Keeping it on the Down Low

I got tasked with a big project at work. Luckily I had vetted the schedule, and signed up to meet it. Then the boss decided to review my design. He went gang busters with ideas for changes and new ideas. Hey I am down for more work. I just need more time. Nobody wanted to give me more time.

I don't implement extraneous ideas on my own nickel. Somebody needs to give me the budget. I tried to keep my boss in check. But he is the boss. He wanted a lot of extra things for my task. In the end, I drew a line in the sand and costed the pricier extra items. I got the go ahead to extend the schedule. Great. I told you I like more coding when I get the budget.

When I code, I am in the zone. I work to ensure I can deliver something on time. That is my style. Part of the technique includes avoiding distractions from my task. Another is doing tasks in the optimal order. For once it looked like I would actually beat the estimate. I told my team lead. But I warned him to keep the information private.

As soon as a manager hears you are ahead of schedule, they revise the schedule, and then you might be late even though you are ahead. Then I made a mistake. A mid level manager asked how I was doing. I told him great. I confessed that I was projecting an early delivery. Then came the fail. The mid level guy said that the new things my boss requested put the whole big schedule at risk. They need the delivery earlier.

Hey. I was doing my part. I was going to complete earlier. Then the mid level manager told me I should work extra hours to deliver even earlier. Epic fail. Don't beat up the guys that are delivering early. I learned an important lesson. Give one of these guys a positive inch, they try to take a foot. I have ways of dealing with this nonsense though.

Keyboard Accelerator Fail

I added some new buttons to various screen for a recent change. First steps was to produce a design. I always put screen shots in there so users know what to expect. My boss took a look at my draft screen shots and declared that I needed keyboard accelerators. No problem. Just stick an ampersand in front of the name in the resource editor.

Problem was that the accelerators were just not showing. That's okay. I hacked up a screen shot with them using Microsoft Paint. Made a note to get this fixed during the coding phase. I did notice that when you pressed a key, the accelerators seemed to show up. Weird.

Finally I got down to business. Tried to figure out what was going wrong. OnInitDialog() looked okay. Resources looked okay. WTF is going on? I turned to Google. That got me to Raymond Chen's Old New Thing blog. Sure enough. He described why I could not see the accelerators. You don't get the visual cues unless you press the Alt key. This has been so since Windows 2000. This is a "feature" from Microsoft. Great.