• slippyr4 (cs)

    That was my frist digital camera.

  • Mike (unregistered)

    I still have a camera like that - but mine is the Panasonic model that uses the 120mb SuperDisk.

    I also have like 3 SD drives and about 30 or so 120mb diskettes. :)

  • Hasteur (cs)

    Couldn't we skip over the portion of the article where people are using quaint digital camera technology?

  • Anonymous (unregistered)

    I must be missing something here. Managers steal ink - test page created - managers stop stealing ink. Shouldn't there be a WTF around here somewhere?

  • anonymouse (unregistered)

    Awesome. My college department had a Mavica. I still have a blocky 8x10 printout on cardstock from one. I think it held 6-8 photos per disk.

  • Kemp (unregistered)

    Is there a paragraph or two missing? I got:

    • Managers steal ink in various mischievous ways.
    • Test page is supplied to the managers to check the ink levels in cartridges before stealing them.
    • This page is somehow "hidden" from the managers (who are using it)?
    • Somehow, allowing them to identify better cartridges (with a page they can't see) leads to less theft?

    /me is confused as hell

  • Krenn (unregistered) in reply to Kemp
    Kemp:
    Is there a paragraph or two missing? I got:
    • Managers steal ink in various mischievous ways.
    • Test page is supplied to the managers to check the ink levels in cartridges before stealing them.
    • This page is somehow "hidden" from the managers (who are using it)?
    • Somehow, allowing them to identify better cartridges (with a page they can't see) leads to less theft?

    /me is confused as hell

    Maybe it's because the test page has the wrong (or maybe faded) colors on it, so they don't take the perfectly good cartridge because they think it's almost empty?

  • WC (unregistered)

    I think the idea was that the colors didn't match the words, which made the managers think the cartridges were bad.

    I still don't see how it prevented anything, since they could just steal without printing a test page, like they used to?

  • Olivier (unregistered) in reply to Kemp

    That makes three of us.

  • Joe (unregistered)

    Is it just my colorblindness, or do the colors not match the words? Much like the classic Stroop test.

    A real IT person would introduce random blank lines passing through the colors, to save the good cartridges for himself.

    --Joe

  • Kemp (unregistered)

    Plus, I'm pretty sure the manager would just quickly scan down the page and see that all the colours worked (without reading the words themselves).

    Faded colours might do it, but when every test page is faded in the same way...

  • Linus (unregistered)

    The real WTF is that the readers of the WTF has to get the WTF explained to them... You all managers, or wtf?

  • anon (unregistered)

    I still don't get how this worked at all. Since when do people read the words on a test page instead of just looking at the colors? Like, if a test page printed with a line that said BLACK in red ink, would someone actually be dumb enough to think that cartridge was out of red? And if you're looking for good cartridges, wouldn't you just try every printer until one printed every line?

  • Urza (unregistered)
    It wasn't long after that when the bean counters realized that the department was spending over $1,000 a month in ink cartridges for an office staff of twenty.

    And the logical next step is to stop buying them ink, right?

    ...Right?

  • anon (unregistered)

    This article made a lot more sense once i stopped ad-blocking all images.

  • M (unregistered) in reply to Linus

    The removal of a one or more colours from the printing process would not produce a print out with those colours… obviously.

  • McBain (unregistered)

    This article left me a bit confused. Missed paragraph or something. From what I'm piecing together, there's a test page that managers will print that looks normal where the colors match the text. But the document has a hidden second page where they don't match. Manager goes to check the printer, sees the second page on top with all the wrong colors and assumes something is wrong with the cartridge. Sound about right?

  • Evan M. (unregistered)

    Alright, I finally understand.

    1. There is an electronic document used as the "test page"
    2. The faulty colouring displayed in the article is on page 2 of the electronic document
    3. Manager's open the test document and print it
    4. Because they only need to print the test page, they never scroll down to the second page and look at it on their computer to see that the colours are wrong to start with
    5. Manager retrieves the 2-page test print from the printer, and sees the colours are off on the second printed test page
    6. Assumes that the ink cartridge is out on the printer, doesn't steal it for home use
    7. ???
    8. Profit
  • Kemp (unregistered) in reply to McBain
    McBain:
    This article left me a bit confused. Missed paragraph or something. From what I'm piecing together, there's a test page that managers will print that looks normal where the colors match the text. But the document has a hidden second page where they don't match. Manager goes to check the printer, sees the second page on top with all the wrong colors and assumes something is wrong with the cartridge. Sound about right?

    And THAT'S the missing paragraph. Of course, I'm used to printers that don't reverse the order of the pages, but we did used to have one that did that.

  • Rick (cs)

    I worked at a company where our laserjet cartridge kept getting replaced with an empty one. I solved the problem with a Sharpie(tm). "Stolen from xxxxxx"

  • NameNotFoundException (unregistered)

    This makes no sense. If the cartridges were out of color and the managers didn't look at the second page on the screen, how did this stop them from taking the cartridges? And why did the managers require a test page anyway, and what was on the first page? TRWTF is the article itself, I guess. Somebody please fill me in.

  • Nagesh (cs) in reply to Rick
    Rick:
    I worked at a company where our laserjet cartridge kept getting replaced with an empty one. I solved the problem with a Sharpie(tm). "Stolen from xxxxxx"

    This kind of stupidity may work in your company, but in my company stationary is free for all. Lot of manager take home print paper so their children draw on it. Then they bring back drawing and hang it in their cubicles.

    One manager I know had children drawing on back of invoice report someone in team had print one week ago.

  • Ast Derek (unregistered)

    They stopped because their photos were ugly and low-res. It happened with the CDs where out-of-tech seniors were given CD burning capabilities, which started to consume all of the crappy quality CDs in the office.

    Low quality CDs copy from lower quality CDs were made at max burning speed, resulting in incomprehensible sounds coming from their speakers; of course their disks didn't survive longer than a week.

    The rush lasted a whole month.

    Also, my captcha, if you need to confirm I'm a human: oppeto

  • Le Forgeron (unregistered)

    The test page is on the second page of the document because the monitoring manager only show the front page (in the software that manage the printing queue).

    Ergo, the stealing manager is just using the printer for a real document... at least it is what it seems to be.

    Kind of putting Playboy in the NY Times when encountering some people in the train: NY Times is so passionate... It was all for the articles.

  • ScottN (unregistered)

    My parents had one of these up until late last year and swore up and down it was just fine. I kept reminding them that the quality of this pics are horrible but they wouldn't listen to their techy son. It wasn't until they were made fun of from it with their peers down in FL at gatherings that they finally spent the $200 on a nice camera of current technology.

    My parents even bought a USB floppy drive to work on their new laptops that didn't have that drive. Fun stuff, I'll never let them live it down :)

  • Anon (unregistered) in reply to Evan M.
    Evan M.:
    Alright, I finally understand.
    1. There is an electronic document used as the "test page"
    2. The faulty colouring displayed in the article is on page 2 of the electronic document
    3. Manager's open the test document and print it
    4. Because they only need to print the test page, they never scroll down to the second page and look at it on their computer to see that the colours are wrong to start with
    5. Manager retrieves the 2-page test print from the printer, and sees the colours are off on the second printed test page
    6. Assumes that the ink cartridge is out on the printer, doesn't steal it for home use
    7. ???
    8. Profit

    Yeah, that's about what I assumed happened, but this was one of the most confusing and unclear WTFs in a long time. Which is a WTF itself.

    Also, bring back MFD.

  • Justing (unregistered)

    TRWTF is that half of the people who are confused about it are probably the managers this would work on.

  • toshir0 (cs)
    The year was 1998, and digital photography was ...

    ... In those days, "e-mail” was a pastime of nerds and ...

    On which planet do you live, again ?

  • Kemp (unregistered)

    Just to clear this up for the people who got it first time round and can't figure out how the rest of us didn't - the problem boils down to this phrase I suspect:

    "Because this was "hidden" on the second page of a document, the managers never actually scrolled down on the screen to see what was printing."

    The use of "a document" implied that the test page was appended to a real document that the managers would be printing. The "hidden" part (to me at least) sounded like the managers wouldn't see the page at all, particularly as it points out that they won't bother looking at it.

    I think the following wording would have prevented most of these posts:

    "Because this was "hidden" on the second page of a standard test page, the managers never saw it on screen. However, it was the first page they picked up from the printer."

    Of course, the article then points out that the printers got the colours wrong, meaning that a standard test page would be wrong most of the time anyway...

  • boog (cs)
    When a cartridge would run low on a particular color – say, cyan...
    Isn't cyan always the first to go?

    Lousy blue skies...

  • trtrwtf (unregistered) in reply to boog
    boog:
    When a cartridge would run low on a particular color – say, cyan...
    Isn't cyan always the first to go?

    Lousy blue skies...

    Blue? When was the sky ever blue? (Or are you from somewhere that isn't Portland?)

  • boog (cs) in reply to trtrwtf
    trtrwtf:
    boog:
    When a cartridge would run low on a particular color – say, cyan...
    Isn't cyan always the first to go?

    Lousy blue skies...

    Blue? When was the sky ever blue? (Or are you from somewhere that isn't Portland?)
    Well, I suppose if you're in Portland, the first color to go would be gray, right?

  • Yeah Right (unregistered) in reply to Nagesh
    Nagesh:
    Rick:
    I worked at a company where our laserjet cartridge kept getting replaced with an empty one. I solved the problem with a Sharpie(tm). "Stolen from xxxxxx"

    This kind of stupidity may work in your company, but in my company stationary is free for all. Lot of manager take home print paper so their children draw on it. Then they bring back drawing and hang it in their cubicles.

    One manager I know had children drawing on back of invoice report someone in team had print one week ago.

    Bullshit! Paper maybe, but there is no way you're allowed to help yourself to toner cartridges - a full set of cartridges for our printer (HP Laser 5500) costs £979.40. Thats over 115,433 Indian rupees. And you're just allowed to help yourselves to that are you? Rubbish, utter rubbish.

  • ContraCorners (cs)
    article:
    (managers) could simply go around to the various office printers and discreetly swap-out their used cartridges with the printer's less-used cartridge.
    I call bullshit. What manager knows how to replace an ink cartridge?
  • Jay (unregistered) in reply to toshir0
    toshir0:
    The year was 1998, and digital photography was ...

    ... In those days, "e-mail” was a pastime of nerds and ...

    On which planet do you live, again ?

    I'm a little puzzled by that part, too. I was using email long before I had a digital camera. And when digital cameras first came out, weren't they at least as much a nerd thing as email? This sounds a little like saying, "My friends and I all played rugby, because football is a game for jocks and we were more sophisticated than that."

  • Jay (unregistered)

    It's certainly a good idea to print a multi-color test page to determine whether your ink cartridge is still good.

    But to save on expensive ink cartridges, wouldn't it be better to just view the test page on the screen rather than printing it?

  • Meep (unregistered) in reply to ContraCorners
    ContraCorners:
    article:
    (managers) could simply go around to the various office printers and discreetly swap-out their used cartridges with the printer's less-used cartridge.
    I call bullshit. What manager knows how to replace an ink cartridge?

    Oh, every manager has the ability to swap out vital parts of a device almost correctly, but without recalling that they did it. They're also brilliant at removing unnecessary system files and tweaking hidden settings.

    Still recall spending hours trying to fix the boss's computer before I realized a lot of DLLs were missing from the system directory whereever that was back in 95. After I figured it wasn't a virus, I finally got her to explain that she was getting rid of "useless" files to save disk space.

    Thank God they implemented system protection and all the warning screens...

  • Z (unregistered) in reply to Jay

    No, back in 1998 you had to worry about wearing the phosphor off the CRT if you looked at too much color. Far better to just use the ink. We can't go around ruining expensive monitors now, can we?

  • Robb (unregistered)

    Well I wasn't going to get a bacon burger for lunch but now look what you've all done to me!

    (assume I'm purchasing one for lunch)

    CAPTCHA: appellatio (oral sex with apples?)

  • trtrwtf (unregistered) in reply to Robb
    Robb:
    Well I wasn't going to get a bacon burger for lunch but now look what you've all done to me!

    (assume I'm purchasing one for lunch)

    CAPTCHA: appellatio (oral sex with apples?)

    Meep:
    God damn it. Now I really want some bacon

    My work here is done... On behalf of the Bacon Marketing Advisory Council, I thank you all for your time.

  • Sigmund (unregistered) in reply to Rick
    Rick:
    I worked at a company where our laserjet cartridge kept getting replaced with an empty one. I solved the problem with a Sharpie(tm). "Stolen from xxxxxx"

    That is the most elegant solution I've seen this month.

  • ezra abrams (unregistered)

    I think the WTF is that the names deliberately don't match the colors, but the managers were to stupid to understand that - they thought if the saw "RED" in black color, it mean't the colors were gone, so they would go somewhere else...

  • C-Octothorpe (unregistered) in reply to trtrwtf
    trtrwtf:
    My work here is done... On behalf of the Bacon Marketing Advisory Council, I thank you all for your time.

    I knew it...

  • Code Warrior Malo (unregistered) in reply to toshir0
    toshir0:
    The year was 1998, and digital photography was ...

    ... In those days, "e-mail” was a pastime of nerds and ...

    On which planet do you live, again ?

    lol, toshir, you are one of the nerds that used "e-mail" as a pastime...prolly everyone commenting here used "the email".

    CAPTCHA test: refoveo as in "refoveo, refoveo, where for art thou refoveo"

  • Power Troll (cs)

    Hopefully John got fired shortly afterwards. The fact that a printer test page is on version "42b" is absolutely horrifying to anyone who has tried to manage a budget.

  • Brent (unregistered) in reply to WC
    WC:
    I still don't see how it prevented anything, since they could just steal without printing a test page, like they used to?

    Oh, they could... except that this was implemented at a time where things had gotten to the point that taking a random cartridge was a gamble. So rather than waste time sneaking out a cartridge, taking it home, and printing pictures only to find out that the cartridge is faulty after all that (and repeating that for a couple days until you get a good one)... running a test page to find a good cartridge must have been seen as a blessing.

    As for why they wouldn't just ignore the words and check that all the lines were there... well, a colour cartridge only has yellow, magenta, cyan, and black ink. Other colours are composed by combining those colours. So a test page with red, blue, and green on it, printed with a colour missing, would be expected to print those lines... but two would be in the wrong colour. The managers would have known of this effect by this point, because they'd have had failed prints where the colours were off because of it... so they'd want to check that the colours printed were the same as what they read. TRWTF, is that they don't know enough about subtractive colour theory (which is like elementary school level science) to realize that this test page doesn't make any sense even when it prints perfectly. If I saw this test page, I'd first assume that the document or the software was at fault, not the cartridge.

  • Nagesh (cs) in reply to Power Troll
    Power Troll:
    Hopefully John got fired shortly afterwards. The fact that a printer test page is on version "42b" is absolutely horrifying to anyone who has tried to manage a budget.

    madarchod, don't repet what i have said. mere fact is that this story is completely incomplete. go read my comment, before you make any.

  • nonpartisan (cs) in reply to Anon
    Anon:
    Evan M.:
    Alright, I finally understand.
    1. There is an electronic document used as the "test page"
    2. The faulty colouring displayed in the article is on page 2 of the electronic document
    3. Manager's open the test document and print it
    4. Because they only need to print the test page, they never scroll down to the second page and look at it on their computer to see that the colours are wrong to start with
    5. Manager retrieves the 2-page test print from the printer, and sees the colours are off on the second printed test page
    6. Assumes that the ink cartridge is out on the printer, doesn't steal it for home use
    7. ???
    8. Profit

    Yeah, that's about what I assumed happened, but this was one of the most confusing and unclear WTFs in a long time. Which is a WTF itself.

    Also, bring back MFD.

    You complain when there are typographical errors and you complain when there's not enough information.

    Alex can't please everyone.

  • Kuba (cs) in reply to slippyr4
    slippyr4:
    That was my frist digital camera.
    I had a Canon that also had disks, but those were smaller (2"?) analog disks where each track stored one half-frame of NTSC signal. I think they simply reused a FM VCR chipset from a camcorder on this one.
  • C-Octothorpe (unregistered) in reply to Sigmund
    Sigmund:
    Rick:
    I worked at a company where our laserjet cartridge kept getting replaced with an empty one. I solved the problem with a Sharpie(tm). "Stolen from xxxxxx"

    That is the most elegant solution I've seen this month.

    What would be awesome would be to mount a fake camera in a corner (kind of hidden), and write on the cartridge "Yep, that's a camera in the corner catching you stealing me. Just put me back and no one will get in trouble".

Leave a comment on “The Special Test Page”

Log In or post as a guest

Replying to comment #:

« Return to Article