Recent News Roundup

Our code cowboys do a roundup of stories based on current events.

Mar 2021

UI That Looks Like $900 Million Bucks

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User experience, and its related topic of user interface design, are important. How important? Well the US government’s General Service Administration (GSA) took the time to build a website to explain what it is. What other proof do we need? Well not only did the GSA build a website, but they invested in the SEO necessary to make it top of Google organic search, right below the featured snippet from

Screenshot of Google search results, showing the US Usability site as the first hit

Which is why the saga and ongoing story of Citibank’s debt repayment blunder all the more amazing. Here’s a quick recap:

  • Revlon, which owed nearly $900 million to creditors from a 2016 debt facility, was working with Citibank to refinance their current obligations into a new loan
  • Citibank, who managed loan payments, intended to send out $7.8 million of interest payments to creditors using a system called Flexcube
  • Citibank intended to roll over the remaining loan principal into an internal “wash account” to avoid sending the entire amount owed to creditors
  • Instead, the offshore Citibank contractor responsible for this massive responsibility, misread the Flexcube UI and sent $900 million to all of Revlon’s creditors
  • Citibank begged for the cash back, and received $400 million back
  • A judge ruled that the remaining creditors can keep the cash. Citibank is miffed.
  • If you want more details written in only the way that Matt Levine at Bloomberg can, check out his piece from February.