jewel on line at last

This is my personal weblog where I get to be as crabby as I want to be.

1.26.2006

I hate slow banks

Right now I am massively annoyed because Wells Fargo Bill Pay is so freaking slow. Now, I'll admit that WFBP is far superior to MSN billbay (sucks badly and which recently, in the grand tradition of website overhauls actually got worse and more confusing). But honestly, WFBP is slow slow turtle on valium slow. Painfully hurtfully slow. There's nothing but dial up out where I live, so the performance is extra sucky. MSN billpay is faster. Stupider and far worse, but faster. (I use MSN to pay the parent's bills, so I know whereof I speak.)

Which reminds me that I am pretty ticked off that in both MSNBP and WFBP if a payee's billing address changes YOU CANNOT UPDATE IT. You must delete the payee, and all the information that hasn't changed, and make a new one. What kind of stupid database design is that? Now, I suspect I know why, and it's also related to stupid database design. In the very early days of WFBP (when it was speedy but not too attractive) way back when the 49ers were in the playoffs every year, I payed my 49er season ticket via WFPB. Some couple or four weeks later, I get a letter from an AIDS Foundation thanking me for a donation in the exact amount of the season ticket price. Panic, let me tell you. I almost threw away the letter without opening it! Turns out that if you made any changes in your payee information (I had corrected a zip code) the payee address appeared just fine on the screen but IN FACT, defaulted to the address of the first payee in the database. (AIDS Foundation, get it?) So, WFB took care of it and I did not lose my tickets. Good thing, because they went to the Superbowl that year.

The solution to the stupid database design that quite obviously I think, was probably COBOL based and therefore lacked the concept of a foreign key, was to prevent the updating of any payee information even though a payee change of address is not uncommon at all. And so the tail wags the dog. Yahno, a REAL database, with primary and foreign keys and some normalization will fix that for you. WFB - you could even use Oracle and I wouldn't be too upset. I bet the query result would come back faster, too.

Referential Integrity people.

General Crabbiness Level: Moderate

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