Showing posts from December, 2007

Spare me dear

.. and dude too ! While somebody calling me a "dude" is merely annoying, somebody calling me "dear" (like in "How are you dear?" and not "Dear Abhaya, how are you?") feels downright cheesy to me. Of course the previous statement needs to be qualified with the assertion that both the addresses might be ok in some contexts or when used as part of the rhetoric. What I am complaining about is the stock version. It is hard to pinpoint the root of these annoyances. Dude perhaps has to do with the mental images of dudes from college days and the slight negative connotation it carried in college lingo. With dear , things are not so simple. One visual image associated with dear is of nuns or teachers from convent schools or governances calling the children dear . Another one is of Jitender calling his better half as dear as in "tum abhi tak tayaar nahi huin dear? hum party ke liye late ho jaayenge !". It is hard to blame either of them for my b

Chat Agents: Humans and Bots

I am sure some of these things already exist with a different name or are probably present in those mega expensive enterprise solutions that companies sell and companies buy but here are some ideas I have recently been thinking about. Consider the live chat based support that is present on a lot of websites these days (Examples: , ). The idea is that if you want to talk to someone, you can start a chat right then and there rather than call customer support and spend 15-20 minutes on hold. It is a plus for the company also since they no longer need to maintain a call center (or outsource it). This is specially attractive for startups who cannot afford to spend a lot on customer support. So how I imagine it must be working is that there is somebody sitting on the other side of the comp and probably talking with one or more customers at the same time. They would have many chat windows open or many tabs open, one for each customer. I would guess that even a trained