Alaska Airlines Useless Apology Cards
I normally like Alaska Airlines. They're generally very nice, and in the case of a major delay (during which we had to turn around and return to the airport of departure) they were polite and professional. No big deal. To make matters nicer, the airline offered a $25 discount on any future Alaska flight. That's nice. Here's the problem - in order to receive the $25 discount, you have to physically take a piece of paper to either an Alaska Airlines ticket counter or to a travel agent in order to purchase your ticket. Yes, in the year 2007 Alaska Airlines actually expects you to buy a ticket, in person, from someone behind a desk. Either that or they have DELIBERATELY imposed this rule to reduce the number of people actually redeeming the discount.
If everyone on the 737 I was on redeemed the discount, I figure that would cost the airline about $3000. I'd guess only half the people will actually remember they have the discount and with the "ticket agent" restriction in place, I'd say, about zero will actually redeem it. Nice going guys, way to be tricky.
Toms Toothpaste Interpreted as a Threat
I know I'm not the first person who's complained about these things, but my respect for TSA security is so low I could scream. Twice recently I've had these idiots rummage through my bag in search of liquids and when nothing is found have had things randomly taken or bizarre demands made. Just now, my toothpaste was taken because it was, apparantly, over their 3-point-whatever limit even though the toothpaste tube has gone through the x-ray at least 8 times since I got it. Screw you, you stinking jerks. You owe me $5 and a written appology. A few days earlier the exact same bag of toiletries was rummaged through, including the toothpaste, which was not taken. That time, I was scolded for not having the correct sized clear plastic baggy, and given a new plastic baggy. How in the name of god does the size of the pastic baggy impact anything?
My respect for TSA = Zero. You are doing nothing but harrassing people and commiting crimes against decency and intelligence.
Google Maps Useless WhiteSpace
I really love Google Maps. There's one problem with it though. When you search for something and get a typo, you typically get a left-hand sidebar with suggestions about what you might have done wrong. This is vaguely useful, but usually I just want to re-type in what I'm looking for and get on with life. The sidebar takes up a huge amount of space and there is no "X" to get rid of it. The only way to remove it is to perform a successful search.
But now the problem is 100x worse. Now this useless sidebar appears all the time. And there does not appear to be any way to get rid of it. If you have a small screen, or just appreciate a full screen map like me, then you are continually offended by the presence of this un-close-able sidebar. Please, Google, give it a close button!!!
JetBlue's Expiring Miles
JetBlue is a wonderful airline - they are hip, polite, and have cool features like live TV on the flight. However, their frequent flyer program, true blue, is a failure. Why? Because miles expire after one year. As a result, I have (on two occasions) paid slightly more to fly on a different airline knowing that my miles might actually be useful some day.
I suppose if I lived in New York I might fly JetBlue enough to earn something within a year, but it seems to me that JetBlue is losing business by having such a draconian policy. A *two year* policy, such as the one Southwest offers is immensely better!
Airbus' Immobile Armrests
I never wanted to get into this battle, but I have to throw it in - Boeing's large jets are superior to those of Airbus, at least the Air France variety. Why? One and only one reason - the central armrests on both the A330 and the A340 are immobile. That means that if you get the entire middle row (a rare luxury on an intercontinental flight) you are no better off than if you only had 2 seats to yoursellf in one of the outer rows. It is impossible to lie down on only two seats. Horrible!
Assinine Software you Have no Choice but to Install
A USB device is suppose to connect intelligently to your computer without any hassel. Not printers. If the even come with a USB cord (some printers actually make you buy this separately), you inevitable have to install an entire CD worth of god awful software which clugs up your machine to no end. Desktop icons, system try icons, strange dialogue boxes that always try to sell you more ink. Default settings that use as much ink as possible, and worse, if you happen to lose the idoitic CD, then it's an unreal process to find the right drivers online and get it working. Argh.