Every once in a while I get a check for some miscellaneous activity of life. It's usually a rebate or refund, or a friend paying up for some group activity I organized. And every time it makes me angry because I have to take that stupid check to the bank and deposit it. It feels so 1990s.

I am frankly amazed that checks still exist. And you know how happy you are when standing in line and the person in front of you whips out a check.

I will have limited time to blog for a few weeks, so today I'm just wondering what else you encounter in your daily life that seems like it should have gone the way of buggy whips ten years ago.

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Feb 27, 2009
Fax machines with their lousy print quality, like an old cheap copier of 1991... With computer, email and PDF, why do we still use faxes ? Because a lot of small businesses still don't have computers (mostly in the South I presume).
Feb 27, 2009
Oh, there are so many things we can't let go of. Pennies! Yay! Also, pretty much hard copies of anything are irrelevant, considering everything now comes with a computer shoved in it somewhere. For example, cars now have hard drives and "mouse-like" tools for human interface. You can even buy a refridgerator that can surf the internet. And to think we still use newspapers...
0 Rank Up Rank Down
Feb 27, 2009
PROCESSING FEES- it's all a scam. you have to do the administrative work anyway, and they are already getting paid for it.
Feb 27, 2009
I have to agree with everyone who said printed documents. At work, I have to print out every document every time it is updated, bring multiple copies to meetings that nobody ever even looks at, and then they have to be burned in case they contain company secrets. We must burn 100 trees a day for no reason whatsoever.
Feb 27, 2009
oh, and how about airline tickets?

you have to show your ID at check-in, security & sometimes at the gate and much like car registration/insurance (/anything else) we all know "the computer" is authoritative whether right or wrong (i.e. show me someone who ever got on a plane w/a ticket that didn't match "the computer").

and can someone please explain to me exactly WTF is "e" about an "e-ticket"? I still have to have a hard copy of a confirmation that (once blessed by "the computer") I exchange for a card I have to hand to a gate agent to get on the plane...

don't get me wrong, I'm not a technophobe (I'm actually a DBA for a major website), I'm just saying that since computers are in practice authoritative in almost all situations why do we still kill as many trees as we do?
Feb 27, 2009
US One Dollar bills. They are ugly, wrinkly, floopy, unsanitary, expensive to make and have a half-life of a nat.
Feb 27, 2009
Scott - get a frickin' scanner! they're like $60 at newegg.com. SCAN your checks, or change to a bank that will let you. I haven't been to the bank in almost a year. All my checks get deposited through my scanner.

Now - if they'd only let me make my withdrawals via my printer, life would be awesome 8-}
Feb 27, 2009
that stupid sticker you have to put on your license plate every year and a hardcopy of your registration & insurance!

I defy ANYBODY to find me a case where a cop pulled someone over and said: "well, the computer says you're registration's expired & you're insurance's cancelled but your plate has the right color sticker and you have registration & insurance cards so I'm gonna give you the benefit of the doubt..."

a guy I work w/got arrested because "the computer" erroneously said he was uninsured - the charge got dropped, he was released but still wrongly booked/printed/detained. think he got so much as an apology? if so I got some beach property in Utah you might be interested in...
Feb 27, 2009
Steroids in sports. You would think, with all of our modern technology, that catching juicers would be easy. But for some reason MLB, NBA, NFL, NHL and any other 3-letter acronym you choose have chosen to be soft, blind and in denial. In the mean time high school kids are convinced that they need to juice if they are gonna advance in their sport.
Feb 27, 2009

And I agree on checks, the only thing I use them for is to give out void cheques when I need to prove my bank account is what I say it is.
Feb 27, 2009
Frankly $1 bills have pissed me off for far too long. Inflation caught up probably 10-20 years ago that we should have kept printing $2 bills and stuck with dollar coins (I remember first visiting Canada in the early nineties and seeing their loons and thinking this). Now I can't even go to the soda machine a buy a bottle of water without paying $1.25 which requires finding both a bill and a coin (or an awful lot of coins).

I think the Euro system works better. We should have $5 be the smallest denomination bill and start minting both $1 and $2 coins. (Note the Euro also got it right with differing size bills and coins which make it easier for those cashiers that can't seem to grasp handling money).
Feb 27, 2009
Why are we still trying Socialism? It has clearly failed everywhere. Capitalism built this country up in 200 years what some countries couldn't do in 500. Yet here we are...
+3 Rank Up Rank Down
Feb 27, 2009
1. Fax machines. Who is keeping these things alive and why? I’ve been living in Europe for awhile and a lot of Phone/Electric/Cable companies here insist on a FAX to adjust or cancel contracts. I always offer to send them a telegram.

2. Escalators. Is it really going to kill you to walk a few stairs fatty? There’s an elevator for those who aren’t capable of traversing the stairs, escalators are just for the lazy.

3. The Autoformat function on Word programs. I’m typing this on Microsoft Word then pasting it into the blog because I can’t spell (spell checker we can keep). I’ve spent more time trying to undo the Autoformat that wants to indent my 2nd bullet but not my 1st and third than I have typing. Please don’t post and suggest I turn it off, if I can’t spell, do you really think I can manage that?

5. The number 4. There are way too many number already, and that one is just a waste of time. Think of all the time that could be saved when rockets are taking off or when you’re “it” in a game of hide and go seek.

6. The Human Appendix. Apparently its only function is to occasionally burst and kill you. Doctors love it because when they get tired of hypochondriacs coming into to see them, they can tell them they need to get their appendix removed and pay off their boat. (Same with dentist and wisdom teeth-except I don’t know many dental hypochondriacs).

7. Pennies. I know they’re supposed to be lucky, but I don’t think they’re worth the trouble. Most people I know have jars full of them and they don’t seem to be noticeably more lucky than those that don’t. And if we do away with them, we could finally screw the marketing idiots who think they are so clever pricing everything at $29.99 and think we are so stupid that we don’t know it’s the same as $30. Anyway, that’s my two cents.
Feb 27, 2009
@ largewu:
If we didn't have pennies wouldn't prices be rounded up to the nearest five cents? Instead of something costing $0.91 it would then be $1.00, for example.
Feb 27, 2009
This is truly an American problem. Ha ha ha, no problem in Europe or the UK. Why is America so backward in this way?
0 Rank Up Rank Down
Feb 27, 2009
"(This one is for all you teachers out there) Handwritten assignments! Geeze, people, you have a computer for your MSN, how about using it for your work?"

Good grief. 21st century or not, I can't believe anyone thinks it's a bad idea to teach kids to write.
Feb 27, 2009
1 - Emails that say "see me" or which focus on establishing a time for a meeting. Email should be all about NOT NEEDING to HAVE the meeting.

2 - Phone calls, for the same reason.

3 - Lengthy descriptions/directions for how to get to someone's house, including landmarks and house description, but not the street/house number. I have access to SO MANY online map services. All I need is your address...
Feb 27, 2009
Every time I need to go into the bank to do anything, they take a photostat copy of my ID book/card. They have been doing this for 15 years now. Somewhere is their filing system must be hundreds of photostats of my ID book, which can't be access because they are paper.

I have a wired LAN for my company, because the wireless one's seem to be so open to fraud. Every company I know with a wireless LAN talks about mysterious loss of bandwidth, and late night downloads that wipe out their "cap". (Here in South Africa we pay a small fortune for bandwidth, and we are limited to 1-3 gigs per month depending on your contact).
Feb 27, 2009
How about "terms"? Why should the average American business have to wait 30 days to get paid for merchandise they shipped? And then have to go through this endless accounts receivable dance? "Hi, you have an unpaid invoice." "Oh, we didn't get the invoice." "Here, let me fax it to you again . . . " And then, invariably, some businesses use their vendors as a source of free financing, delaying payment as long as possible, or not paying at all.

In a world of instantaneous bank transfers and credit card processing, terms should be obsolete. Millions of consumer retail transactions work that way: cash first, then goods. Pay in advance, or COD -- the delivery guy can swipe your credit card.
-2 Rank Up Rank Down
Feb 27, 2009
Capitalism would be a good fit for your question.
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