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February 22, 2006

Getting someone's Attention

22 February 2006 Two lessons which all of us with websites learn at some time or another:

Jon Udell is a highly respected journalist who writes for InfoWorld. He has his own weblog (of course) where he writes about a variety of technical topics, invariably well written and worth reading. The other day, when I was looking for something he wrote recently, I entered some relevant terms into the search box at the top of his Weblog and received an unexpected result (A Verity page with no result for even the most common terms). Clearly something had gone wrong. The next day I tried again (we ignore occasional glitches, don't we?) but it still didn't work.

Because I care about this stuff, I looked for a way to contact him and found a convenient "email me" button on the site which resulted in a friendly form, inviting me to leave a comment for Jon which even offered to send me a copy of the comment as an email (a nice feature).

error message

Sadly, when I hit "Submit" I got this error. My attempt to be a "good guy" had clearly failed. At that stage I had the option of ignoring the issue (as probably many of his other readers have done), or to write about it here, in the hope that I can get Jon's Attention this way.

[Later: Jon did not disappoint, he found this blog entry within a couple of hours of posting it (see comments).]

[Much, much later: Jon's blog finally got rid of the Old Infoworld header with the "bad search box". I'm sure there is a story behind why it took a long time to correct that problem. With many organisations there is a yawning gap between realising there is a problem and getting "the IT department" to implement a fix. IT magazines are not immune to this phenomenon - Marius 21 July 2006]

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Posted by Marius at February 22, 2006 07:10 AM


> in the hope that I can get Jon's attention

Sorry about that feedback glitch. I'm still relying on Radio UserLand for that feature, probably shouldn't.

Which search did you try, and what went wrong? I've been doing a lot of tweaking lately, so you might want to recheck.

Posted by: Jon Udell at February 22, 2006 09:23 AM


I'm impressed I got your Attention so quickly! It's the search on the InfoWorld header (not the one in the main body of your blog). (1) it is mislabelled as using Google and (2) it doesn't find anything. Hope that helps,


Posted by: Marius Coomans at February 22, 2006 09:32 AM

> It's the search on the InfoWorld header

Yeah, that sucks. I've been working on a replacement for it. Not officially deployed yet, but you can use it here:


Posted by: Jon Udell at February 22, 2006 10:45 AM

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