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Showing posts from June 6, 2010

Don't let your PC banking software talk to your bank

That was traumatic. For years I've manually entered banking transactions into Quicken, and manually reconciled statements. Thinking I might catch up with the times, I set up Quicken to connect directly to my bank tonight and boy was that a mistake. It royally fucked up my accounts in Quicken. It took off downloading stuff from March last year - stuff which has long since been reconciled - and started entering over a year's worth of transactions as "new". It couldn't match any of the stuff I'd entered by hand and at the end of it, I was several tens of thousands in overdraft according to Quicken.
Fortunately, I had the foresight to create a backup before I started so I'm back to normal now, but if that's the face of PC banking instead of web banking, I think they can keep it.
Not least of which, when the bank cocks up (which they do), if I blindly accepted everything it told me to into Quicken, I'd never find the mistake. As it is, doing it by hand, …

Waterproof : do not expose to water.

I'm looking at a wind-up radio / flashlight at the moment because - you know - it's a geeky emergency tool. Reading the spec of the one I'm interested in, I saw this:
IPX-4 splash proof from all angles: Protected against spraying water from all angles at 10 liters/minute at a pressure of 80-100kN/m2 for 5 minutes.
Nice spec, I thought. Given that this is a tool for emergency preparedness, seems like the ideal thing to have in the event of a hurricane (unlikely in a land-locked state) or capsizing at sea (again, unlikely in a land-locked state).
It was even more interesting then to read the various warnings, where they tell you not once, but four times to never get the device wet:
# Do not expose this appliance to rain or moisture.
# Do not submerge or expose to water for extended period.
# Protect from high humidity and rain.
# Unplug immediately if liquid has been spilled or any object has fallen into the apparatus.

So I did a little sleuthing. Thanks to random-facts-and-conjectu…