Wordy Invoice

  • bluesman 2012-11-06 08:10
    2.5000 is the new 2.500?
  • db2 2012-11-06 08:12
    So TRWTF is that Andy can't handle fixed-point math?
  • Andrew 2012-11-06 08:13
    Once the sales manager cleared the scene, he rounded his desk, gathered up the invoices, and reached for his nearest resume.

    FTFY
  • fanguad 2012-11-06 08:14
    I'm personally curious how he managed to store 2.5 in a 16 bit int.
  • Retsila 2012-11-06 08:15
    The sales manager had a row with his boss & then he took the sales managers word on it without speaking to his boss directly?

    That really is stupid
  • Leo 2012-11-06 08:23
    5000th post!
  • Rodnas 2012-11-06 08:24
    Aaah, the good old days of 6502 assembly. I still have a C64 hidden somewhere in my house for sentimental reasons. Ofc in those days i didn't have to worry about invoice printing. I was just a kid trying his hands on this new thing called personal computers and programming. Which meant playing Fort Apocalypse, Impossible Mission and Aztec Challenge a lot. Until the boredom set in and i wanted to make my own games. That is how it all started for me. In the end there was no great games programming career for me, but now there a customers complaining about the layout of their invoices. I should get back to work.
  • PedanticCurmudgeon 2012-11-06 08:24
    Retsila:
    The sales manager had a row with his boss & then he took the sales managers word on it without speaking to his boss directly?

    That really is stupid
    I was also wondering about that. People who think that nothing's impossible if you yell loud enough and for long enough generally are also more than willing to lie when it suits their purposes.
  • Wody 2012-11-06 08:31
    He's obviously not very smart, all he had to do was write a single line to the invoice 'all tonnage values must be multiplied by 1000 for actual values'
  • TheRider 2012-11-06 08:31
    "Figure it out, and give my customers a readable print-out!"

    I only hope that all the sales manager's personal customers are clearly marked in the database. Otherwise that feature request is impossible to implement...
  • Mike 2012-11-06 08:33
    This is a very sad story.
  • Tim 2012-11-06 08:34
    Wody:
    He's obviously not very smart, all he had to do was write a single line to the invoice 'all tonnage values must be multiplied by 1000 for actual values'


    Or just "all values are in European standard kilotonnes"
  • GettinSadda 2012-11-06 08:34
    So many WTFs!

    But in the article itself...

    I can't understand why anyone would write invoicing software for a PET 4032 in assembler, when the built-in basic handled that sort of task perfectly well. Writing assembler for a PET was not trivial - machine code directly entered in hex was not uncommon for speed, but assembler generally required a whole load of messing around.

    Also, I wrote accounting software at about this time and I never saw anyone print invoices on green-lined paper!

    On top of all of this - thinking that "adding three zeroes" to the number would give the correct answer makes Andy TRWTF!
  • flop 2012-11-06 08:37
    > I'm personally curious how he managed to store 2.5 in a 16 bit int.


    What's the problem? 2 in a byte, 128 in another - voilá!

    Ever heard of fixed-point math?
  • the beholder 2012-11-06 08:38
    PedanticCurmudgeon:
    Retsila:
    The sales manager had a row with his boss & then he took the sales managers word on it without speaking to his boss directly?

    That really is stupid
    I was also wondering about that. People who think that nothing's impossible if you yell loud enough and for long enough generally are also more than willing to lie when it suits their purposes.
    I was thinking the same thing. I guess I've been close to sneaky bastards long enough to learn not to trust customers or cow-orkers on spoken words alone.

    Also TRWTF is that Andy can't handle fixed point math. The least he should do is check how many zeroes actually must be appended for a correct conversion.
  • Doo-doo Facial Hair 2012-11-06 08:40
    TRWTF is someone writing that kind of software in the early 1980s for an 8-bit computer in something other than Basic.

    And the only kind of green-, blue-, or brown-lined paper I remember from back in the day was used to print out source code or listings, not documents for customers, but maybe such a thing was done somewhere vOv.
  • ewanm89 2012-11-06 08:41
    The easiest option, is multiply the quantity by 10 and convert to int, then add 2 0's hard coded into the printout.
  • Grumpy 2012-11-06 08:48
    When I was your age, everything was greenbar and we liked it!

    Then some weenie invented 8 1/2 x 11 white paper, with perforated strips along the edges that you could tear off. Which was all fine and dandy, except the printer was wide enough for greenbar and the white stuff didn't fit. Then you needed adjustable roller thingies. Then someone would spool a job without realizing there was white paper in the printer, and it would print right off the edge. Devil spawn, I tell you! Give me back my greenbar!

    You young 'uns missed out. Why you could walk around with a wad of greenbar tucked under your arm, and it was as good as a roll of hundred dollar bills. Chicks instantly realized that you were in the big-money computer business, a rising star!
  • Fred 2012-11-06 08:51
    I call shenanigans! Anyone who was there knows that every report had as much info as possible crammed into the inflexible limit of 132 columns. There's no way you could add three zeros, or even one, to anything without running out of room.

    Basically any requirements session boiled down to "if we cut off the last name at 8 characters we can add four digits to the zip code -- is that what you really want?"
  • @Deprecated 2012-11-06 08:52
    Andrew:
    Once the sales manager cleared the scene, he rounded his desk, gathered up the invoices, and reached for his nearest resume.

    FTFY

    Hardly. Sales guys tend to have higher turnover than most.

    Should be, "Gathered up the invoices, shredded them, restored the code to the original form, and then went home for the day. Later that week, the sales guy tried to get Andy fired, but ended up having his ears thumped by management. Everyone else was happy!"
  • Mike 2012-11-06 08:58
    The easiest option is to multiply by 1000!
  • Abico 2012-11-06 08:59
    Sorry, but Andy is in the wrong here. Maybe the guy was as much as a dick as his story says, but he did nothing to explain the problem. And on top of that, his solution was wrong.
  • Smug Unix User 2012-11-06 09:06
    This is why nothing should be changed without getting people to sign off in writing. Also having a nice three week minimum turn around for change requests typically reduces the amount of issues that really need to be worked. Didn't review the changes in our test environment? Guess you will have to live with it for a few weeks.
  • Smug Unix User 2012-11-06 09:06
    This is why nothing should be changed without getting people to sign off in writing. Also having a nice three week minimum turn around for change requests typically reduces the amount of issues that really need to be worked. Didn't review the changes in our test environment? Guess you will have to live with it for a few weeks.
  • Chris 2012-11-06 09:13
    So, without the decimal place, 2 becomes 2000 but 2.5 becomes 25000, that there is the REAL WTF!
  • NMe 2012-11-06 09:15
    Abico:
    Sorry, but Andy is in the wrong here. Maybe the guy was as much as a dick as his story says, but he did nothing to explain the problem. And on top of that, his solution was wrong.

    Very true. Just appending three zeroes in order to make a decimal value appear as though it's multiplied by 1000? Any idiot should know that this does not work, so he can only have done this in order to piss off this manager. Whether or not he deserved it, 5 minutes of decent coding would have had this sales manager out of his hair for the rest of the day. Instead he chose to ignore his wishes, rush the job, be cheeky and lie about it and ended up using whiteout on a stack of invoices, costing him time that he could and should have spent doing his actual job.
  • bemis 2012-11-06 09:19
    I take it the WTF is how poorly Andy handled this situation?

    Slap on an extra three 0's, really?
  • bemis 2012-11-06 09:20
    Mike:
    The easiest option is to multiply by 1000!


    Umm... I think you might have missed something...
  • anonymous 2012-11-06 09:28
    Waidaminute...


    Doesn't an invoice usually take the form of:

    Item A Qty of A x Unit Price of A = Amount of A
    Item A Qty of B x Unit Price of B = Amount of B
    Item A Qty of C x Unit Price of C = Amount of C
    Grand total

    Presumably the unit prices were all in kilotons before, so if Andy just changed the way the quantities were display without also changing the unit prices, the invoice would be all kinds of messed up. TRWTF is that the company let Andy anywhere near any sort of maths. Maybe he should have been fired.
  • biziclop 2012-11-06 09:32
    What the hell were they selling hundreds of thousands of tons of?
  • GettinSadda 2012-11-06 09:32
    Is it really that hard?

    ; Assuming Val is 16-bit Qty / 100
    
    LDA (ValLo) ; Load the low byte
    TAY ; Put in Y
    LDA (ValHi) ; Load the high byte
    JSR GIVAYF ; Convert to float in acc 1
    JSR MUL10 ; Multiply by 10 (is now Qty / 10)
    JSR MUL10 ; Multiply by 10 (is now Qty)
    JSR FOUT ; Format as string in output area

  • Pluvius 2012-11-06 09:37
    biziclop:
    What the hell were they selling hundreds of thousands of tons of?


    Toenails.
  • Mike 2012-11-06 09:42
    Just got done loading two new boxes of greenbar into our ancient beast, so I am getting a kick out of this.
  • OldCoder 2012-11-06 09:45
    biziclop:
    What the hell were they selling hundreds of thousands of tons of?

    Don't get out much, do you? Grain? Coal? Steel? Fertilizer? Fish? Cement?

    I could go on, but I have a website to read.
  • jc 2012-11-06 09:46
    you obviously didn't ever hear about fixed point decimals.
  • Zecc 2012-11-06 09:50
    The first 5 comments are good comments!
    What has happenned to this site?
  • corroded 2012-11-06 10:06
    The Real WTF is Andy.

    Uses hack, creates inconsistent output that is confusing and makes the problem worse than before. Acts like a bit of an arse to boot.

    Should have said it wasn't possible, and explained why.
  • fanguad 2012-11-06 10:13
    flop:
    > I'm personally curious how he managed to store 2.5 in a 16 bit int.


    What's the problem? 2 in a byte, 128 in another - voilá!

    Ever heard of fixed-point math?


    You certainly could do fixed point math, but this specifies that the largest value he could store in his 16 bit word is 65536 - which means he's using unsigned integers.

    In reality, they probably did use fixed point math and "TRWTF" is all the errors introduced during the re-writing of submissions.
  • Excelsior 2012-11-06 10:20
    Pretty story, but TRWTF is Andy being to lazy to do its actual job, or being able to stand his ground (who changes customers invoices snapping his fingers ?).

    Whatever...
  • tim 2012-11-06 10:28
    NMe:
    ...and ended up using whiteout on a stack of invoices, costing him time that he could and should have spent doing his actual job.

    LOL - in the UK we only have Tipp-Ex and i've never heard of whiteout. Until I read NMe's comment, I assumed whiteout was some kind of strong cider and he was just going to get hammered :-) (oh - and just to add to the confusion, cider is different in the UK too)
  • Cbuttius 2012-11-06 10:37
    As well as tipp-ex we used to have liquid paper.

    Pretty-printing of numbers is tricky. Anyone want to try it in their favourite language?

    My guess is that they were storing "fixed point" numbers if they allowed 2.5
  • Publius 2012-11-06 10:56
    This sounds like a fairly trivial problem to solve, even in 6502 assembly, I get the impression this guy is just lazy. If the same invoice printing code is in 600 different places, write a set of find/replace expressions? Original submitter, please feel free to chime in on how the editor messed up your story.
  • Publius 2012-11-06 11:01
    GettinSadda:
    So many WTFs!

    But in the article itself...

    I can't understand why anyone would write invoicing software for a PET 4032 in assembler, when the built-in basic handled that sort of task perfectly well. Writing assembler for a PET was not trivial - machine code directly entered in hex was not uncommon for speed, but assembler generally required a whole load of messing around.

    Also, I wrote accounting software at about this time and I never saw anyone print invoices on green-lined paper!

    On top of all of this - thinking that "adding three zeroes" to the number would give the correct answer makes Andy TRWTF!


    I can confirm that to this day Walmart still prints out accounting totals on green-lined paper on dot matrix printers.
  • GettinSadda 2012-11-06 11:06
    Publius:
    I can confirm that to this day Walmart still prints out accounting totals on green-lined paper on dot matrix printers.

    Yes, but accounting totals are NOT invoices!
  • Captcha:appellatio 2012-11-06 11:09
    Zecc:
    The first 5 comments are good comments!
    What has happenned to this site?

    It got fascist mods.

    You fascists!
  • lesle 2012-11-06 11:13
    Wite-Out, no h.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wite-Out
  • justsomedudette 2012-11-06 11:14
    I miss greenbar; I miss making little springs out of the perforated edges *sigh*
  • lesle 2012-11-06 11:24
    lesle:
    Wite-Out, no h.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wite-Out


    Non-pertinent but interesting information here:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Correction_fluid
  • bkDJ 2012-11-06 11:33
    So, he didn't get confirmation from his boss, his solution was laughably wrong and terrible, he acted like even more of an ass than the sales guy at the end, and then decided to use wite-out instead of fix the code properly and leave for the day? TRWTF is Andy. Also someone needs to teach the new writers that we like our HTML comments.

    Speaking of writers...
    "Because he wanted to knock off at 3:02, obviously."
    Knock off...? As an American, the only thing that means to me (when it doesn't take an object, i.e. "knock it off") is to copy something (possibly cheaply), so what is the author trying to say here?
  • TRWTF 2012-11-06 11:36
    The real problem is that 2.5000 is wrong. He added three 000 to both 2 and 2.5 which gets you 2 thousand and 25 thousand. Also, if this was for Europe it should have been a comma in the abbreviated version. TRWTF is the fail programmer.
  • ubersoldat 2012-11-06 11:45
    I miss making little springs out of the perforated edges


    Those were good times. I also remember that the printing "tapes" ran forever before running out of ink.

    Also, first of second page!
  • Abico 2012-11-06 11:46
    bkDJ:
    Speaking of writers...
    "Because he wanted to knock off at 3:02, obviously."
    Knock off...? As an American, the only thing that means to me (when it doesn't take an object, i.e. "knock it off") is to copy something (possibly cheaply), so what is the author trying to say here?

    As another American, I hear it frequently as meaning stopping work or finishing something. Also as a euphemism for killing someone, though not as frequently in my day-to-day life.
  • doran 2012-11-06 11:48
    Knock off = finish work
  • justsomedudette 2012-11-06 11:50
    bkDJ:
    Speaking of writers...
    "Because he wanted to knock off at 3:02, obviously."
    Knock off...? As an American, the only thing that means to me

    As a non-American deal with it! You are not the owners of the English language or its colloquialisms.

    It means go home - wouldn't have thought it was that difficult to work out anyway.
  • Wildcatmike 2012-11-06 11:51
    This. I came to post that TRWTF is:

    “2.5” had become “2.5000”

    That's just plain wrong.
  • Ted 2012-11-06 11:55
    OldCoder:
    biziclop:
    What the hell were they selling hundreds of thousands of tons of?

    Don't get out much, do you? Grain? Coal? Steel? Fertilizer? Fish? Cement?

    I could go on, but I have a website to read.


    Greenbar!
  • Tom 2012-11-06 11:59
    Yes, and to expand on the oft-repeated "learn fixed-point maths" theme...learn ANY maths. You don't convert decimal to integer with a frickin' string concatenation.
  • Jim Hulsey 2012-11-06 12:04
    Ever hear of overflow?
  • chubertdev 2012-11-06 12:13
    biziclop:
    What the hell were they selling hundreds of thousands of tons of?


    greenbar

    EDIT:
    arrgggh, Ted beat me to it




    anyways, ugly hacks are allowable when there is little time, and they actually work. but when they just create more issues, that's when someone needs to have a little chat with Andy...
  • blivet 2012-11-06 12:37
    justsomedudette:
    I miss greenbar; I miss making little springs out of the perforated edges *sigh*


    It's always startling (and in this case pleasant) to be reminded of some small detail of the past that you had completely forgotten about. Thanks so much.
  • da Doctah 2012-11-06 12:53
    Abico:
    bkDJ:
    Speaking of writers...
    "Because he wanted to knock off at 3:02, obviously."
    Knock off...? As an American, the only thing that means to me (when it doesn't take an object, i.e. "knock it off") is to copy something (possibly cheaply), so what is the author trying to say here?

    As another American, I hear it frequently as meaning stopping work or finishing something. Also as a euphemism for killing someone, though not as frequently in my day-to-day life.
    As another American, what people here are calling "greenbar" we knew as "watermelon paper".
  • Mats Svensson 2012-11-06 13:13
    "Or else!" ?

    JFC!
  • Arvind 2012-11-06 13:14
    I am from Asia, and we DON'T use dot as the thousand separator. We use comma.
  • Jack 27 2012-11-06 13:18
    So Andy's response to an unnecessary request was to do something that not only failed to address it properly, but actually made the printouts much more confusing for everyone.

    Though, as people have already pointed out, I get the feeling that this story has been hoplessly obfuscated in the rewriting.
  • swschrad 2012-11-06 13:37
    more than that. you could stuff a sheaf of greenbar under your arm, scowl slightly, and march out the door to... elsewhere... for a break without anybody thinking you were slacking off.
  • foo2 2012-11-06 13:46
    Doo-doo Facial Hair:
    And the only kind of green-, blue-, or brown-lined paper I remember from back in the day was used to print out source code or listings, not documents for customers, but maybe such a thing was done somewhere vOv.


    I was doing a short contract at a rather large car manufacturer named Toyota a few years back, and was amused to see a pile of green-bar paper sitting on a desk.

    I was less amused to find out that how they did their reporting & invoicing. It had been ages since I'd seen teams of people leafing though printouts, or seen a chain printer for that matter.

    I guess Kaizen was working a little too slowly there.

    To their credit they were rolling out a completely new system, although that one functioned exactly the same as the old one. Lol.

    "Extend my contract? Err, no thanks."
  • foo 2012-11-06 13:54
    NMe:
    Abico:
    Sorry, but Andy is in the wrong here. Maybe the guy was as much as a dick as his story says, but he did nothing to explain the problem. And on top of that, his solution was wrong.

    Very true. Just appending three zeroes in order to make a decimal value appear as though it's multiplied by 1000? Any idiot should know that this does not work
    Especially when the only concrete test case he was given is one where it doesn't work. I mean you can have some strange ideas sometime, but when you apply it to the actual problematic case and it doesn't even work for that one and you don't find something wrong about it, you have no place in a progamming job. As much as it hurts to say, I actually have to side with the sales manager here.

    Of course, that's all assuming the story happened as written. Which is unlikely: "65,536, which was the biggest number they could work with." (apart from the fact that it should be 65535), but then somehow being able to store fractions in the same 16-bit word? It doesn't add up. OK, maybe we shouldn't bash the new editors too hard, but I think it's better they learn early that people here actually read things, including the details, and know about the subject matter, so you either start paying attention soon, or get ready to get flamed for "creative writing" every day from now on.
  • the beholder 2012-11-06 14:04
    justsomedudette:
    bkDJ:
    Speaking of writers...
    "Because he wanted to knock off at 3:02, obviously."
    Knock off...? As an American, the only thing that means to me

    As a non-American deal with it! You are not the owners of the English language or its colloquialisms.

    It means go home - wouldn't have thought it was that difficult to work out anyway.
    "wouldn't have thought it was that difficult to work out anyway."
    Work out...? As an American*, the only thing that means to me is to put some time exercising in the gym, so what is the poster I'm replying to trying to say here?
    Anyway, I don't wanna have to think about this. Put other words in there place and post a new comment. Or else!

    *not really american, not even close
  • Zylon 2012-11-06 14:18
    bkDJ:
    Also someone needs to teach the new writers that we like our HTML comments.

    The only value of HTML comments is to distract from the terrible writing, such as in this story. If they would bother proofreading before posting, there would be little need for the stupid things.
  • foo 2012-11-06 14:25
    Zylon:
    bkDJ:
    Also someone needs to teach the new writers that we like our HTML comments.

    The only value of HTML comments is to distract from the terrible writing, such as in this story. If they would bother proofreading before posting, there would be little need for the stupid things.
    Isn't that what unicorns are for?
  • Dzov 2012-11-06 14:49
    "and reached for the nearest bottle of whiteout." Hopefully he also reached for a bottle of greenout, or his corrections will be very obvious.
  • foo 2012-11-06 14:50
    Dzov:
    "and reached for the nearest bottle of whiteout." Hopefully he also reached for a bottle of greenout, or his corrections will be very obvious.
    Didn't they have alpha-out back then?
  • Dann of Thursday 2012-11-06 15:30
    Zylon:
    bkDJ:
    Also someone needs to teach the new writers that we like our HTML comments.

    The only value of HTML comments is to distract from the terrible writing, such as in this story. If they would bother proofreading before posting, there would be little need for the stupid things.


    You must be the life of the office holiday parties.
  • Eric 2012-11-06 15:38
    Small companies routinely have requests generated directly from the sales manager (who typically only has 1-2 salesmen working for him).
  • Jim 2012-11-06 15:40
    ewanm89:
    The easiest option, is multiply the quantity by 10 and convert to int, then add 2 0's hard coded into the printout.
    Would that work for 1.75?
  • JsD 2012-11-06 15:42
    Mike:
    The easiest option is to multiply by 1000!
    Sure would be, except the article talks bout other customers having numbers that would suddenly overflow if you did that.
  • Julia Gillard 2012-11-06 15:44
    biziclop:
    What the hell were they selling hundreds of thousands of tons of?
    Carbon. And there was some tax to be made!!
  • Gunslinger 2012-11-06 15:57
    So, TRWTF is Asia and Europe...
  • Young Un 2012-11-06 16:11
    What next, should we get rid of email because when you got a stack of letters delivered to your company mailbox, it let everyone know how important you are? Maybe we should get rid of cars too, because back in the day if you had a horse carriage bring you to the office, everyone knew who was the big muckity muck around the office. Idiot.
  • chubertdev 2012-11-06 16:26
    Jim:
    ewanm89:
    The easiest option, is multiply the quantity by 10 and convert to int, then add 2 0's hard coded into the printout.
    Would that work for 1.75?


    Article didn't say the scale...so maybe the small interval is a tenth of a ton. Not that we can give this guy credit for being smart enough to think of something like that...
  • Mikhail 2012-11-06 16:27
    bkDJ:
    So, he didn't get confirmation from his boss, his solution was laughably wrong and terrible, he acted like even more of an ass than the sales guy at the end, and then decided to use wite-out instead of fix the code properly and leave for the day? TRWTF is Andy. Also someone needs to teach the new writers that we like our HTML comments.

    Speaking of writers...
    "Because he wanted to knock off at 3:02, obviously."
    Knock off...? As an American, the only thing that means to me (when it doesn't take an object, i.e. "knock it off") is to copy something (possibly cheaply), so what is the author trying to say here?
    Not all the world is American.
    Not all the English-speaking world is American (some of us actually speak English).

    I've heard knock off to mean:
    1) Finish work and go home ("Time to knock off, fellas!")
    2) Steal ("I left me treadly out the front, and it got knocked off")
    3) Copy ("He wears a knock-off rolex")

    I could also imagine it being used to imply giving oneself some enjoyment....
  • joker 2012-11-06 16:29
    the beholder:
    justsomedudette:
    bkDJ:
    Speaking of writers...
    "Because he wanted to knock off at 3:02, obviously."
    Knock off...? As an American, the only thing that means to me

    As a non-American deal with it! You are not the owners of the English language or its colloquialisms.

    It means go home - wouldn't have thought it was that difficult to work out anyway.
    "wouldn't have thought it was that difficult to work out anyway."
    Work out...? As an American*, the only thing that means to me is to put some time exercising in the gym, so what is the poster I'm replying to trying to say here?
    Anyway, I don't wanna have to think about this. Put other words in there place and post a new comment. Or else!

    *not really american, not even close
    Diod you hear about the Constipated Mathematician?
    He worked it out with a pencil.
  • Mikhail 2012-11-06 16:30
    Mikhail:
    bkDJ:
    So, he didn't get confirmation from his boss, his solution was laughably wrong and terrible, he acted like even more of an ass than the sales guy at the end, and then decided to use wite-out instead of fix the code properly and leave for the day? TRWTF is Andy. Also someone needs to teach the new writers that we like our HTML comments.

    Speaking of writers...
    "Because he wanted to knock off at 3:02, obviously."
    Knock off...? As an American, the only thing that means to me (when it doesn't take an object, i.e. "knock it off") is to copy something (possibly cheaply), so what is the author trying to say here?
    Not all the world is American.
    Not all the English-speaking world is American (some of us actually speak English).

    I've heard knock off to mean:
    1) Finish work and go home ("Time to knock off, fellas!")
    2) Steal ("I left me treadly out the front, and it got knocked off")
    3) Copy ("He wears a knock-off rolex")

    I could also imagine it being used to imply giving oneself some enjoyment....
    And of course...kill someone (thanks for the reminder).
    "We're gonna knock him off":
  • Chris 2012-11-06 16:42
    I agree with several of the posters here. The RWTF is Andy.

    Customizing an invoice per customer is laughable. Customizing it per country isn't. Further, simply adding 3 zeros doesn't solve the issue at all. Finally, even attempting to explain ANYTHING to a sales person is a complete and utter waste of time.

    Which leads us to the other WTF: Andy's boss. Quite frankly the id10t should have known what a PITA it would have been to customize per customer and simply shot it down.
  • neminem 2012-11-06 16:44
    Mikhail:
    And of course...kill someone (thanks for the reminder).
    "We're gonna knock him off":

    He said when it doesn't take an object. Knocking a person off is it taking an object. If you're just knocking off, no object, it does just mean "leave early" to me (or possibly, as mentioned, an Unusual Euphemism for a date with rosie palms.) Knocking something off in the sense of stealing it, to my mind, requires the object of the theft to be stated as well.
  • Raki 2012-11-06 16:52
    Young Un:
    What next, should we get rid of email because when you got a stack of letters delivered to your company mailbox, it let everyone know how important you are?
    Oh, there's an easy fix for that. Just hold all your conference calls from your cubicle on speakerphone. That way everyone around you will know you are important enough to be invited to meetings!
  • Zylon 2012-11-06 17:08
    Dann of Thursday:
    You must be the life of the office holiday parties.

    The Daily WTF isn't an office holiday party.

    Normally I wouldn't feel the need to point that out, but you seemed dumb and confused.
  • pjt33 2012-11-06 17:19
    Mikhail:
    Mikhail:
    I've heard knock off to mean:
    1) Finish work and go home ("Time to knock off, fellas!")
    2) Steal ("I left me treadly out the front, and it got knocked off")
    3) Copy ("He wears a knock-off rolex")

    I could also imagine it being used to imply giving oneself some enjoyment....
    And of course...kill someone (thanks for the reminder).
    "We're gonna knock him off":

    1) is just "Finish work", and doesn't necessarily imply going home. E.g. (from the British National Corpus) "I assumed they'd knocked off for lunch".

    At quick scan through BNC also adds

    5) To reduce in price ("...they knocked off six hundred because there was the tiniest little scratch...")
    6) Simple combination of "knock" (collide with gently) and "off" as in e.g. "He was knocked off his bike by a car"
    7) To produce (generally hastily): "We knocked off the bare bones of a report to the policy and resources committee"
    8) To complete: "The horseshoe ridge that Ben Lawers dominates can be knocked off in a single day if you have legs of iron"
    9) To eliminate: "After you'd knocked off the highest and lowest assessments of the five judges, three scores still counted"
  • Malcolm 2012-11-06 18:03
    You forgot to mention all of the extra paper you had because the paper feed was above the top of the page (and you had to have a blank page in front of everything you printed).

    Or my fav... when someone manually rolls the page up to tear it off, and the printer would lose track of where you were on the page (and print the next 50 pages with the margin about 1/2 way down the page)
  • bkDJ 2012-11-06 18:27
    Mikhail:
    Not all the world is American.
    Not all the English-speaking world is American (some of us actually speak English).
    I know. Which is why I assumed it meant something I was unfamiliar with and asked about the expression. Thanks to those who answered, though. :)

    Mikhail:
    I could also imagine it being used to imply giving oneself some enjoyment...
    Sure, but anything can imply that!
  • SomeGuyOnTheInternet 2012-11-06 18:27
    Grumpy:
    You young 'uns missed out. Why you could walk around with a wad of greenbar tucked under your arm, and it was as good as a roll of hundred dollar bills. Chicks instantly realized that you were in the big-money computer business, a rising star!


    You and I remember the '80s very differently.
  • Herby 2012-11-06 19:02
    Malcolm:
    You forgot to mention all of the extra paper you had because the paper feed was above the top of the page (and you had to have a blank page in front of everything you printed).

    Or my fav... when someone manually rolls the page up to tear it off, and the printer would lose track of where you were on the page (and print the next 50 pages with the margin about 1/2 way down the page)

    Of course if you did this right you had carriage tapes that indicated the proper top (1 on the VFU) and bottom (12 on the VFU) of the page. Hopefully the people who take their report with them know how to advance the paper!
  • Matteo Italia 2012-11-06 19:15
    People, you don't get it, TRWTF is *both* the salesman and Andy. This is *both* a "feature article" and an implicit CodeSOD, so it's two WTFs for the price of one.
  • Silverhill 2012-11-06 19:34
    bkDJ:
    Mikhail:
    I could also imagine it being used to imply giving oneself some enjoyment...
    Sure, but anything can imply that!
    "That's what she said!"
  • Gigaplex 2012-11-06 21:41
    The real problem is that 2.5000 is wrong. He added three 000 to both 2 and 2.5 which gets you 2 thousand and 25 thousand. Also, if this was for Europe it should have been a comma in the abbreviated version. TRWTF is the fail programmer.

    It depends on what part of Europe - I think UK typically uses a decimal point as radix whereas most of the rest of Europe uses a decimal comma as the radix point.
  • Coyne 2012-11-06 22:58
    What it was:


    Item KiloTons Price/Kiloton Total Due
    Heap of whatever 2.5 $139.00 $347.50


    What it should have been if he'd bothered to do his job right:


    Item Tons Price/Ton Total Due
    Heap of whatever 2500 $0.13900 $347.50


    "Well, you wanted the weight in tons, so I had to make it price per ton..."
  • Zemm 2012-11-07 00:44
    "and reached for the nearest bottle of whiskey"

    FTFY (That's how I read it first time around) I am not an alcoholic.
  • Jibble 2012-11-07 04:39
    Andrew:
    Once the sales manager cleared the scene, he rounded his desk, gathered up the invoices, and reached for his nearest resume.

    FTFY


    You quit your job every time somebody tells you to do something?

    His 'solution' was junk. He failed to format a number on an invoice.
  • Jibble 2012-11-07 04:42
    flop:
    > I'm personally curious how he managed to store 2.5 in a 16 bit int.


    What's the problem? 2 in a byte, 128 in another - voilá!

    Ever heard of fixed-point math?


    Apparently the programmer in this tale hadn't. He didn't need to make the internal representation 1000 times bigger, just output it differently.
  • Mike 2012-11-07 04:45
    JsD:
    Mike:
    The easiest option is to multiply by 1000!
    Sure would be, except the article talks bout other customers having numbers that would suddenly overflow if you did that.


    Not if the only time you ever did it was in the print routines. The overflow is a storage precision problem, not a formatting the print output problem!

    But back in the early 80s, people tended to be happy of they got characters on the paper, not too many worried about if they were right and even less worried about the format.
  • Katastrofa 2012-11-07 04:49
    Andrew:
    Once the sales manager cleared the scene, he rounded his desk, gathered up the invoices, and reached for his nearest resume.

    FTFY


    Quitting because a co-worker is being difficult? Grow some balls, man.
  • Watson 2012-11-07 04:57
    tim:
    in the UK we only have Tipp-Ex and i've never heard of whiteout.

    At least you don't have to use Twink. Or worse, ask to use someone else's.
  • beeneto 2012-11-07 07:46
    Whiteout wouldn't have worked on greenbar would it, it would have been incredibly obvious, and how would a programmer experienced with financial systems make that kind of basic maths error? I always assumed these stories were at least based on reality, if they're complete fabrications then what's the point of them?
  • PedanticCurmudgeon 2012-11-07 08:24
    TRWTF is writing a large program in assembler but not bothering to implement 32-bit arithmetic.
  • Oh THAT Brian 2012-11-07 08:29
    Or, if you were lazy, you would get the narrower paper and since your printer didn't have the fancy adjustable platten, you simply put paper in the left tractor feed and adjusted the pressure so the paper wouldn't bind and start printing diagonally.

    Which worked fine until someone printed a wide report and didn't change the paper. After a few of those, the paper roller was coated on the right side with many layers of typewriter ink.
  • Abico 2012-11-07 09:11
    Katastrofa:
    Andrew:
    Once the sales manager cleared the scene, he rounded his desk, gathered up the invoices, and reached for his nearest resume.

    FTFY


    Quitting because a co-worker is being difficult? Grow some balls, man.

    Maybe it's anticipating being fired for his terrible attitude and solution.
  • european 2012-11-07 11:06
    TRWTF:
    The real problem is that 2.5000 is wrong. He added three 000 to both 2 and 2.5 which gets you 2 thousand and 25 thousand. Also, if this was for Europe it should have been a comma in the abbreviated version. TRWTF is the fail programmer.


    You realise that Europe is not a republic (yet) and not all european countries use the comma for this?

    Stupid confederate ...
  • chubertdev 2012-11-07 11:43
    Should have just converted the numbers to strings and concatenated "x10^3" onto it. :)
  • Neil 2012-11-07 12:40
    Why use kilotons when you can use gigagrams?
  • Shinobu 2012-11-07 18:11
    TRWTF is Ellis Morning for signing off on this crap.
  • Mr.Bob 2012-11-07 18:33
    Katastrofa:
    Andrew:
    Once the sales manager cleared the scene, he rounded his desk, gathered up the invoices, and reached for his nearest resume.

    FTFY


    Quitting because a co-worker is being difficult? Grow some balls, man.


    Making the co-worker quit is the correct approach. No need to battle your way through the day. If you're not getting along with your co-workers, fix it. If you can't fix it, then you decide if you can live with it, or leave it.
  • L.P.O. 2012-11-08 08:01
    the beholder:
    justsomedudette:
    bkDJ:
    Speaking of writers...
    "Because he wanted to knock off at 3:02, obviously."
    Knock off...? As an American, the only thing that means to me

    As a non-American deal with it! You are not the owners of the English language or its colloquialisms.

    It means go home - wouldn't have thought it was that difficult to work out anyway.
    "wouldn't have thought it was that difficult to work out anyway."
    Work out...? As an American, the only thing that means to me is to put some time exercising in the gym, so what is the poster I'm replying to trying to say here?
    Anyway, I don't wanna have to think about this. Put other words in there place and post a new comment. Or else!


    ITYM "Put other words in they're place and post a knew comment."

    CAPTCHA: nulla. As in "Jag vill k-nulla."
  • Ubiquitous 2012-11-09 14:36
    That reminds me of the time one of our programmers couldn't get the totals on the report correct so he just hard-coded them.
  • Anon 2012-11-11 18:35
    "It isn't possible" isn't allowed, you know.

    There are dozens of management books telling managers to never accept that as an answer, and your co-workers have all read those books.
  • The Darned 2012-11-12 06:57
    I am a Martian and only understand 'signing off' to mean strimpling my noodlepiff.
  • Robert 2013-01-28 03:56
    The real WTF here is that he put three zeros at the end. What would you expect to happen if you have to format something like 2.5 ?
  • catherinalucy 2013-02-20 08:52
    Preparing an stylish invoice template make the customers to attract.So,be the best in your work.