Thursday, January 10, 2008

Text Adventure Games

Remember in the olden days how the only graphics you got with a game were the box design? Infocom made some killer games, my favourite being Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. What I wasn't so thrilled about were some of the steps you had to take in an exact order. Do any one thing wrong and you'd only find out far too late in the game, forcing you to start over and once again order the beers and peanuts and sandwich. If you didn't take the junk mail with you, you were fucked up in the Vogon ship and couldn't get the Babel fish.

Corporate games are no different, except that the plot's not nearly as amusing.

"Single sign-on" means you only sign on one time for everything. It was never meant to be an abbreviation for "sign into each fucking application and each goddamned screen every single time". It would also be helpful if, when I have to access something within this "SSO" environment, that the fucking user ID you want remains the same. By definition a "global" user ID number is my world-wide ID and not just one of a collection.

I tried to log into my MegaInfo account. Error in name or password. Fine, try the old passwords. None worked. No problem, just check the "lost password" button which takes me to a screen that requires me to again enter my E-Mail address.

We're sorry but the e-mail address really.evil.canine@megacorp.com was not found in our user database.

WTF? Great, another automagically lost account. Off to the account activation applications.

You are not authorized to access this screen. Please log in with correct credentials.

You gotta be shittin' me. Off to IT I went, where it was then explained I have to use this link to get to that page; coming in from the link I was using passed the wrong credentials. Huh? Our user names are always fname.mi.lname@megacorp. Not at account activation, where I'm just really.evil.canine.

Back upstairs to try again. Success! I could now enter the account activation area! Click on new account, fill in information, and... I need a corporate ID code. Back to IT.

"You need to use the Employee Account screen."
ORLY? Where the fuck is that?
Johnny tried to show me but couldn't find it himself. He clicked around a while, did a few searches, and was finally able to bring up the correct account activation screen. The correct one isn't on acct.megacorp.com, it's on acct.emea.megacorp.com. Johnny mailed me the direct link.

Back upstairs to try again. Open Johnny's mail, copy the link, paste it into Fireferret and...

You are not authorized to access this screen. Please log in with correct credentials.

Once more into the breach. Johnny was able to paste it directly and access the section. I told him to try logging out from all open screens completely and then he figured out the problem. You have to log into the $MegaCorp Apps section, then also log into the account activation section. If you hadn't been routed via a link to the acct.emea.megacorp.com in your current session, you can only access that server via a link three screens into the accounts section.

Back upstairs. Log out of everything. Reboot for good measure. Log into apps. Log into accounts. Click on link 1, search for second link. Click on link 2, search for third link. Click on link 3 and... IN! Huzzah! All those years playing Scott Adams games and MuDs was paying off.

Go to Employee Accounts, check. Fill in name, country, employee number and global UID. And... nada. WTF? My global UID isn't correct.

Click here to open the $MegaPeople site to find your GUID.

Fine. Not surprisingly another full log-in is required. Search for me, click on me, click on details, see two different UIDs and grab the one I didn't use, and back to the accounts screen, out of which I've been auto-logged out. "No problem," I thought as I pasted in the direct address. I've already been credentialised.

You are not authorized to access this screen. Please log in with correct credentials.

Log out of everything, reboot, restart the whole above process, get back to the accounts. Remove Gown. Hang Gown on hook. Wait for Ford to sleep. Get towel and satchel. Put towel over drain. Put satchel in front of robot panel. Put junk mail on top of the satchel. Push dispenser button. Press the switch on the case.

I finally had the Babel... the MegaInfo account and could access it, allowing me to understand the Vogon poetry, from which I'd need exactly one word. Except it wasn't Vogon poetry, it was a group of "trainings" I was required to complete, every single one of them Death-by-PowerPoint with "presenters" of increasingly poor oratorial abilities reading out slides and documents we already have access to word for word.

Oh freddled gruntbuggly,
Thy micturations are to me
As plurdled gabbleblotchits,
On a lurgid bee.

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In compliance with $MegaCorp's general policies as well as my desire to
continue living under a roof and not the sky or a bus shelter, I add this:

DISCLAIMER:
The views expressed on this blog are my own and
do not necessarily reflect the views of $MegaCorp, even if every
single one of my cow-orkers who has discovered this blog agrees with me
and would also like to see the implementation of Root Cause: 17-Fuckwit.