Creating a Win/Win Situation With Promotions

I am constantly surprised about how some business are operated.  It never seems like the customer’s feelings are taken into consideration. 

Let’s take my recent purchase from  As usually, as soon as I see an “Enter Promotion Code” box, I immediately assume there is a promotion available.  I see a live chat window pop up and decide to ask for a promotion code, only to be told that they can not give me any discounts.  I try every trick in the book, walking away, etc….  Nothing made the operator budge.

I take to Google to start my search and within a couple of minutes I find a 10% off, which saved me $180.  I try to tell the operator (Roy) that he should tell his boss of this experience.  If Adobe would give there operators a code to give to people that ask of chat, then maybe Adobe could create a better win/win experience.  I would have been happy to tell my boss that I saved the company $100, had the operator gave me that chance.  And Adobe would have made another $80 for themselves.  That’s what I call a win/win. 

I am happier to tell my boss that I save $180.  But that doesn’t serve this article well.

We here at have learned to listen to customers.  If they ask for a promotion code, and we know we have them running, we will give out the code.  Let’s face it, online, there are always promotions running.  Why make someone turn somewhere else looking for a deal.

Like I tried to tell Roy.  This was just my $0.02 and was never meant for a blog entry until he gave me another templated answer telling me that he couldn’t give me any discounts.  Roy….  I already told you I found a 10% code and already save $180.  I don’t need your help saving money any more. 


Amazing Article: Losing my Religion for Equality by Jimmy Carter

My wife received this amazing article that I wanted to share.

Women and girls have been discriminated against for too long in a twisted interpretation of the word of God.

I HAVE been a practising Christian all my life and a deacon and Bible teacher for many years. My faith is a source of strength and comfort to me, as religious beliefs are to hundreds of millions of people around the world. So my decision to sever my ties with the Southern Baptist Convention, after six decades, was painful and difficult. It was, however, an unavoidable decision when the convention’s leaders, quoting a few carefully selected Bible verses and claiming that Eve was created second to Adam and was responsible for original sin, ordained that women must be “subservient” to their husbands and prohibited from serving as deacons, pastors or chaplains in the military service.

This view that women are somehow inferior to men is not restricted to one religion or belief. Women are prevented from playing a full and equal role in many faiths. Nor, tragically, does its influence stop at the walls of the church, mosque, synagogue or temple. This discrimination, unjustifiably attributed to a Higher Authority, has provided a reason or excuse for the deprivation of women’s equal rights across the world for centuries.

At its most repugnant, the belief that women must be subjugated to the wishes of men excuses slavery, violence, forced prostitution, genital mutilation and national laws that omit rape as a crime. But it also costs many millions of girls and women control over their own bodies and lives, and continues to deny them fair access to education, health, employment and influence within their own communities.

The impact of these religious beliefs touches every aspect of our lives. They help explain why in many countries boys are educated before girls; why girls are told when and whom they must marry; and why many face enormous and unacceptable risks in pregnancy and childbirth because their basic health needs are not met.

In some Islamic nations, women are restricted in their movements, punished for permitting the exposure of an arm or ankle, deprived of education, prohibited from driving a car or competing with men for a job. If a woman is raped, she is often most severely punished as the guilty party in the crime.

The same discriminatory thinking lies behind the continuing gender gap in pay and why there are still so few women in office in the West. The root of this prejudice lies deep in our histories, but its impact is felt every day. It is not women and girls alone who suffer. It damages all of us. The evidence shows that investing in women and girls delivers major benefits for society. An educated woman has healthier children. She is more likely to send them to school. She earns more and invests what she earns in her family.

It is simply self-defeating for any community to discriminate against half its population. We need to challenge these self-serving and outdated attitudes and practices – as we are seeing in Iran where women are at the forefront of the battle for democracy and freedom.

I understand, however, why many political leaders can be reluctant about stepping into this minefield. Religion, and tradition, are powerful and sensitive areas to challenge. But my fellow Elders and I, who come from many faiths and backgrounds, no longer need to worry about winning votes or avoiding controversy – and we are deeply committed to challenging injustice wherever we see it.

The Elders are an independent group of eminent global leaders, brought together by former South African president Nelson Mandela, who offer their influence and experience to support peace building, help address major causes of human suffering and promote the shared interests of humanity. We have decided to draw particular attention to the responsibility of religious and traditional leaders in ensuring equality and human rights and have recently published a statement that declares: “The justification of discrimination against women and girls on grounds of religion or tradition, as if it were prescribed by a Higher Authority, is unacceptable.”

We are calling on all leaders to challenge and change the harmful teachings and practices, no matter how ingrained, which justify discrimination against women. We ask, in particular, that leaders of all religions have the courage to acknowledge and emphasise the positive messages of dignity and equality that all the world’s major faiths share.

The carefully selected verses found in the Holy Scriptures to justify the superiority of men owe more to time and place – and the determination of male leaders to hold onto their influence – than eternal truths. Similar biblical excerpts could be found to support the approval of slavery and the timid acquiescence to oppressive rulers.

I am also familiar with vivid descriptions in the same Scriptures in which women are revered as pre-eminent leaders. During the years of the early Christian church women served as deacons, priests, bishops, apostles, teachers and prophets. It wasn’t until the fourth century that dominant Christian leaders, all men, twisted and distorted Holy Scriptures to perpetuate their ascendant positions within the religious hierarchy.

The truth is that male religious leaders have had – and still have – an option to interpret holy teachings either to exalt or subjugate women. They have, for their own selfish ends, overwhelmingly chosen the latter. Their continuing choice provides the foundation or justification for much of the pervasive persecution and abuse of women throughout the world. This is in clear violation not just of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights but also the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul, Moses and the prophets, Muhammad, and founders of other great religions – all of whom have called for proper and equitable treatment of all the children of God. It is time we had the courage to challenge these views.


Jimmy Carter was president of the United States from 1977 to 1981.

The article was posted on


Brunswick C (System) 2.5 Bowling Ball

Brunswick is coming out with a new bowling ball release, scheduled for the end of September 2009.  There is limited details of this release right now, all the information is available at [bowlingball value=”7529″/].  We are looking forward to seeing this ball in action as soon as we can.

[bowlingball value=”7529,i150″/]

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

I Was Raised a Typical Boy

I had a typically boy upbringing, not saying it was right, but I was told big boys don’t cry.  To this day, it takes a lot for me to show emotion (to my wife’s dismay).  This is a preamble to what happened at the end of my vacation.

My parents divorced when I was seven or eight and my mother felt the need to move us to Florida.  I understand that it was because she had family in Florida that could help her and us three kids.  It wouldn’t be until many many many years later that I realized that my father had no idea that was coming.  He never mentioned it when we would visit and he never spoke ill of my mother.  Quite the contrary on the other hand.

During my trip to see him in August 2009, we were sitting in his living room when he said I have something I want to give you and if I don’t do it now I will forget.  I had no clue what it could be.  He stood up and started rummaging through a little cabinet and pulled out a very old photo album.  He scanned through it and found an old photo from a photo booth of him and my mom.  I am pretty sure my mom destroyed any pictures she may have had of him, so this was very precious to me and a very welcomed surprise.  We then looked through some of the other photos of him at a very tough time.  He was in Vietnam and of course looked much different than he does today.

On the day I got home from vacation, I called to let him know I arrived safely and to thank him again for the picture.  We had a great talk and at the end he told me he was proud of me.  I think that may be the first time I have heard that from him.  We hung up moments later and I sat on the couch very happy with tears in my eyes.  I sat with it for a couple of minutes and then got up to do some chores in the kitchen.

I continued to think about it and had more tears come to me.  At that time my wife had come out of the bedroom, and I just couldn’t hold them back.  I was full out crying, she was terrified that something horrible had happened, and I was trying to tell her everything was ok, but I just couldn’t get the words out.  She hugged me for a minute or so until I could mutter the words, “He told me he was proud of me…”

Thank you dad! 

Programmer's Mindset

Mysql Master / Slave Thoughts

I have been thinking about a way to have isolated machines that I can almost take on and off line very easily.  Here are my thoughts and would love feedback on my “solution”.

I am almost thinking about “spinning” the traditional model.  I will have my Administrative DB(ADB) in a central place.  ADB will be where I pull all reporting, master updates of product and pricing, all orders, etc….

On each individual web server I will have a slave DB (SDB) that will replicate all data from ADB.  The individual web servers will pull information from SDB for pricing, dynamic web pages, etc…  It will also have its own database (ODB) for writes (order information mainly, maybe other statistics as well).  When an order is placed (instead of trying to reach ADB) it will put the information into ODB.

Now I can have a cron job that will pull the data off each ODB to update ADB for reporting purposes.


  1. Each web server should be able to run without relying on any other machine.
  2. Once the web server’s SDB is up to date, there should be very little delays in price/product changes.
  3. Scalability, simply launch a new server to be up and running.

Does this make sense?
Web servers write to ODB
Administrative server reads from ODB to update itself which replicates to all the SDB (Every slave/web server becomes a realtime backup of ADB)

Here is a diagram of my thoughts.

DB Proof of Concept
DB Proof of Concept
Reblog this post [with Zemanta]