life gets exciting, through no fault of my own. Some things I can't discuss in detail, like whistleblowing, a rescue and a couple of other things, due to NDA/court orders and privacy and the like.

So given all that, there really isn't much more over the top stuff one single person can go through, right?

No, probably not, but it seems that the universe also has a sick sense of humour, or at the minimum, likes kicking people when they're down.

Today, I was shopping at IKEA (You know, so I can start having a residence with furniture in it) and I was trying out the beds.

I get on it to see how it feels, and the bedframe slats underneath it fall through (they didn't snap) due to someone else messing around with them prior to me trying it.

It resulted in a hurt shoulder, a incident report, and asking about bedframes without that sort of design.

And classic exchanges like: "Well, I assume that not all your bedframes are like this?" "No, because we'd be out of business if they were."

The sales assistant was also pretty nice, and found out she plays a lot of DotA2. It's nice to meet people who play games and I appreciated the half hour while I let the ice pack do its work on my left shoulder.

It's probably not really all that significant, but sometimes you have to wonder if someone with the controls to the universe thinks you're their personal TV channel...

Don't mind me, I thought it was funny and I guess after my experiences my perspective is rather unique that way.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Naryoril on September 10, 2015, 01:59:15 pm
Even before i reached the part with the TV channel i thought "this sounds like the history of a character from a long running soap opera"...

And yeah, i don't think i have met anyone else with such a set of events happening... I don't know how old you are, but i don't think you are that old, that makes it even worse...
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: DeviantProtagonist on September 10, 2015, 07:13:01 pm
Take that motherfucking bedframe to court for assault charges -- the mattress can testify that shit! Or something of the like. :P

But yeah, you're rather... peculiar. There's also the spider, so time and again I sigh relieved. I swear, you'll give a heart attack.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: ChocoCats on September 10, 2015, 07:32:21 pm
That's quite an adventure you have. Good thing you're alive.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Nayre on September 10, 2015, 08:00:15 pm
Wow, didn't know you've been through so much, and just one after the other. :/  I really hope your luck turns around soon. 
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 11, 2015, 01:13:43 am
Wow, didn't know you've been through so much, and just one after the other. :/  I really hope your luck turns around soon.

I dunno. I think I've been wishing on and off for my entire life.

Am I doing  the wishing wrong?
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 15, 2015, 02:39:59 pm
Only in a world like this...

So I finally arrange for the lease to be signed, and for us to get the keys to the place. The place is part of an affordable housing programme, and how it works is that a market rent is medianed for the area for the size/location and a % is charged (as the NSW government will pay off the rest). The actual percentage is 74.9% of market (and I have no idea why they chose that percentage)

The rates stay that for the duration of the lease.

So what happens?

Literally 30 minutes before we turn up (I'm serious, the document was dated WHILE I was in transit) the calculations were run again, and it moved the rent up 20 dollars a week.

I'm not sure if I should laugh or cry.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: MetalPredat0r on September 15, 2015, 04:20:33 pm
Life can be the ultimate cruel comedy sometimes.

Anyway, glad to know you have a place to live, even if the price cheated.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Amazing_Grace on September 15, 2015, 06:14:32 pm
You just can't catch a break, huh?

Well, at the least, I'm also glad you have a place to live. Hopefully, things will look up for you. I mean, there's nowhere to go but up, right?

... ...Right?
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 15, 2015, 10:43:47 pm
Well, the lease HAS been signed, and I have taken possession of the keys. It's a one year, with options to renew (and the rent recalculated every year) so it means I can finally start an actual rebuilding process.

So as of 4pm Tuesday, I have a place to stay.

Of course, there's nothing in it yet. That's going to be the job for the next few weeks, and months.

First things first of course (And where all the money I've been accumulating and the like kick into play) and that is to get a fridge and washing arrangements.

... Unfortunately, the space to get said washing machine to its space is really tight compared to even the smallest washing machine.

The doorway gap is 61cm. The washing machine I picked out is a minimum of 60cm.

I might gain a few more cm of breathing room if we temporarily remove the bathroom door though.

I think this is the sort of little things a lot of you will expect to happen as you all get older and I seem to be good at handling these things, although, I'm not sure if I have anything going for me EXCEPT that...
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: nastynate on September 16, 2015, 01:07:54 am
At least you have a sense of humor about it  :P
.
I think you handle these situations better than Larry David's character on Curb!
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Tafira on September 16, 2015, 03:18:45 am
I can't hope to say I have had as much misfortune as you. to sympathize, but maybe at least you'll be pleasantly surprised when things later down go smoothly?

It's good to see that you've stabilized from your previous events, and I wish you the best of luck!

What doesn't kill you makes you stronger? ^^;
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 16, 2015, 04:40:00 am
What doesn't kill you may make you stronger, but it also demonstrates that you CAN handle that sort of thing, and encourages more of the same.

Well, for more 'Okay, who's stupid idea is this?'

The place has a phone line connected. It was active when I tested it a week ago for inspection.

I was asked to do some tech stuff to find out the last used number so I can arrange a net connection.

So what happens when I enter? I connect the phone to get the last number, and the dialtone is dead.

A quick inquiry finds out that the line was disconnected a couple of days ago, because the last tenant failed to pay their phone bills.

My problem? I now have to pay an extra 250 dollars to get the line physically reconnected. (Technician has to come out etc)

Maybe being ABLE to handle this sort of thing isn't such a useful skill, if it just encourages whoever that jerk is managing the universe to keep throwing things my way.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 16, 2015, 11:51:32 am
So now my roommate gets screwed over due to an automated transaction that ran (That shouldn't have) and he just got short shifted this week due to lowered demand. And once again, we find this out just AFTER we purchased the beds and two tables, so we got very, very screwed. (We need the items, but frankly I'd have reversed the tables just to get more to work with)

... I've had one offer of help (thank you, seriously) which puts us behind but on this side of a knife edge, and I'm now convinced someone up there is keeping an eye on me, just so they can counter any help with another 'Unexpected issue'

I generally pride myself on being able to get through nearly anything, but frankly someone's decided to put that to the test.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Yui on September 16, 2015, 03:10:56 pm
Damn... such karma. o_o
Anyway, more luck for you. o/
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Amazing_Grace on September 16, 2015, 05:09:43 pm
Well, best of luck to you. Let me know if you need any help with finances or anything like that; I'd be happy to help as best I can.

In any case, I remember you were writing a book at one point. How did that end up going for you?
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 17, 2015, 07:37:32 am
Life got in the way. I want to get around to writing more, but I need all of this stuff cleared up first.

(I've got about 30 minutes every couple of days to connect, so I can do admin work and collect email and try to keep the place running)

Now for more 'Things that aren't supposed to happen in a normal world'

Since you are all aware of the fact the place I was in got massively fire damaged, there's a lot of cleanup that happens in regard to closing utility accounts, and the like.

In this case, since the cause of the fire was electrical (from ground floor) the electrical meter reader that checks how much electricity you used was ripped out and can't do the normal readings for billing.

So they had to close the account somehow (You can't use an estimate) and they can't just wait nine months + to see if they can somehow get the figures out of a damaged meter.

They decided to do this by declaring the last paid final bill the end date, which was the 14th June, which was the previous bill (and was paid promptly), because discounts are offered for prompt payment.

Now that's fine, but there's a bit of a laugh to be had.

From the bill:

Due date
Payment not required
Total amount if paid after due date
$0.00
Total amount with discount if paid by due date
$42.52Cr

Basically their accounting system decided to pay out the discount twice, and how do I pay a 0.00 AFTER the due date, anyway?

Of course a human reading over the system would go 'There's no credit to be had' and it IS a final account, so no point either way, and I technically get away scot free from a ~450 dollar electricity bill that SHOULD be owing if the place didn't go down in flames. Of course, this affair has cost me a lot anyway, so it's not really much of a consolation.

But not everything is always terrible. It's mostly the fact people tell me that the world isn't supposed to be this crazy. I beg to differ.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 19, 2015, 07:26:54 am
In the ongoing saga of settling back in, you learn something new.

At the new place, there's this electric cooker. The coils are downright terrible, so it takes a long time to cook anything.

Now, I'm not going to replace it anytime THAT soon (money and all) but making sure you can cook things properly is probably a good idea. Besides, I do things like stir frying and pressure cooking. So a portable gas stove seems like a good idea, you know doing asian cooking (and doing non terrible cooking in general) since the stove here is so lackluster.

So I rock up to a store that sells gas stoves and the like, including portable ones, and ask about them. After all, at least five of the places I inspected before this one used such a setup.

After a ongoing conversation, I find out that by law in Australia, we're not allowed to actually use gas to cook in an apartment. Apparently there have been enough explosions to pass a law against them. It's apparently legal in Europe and Asia, and is why a lot of asian families ignore this law.

More interestingly, the presence of a LPG canister inside an apartment will immediately deny you any insurance claim. Apparently this is listed as a clause in most insurance policies online.

It's one of those little interesting things you learn in a day.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 24, 2015, 10:27:44 am
So I'm finally slowing down, and apart from a few laughs along the way, it seems I might see a light at the end of the tunnel.

Or maybe that's an incoming train, and I need to find somewhere to hide, rather quickly.

First things first, more oddities at my end.

The first is that I've now been given a mobile smart phone for use while I'm here. It's a HTC One (I think) with a custom OS. I couldn't tell you all the details, because to be honest, mobile devices aren't my strong point (I tend to work on bigger devices anyway) although I'm fairly sure this particular one is the strangest phone I've seen in a while.

Apparently it takes all the settings for the various things I tell it to do as suggestions. Most of them I might add are focused around tethering and wifi hotspots, but it sometimes does it while quickly webbrowsing on the phone.

No, I'm serious. Sometimes to tell it to tether, I'd have to turn the mobile data option off, the wifi off and the hotspot option off to get hotspot tethering to work.

This is of course coupled with a unique handicap at my end - due to how my right hand is now geared, sometimes the touchscreen will simply not work. This isn't a problem specific to the phone (I have a Apple 3GS which won't tether at all, since apparently the USB doesn't want to work, there's no wifi option, and the bluetooth version's broken) but due to the fact that as a side effect to the surgery I had a couple of years ago (see cancer removal), I don't generate enough resistance with my right hand for the touchscreen to work depending how I hold the phone.

(There's a nice long scientific explanation, but the short of it is that my thumb, index finger and middle fingers on my right hand have such a low resistance that the touchscreen has a 50/50 to not actually detect the change in resistance. Yes, this also means I'm incredibly susceptible to static electricity to the point where very small shocks can really, really hurt. I also suspect that any minor electrical shock in just the right way will outright kill me.) 

Given all the above, I've yet to really see any actual benefit in a mobile phone, but that's because how it works and how I work don't match each other at all. It's probably not necessarily extendable to anyone else. So tethering it is, if only the phone would take the settings as more than something I'm kindly requesting.

Then there's the little question of 'So how does 900 dollars get earmarked as missing without you knowing where the money went, anyway?'

My account has also decided not to work properly, by saying I have stupid amounts of money, but an available balance of maybe 10% that.

This would be normal except for one thing...

The bank can't tell me anything about the earmarked expenses apart from the fact they exist, and I don't own the money. They're as confused as I am about the charges, because they're literal blank entries.

That would be good news, except the money going in is ALSO literal blank entries, so basically money I never had has entered the account, then decided to leave the same way.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 29, 2015, 02:05:14 am
Not that I expect anyone to be reading this, but well, time for another episode of 'How can things go uniquely wrong for one person?'

Well, during the last week, I've been arranging for repairs that we first noted when we inspected the place.

One of the repairs wasn't really that big a deal (Shower divider misaligned and won't run on rail), another required fixing a window that was used to break in (a big deal but I've been home all the time so I've kept an eye on the window), a power point that jammed, and a faulty light in my room (not dangerous, but have to be done by an electrician in Australia) and the last was two wooden floorboards that bent in severely when you stepped on them.

We were thinking the boards were damaged, so they ripped up the two boards to take a look.

Termite damage. They had eaten through the floor supports

So what happens?

The problem is that the termites ate their way through somewhere (and we haven't seen the termites, so they'll probably be back if we don't do something about it) and it's now starting to look like a VERY big job.

The only thing going for us is that we didn't do it, so we're not liable for the repair cost.

The bad news is that the damaged floorboards were literally in the MIDDLE of the apartment, so the beam they ate their way through could mean that the entire floor has to be torn up.

... And we just moved into the place. *sigh*
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: mariokirby on September 29, 2015, 08:59:54 am
Not that I expect anyone to be reading this, but well, time for another episode of 'How can things go uniquely wrong for one person?'

I'm reading it since there are bits of wisdom I pull from your experiences.  Wish I could explain why bad luck always follows you.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 30, 2015, 06:45:27 pm
Well, in another episode of fun stuff, we get to look into the weird and wonderful world of contracts.

... No, this isn't actually bad, but it IS weird, or at least some of it is.

Let's first start with a series of fortunate events (no, honest, no un) which resulted in a very odd decision made in regards with the contract.

As you might know, I live in Australia, the world of the stupidly expensive and low quality internet (due to the simple fact well, the previous government was planning to fix the whole mess by just going 'We can't trust any of you private players anymore' and just build a proper fibre based network structure (the NBN) then the current government decided to just scrap all of it.) so even though the numbers will seem VERY bad in comparison to other countries, it's actually fairly good as far as it goes here.

Due to various things (im@s uploads and video streaming) my requirements are that I require a pretty high upload (as in higher than 1mbit) so I can deliver videos in something resembling a decent time.

I was paying 110/month for a 1.4mbit up line. This means I have to allocate as a business, because I needed AnnexM enabled to get past the 1mbit cap.

This also means I have to provide an Australian Business Number (I'm registered as a contractor by the ATO) so I can get the service provisioned.

Of course, when a fire happens, you lose all your paperwork, and the ATO got really really uppity due to the fact that I couldn't prove who I was to retrieve the details.

So after a long discussion with the ISP's corporate division, we work on a way to dodge the ABN requirement.

Since I also lost a significant amount of equipment, they also offered to sell me a small business modem (A Cisco 867VAE-W), and because he knew I was a long time customer with the ISP (About 6 years, and the only reason I had to stop was cause the fire literally destroyed the line they were provisioning me) he'd grant a subsided price for a 12 month contract, with the device being paid for over the 12 months along with the line.

This means they get remote access and I don't get full control of the device until a year later, and I'd have to stay with the ISP for a year.

(Device is provided at 400, but sold to me at half that, spread over 12 months. It's a business grade modem, with the standard Cisco iOS, serial etc. If you're doing networking or plan to get a Cisco qualification (CCNA/IE etc) you'll know it's a fairly big deal.)

So fast forward to today, where the line that was contracted has been activate since yesterday.

The person I was speaking with told me due to a plan shakeup, he terminated the contract.

This is because the plans had changed significantly in my favour. The cost went down from 110 to 80/month, and the quota went up from 600GB down to 1000GB down. He migrated me over to the new pricing for internet provision, and I'm still bound to the ISP for at least 12 months. (which was the terms of the OLD contract, but at lower prices. I'm not complaining.)

In the process the termination clauses for the previous contract kicked in.

Since this was initiated by the ISP, and it was at their behest, the conditions had to be at least reasonable in our favour.

He handed me over the access details for the device, and a notice that we formally have full control of the modem/router. Also, the additional cost of the device was not added to the new contract, because we were added in as 'brought our own device'.

Basically, we had effectively served a 12 month contract in about 36 hours, without putting in a single payment.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 30, 2015, 08:21:27 pm
So in the second part of this update, I'll get to talk a little about some of the things I do outside of im@s, and maybe you'll learn a little about how the business world works, and maybe a little about my perspective.

I don't really talk about some of the skills I keep hidden up my sleeve, but well, I figured if I'm going to talk about things, I'll have to reveal some of them.

I have training as an accountant, and I can do bookkeeping for any small or medium sized business. I can't legally provide tax advice in Australia only because that requires 3 years working under a certified accountant before I can claim to be a CPA.

Most of my knowledge does transfer internationally, because most accounting standards are just that.

Because of all of that training (and various other experiences) I tend to have a very critical eye about how things work.

For example, I tend to have some very strange hobbies (or at least strange in the sense that you'd call them hobbies) such as keeping track of the total amount of proven financial fraud (as in stuff that gets proven in court cases) as well as the amount of prosecuted fraud (namely the stuff that's in ongoing investigations) that has happened since January 2nd, 2001, as a calculated average on a per day basis (assuming the costs of said financial fraud are distributed over 10 years).

I also calculate an estimate based on various sources.

The proven column so far...
At 2001, it was about 20 million a day.
At 2007, it was about 50 million a day.
At present? About 350 million a day averaged over 10 years.

The 'in trial' is roughly 7 times that, and the 'in investigation' is roughly 22 times the 'in trial' number. (The number fluctuates, but it's accelerating rapidly due to a few things.)

Some people find the number terrifying (For an idea, Bank of America was literally stealing about 300k houses literally from under the feet of people at one point, and that was TAME compared to some of the documents I've seen) but I just find it amusing because well, people get up in arms over people stealing a dollar or being ripped off for a game, but don't bat an eyelid when someone's grandmother gets their house stolen from them.

You have to keep in mind that the money doesn't disappear. You can trace where the money went, and if you look closely enough, where it came from, and it's very much theft, and it's definitely coming out of your pocket.

It's just that well, we live in an age where people don't look very closely at anything at all, and those that do get hurt very severely, at various levels.

Of course, if you ever wondered given how I tend to do things why I haven't just quit yet, well, if you can laugh at the biggest single daylight robbery and keep track of the pace of it for fun, and laugh at it after you nearly got killed a few times, you'll laugh at pretty much anything.

That and I also have what I call the uncollectable debts tally - People have made bets with me about various things  that they really believed was right (and mostly because if the other side was correct, it would significantly destroy how they see the world), and that if I could prove them wrong in the specified timeframe, they'd pay up.

Of course, they never seem to pay up when I hand the evidence to them.

It's at roughly $47000 since I started making predictions in 2007, with another $12000 in the next 12 months, and $250000 that is scheduled in 3 years.

I expect to be proven right as they come up, but I also expect to never be able to collect a dollar. In some cases, it's because they know they joined in, in some other cases, it's because they're in no position to pay, and in a couple of cases, it's because well, they're no longer with us due to a reason related around said bet.

So what can you learn from all the above?

Facts, the truth and reality really don't matter. People will believe what they want to, and the only thing you can do is laugh, and hope you learn from their mistakes.

That and maybe 'Before taking a point of view, be very sure that you know where opposing points of view can come from, just in case.' if for no other reason to prevent some enterprising woman to offer to take an opposing side and curse you with consequences.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Nakiame on September 30, 2015, 08:43:31 pm
I was paying 110/month for a 1.4mbit up line.
110$ a month for 1.4mbit?? Thats insane! Or do you live in a rural area?
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on September 30, 2015, 08:45:09 pm
110$ a month for 1.4mbit?? Thats insane! Or do you live in a rural area?

No, I live in suburban Sydney, Australia.

It's 1.4mbit up, by the way. The full line is 12/1.4 (Well, was, because it's dependent on the quality of the copper line)
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Naryoril on October 01, 2015, 09:30:11 am
it's really insane. I live in Switzerland, one of the most expensive countries in the world (if not the most expensive) and i pay 64 USD a month for 40/4 Mbit, but that also includes cable TV. Just internet doesn't even go as slow as yours, the slowest is 20/2 for 34 USD a month...
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 01, 2015, 02:29:09 pm
Well, bear in mind I pay for a business line, which means I get certain dependencies that aren't offered on a residential (Minimum call out times, expedited tech support, the right to deploy the network as I wish, and resell the connection/run my own servers with a minimum guaranteed service.) so I pay more for those extra bits (mostly the fact that I don't have very much variance in regards with contested bandwidth or any sort of peak fluctuations.)

However, the other thing that plays into speeds in Australia is what sort of network is available.

Listed from highest to lowest:

1. Fiber

This was supposed to be the 'National upgrade' to the copper network we had. The idea was that we'd run a full scale fibre network to about 98% of the entire country, so basically short of you living 200km away from the nearest house (basically, you'd fall back to satellite, because you're literally somewhere in the middle of Australia) where you lived didn't really affect what sort of internet services you could get.

It would also have a significant amount of future proofing, because of the fact that speed upgrades are mostly about upgrading the receiving ends of fibre due to the nature of the medium.

The previous government (2007-2013) decided it was worth working on (it's expensive as all hell of course), and created NBN co to construct the network.

They were voted out, and the current government led by Tony Abbott had a few people complain about the network, on the argument the existence of the network would severely undermine their revenue. One of the main lobbiers who demanded that the network be stopped, and previous work be ripped out was Rupert Murdoch (for reasons I'll get to a little later).

They did so, although Tony Abbott didn't dare tear up the work that WAS completed after his colleagues said they'd murder him (roughly 15ish%) and after a bit more pressure, grudgingly used a hybrid system which protected the Murdoch interests (Like I said, more on that later) claiming the recycling would save money and 'we didn't need the upgrades at all in the first place'.

The irony is that the hybridizing doubled the eventual cost compared to the initial rollout plan, and ironically is more expensive to maintain AND delivers a much worse speed profile due to the fact we effectively maintain FOUR different systems, instead of two.

Tony Abbott was kicked out as PM about a month ago.

Anyway, if you live in a 'lucky area' you may get access to Fibre. Due to the history above it's a lottery based on 'where you live', and the collation government decided that it'll only do select areas based on needs.

I'll use my ISP as a point of reference for pricing, but bear in mind iinet are considered somewhat premium. For home use, you could easily slice 20-30% off these prices, but you know, you get what you pay for.

IF (Key word) you have access to the NBN and Fibre:

The absolute top end of the scale is a 100/40 line with 1TB download quota (and no upload quota) on a business plan will set you back 145/month. It's as gold plated as you can make it without paying for a 99.99% uptime service guarantee with a 1 hour fault turnaround (You get a 99% at this price with an 8 hour) with all the stuff I get. If you want corporate you'll get nearly zero contention, but at that point, you're buying actual circuits, and the price skyrockets, but if you're big business, you'll pay for the reliablity.

If you don't NEED the turnaround (I like the flexiblity, but let's face it, most people don't REALLY need the ability to call up and finetune a connection when it degrades 10% theoritical max upload) the consumer equivalent is 120/month (Although I don't know if the 1TB limit counts data in BOTH directions, not just down)

http://www.iinet.net.au/internet/broadband/nbn/plans/

You can tinker around with that to see what you can get at a residential level.

http://www.iinet.net.au/business/small/internet/nbn/

You can tinker around with this one to see what you can get at a business level.



2. Cable

You might remember me saying something about Rupert Murdoch in the Fibre part, and why he was so vehemently opposed to the NBN.

This is why. He has Foxtel to defend, which has a monopoly over Cable TV in Australia, and the existence of the NBN would completely destroy his business model.

Cause I don't really like Telstra (and they charge more for a LOT less service) I'll be referencing the Optus (the OTHER player in the cable market) pricing for what you can get.

http://www.optus.com.au/business/broadband-internet/office/plans/cable

A 30/2 line (Assuming you live on a street with Optus cable) will set you back 95/month 'Unlimited'. You can opt to upgrade it to 100/2 for another 30 dollars per month.

Yes, it's actually CHEAPER to get a cable+phone package than just the phone. You can check it yourself.

It's not actually unlimited, (from experience from people I know.) but closer to about 1TB before they start warning you, as in the 'We'll disconnect you for being in the top 10% of users' warning you.

The flip side is that it's actually very difficult to actually get anywhere near that, due to how cable internet actually works (Basically, there's a maximum provision per node (think of it as section) where the total bandwidth allocated is limited to x over everyone in said section, usually 1000/10, usually spread over one street (or usually between 16 and 32 addresses, up to 127). Basically, unless you get a undersubscribed street, the only time you'll get anything close to the advertised is when it's 3am in the morning.


3. (A/V/S)DSL

This is what I have allocated. It runs off the Telstra copper network, which was originally used for the phone lines when the company used to be Telecom, and was a government owned corporation.

http://www.iinet.net.au/business/small/internet/

Previously I was paying 119 for the bundle pack, and I don't really use my phone (I'm not big on voice communication), and the naked DSL was... also 119, which was why when I applied for the naked, he asked me if I wanted it knowing that the price was identical. I sort of lucked in on the price drop to 80/month happened and he gracefully transferred us over.

Anyway, in Australia, this is the majority of residental and small business connections. We don't have a fibre network, and due to how Telstra (Which inherited the government owned POTS service) treated the copper connections (Namely they treated it like crap and did things like use a substance that turns corrosive (to copper among other things) when exposed to water... to seal the cables from water. Yes, this was a multi billion dollar mistake they're STILL supposed to fix but are dragging their heels over.) the copper is pretty slapdash, degrading, and in really poor condition.

There's a reason why anyone with a DSL connection in Australia can tell when it rains - the network slows down significantly.

There's also a reason why there's an old joke - If you want a device that is impenetrable and on the internet, connect it to Telstra ADSL.

A very large percentage of broadband connections are DSL.

Scarily enough, there's a significant amount of people who fight for even DSL because...

4. Wireless

Due to the nature of the lines here, and how DSL works, you basically need to be within 3.5km of a telephone exchange for ADSL2, or within 8km of an exchange for ADSL1, assuming the copper pair that runs to your house is in decent to good condition.

However, you ALSO need to not be behind a RIM, or be pair gained (Namely, get 2 phone services on the 1 copper pair) or any other telecommunications trickery.

And of course, being a privatized service about to sell an aging asset (It's about 50 years old) where the NBN was planning to retire it (They intended to use the space the copper occupied to run fibre through) they didn't bother maintaining it, since it was going out, and they were planning to just short gap it until everyone ended up on the NBN.

Until Murdoch campaigned to destroy the NBN, and Tony Abbott ordered the hybridisation, maintaining a network no one wanted (And which is why it costs multiples more than the Fibre/Satellite solution. The repairs needed on the copper network are downright insanely expensive).

So if you're unfortunate enough to be behind a RIM, or were pair gained with your neighbour, or you were unlucky enough to have a flood and Telstra kept postponing the repair of the copper that runs to your house, or you were unlucky enough to have a pair that's about to fall apart or isn't good enough to run DSL off... you're going to be stuck with hoping that you have a good enough reception on your mobile phone.

Fortunately, Australia (for some weird reason) has one of the better (almost the best) mobile networks in the world, due to very recent heavy investment in new technology.

For an idea, I've seen my crappy barely enabled 4G phone pull 50/4 in bursts.

However there's always a few cravats.

The first is that it depends on your reception. Where you are matters - For those speeds, I was standing right under a tower, at thirty minutes to midnight.

The number of people trying to connect to the tower you want (Contention of network resources), as well as the presence of other access points to ensure a clear signal (signal congestion) will influence this.

And as you can guess, since there's pockets of 'bad broadband' spots, you'll find that contention and congestion are really bad in areas where people have no other option.

The other major problem is cost - For an idea, a prepaid plan cost me 40 dollars to get 2GB of data.

A friend who has a postpaid plan (Contract) pays 60 a month for 4GB.

They come with calls of course (They're mobile phone plans, and the contract comes with infinite calls mobile to mobile) but you can see how expensive it gets. All mobile plans count traffic both ways for the purposes of quota.

There's wireless broadband, but even that ends up being about 70 for 6-8GB a month.

Needless to say, it's frightfully expensive.

By the way, Tony Abbott (who was PM until just recently) actually said that Australia should be connecting everything via wireless and actively pushed to get telecommunication CEOs fired for 'spreading disinformation' when they all pointed out wireless doesn't work the way he envisioned it.

Needless to say, he doesn't understand the technology very well.


5. Satellite

I can't really comment on this, except that there are in fact people in Sydney (As in within a 50km radius of Australia's largest City) who resort to satellite because they haven't been allocated fiber, are too far away from an exchange, don't have access to cable, and are in a mobile blackspot.


-----

That's a very basic rundown of the current state of the Australian telecommunications networks. Basically, what you see as 'it's utter crap' is actually the only options you REALLY get. The real problem is the fact that the entire state of affairs ended up happening because of the fact we sold our government network off, then the private sector went 'Well, screw this, we'll milk you for what you're worth because who else are you going to go to, really?'

Oh, and when competition shows up, you pressure the government to ban them. They so nearly pulled it off when Optus threatened to compete, and they just about pulled it off again with the NBN.

I'm sure there's some details I probably got wrong (or are at the very least mostly unprovable, since I've talked with some of the major players, and they're just stories from them) but the general gist should be accurate.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Nakiame on October 01, 2015, 03:40:12 pm
Suddenly I feel myself lucky with 1gbit symmetrical connection for ~13$ a month lol
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 02, 2015, 02:49:11 am
Suddenly I feel myself lucky with 1gbit symmetrical connection for ~13$ a month lol

You generally don't realise how something is until you realise the costs of getting it.

For most part, I'm pretty lucky in the sense that I got anything that resembles broadband at all - When I was living in a suburb about 10 years ago we were in were actually earmarked at one point for decommissioning because 'Not enough people wanted broadband internet at the prices offered.'

There was a reason for this - a DSL connection (512/64) connection with 3000 MB a month with a 25c per MB excess was 180/month. You needed an ABN, and it was purely on Telstra's decision to provision it to you.

They got caught ransoming a few people (I should know, I was part of the settlement) by literally saying 'Pay up 500 dollars, or you're not getting a damn thing'

Granted this price WAS in 2003, but that's the 'best' you could have gotten.

So perspective helps a lot generally. What you have is generally only valued the harder you fight for it.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 03, 2015, 08:31:15 am
So after we were told that everything inside was a complete loss, I was told to come to a pawn shop.

... Even though we were told that taking the items out was too risky due to asbestos, someone ELSE decided it wasn't.

The fun part was that the person who decided to wasn't particularly smart decided to try and sell the entire games collection ALL AT ONCE to them. Not even cleaned up either.

Needless to say, the pawn owner stalled for long enough for the police to arrest the guy, and then they concluded that it came from a place with a fire. After a few calls around, they found me (I had to give a statement) and told me that they were from the site.

So I now have (most of) a games collection, and now we have to go through the testing phase.

Unfortunately the PSP didn't work (it took too much fire damage) but the 3/DSes came out fine.

This is where you'll learn something new: Apparently Nintendo run a weapons grade division, because every single game we tested so far still works.

The worst damage we have so far is that my light green DSi has broken speakers... but the headphone jack still works.

Go the hell figure.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 03, 2015, 10:14:41 am
http://i.imgur.com/Dbuktkl.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/GJsr1Rs.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/Nq8WOXH.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/vD5TQpS.jpg

A preliminary look at the stuff. There's a LOT of work involved.

Yes, a couple of the games didn't make it (Tales of Symphonia) from basically looking at the disc.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Nakiame on October 03, 2015, 11:36:32 am
... Even though we were told that taking the items out was too risky due to asbestos, someone ELSE decided it wasn't.

I'd like to note that asbestos is harmless if you don't inhale it's dust. It only harms you when it gets in respiratory system! It does no extra harm when touched or even eaten. So as long as you are careful and wear a respirator you are safe. I've come across it due to my work, so i know it. Actually it just increases a risk of cancer, so you might inhale alot of it and be fine (most likely) or inhale a bit and be affected (less likely).
Knowing your luck though i'd not go there if i were you lol.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 03, 2015, 12:13:40 pm
I'd like to note that asbestos is harmless if you don't inhale it's dust. It only harms you when it gets in respiratory system! It does no extra harm when touched or even eaten. So as long as you are careful and wear a respirator you are safe. I've come across it due to my work, so i know it. Actually it just increases a risk of cancer, so you might inhale alot of it and be fine (most likely) or inhale a bit and be affected (less likely).
Knowing your luck though i'd not go there if i were you lol.

Well, given how enough of it went up in smoke, they deemed the place too risky, just due to how much of it was released.

It also means there's a risk for me, because I was inside during the fire and breathing the smoke during the fire. I've been advised to keep an eye out for anything health wise for the next couple of years just due to this.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Virgofall on October 04, 2015, 06:20:41 am
Unfortunately the PSP didn't work (it took too much fire damage) but the 3/DSes came out fine.

This is where you'll learn something new: Apparently Nintendo run a weapons grade division, because every single game we tested so far still works.

The worst damage we have so far is that my light green DSi has broken speakers... but the headphone jack still works.
Ah, Nintendium (https://www.google.com/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=nintendium). Prime example right here.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 09, 2015, 12:18:09 pm
So time to put in another installation of 'So how badly can one person screw up life?'

Well, people tell you not to lie as a general rule of thumb, and I think it's a good one. If anything I speak too honestly at times, and it causes issues.

It goes down on all my paperwork too - I've had to put in a form so I can return back to study as I was doing prior to the fire.

Now, there's a little problem with this form - The government department has told me that I have to do it online, as there's no paper version of the application form. That's fine, but these forms come with a little notice (as did the paper ones a long time ago) that any information declared deliberately falsely would be prosecuted as an attempt to commit fraud (Fraud by deception) with a 3 year jail penalty.

Thing is... the form won't work. If I put in my details, the form literally throws .NET errors (They use ASP), and decides generally that this form is going nowhere.

So... needless to say I have to fill in this online form, and I can't, so I call up the office by phone and 50 minutes later (Hey, it's government) I get someone on the other line, and needless to say he's quite surprised I broke it so badly...

Now needless to say, I tried changing computers, rebooting and all sorts of fun stuff. No dice.

The call escalates upwards, because I DO need to put in this form, and we're finding out that it only applies to me, as testing goes all round. Apparently my application has scrambled my account somewhat.
 
Another half hour later, two supervisors, and a director later...

"We can't duplicate this problem at our end, but we can see it at your end. Could you try something for us?"
"Sure, what?"
"We need you to make up a new identity on the application."
*pause*
"Sorry, did you just say I need to make a new identity?"
"Yes, we think there's a problem with all these details, so we need you to put in fresh details, and completely change everything so they don't match your record, so we can attempt to manually alter your record without destroying it."
"... I'm sorry, did you just ask me to commit identity fraud?"

Another fifteen minutes, some creative thinking, two emails and an authorization from the Minister for Social Services after that, and apparently I'm now the first person who's been instructed by the Federal government to commit fraud by deception to fix my account. The letter is listed as quite confidential, but it says what you'd think it does - They will not prosecute me for basically breaking the law at face value, and will instruct the Department of Public Prosecutions to not pursue any cases that result from any security alerts that resulted from... well this incident.

So what's the lesson you can learn from this? If you're high enough up the ladder, apparently you CAN get away with anything.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 19, 2015, 08:12:53 pm
Well, we begin this week would have been another instance of 'So how does one person manage to cause an electricity company to decide multiple times to really screw things up anyway?'

I'm really not sure why when it comes to me and the electricity provider, (or just electricity in general) I have a knack for making things simply not work.

I mean, I can't use a touchscreen properly, I probably generate static electricity by simply existing, and we've already had a few bits of fun regarding electricity this year (one being the fire of course, and the other being the final electricity bill that went... weird) but well...

As you can guess, I have to enable the utilities at the new place, and as you'd might expect because I know how this goes (It should be the first thing you do when you rent/own a new place), I immediately sign up to an electricity provider of my choice upon moving in.

I sign up, on the 16th of September, and that's that, or so you'd think.

Fast forward to Friday afternoon, and on a whim, I decided to call the electricity company, only because I had this really nagging feeling something was about to go wrong. No, I didn't have any real grounds to be suspicious... Okay, I mean apart from every OTHER time something's gone weird...

So I call up, and the conversation goes something like this:

"So, when should I expect my next bill?"
"Just a moment. I'll check for you... According to this, your first meter read should be on December 10th."
"Uh, I signed up in September. Why is it so late?"
"Well, because you haven't been transferred over from your previous provider."
"What previous provider? We just moved in here and I signed up with you on the first day we arrived."
"Well according to this, you don't actually join our company as a customer, and will be billed by your previous one."
"Except we signed up with you as a new customer, because we just moved into the place. We can't HAVE a previous provider."

... So what ends up happening is that three calls, a supervisor and a manager and a call to the wholesaler later, we established that the utility company screwed up the initial signup. There's a billing 'deeming' clause as in Australia where if you have a working electricity connection, that someone CAN bill you if you try to use all your electricity for free.

I don't know what's going to happen next, but the entire process involves having to sign up again, and I'm REALLY hoping that we don't get a bill shadowed to us, because someone really screwed up. Namely the 'deemed provider' decides that they provide my electricity and they try to bill me twice for the same supply.

The really bad part is that there's a non zero chance they could threaten us for a non payment of a bill that simply put, we can't be responsible for, because well, we did the right thing (not that we even knew we had a deemed provider). They could disconnect the electricity for non payment, then we get to find out how much compensation I'll be entitled to because, simply put, I can prove both the original and amended contracts with my electricity company, as well as when I moved in (The lease proves when we actually moved in).

If the previous company get their dates wrong by even a single day, you can guess hell will break loose, because I pretty much get cache blanc to sue the company for... well, fraud on multiple levels.

The upshot to this is if the provider that never was DOESN'T try anything (See all the risks above) my current electricity company can't charge me for anything prior to last Friday. The reason for this is because of the fact they didn't do a meter read until then, when we discovered the fatal flaw in the account setup.

In short? I'd be granted a month's free electricity, since I was here a month prior to the amended contract, and without a known meter reading to start, they're not allowed to estimate my electricity use.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 21, 2015, 08:50:46 am
Of course, I'm not the centre of the universe (Although I've been accused of making a pretty damn good case) and sometimes, you hear from other people about some... spectacular stories.

Now I'm an admin person at heart, with financial background, and accounting training. I have friends across the board, and it should be very little surprise that I have a friend who's got a law degree, and is working at a major bank (who works for an attorney) while preparing to sit for the bar so he can practice.

He's currently working as part of a managed trust unit, and it's been a while since I caught up with him (since he lives in the US and all).

I won't get into a full explanation (because I'll get it partly wrong anyway, as I specialise in small business, not major corps) but basically he manages money held in trust by the bank, and his job is compliance - namely, making sure that any instructions received from people who can execute on the trusts are good, the risks are known, and most importantly legal.

So, if you do any financial management, the coming statement is something that he came across in an investment proposal coming from one of the investment advisers in the trust.

If you have a decent or good background in law or finance and understand any sort of risk management, you'll either be laughing really hard, or you'd be completely and utterly horrified.

This trust fund wanted to invest in "niche markets that have historically had a difficult to impossible time raising capital through traditional means"

The fund in question is in the United States, to help you with any guessing.

If fifteen different alarm bells just went off in your head, well, you probably don't need an explanation since you understand risk management, and I'll just give the answer in a spoiler so you can compare your guess with the actual answer.

For the rest of you, basically it amounts to this - you NEVER EVER want to see that as a proposal. Seeing a couple of them is okay. Seeing more than about five or six is scary.

Seeing that complete sentence is the sort of thing you want to stay well, well away from. And probably make sure you don't ever get close to anyone who seriously put that as the executive summary of an investment proposal.

Or to break it down:

'Niche market' - A very obscure or undertraded marketspace
'Historically had a difficult or impossible time' - This means that there were major issues in the past. This usually implies there are or were legal issues.
'raising capital through traditional means' - Means that they couldn't just go to a bank, or regular investor, or even go crowdfunding.

Put the lot together and... Well. Let your imagination run wild, because bluntly put, you're probably on the right track.

Said investment was into marijuana combines.

Note, the investment complies with the state law that the said marijuana was grown in. Federal law dictates that it is illegal though, and the ATF have a 'arrest everyone, ask questions later and sort out the mess in a few years' policy, particularly if they can find anything like a paper trail with names on it.

Say what you will about the actual substance, but as an investment, sure, it's lucrative... IF you don't spend like 10 years in prison in the process.




Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Naryoril on October 21, 2015, 09:09:26 am
...making sure that any instructions received from people who can execute on the trusts are good, the risks are known, and most importantly legal.

Yeah, sure... Especially when talking about banks and trusts.

As your example shows: There are way too many people in that business who don't care for legality and risks if there is profit to be had. Your friend may be making his job properly, but i bet there are a ton who aren't, or he'll get according orders from his superior.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 21, 2015, 09:24:00 am
Yeah, sure... Especially when talking about banks and trusts.

As your example shows: There are way too many people in that business who don't care for legality and risks if there is profit to be had. Your friend may be making his job properly, but i bet there are a ton who aren't, or he'll get according orders from his superior.

Well, for most part, the problem ultimately is that banking, finance and the like aren't evil by their very definition, it's mostly the end result (All that money and power) that induces bad behaviour.

And yes, he does his job properly - If nothing else, it's less about morality and more about 'Are you off your rocker?' cause there's... well, things you don't do if you like holding onto your money, like risk being placed on the wrong side of a cell.

Then again, most people don't honestly care until it personally affects them personally, like our really stupid investment adviser here.

I remember when I found a massive flaw in a major financial institution where you could use a prepaid card, and with the knowledge of the email linked to an account as well as the country and state that the account was made in, you could hijack their account if you were prepared to spend maybe 10 dollars. I was told that no one cared.

I then revealed the financial institution in question was Paypal, and that I had let them know on three separate occasions that the attack vector was still doable. I was told every time the problem had been patched.

I suddenly got massively lectured by all the people in the room 'Why haven't I fixed the problem and told them about the flaw and it must be done now!'

Needless to say, the only thing I did was laugh, because well, what CAN I do about it after explaining to them how it worked.

For the record, the vector still works by the way.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Naryoril on October 21, 2015, 09:35:48 am
Well, for most part, the problem ultimately is that banking, finance and the like aren't evil by their very definition, it's mostly the end result (All that money and power) that induces bad behaviour.

Of course you are right, but imo banking, especially investment banking, attracts exactly the type of person that will do almost anything if it's for money. They already are into money, so it's only natural they are going for a job where they can operate with millions and sometimes even billions, especially if it isn't their money they potentially loose (but they still get paid a ton extra if they get lucky and pick the right assets).

But sorry for drifting off topic here. I'm a bit marked on this topic as a) Swiss (tax evasion and all that stuff) and b) someone who develops an asset management software (in a small company, but we do only book keeping and reporting) and c) thus often has contact with banks
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 21, 2015, 09:56:23 am
Of course you are right, but imo banking, especially investment banking, attracts exactly the type of person that will do almost anything if it's for money. They already are into money, so it's only natural they are going for a job where they can operate with millions and sometimes even billions, especially if it isn't their money they potentially loose (but they still get paid a ton extra if they get lucky and pick the right assets).

But sorry for drifting off topic here. I'm a bit marked on this topic as a) Swiss (tax evasion and all that stuff) and b) someone who develops an asset management software (in a small company, but we do only book keeping and reporting) and c) thus often has contact with banks

Oh definitely. Basically the worst that can happen is 'You get fired' for making a decision that can destroy millions of people's lives. I mean, I remember the two trillion dollar 'fat finger trade' that JP Morgan did only what, a year and a half ago? The amount of straight upright theft you can see in those units is downright disturbing.

You tend to find that a lot of the legal departments are very conservative (mostly cause it's their entire job to ensure that it's legal enough they can get out of trouble) but the trading desks tend to get the right of way if there's enough money 'left on the table' so to speak.

I should know, cause I used to work the FX tables once upon a time. I can tell all sorts of really stupid stories, and about how stupid I was (mostly it amounts to 'I left because I valued being able to sleep at night. I have a conscience that WORKS, which, unfortunately is not an asset if you intend to get deep into investment finance.) back in those days. Needless to say, I could have been a souless millionare, but I value my sanity more than the money.

For most sane people out there, seeing the set of sentences I described there should have you running for cover. The amount of risk loaded words should be enough to convince anyone financially literate to run away screaming (if for no other reason than 'I don't want any of this on me')
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 26, 2015, 02:15:40 am
Well, I'll put in another edition - this time to give a little bit of a background into how I actually think.

Oh, and if anyone's interested , the 'in investigation' fraud number got inflated by between 50-70 billion total. It moves the average (based on the average) about 40 million a day. It's only one of the biggest (Well, was) companies in the US by Market Capitalisation.

http://brontecapital.blogspot.com/2015/10/some-comments-on-valeant-conference-call.html

If you're wondering. There's nothing like the smell of probable fraud in the morning, and daylight robbery to make all those street gangs jealous with envy. Real robbery comes under the guise of it looking legal, and the best part? Most of the victims are willing, and often defend the fraud.


Now, where was I? Oh yes, I promised a (somewhat) curtain pulled back into my perspective, and I think I'll speak my mind, since although I am tired of getting shot at, I do have enough to hide behind today.

If you've seen me comment on the forums, you'll notice that I keep my counsel a lot, and every so often, I even say so. I get questions every so often about why I say something like that. 

I often decline to be drawn into the circumstances when I make comments like that, and I suspect I leave a lot of people just wondering why I would make a cryptic comment like that.
You'll also note that when I turn to counter attack in an argument, I do so with a viciousness that leaves people reeling. No, I don't give any mercy.

There's a reason I often say that, and why I can make an argument so well that I can make people physically flinch when I want to - I do my research well before I even decide to open my mouth, and will often have considered your counterarguments to anything I've got to say, the rebuttals to your counterarguments, counterarguments to your rebuttals AND have rebuttals to even THOSE counterarguments.

No, it's not perfect, because nothing ever is. Yes, this is a cited reason why I don't have a significant other (If you really have to ask, it amounts to this - no one likes a woman who will win 85%+ any arguments she picks. Why? Because unless you can keep up (or you're careful enough to take positions that are unassailable) you will just get VERY scared of having a discussion with me after long enough), but on the other hand, I often get consulted regarding business for this exact reason (If you're trying to make money, you REALLY want to be sure that your ideas will actually work on a good %, and if I can't reasonably blow holes in your business plan, you're probably onto something.)

It's for this reason I get accused a hell of a lot of having a crystal ball that can see into the future.

Unfortunately, no, I don't have any precognition, and if you dare say that to my face, my response will be (and this is me being kind) that 'I get very tired having to predict everything, and if you ask me to do any prediction, I'll shove that crystal ball where the sun doesn't shine'.

Yes, I have said that to my superiors at work. No, surprisingly I didn't get fired for it, because he damn well knew why I said that, and would ask me to predict his day just to rib me while I was working.

There IS a reason why I worked on the FX tables at a major bank at one point in my life.

I then get asked 'How the hell do you land so quickly on a position so quickly? You can't possibly know everything, can you?'

Well, the truth to that is 'No, I don't know everything, but I know enough about almost anything so I can go out there and find out what I need to know.'

As an example, I don't know enough physics to design a new jumbo jet. I do however have a fairly good understanding of design, knowledge of how weights and expected glide distance, fuel economy and a myriad of other things to actually understand why Boeing would cheap out and put in unsafe battery designs, or why airlines did not like the idea of putting in a bulletproof reinforced door (weight meaning significant economy loss and to an airline that's actually significant.) and I also know people and places who will talk to me when I need the specifics, and will do so very quickly on demand.

The same goes for virtually every field you can name. I don't have an infinitely deep knowledge pool, I just have access to one that's really, REALLY deep, I know how to use it, and I'm prepared to use it.

Of course, since this sort of thing is a discipline and like anything you want to get good at, you must PRACTICE to get any good at it, you'll end up finding that you end up with very different opinions to your friends, mostly cause your approach has to be 'How precise can I be?' rather than 'Does the facts suit my opinion?'

You'll also find out that if you learn to do things like this that you'll learn to pick your arguments very, very carefully, and of course, the fact you won't have many friends, mostly because you'll watch them march off to their doom, and you won't be able to stop them.

So generally for the people who do know me, when I make an opinion (unless I'm clearly joking around) most people tend to pay attention.

And most people who know me when I end up challenging their opinion tend to get very, VERY worried. For good reason.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on October 26, 2015, 02:00:59 pm
http://www.dailylife.com.au/life-and-love/love-sex-and-relationships/are-men-only-attracted-to-smart-women-in-theory-20151025-gki1j5.html

People have always asked me 'You're smart, you can beat virtually anyone in a fight. How the hell can you simply not find a boyfriend?'

Well, it's mostly the fact that people simply do not like women that can let you set your own trap and then let you execute yourself on the said trap.

Why? It's mostly a perception that a woman who can strike you down without you seeing them coming is a sneaky conniving bitch. You know, the type who will sneak around your back and backstab you, turning your friends against you.

Actually, I think ANY woman who has the ability to strike people down in any sense is considered a massive threat to society as a whole. Off the top of my head, Macbeth comes to mind, and although I couldn't quote her name off the top of my head, I'm pretty sure if you've read the play, you'd know who I'm talking about. There's stuff like various witches and the like too, folklore and the like.

So there's a lot of natural distrust (at least in the modern day) of women who seem too clever by half. I don't necessarily mean smart as in the traditional 'Oh, I can score better than you in a test'.
I'm talking stuff like the ability to be perceptive (Or basically, know where the wind is blowing well before the gust arrives), the ability to pay attention, or the ability to recall things (I'm famously poor at recollection, so don't ask me to remember a damn thing). There's probably others, like the ability to rapidly assess situations and determine solutions and the like too.

Basically, society does not like women who seem to be able to get an intangible advantage over other people. Men who are successful are called career politicans, if nothing else.

There's also other bits of relationship advice that sort of disapprove of anyone who has these intangible advantages to not show them at all. Some of it is basic relationship advice - a relationship is a partnership of equals, so if you REALLY think about it...

So how does my average date manifest anyway?

Something along these lines: People offer, and if I'm interested, I'd let them suggest somewhere to meet up. Some people are disappointed, since apparently the first date is a request for sex, more or less, because I decline those.

Most people tend to arrive fashionably late.

Me? I tend to scout out the place, determine where it is, what sort of clientele frequent the place, and try to understand the person that asked, from what I know about them, and what I know from experience about people like them.

What ends up happening at most first dates (if you call them that) is that the person tries their hardest to impress me, usually by thinking they can catch me off guard. Sometimes it's some sort of trick (Yes, I actually was asked out by someone who thought they could impress me with a card trick once), other times it's an attempt to surprise me either with their perceived depth in some field, or even some sort of physical surprise otherwise (outlandish gifts or something).

Problem is that I've lived a very long time operating on the principle that being caught out in surprise can get you killed. To be fair, all my brushes with death (or with someone ELSE'S death) all coincided with me being caught flatfooted, and as some of you may be aware, I don't stay surprised for very long at all.

What invariably happens is that I'll either replicate their trick within twenty minutes, or I'd turn the tables on them and shoot their knowledge of their field (which they were hoping to impress me with) with questions that someone who doesn't know anything about their field (no matter what that field is) shouldn't be asking, or I figure out exactly where the gift they got me came from, as well as a lot of other things I can derive from their gift using other information available to me (stuff like if they're living with their parents, what sort of income they earn, what they do for a living, previous girlfriends and the like)

A LOT of people who do dates bank on that working - basically you come in with your best card to impress.

Unfortunately, I'm almost impossible to impress by that sort of standard, because I've done things like brush shoulders and have arguments with celebrities (Journalism is like that) and I find that all the celebs I've dealt with would rather be treated as a human being, rather than you being struck with awe, kissing the ground they walk on.

Of course, you could also guess at what DOES impress me. It's really not too hard, IF you make the time to know me. If you need some suggestions, perhaps 'Try to consider your next move before it blows up in your face and not make the move, not after you do it, and hell rains on you?' for one.

So their best card fizzles, and generally my date gets distrustful of me, because I seem to know what they're going to do before they do it.

If you're young and female, my advice if you want to live something resembling a normal life with a social life etc would be this - You know those dumb jokes about stupid blondes? You're statistically better off being a 'stupid blonde' because at least THEN you'll have a decent social life, and judging from one of my friends, an awesome sex life.

... Yes, I should be all about feminism and all that. It doesn't mean that I can't point out the obvious, and despite what some segments of society will claim, having a healthy sex life DOES have some advantages, and it's not about you being a slut. (excuse me)

Then again, I know all kinds, including someone who frankly could write a revised edition of the Kama sutra. Besides, apparently if a male hits up 20 women, he's considered a stud, but if a woman hits up more than 1 male, she's considered a shameful slut. Is it just me, or is there a massive 'wait a second, didn't anyone do the math?' moment?

So there's another word of wisdom, if you can call it that - intelligence (of any kind) is not necessarily considered an asset, not if you want any sort of social life.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on November 05, 2015, 04:40:04 pm
Now, for another episode of 'So how can this happen?' starring my favourite entity - the government department.

(If you haven't figured it out by now, I'm being very sarcastic)

Okay, for those who don't know, I was in the middle of picking up a course in Security and Risk management (Mostly due to the fact I like to keep my skills sharp, and keeping things tucked away is a MO, only cause - Hey, you read everything I've said so far, haven't you? Frankly, I'm convinced I'll need to learn how to maintain a machine gun before my life is over, because I wouldn't be surprised if I get caught up in a civil war before I'm done with life) before the fire happened.

Since I'm mostly stable (although outfitting to bring things back to speed will take over 6 months so for the im@s requests, that'll be a VERY long time) I figured I might as well do something to improve myself. Besides, looking for work is proving fruitless, since well, it's somewhat difficult to do so when you're running off charity for a wardrobe (And expansion is very, very slow, as you can guess), and you need proper business attire.

Of course, since I was previously studying, I was granted a deferral until such time as I could return.

I was also being paid a stipend from the government (not much, but it's enough to keep the household running and slowly creep things along) and they previously agreed to let me time to recover, as long as I stayed on another payment (and looked for work in the meantime, which I did because replacing and prepping this place requires money, not because they insisted)

So since I was granted a deferral, and I was more or less prepared to move back to study, a provisional date to transfer back to what I was doing on August 15th was set to November 5th (Yesterday)

Thing is...

Well, you remember how I had to lie about the initial application?

Well, apparently something ELSE went wrong.

I think the recap I did to a friend should be enough really. Sometimes, you can't make real life up.

According to Centrelink, my record has been locked for at least two days and they can't adjust things to reflect my new status as a student, and the cause of this is according to the customer service officer I spoke with, my fault, even though there's no way for me to actually access the system as the processing is done by the department.

Now, apparently since I'm technically looking for work, I'm supposed to attend this job program, but due to the fact the system's locked and I'm now a student, the system removed me from the program as I'm no longer eligible. There's a problem with this, where the program is being run in an office building with security. Since I'm 'not on the list' I have no access.

But the system removed me from that list, but not the actual obligation, due to the record lockdown apparently preventing even the internal system controls from altering my record.

So basically, the system has (while it's locked down from their own staff being able to do a damn thing to it) decided to literally make me do something I cannot do short of committing trespass in a secured government building.

Which I might add is an instant 2 years in jail.

I was told to focus on the actual obligation (study like I'm supposed to) but because the system would deem me in breech, I will have to pay a penalty.

Since apparently it's my fault I broke a system I don't even know about, and I apparently am legally allowed to break the law so I can fufill my obligcations to a government department, and apparently a (seemingly massive) failure I have no control whatsoever over, to the point where both the customer service officer AND his manager admitted on a recorded call said there was no physical way I could be at fault, is according to Centrelink, my fault, and consequently the system dictates I have to pay a penalty.

Yes, they actually said this in a recorded conversation (as all communication with this department by law is required to be recorded) and apparently NEITHER of them thought there was an issue with what they said.

Of course, there's a real kicker in this.

You know how I mentioned that for me to fulfill my obligations, I needed to sneak into an office block and get into a program?

The block in question is owned by Centrelink, and apparently their system won't allow them to add me as a visitor, because manual additions must be for contractors or other staff, and any 'job seekers' must be cleared by the automated system.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on November 19, 2015, 02:17:21 pm
... Sometimes you remember that no, you're not as strong as you think you are.

No matter how apparently superhuman some of the things we do seem, sometimes little things can... unsettle you.

A fire alarm was going off in the new apartment , and considering how my last adventure with a fire turned out, this time around had me packed up, ready to leave in twenty seconds, and had me investigating when the alarm was going off for more than a minute.

I followed the alarm upstairs, and knocked on the door, because you know, fire alarm, and the door was answered by a woman, which in turn let the smoke out and set off the fire alarm in the hallway.

The conversation then went like this:

'It's fine, what are you being worked up over?'
'Oh, maybe the fire alarm going off and all that smoke.'
'It's just cooking. You make it sound like the place is going to burn down'
'Sure, that's what the tenant of the place I was staying in last time was probably thinking before I ended up moving out.'
'What's that supposed to mean?'
'I've already been through one fire this year, and I don't want to have to rescue you or your kids because you thought it'd just be fine, just like I had to for the last place I stayed at.'

The awkward silence before she carefully closed the door was probably all I needed to know. I was tempted to kick the door in, but I went back downstairs, and the alarm stopped another minute and a half later.

I get the feeling that I'm either going to turn into a serial killer, or I'm just going to let consequences happen for other people. To be fair? She probably never ever experienced the consequences of a fire, so the danger is something that happens to other people.

The problem is of course, that their poor decisions affect other people.

If you're reading this, all I can suggest is that you might want to be more careful and more mindful. Risk management, statistical odds and consequences are three things humans are incredibly terrible at understanding, generally because 'bad things only happen to other people'.

... And sometimes I wonder if the best course of action is to teach the painful lesson that maybe you should heed it, because someone decides you're 'other people'.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on December 30, 2015, 04:49:24 am
Well, it's been a while but it amounts to a quick update (not that I honestly expect anyone to care):

Apparently when I fail to do things as required by social security law, I break the law and I get duely punished.

When a government department breaks the law, it applies for an exemption under national security, and the person who reported the breech goes to court for a day trying to explain why they shouldn't be detained under national security guidelines.

Oh, and the government gets to break the law in the process of breaking the law.

I also get to break the law on behalf of another government department in a futile attempt to prosecute someone else (Who I will never know) because of some unknown international thing.

And the best part? I lost 50 dollars just today because I dropped it after withdrawing it, and a kid (who was probably 12-14) managed to run away fast enough and get on the train before I did.

People tell me the world's a nice place and that good deeds will be rewarded.

I honestly would like to know where this world of theirs is located, because the real world I live in isn't very forgiving, or even gives a damn about doing the right thing.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Nakiame on December 30, 2015, 06:46:41 am

And the best part? I lost 50 dollars just today because I dropped it after withdrawing it, and a kid (who was probably 12-14) managed to run away fast enough and get on the train before I did.

People tell me the world's a nice place and that good deeds will be rewarded.

I honestly would like to know where this world of theirs is located, because the real world I live in isn't very forgiving, or even gives a damn about doing the right thing.

Maybe that kid have done something good and was rewarded with 50 bucks for it? =)
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Amazing_Grace on January 04, 2016, 10:07:43 pm
Well, it's been a while but it amounts to a quick update (not that I honestly expect anyone to care):

Apparently when I fail to do things as required by social security law, I break the law and I get duely punished.

When a government department breaks the law, it applies for an exemption under national security, and the person who reported the breech goes to court for a day trying to explain why they shouldn't be detained under national security guidelines.

Oh, and the government gets to break the law in the process of breaking the law.

I also get to break the law on behalf of another government department in a futile attempt to prosecute someone else (Who I will never know) because of some unknown international thing.

And the best part? I lost 50 dollars just today because I dropped it after withdrawing it, and a kid (who was probably 12-14) managed to run away fast enough and get on the train before I did.

People tell me the world's a nice place and that good deeds will be rewarded.

I honestly would like to know where this world of theirs is located, because the real world I live in isn't very forgiving, or even gives a damn about doing the right thing.

Oh, wow...I swear, people could make your life into some kind of soap opera or slapstick slice of life sitcom. Maybe you can pitch to have your life made into a movie or write a book about it?

I would pay good money for that. And hey, then you get money! You can earn back those $50 that jerk of a kid stole from you!
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on March 09, 2016, 05:19:49 pm
It's been a while - Three months in fact, since I decided to write on things.

On the bright side, things have stabilized somewhat. A whole lot of nothing happened, mostly cause I've been doing my damnest to make sure that nothing happens.

In short, I actually like being really bored a lot, simply cause if you're bored, nothing exciting or terminal has happened. Like oh, being shot at or what not.

Okay, apart from things like heatwaves and what have you anyway.

Out of the things that did happen though during what I consider 'I want to be chronically bored, because excitement gets me into trouble' phase....

1. For whatever reason, apparently I'm required by some intergalactic law to be able to come up with all sorts of things in a hurry, because people and situations keep asking me for things that, at least at face value, there'd be no reason for me to know. I'm pretty sure there isn't a school for this sort of thing, is there?

- Like for instance, the correct steps to intervene in a suicide attempt, where the other guy is armed with a bladed weapon and is threatening to kill themselves, and anyone who's crazy enough to stop them. Or a suicide attempt where you're several thousand kilometres away from the other guy.
- Or the correct steps on how to remove an arm that should have rightfully got sheered off due to a traffic accident that damaged the door, and hey, you just happen to be the closest person who got to watch a car hit face first into a truck.
- Or the best place to stand in the event of a gunman deciding that someone needs to die today, and you're just walking by. No, I made sure I left in one piece.

2. For whatever reason, I'm also required by some intergalactic law to have knowledge of a whole bunch of diverse things that on request, I have to be able to recite facts of.

So I've been asked to as of this month...

- been asked to source various old video consoles, for replacement and modification.
- figured out through sheer force of trial and error on how to repair a Vita by concluding which bits are interchangeable between the 1000, 1001 and 1002 lines. (The short answer is 90%. There's a couple of modifications to be done due to slight differences in the parts, and I am now back in possession of a Frankenstein Vita that's able to broadcast out.)
- been asked to figure out how to analyze and then make effective a couple of campaigns that are apparently about to launch, including one political campaign.
- Spec a computer from parts, to be a mainstay gaming platform, while ensuring that the computer can do high quality recording.
- Arrange for specialised equipment, and figuring out the three seperate places someone has to visit in Japan to make arrangements for specialised modifications. Apparently if you want a N3DSXL USB broadcast mod, a Vita USB broadcast mod, a SNES HDMI display mod, or a specialized HDCP breaker, you might want to ask me for acquisition methods and costs.
- Analyse and explain economic models,  assist in a couple of investigations, and account for various frauds on the face of the planet. Nothing like understanding and helping to explain how to destroy national economies, account for huge fraud, and break in four security systems while still in your nightie.


3. Apparently the natural laws of probability don't apply to me either, at least when I found out when a friend dropped off FE Awakening (And borrowed the US copy of FE Fates I've been sitting on, due to a lack of real interest).

Apparently when I play FE Awakening Lunatic, the AI can't seem to miss any shot below 52%, which is a problem, because the first 3 stages it's nearly impossible to actually reduce enemy hit chances much below that. Or at least they didn't, 72 times in a row. We did the math, and apparently the odds of that happening (assuming flucutations and accounting for the skew due to the FE RNG modifications) somewhere between 1 in a a couple of quadrillion, and a septmillion.

Oh, and before you ask - it wasn't a spot wielding because the % odds when I tried to hit them were behaving mostly just fine (within reasonable margins of error). I started laughing after AI hit number 28.

For the record, the odds of winning the lottery are not anywhere near close to this. Yes, this was counted for over about 3 hours of constant play and resets (since you can't make battle saves)

Some people win the lottery, or score the best job ever, or other happy fun things.

Apparently I blow my absurd luck on asking the AI to kick my ass just cause they can. That and I haven't figured out a way how to make a program to select numbers based on the odds of absolutely horrible things happening to me yet.

Sad part is, that sort of thing doesn't even have me bat an eyelid. I mean, I play Xcom, I expect the absolute worst to happen.

------

Yes, this is the sort of thing I barely register, because I really, REALLY am trying my very best to keep my life boring. I actually make a note not to leave the house unless absolutely necessary, just because, well, apparently when I do things, things just... happen.

I dunno. People ask me 'So what sort of person are you?' and I mention that I don't go out to have fun, and that I spend a lot of time at home, and I honestly don't travel or do things unless I have a reason to.

I'm pretty much your average run of the mill housewife without the married part, so I predictably get told that I really should get out more, because staying at home so much isn't healthy.

Then I tell them what happens when I do go out, then they mysteriously go quiet, because apparently when I go out into the world, the world decides that things must happen. People magically expect you to know everything, and look at you like you fail at life's simplest things when you protest on how unlikely one person should happen to know the mechanical aspects of PCI-e lanes, corporate law, how to override a car door's airbag system, suicide safety protocol, concealment and covering fire, and the time it takes for someone to make it to Sydney Airport Domestic Terminal 11 from 50 Pitt Street Sydney to prove that that the cellular GPS data wasn't inaccurate and did in fact reveal a side trip...

Then make you do it anyway, like the above is a cakewalk for your average five year old.

... Then for good measure, you then find out that you're mysteriously failing at cooking, when you have blisters over both hands due to minor accidents in the kitchen, for things you normally do without question.

Yeah, I might be rambling just a little bit, but I dunno. At some point I think I want to just quit at life only cause I'm tired of all this fantastical crap. There's no reward, pay or incentive in it all, and most of the time, you earn the scorn of the people you interact with, because they want to believe a view as opposed to dealing with what's actually there in front of you, and get very, very upset when you explain that hope isn't a substitute for the things you actually have to do to get things done.

And yes, this is when I think I'm horribly bored. I'm trying my damn best to be a very boring person, and it's simply not working.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on June 02, 2016, 09:07:39 pm
And in yet another episode (Well, actually two) of 'Oh hey, no one's life can be that screwed up... right?'

This is life, and yes, I get accused a lot of making this stuff up. Or if I write this story in an autobiography, it'll end up being relegated to the fiction section, because no one will ever believe me.

As some of you may know, I play a lot of Atelier games. I'm surprisingly good at them.

I've been moving most of my earned funds towards various logistical improvements and a few things here, which is why you might have seen a 'mysterious post' where I'm sort of vague about why I'm doing something.

There is also a reason why I'm not doing OfA or im@s 2 requests at this point. Well, several of them. One of them is simply the fact I've been picking up Temporary positions (Labour Hire or whatever else term you know it as) so you know, busy and stuff.

Anyway, even someone like me has a few vices, and I like Atelier games as a whole, so in the few vices I have, I figured I'd order Atelier Sophie from NISA, as well as other things cause well, I haven't had a chance to actually enjoy life in nearly a year.

No, I don't own a PS4 still. Yes, you can laugh.

Anyway, so what ends up happening is that I run the order on the 18th of May. They run the authorisation as expected (You know, they need to know I can pay for my order)

They then decide to collect the money on the 19th (executed on the 23rd, due to how banks work namely, they executed on a Saturday here, carrying over to the Monday)

Nothing surprising here, right?

Well, this is where things become a lot of fun - due to some sort of bug, they drew the money the Monday morning... but the authorization remained.

Financial rules and good practice should go 'When collecting the funds, execute the authorisation, closing that, because you know, you got the money you came for'

This in turn sent my account into overdraft by a significant amount (The order was 350 AU, so you can guess what happened when they took the money and left the authorization!) and this in turn prevented me from recharging my Opal card because you know, what was the worst thing that could happen?

This in TURN caused me to miss a day of work, costing me directly 179 AUD (due to 27/h & 7 paid hours that day) because I didn't have cash, I had the money set aside, and I flat out couldn't go anywhere cause I don't drive, and rely on public transport to get to my assignments.

That had me on and off for the next week trying to fix this issue. NISA couldn't find the troublesome Authorization at their end to kill, there was no record of the ghost authorization at Paypal, and NISA's e-Shopify contacts didn't have a record of the problematic Authorization executing in the first place, the bank and I are all 'Hey NISA, Paypal, e-Shopify, what the hell are you doing? You know what the proper financial rules are'.

The issue was resolved Thursday, due to the mad scramble of 'So what the hell happened anyway?'

We're still discussing compensation, because they have evidence that they screwed me over (And my bank has let them know too).

Needless to say, last week (being the 25th -30th) was... a lot more stressful than I'd like.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on June 02, 2016, 09:47:02 pm
Yep, I'm double posting for a reason. I explained what happened LAST week with NISA. I would have written this last week, except you know, I wanted to be in a position to mostly resolve it, and at least that's mostly 'We're quibbling over the discount due to the costs incurred.' as opposed to 'Hey, you just claimed half my wage this week after you already taken the money!'

Now I get to explain what happened THIS week (30th May - 3rd June)

As you might have concluded, I'm in the job market as a temporary worker - or for those who might know one of the formal terms, I work as Labour Hire.

For those who don't know what that is, it's basically short term contract work. Drop in, drop out, paid a rate, no job security. It's not casual, and it's usually around set contracts. It's a 'you get what you can get' situation. Your pay cheques vary from week to week, because you can only get paid on what work you can secure.

Since my specialties are in office administration and I can do customer service, I'm pretty flexible, and the skill set helps with the drop in/out nature of labour hire. It's also a good way to quickly hone in discipline and your skills - You learn very quickly to be good at the job you're in at least to meet the standards required, and you learn that your reputation means a lot, so no slacking. If you don't do a decent job, the agency that you have contact with won't send you anywhere else.

Anyway, it's not a nice position to be in long term due to the lack of stability (I don't mind it though, because the variety due to the changing workflow, but you can't get a regular wage that way) so I work on what job leads I can get so I can get a stable income.

Which leads to a job interview that I attended yesterday.

I was referred to there by my employment agency, after he hooked me up for this interview.

The job in question is appointment setting for sales - you cold call businesses, and you try to convince the business that it's worth their time to consider your company's products, and we'd like to send one of our consultants out there to show you what we have.

It's what's known as soft telemarketing - all you're doing is setting up a sales consultant to do the hard yards, and it's easy enough, but a necessary service, since you're getting the foot into the door. The pay rate's okay (Just shy of $24/hr, but bear in mind that the Australian minimum wage just moved to $17.65 an hour, so it's not quite as much as it first seems.) and I figured I could learn a few new skills since most of my work is customer service, not sales.

The interview was a group interview, and I honestly thought my lack of 'hard edge' wouldn't get me through - basically, if you've seen the Wolf of Wall Street, to be REALLY good at sales, you must have an innate skill to always be closing.

I DO have a sales edge, but I take a more calculated approach - figure out who the customer is, figure out what they want, then hit the angle, and offer 'additional services'. There's objective handling, and basically a little bit of force, and I use a softer version of that - via offering solutions, while tailoring them to make sure they generally lead the way to our benefit.

I also don't wield the skill set that much - I can of course, but you probably haven't seen me use that skill set here, due to the fact I don't have to.

Anyway, I get home after the interview, and I let my contact know about the fact I went there, and how I felt I went - I'm brutally honest in my assessment, because there's no point being otherwise for post interviews. You have to impress, and I felt like I fumbled it.

The conversation that resulted (he called me up roughly 10 minutes after I put in my report) went something like this after the usual greeting:

-----

"So how did I go? They mentioned if they liked me enough, they'd ask me to return on Monday to do a workshop and try a call to see if I'm good enough to go onto the floor."

"They've invited you back for the workshop. Only 3 of the 5 candidates that were there were asked to return."

"Ah okay, thanks, I'll prepare for Monday. I wasn't expecting to pass because I was worried I didn't have a sales edge but I'll take the offer. Is there anything else?"

(Nothing unusual here. He set up the interview for me, so this is regular business.)

"Well, actually, something just came up, and I'd thought you'd like to look at this."

"Oh?"

(This is where things go off the rails.)

"Well, an opening at one of our other offices is available, and I'd like to put you forward for that position."

"... Okay. What position is it?"

"It's a Customer Service Officer position at the agency. I know you can do customer service, and I know you can do this position very well.  Can I put you forward for the position to our business manager?"

-----

Now to recap:

- The person on the phone was the one who made the arrangement the day before to set me up to the interview.
- The business I attended to is one of their clients on the employment providers' books
- They know where I'll be, and the status of my hiring (namely second stage interviewing), because the agency earn a commission (It's how they make money of course) depending on how many people land positions and how long these referees hold said positions.

To be fair, the job position IS filling my skill set (customer service, office support and administration and front of house operations) better than my mostly untested ability to cold call and appointment set (Which has not been tested in a business setting) so the offer is reasonable.

... I just don't think very many people can say 'I think I just got poached by the employment agency from right under their clients' own noses.'
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: mariokirby on June 03, 2016, 05:21:07 am
Anyway, even someone like me has a few vices, and I like Atelier games as a whole, so in the few vices I have, I figured I'd order Atelier Sophie from NISA, as well as other things cause well, I haven't had a chance to actually enjoy life in nearly a year.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought Tecmo-Koei has taken over publishing the Atelier series since they bought out Gust (or something like that).  So, I assumed NISA no longer publishes the Atelier games.

But, Atelier Sophie is on the NISA online shop, so I thought that's kind of weird since they no longer work on Atelier games.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on June 03, 2016, 05:30:49 am
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought Tecmo-Koei has taken over publishing the Atelier series since they bought out Gust (or something like that).  So, I assumed NISA no longer publishes the Atelier games.

But, Atelier Sophie is on the NISA online shop, so I thought that's kind of weird since they no longer work on Atelier games.


You would be correct that Koei-Tecmo have purchased Gust.

However, it's a bit murkier than that when you look deeper.

My understanding is that Koei Tecmo offers NISA the opportunity to do freelance translation work for the series, as well as offer them limited distribution rights - they're the only entity that will stock the English Limited editions of the game.

KT will handle the regular distributions as per normal though, through their normal distribution channels.

So the relationship is very murky, and my understanding it's actually a loan of specific staff for the projects.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: mariokirby on June 03, 2016, 09:16:15 am
Oh, I see.  That's pretty interesting.  Didn't know Japanese companies can hire free-lance translators to work for them. 

I'm guessing NISA will also help translate Atelier Firis once it comes out. 


Sorry, didn't mean to go off-topic.  I was just curious.  So, thanks for the explanation. 

Hope you get a PS4 soon.  Must be a terrible feeling to own a game without the console.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on June 03, 2016, 02:12:12 pm
Oh, I see.  That's pretty interesting.  Didn't know Japanese companies can hire free-lance translators to work for them. 

I'm guessing NISA will also help translate Atelier Firis once it comes out. 


Sorry, didn't mean to go off-topic.  I was just curious.  So, thanks for the explanation. 

Hope you get a PS4 soon.  Must be a terrible feeling to own a game without the console.

It depends. The translators and the localiser working on the Super Robot Wars game being released in Asia is a direct employ.

And as I said, they may have gotten a contract which lets them work on the game as individuals since they do not have branding in the game, but I DO know that for some games (at least) they worked on the Atelier titles as a contractor.

Not having a PS4 isn't the end of the world surprisingly - Considering the PS4k is inbound later this year, the delay actually works out in my favour, considering I can wait for a PS4 price drop. I'm also tossing up if I want to get Firis in Japanese, as I'm expected to do.

There honestly isn't much of a topic set here - I'm just honouring what I said out to do since I made this thread last year - then again, I'm pretty convinced most people read through the thread so far and have said 'There's no way she's telling the truth. No one person can have that many things happen to them in the modern day and age, and not have gone insane, because reality isn't supposed to work that way'.

It is what it is though, reality or not. Basically, for some people, reality takes a completely different bent, and things don't always work out the way they're supposed to on paper.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: mariokirby on June 03, 2016, 06:53:31 pm
Not having a PS4 isn't the end of the world surprisingly - Considering the PS4k is inbound later this year, the delay actually works out in my favour, considering I can wait for a PS4 price drop. I'm also tossing up if I want to get Firis in Japanese, as I'm expected to do..

Oh, yeah.  I forgot about the Neo.  I wonder if a lot of people are going to upgrade.  Though, it seems you would rather have a price drop PS4 instead, which is fine since games support both Neo and regular PS4.  But, I wonder how companies feel about that trying to develop 2 modes for one game.  I hope the regular mode doesn't suffer too much.

then again, I'm pretty convinced most people read through the thread so far and have said 'There's no way she's telling the truth. No one person can have that many things happen to them in the modern day and age, and not have gone insane, because reality isn't supposed to work that way'.

I'm sure a lot people here believe you.  Some people can have terrible luck and things don't fall in the right place.  I think you mentioned you don't expect anyone to read your posts, so this is something you wanted to do.  Some people express themselves via writing or chatting.  If anything, I think I learned a thing or two from your life experiences.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on June 04, 2016, 03:15:42 am
Sometimes you have to wonder if some people are just cursed to have issues no matter how things go.

As some of you guys know I've played a lot, and I play mostly cause it's the only bit of reality I seem to have any control over.

The joke always is though, something seems to go wrong...

I've been wanting to hunt down Deathsmiles, Code of Princess and the Umihara Kawase trilogy on PC, and Green man gaming have the game set for 40 US (It's 50 US - 20% code)

Of course, it wouldn't be that easy, because you know...

Apparently they won't take the credit card.

Or more accurately they'll charge it just fine with an authorization. I don't get charged though, so go the heck figure.

I'm dealing with them now, and they asked me to try again after they removed the ghosts (At least THIS time around, they can get at said ghosts)

Should things go this wrong this many times?

Probably not, but the whole thing is what it is.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on June 04, 2016, 03:45:36 pm
For the record, I'm now quite ticked off, because well, I'm PRETTY sure the system works for everyone else.

After killing 4 separate attempts, we decided to change the purchase mode - I tried using through paypal.

Of course, we hit the 500 error, and they now charged the money via paypal.

I'm very sure that Greenmangaming isn't some dodgy site (I had previously successfully run a purchase of another game there even!) and I'm back to customer service asking them to fix yet another problem.

I'm flat out convinced that I'm on some blacklist that says 'Life is not supposed to work properly' because I'm PRETTY sure that anyone else who rocks up and runs purchases anywhere don't get this sort of problem.
Title: Re: Setsuna's crazy adventures - a cataloguing
Post by: Setsuna on June 08, 2016, 06:44:14 am
Okay, time for another installment of 'So how badly can the world work for one person, anyway?'

As you might have known, I currently am scheduled to work for the Australian Electoral Commission as part of the Australian Federal 2016 election, as a 2IC of a polling place on the day of the election - I report to the OIC, who's the guy who calls all the shots.

It's one day though, and I'd like to put in additional time, so I've applied for roles revolving around that.

Of course, we wouldn't be here if things went as planned.

I passed application stage (because you know, if they can trust me with supervising a booth, and I know a lot about how the election process goes, you'd probably want to keep me for related work) and they now require a online video interview.

Yes, it's what it sounds like - You get given questions, a window to read them, then a set time to answer them, and you only get one shot, while being filmed via your smartphone/mobile/laptop/whatever.

So I do it the first time, after full calibration as per their tests and the whole nine yards, and there were 9 questions, and I fire them through, because you know, it's nothing new.

I do a quick review of the video.

4 of the questions failed to carry audio, but the other 5 did.

So I call up and go 'Okay, what's going on?'

We find out there's a technical issue, and I'd have to reshoot the entire interview. This DOES give me a slight unfair advantage, because now I know exactly what they're going to ask me.

But we wouldn't be here unless something ABSURD happens...

So I get the email to redo the interview.

It first opens an application I don't recall making which is marked as incomplete. I punt it through because well, maybe they remade that. It's nothing insane, since it was a 'fast tracked' version of the position I'm applying for.

No link to the interview after that. Okay...

So I log out and back in, and a link comes up. Looks about right, so I follow it through.

Then I get this:

Number of Questions:
361

Time to Answer:
1,076 minutes (approx.)

For an idea, their system wants me to do a ~18 hour long interview.

Needless to say, I have to escalate this all the way up.

And people keep telling me that I have to be making this up, because one person can't POSSIBLY have this many things go seriously wrong in a row, right?