A new look for the IT Skeptic, and a note on Excessive Technical Fastidiousness or ETF

Welcome to the new-look IT Skeptic. Nothing major: I took advantage of some standardisation of the underlying infrastructure to do some minor decorating, avoiding ETF.

I'll be tweeking the CSS for a while to settle it down. Please let me know if anything is broken. Firefox users: yes I know the tabs across the top look odd. I do test in FF (in fact I make extensive use of FireBug, even to debug IE). I've given up getting sites pretty in two browsers. IE users outnumber Firefox by three to one, so I'm happy if it is just usable in FF and looks OK in IE. If you have a problem with that, please read the following quote from Introduction to Real ITSM about...

... Excessive Technical Fastidiousness or ETF (the worst affected area is CMDB). Many technical people like completeness and accuracy, not to mention a fondness for neat, clever, intricate solutions whether there is a problem or not. The result is ETF: an obsession with doing it right, whether or not this is a useful use of time, yields a good return on investment, or is the most sensible use of available funds – i.e. whether or not it makes business sense.



Actually, the tabs at the top look as awful in my IE 7 as they do in FF.


sorry I only test in IE6. Better now? Should be OK in FF too...

Yes, better

you should test in IE7. It has much better CSS support and will hopefully replace IE6 soon. You'll find it behaves much more like FF;-)

currently using and testing with IE7

My mistake-in-haste. I am a technology Luddite but I am in fact currently using and testing with IE7 :-D

I was thinking you wwere referring to the new IE8 beta

And a good example of ETF is...

All those bookmark icons at the bottom of each blog post. It looks like unneccessary bling.
I occasionally use Digg, but that has an integrated toolbar for web browsers. So why have these icons????


for bling


I can only heartily agree. ETF is a big problem. In my tiny area of expertise (english schools) the phenomenon is extensive - just one example. In schools the summer break is an excellent opportunity to stabilise and consolidate, upgrade and fix. Sadly many technical leaders indulge in enormous bouts of ETF. I know one school where staff came back to find that the network manager had spent the whole summer tweaking the school intranet web home page so that service desk statistics were visible in prettily formatted graphics. Login still took 40 minutes as per late July.

Alex Jones

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