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Australia The Almighty Buck

Australia's Bureau of Meteorology Dumps Water Data Project 112

littlekorea writes "Australia's weather bureau has racked up bills of $38 million for a water data system, based on Red Hat Linux, MySQL and Java, that was originally scheduled to cost somewhere between $2 million and $5 million. The Bureau's supplier, an ASX-listed IT services provider SMS Management and Technology, did a good job of embedding itself in the bureau, with all changes having to be made by the original consultant that built it."
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Australia's Bureau of Meteorology Dumps Water Data Project

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 07, 2014 @06:30AM (#46184283)

    I've got to say that the initial post on this topic perpetuates one of the paradigms that is sticking in the craws of Slashdot users. We are not an audience. We might be users, we might be members, we most certainly are contributors. But we are not an audience.

    If you persist in thinking of us that way, then you're going to get it wrong. You serve an audience differently than you serve contributing members of a community. Most of the complaints hinge on that difference.

    If we were an audience, we'd be coming here for the articles. Most of the complaints are about the comment system, how difficult it is to follow a conversation, how difficult it is leave a comment, etc. I come here, most of us come here, to read what my/our fellow slashdotters have to say. The value here is the community, and the most important contributors are other members, not the site or the editors.

    If you don't get that straight, then you aren't going to "get" why we're upset, so there's no chance that you'll deliver us something that we can live with. And that community is going to vanish, leaving you with nothing of value.

    You can take suggestions and maybe reduce the implosion, but unless you understand *why* we're upset, you're going to be heading in fundamentally the wrong direction.

  • Beta (Score:2, Insightful)

    by pitchpipe ( 708843 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @06:38AM (#46184317)
    Beta is so bad, all of the comments have turned to shit!
  • by mrthoughtful ( 466814 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @06:38AM (#46184319) Journal

    It sucks when some designers or an agency comes along and takes all your money and then produces utter shite, which you are expected to pay for, because you asked for their advice. Like Slashdot. What an epic mess.

  • Re:Beta (Score:3, Insightful)

    by PGC ( 880972 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @06:47AM (#46184369)
    Yeah, Fuck Beta.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 07, 2014 @06:48AM (#46184373)

    And bought back slashdot from a bunch of soulless high level marketers


  • Re:Reminder (Score:5, Insightful)

    by PGC ( 880972 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @06:52AM (#46184389)
    I guess you are right. Hereby another reminder: Fuck Beta.
  • by gridzilla ( 778890 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @07:07AM (#46184449)

    ... that sounds exactly like BETA!

    Let's stick with the old layout Mmkay?

  • Fuck Beta (Score:3, Insightful)

    by FunPika ( 1551249 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @07:14AM (#46184479) Journal

    Please post this to new articles if it hasn't been posted yet. (Copy-paste the html from here [] so links don't get mangled!)

    On February 5, 2014, Slashdot announced through a javascript popup that they are starting to "move in to" the new Slashdot Beta design. Slashdot Beta is a trend-following attempt to give Slashdot a fresh look, an approach that has led to less space for text and an abandonment of the traditional Slashdot look. Much worse than that, Slashdot Beta fundamentally breaks the classic Slashdot discussion and moderation system.

    If you haven't seen Slashdot Beta already, open this [] in a new tab. After seeing that, click here [] to return to classic Slashdot.

    We should boycott stories and only discuss the abomination that is Slashdot Beta until Dice abandons the project.
    We should boycott slashdot entirely during the week of Feb 10 to Feb 17 as part of the wider slashcott []

    Moderators - only spend mod points on comments that discuss Beta
    Commentors - only discuss Beta [] - Vote up the Fuck Beta stories

    Keep this up for a few days and we may finally get the PHBs attention.

    -----=====##### LINKS #####=====-----

    Discussion of Beta: []
    Discussion of where to go if Beta goes live: []
    Alternative Slashdot: [] (thanks Okian Warrior (537106) [])

  • by Kell Bengal ( 711123 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @07:23AM (#46184515)

    WE HEAR YOU We did tell you we wanted feedback.

    If they hear our feedback, and yet do nothing to address it, then it is clear that they do not care about our opinions. If they were truly listening to the user base, there would be a simple story announcing "BETA is over - we were wrong, forgive us." At this point, that is what it will take.

  • by crutchy ( 1949900 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @07:29AM (#46184539)

    for that amount of money they could have secured a water supply for a small town, or provided flood defenses along half a mile of a river.

    a private company, maybe
    a government agency... not a chance in hell
    government is the definition of waste

  • by ixvo ( 2657555 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @07:51AM (#46184617) Journal

    sudo mod parent up


  • I actually couldn't initially believe it when timothy described the commenters as "an audience".I mean, I could have genuinely accepted "peanut gallery", but audience is really just too much considering how most of the performance is actually made down here in the comments.

    Then again, such an attitude would explain a lot of the editorial decisions over the years. Have the slash editors really been looking at the site as a news blog first, and a commenting system second? For all these years?

  • by ChunderDownunder ( 709234 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @10:18AM (#46185515)

    The problem is the tender system is broken. Government projects in Australia are contracted to the consulting company who promises to deliver a solution in the shortest time and the smallest budget. They then sign a blank cheque based on the expected initial phase of development and then the company puts its hand out until completion.

    What happened here is that the company promised to deliver a solution at $2.5million a year and has managed to milk the system for an additional $30m ! So it's a government department, certainly, but the contractor exaggerated its ability to deliver.

    I've worked for a government IT project, directly employed by the department, where years after the original company did handover, we were still cleaning up the mess. No documentation, no code comments, some of the worst anti-patterns I've ever seen. Too many cowboys in the industry and it's a pity the government just don't have an in-house development team.

User hostile.