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'[OT] I can tell he needs help'
I have this very stale, neglected website with a few old projects on it.
It has a submission form and every day I get emails like this. It's
really hard to know where to start, or if it's even worth attempting a
reply. I think the question is about the propeller clock, since he
mentioned "circle" and it has LEDs. The ip address is from somewhere in
Subject: i tested not work
I worked circle attached to the site and took the file
But the project did not work
Bi was not any led
Possible know why?
http://www.fastmail.fm - Accessible with your email software
or over the web
|Bob Blick wrote:
> I have this very stale, neglected website with a few old projects on it.
> It has a submission form and every day I get emails like this. It's
> really hard to know where to start, or if it's even worth attempting a
> reply. I think the question is about the propeller clock, since he
> mentioned "circle" and it has LEDs. The ip address is from somewhere in
I've stopped replying to emails like these... I get a lot of folks
asking me questions about stuff that's on my website (most notably the
capacitive-discharge welder), and usually they fall into one of these
a) Want everything handed to them on a silver plate. "Tell me where
to buy X component". "Tell me how to use an LM317 instead of an L200C".
These people get VERY annoyed when you tell them to "Google it" or
otherwise refuse to give them a solution.
b) Can't be bothered to read the website. Best example of this...
"What is IC1?"... um, look at the text and the parts list -- it's an
L200C voltage regulator.
c) Are trying to scam me. "Tell me how much for 10 of your welders to
send to Nigeria, paid with a phoney cashier's cheque." Mike (Harrison),
I think you've had this one too? :)
If I can see some evidence that the guy has tried to figure out the
problem on his own, I will respond (e.g. the guy that emailed me last
week -- "I'm not seeing any change in voltage at the SCR gate, and TR1
isn't firing even though the gate is changing state" -- swap TR1, oh
look, it works). But if someone's just asking me to do their work for
them? Forget it.
:: I've stopped replying to emails like these
I think it rude not to at least have an auto send, 'Thank you for your
It is also obvious that the emailer doesn't speak English very well -
not everyone does, including those who have some variant of English as
their mother tongue.
It is the result of the Internet being easy to access - people who'd
either skip over something or ignore if they didn't understand the
language it was written in very well. Now are able to send forth
emails all over the world.
It annoys me no end, when companies do not acknowledge emails sent to
them on the grounds that it cost time and money. RUBBISH!!!!! Someone
has actually read the email in order to decide not to bother being
polite. Strangely enough they could still be impolite and the sender
never know, because most email clients can send auto replies or allow
templates. It takes no longer to press the delete key as it does to
press the reply or send, especially as you've just spent 3.4p in time
reading it, then walking around the office pointing out the idiot
email to anyone bothered enough to listen. Of course this wouldn't be
time wasting or cost 'money'.
As for the original post, I'd suggest either reply with simple English
construct questions, or just send a reply saying you don't offer help.
cdb, btech-online.co.uk on 6/05/2010 colin
Web presence: http://www.btech-online.co.uk
Hosted by: http://www.1and1.co.uk/?k_id=7988359
On Thu, 6 May 2010 05:56:40 +1000, "cdb" said:
> :: I've stopped replying to emails like these
> I think it rude not to at least have an auto send, 'Thank you for your
I don't reply to the ones that are ads or obvious scams. But to the
propeller clock questions I usually just give this type of answer:
1. Chip must be 16C84, 16F84, 16F84A
2. Programming verify pass?
3. Run, stop, measure voltage C5. 5V?
That separates the wheat from the chaff, and if I get a followup it is
usually clear if they have no clue or just have bad communication
skills(and/or bad English, like this one).
http://www.fastmail.fm - Choose from over 50 domains or use your own
> <tirade on>
> It annoys me no end, when companies do not acknowledge emails sent to
> them on the grounds that it cost time and money. RUBBISH!!!!! Someone
> has actually read the email in order to decide not to bother being
> polite. Strangely enough they could still be impolite and the sender
> never know, because most email clients can send auto replies or allow
> templates. It takes no longer to press the delete key as it does to
> press the reply or send, especially as you've just spent 3.4p in time
> reading it, then walking around the office pointing out the idiot
> email to anyone bothered enough to listen. Of course this wouldn't be
> time wasting or cost 'money'.
It gets old fast. When you get 10 of these emails per day, you no longer
bother to even forward the email to your colleagues. The problem with idiots
is that they are geniuses at finding ways to waste your time.
We answer all emails, but after seeing how much it costs in lost
productivity to try to help someone who is clearly incapable of using our
product (we had a customer ask "what is a double-click?"), we changed our
policy and when the reps feel that the customer's skills are inadequate,
they offer a prompt & full refund. It saves time and frustration for both
Having said this, it doesn't appear that the person who wrote the email is
stupid and may deserve help.
> every day I get emails like this. It's really hard to know where to start
Simply say on the site that you do not enter into correspondence. Or
that you don't make shopping lists, supply PCBs, fault-find or suggest
how completely different components might be adapted. It's quite a
If you've presented all the information for anyone to follow and build
what you've presented, what more can you do ?
Given your teaching background I understand why you are tempted
to help when possible, but you know that goals aren't achievable
without some effort and/or experience. If someone truly wants to
make a propellor clock, and you've shown them how to do it, isn't
the onus on them, not you ?
I had occasion to ask Bob a dumb question, perhaps a dozen
years ago, about a darlington circuit he published - I'm not an EE,
and clearly don't belong on the current list, but asked anyway.
Bob's reply was succinct, enlightening, & (imagine!) civil.
I was unaware of the implied reverse diode connection across a darlington,
& did'nt understand how the darlington in his servo drive turned off after base
drive was removed - IIRC.
AFAIR, there was no drama, on the list or otherwise - A different world.
Hard to believe, I know...
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