Saturday, October 14, 2006

Tooooo Much Information

I recently signed up for an iPass account to universally deal with broadband connectivity as I travel (I'm tired of having accounts and separate bills with T-Mobile, Boingo and the like -- plus, my company's paying for it :-)).

One of the tools they have is a hotspot finder that is available in both online and offline modes. The online mode is cool if you're the plan ahead kind of person and have mapped out all your options for each location that you plan to be in (and print/carry that information with you).

But I'm not that type of person most of the time and need something that I can use when I'm stuck without access and need to find it (hence the offline mode appealed to me).

So, I, a registered customer, go to download the offline search tool and get prompted with the following web form:

Which requires an awful lot of information... Much more than is reasonably necessary (see the required fields marked with a red asterisk).

This kind of requirement really bothers me, so if you look closely at the data that I filled in, I am "Junk Name", my job title is "Pain in the *ss" (well, that part may be true:-)), I live in Uganda with a Nebraska zip code, etc. etc.. I suggest that anytime you're faced with the same bull headedness, you do the same. Perhaps we can generate enough noise in their datasets so that they stop doing these insane requirements.

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