EppsNet Archive: Credit Cards

Vatican Splendors at the Reagan Library

They had a funny rule in the Vatican exhibit: photos were okay but no selfies. I could stand in front of an artifact and have someone take a picture of me, but I could not take a picture of myself. I asked one of the docents about the reason for that. “Does it detract from the holiness of the enterprise or what?” “No, people taking selfies tend to lose track of their surroundings and start banging into the art.”   I bought a souvenir T-shirt for $32 in the gift shop. They made me sign the credit card slip, even though a lot of places trust me for amounts under $50. “Trust but verify” as President Reagan himself used to say. Read more →

Staples: That Wasn’t So Easy

I was checking out at Staples with my new purchase of a spiral notebook. The checker scanned the barcode and I started to swipe my credit card. “Wait a minute,” she said. “Don’t swipe it yet.” Time passed. “Okay, go ahead.” After I swiped the card, she said, “Can you read me the four-digit security code on the front of the card.” I read it to her. More time passed. “Can I see the card please?” she said. “I thought this was supposed to be easy.” “It is easy.” “Okay, sorry.”   Along with my Staples receipt, I was given a coupon for 40 percent off a different, more expensive brand of notebook. I had actually looked at the other brand of notebook when I was in the store, but didn’t think it was worth the extra cost. If I’d had the coupon at the time, I might have used… Read more →

Things Which Matter Most

Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least. — Goethe You’ve got to keep your priorities in order . . . We’re developing an on-site conference registration system . . . the topic generating the most email bandwidth yesterday was the ability to retry a declined credit card if the on-site Internet connection is down. Declining a credit card when the Internet is down is an unusual scenario that may never occur. We’re not even far enough along in development to be able to say for sure that we can accept a credit card when the Internet is up, but by golly, we’ll be able to decline one when it’s down. My head is spinning . . . Thus spoke The Programmer. Read more →