Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Application: Arden Fair Job Application Applet, Modern?

There is still much room for improvement in user interface applications, especially the job application. If you have one of those steady jobs, then you probably do not worry about the employment process. If not, you probably trained yourself to that patient attitude as your fill-in the same information over and over. Let's not stop there on potential ideas for improvement, as the 2012 version of online job application does not reflect well the skills of top programmers and designers. Where are they? The entire process is open for innovation, and let's use Arden Fair Mall located in the original Sacramento area near the California State Fair (across the river from the state capitol) as an example we can reflect upon.

One reason I chose Arden Fair Mall iss because Apple has their store front located right inside the mall. Apple is known for their beautiful innovation and geniuses. We also have read the news of Apple's big movement into Silicon Valley (south of Sacramento). Also note that Microsoft and Intel are within proximity of the Sacramento area.

There are big store names like Nordstrom, Macy's, Sears, JCPenny's, and around 200 more famous store fronts located in or nearby the Arden Fair area. The Arden Fair website also lists all the cart-sized store fronts. Years ago, it was the biggest mall in Sacramento.

Lots of retail jobs, right? Or, more like lots of paperwork when there are 200+ job applications to fill-in! I have gone around and collected them all, yes, when I was younger.

An old injury to my wrist prevents me from that fill-in task; that is all at once. Ouch! It was obvious to me that the first step is all these application could be put online and typed instead of hand-written, as the taps on the keyboard doesn't affect my wrist like the pressure on the pen does. Oh how I wished the lightness of the Tablet PC pen could have helped me. Actually, I do have one of the earlier Toshiba models.

This Toshiba model with it's built-in PXE boot feature inspired me further with the job application. I walked down the mall the other day, and I noted that Arden Fair features free wi-fi. Any keen programmer already has an idea where I'm headed in this inspiration, so let's not assume I'm off-topic here! With the “pixie boot” the laptop/tablet hardware runs in disk-less mode such that only main memory or solid state storage is in use. With free wi-fi, that should be one of those no-brainer modes to boot any pixie-boot compatible hardware into online store-front software mode. That means no other special software or O/S version as long as the hardware CPU is compatible, which mainly means Intel 86 compatible!

Even the JavaVM showed itself able to boot any Intel 86 compatible software, yes, that means even web-browsers could pixie-boot the software right in their web-page with limited hardware emulation for those that don't have pixie-boot hardware.

What I stated above practically trashes every excuse those companies can think of for why they “can't support” or upgrade some common accessibility to online job application, or even further advancements to all their store-front technology.

*facepalm*? Facepalm! I couldn't even find someone at the Apple store that knew much about pixie-boot features. Note the job application for Apple desires those that are keen in setup and installation solutions.

When I tried the software for online job employment at the big stores, well, let's say I couldn't believe I had to select “involuntary quit” because that was the only choice besides what I really wanted to fill-in as reason why I'm not at my old job: “disability”.

"You're" Fired!"
-- Trump

Further, I keep my USB storage unit from Linden Lab on my key chain. It has 512MB of space with viewer source code for their online virtual “shopping” world. Ok, it's more than any “shopping” world, yet you know Second Life deals with money transactions in Lindens, and everybody puts up store-fronts and malls online! Yes that is proven easy! Well, I put my cover letter and curriculum vitae on the unit. Note that I did not find anywhere in the online job application process where I can simply upload my work history and other standard information we fill-in over and over! Compare how many know what is the USB storage unit to what is the pixie-boot compatible hardware. My 2001-old Toshiba Tablet PC has both!

Irony? No, I became highly depressed at this point with comparison to the modern world's technology being able to gene-splice DNA, highly automate every step of car manufacturers, save with green technology, and drop bombs with unmanned drones, yet  job application process for 2012 is still the PITA. Do Human Resource departments intentionally make the employment process hard as an assessment test? The word  “accessibility” cries even so louder!

All these equal employment laws, yet none make employers support any simple standard file format for the job application. “Upload and go” or instead of “plug and play” devices, just “plug[-in] and [work]”... this is business! People need their job now, and not some 200 online “job application” applications latter that maybe result in only one... or none. Consider how many music file formats you iPhone plays!

“How long... has this been going on...
how long... has this been going on...
how long... has this been going on...”
– (background mall music)

There are many more details I could get into, yet the above covers the basic attitude upon reflection of the experience. Maybe Kevin Johnson can do something with his new downtown-arena deal for 4000 more jobs that centers around the Kings basketball case.

P.S. Note: I do try to be patient with Arden Fair Mall, as their security could not tell the big obvious difference between the racial-color of the man that took-off with my daughter, and my daughter's obvious skin color that matches my native tone. Mall security held me back that day, and that was the last day I saw my daughter. I think I do more than my share of attempts at to show happiness, as still demanded by many, yet those added assessment tests to online job applications seem impossible under these conditions despite major depression! Least Arden Fair Mall could have done was help me get the job that would fund the search and return of my daughter.

P.P.S. Thanks to Apple store-front that allowed me at least to upload this blog since I don't have INTERNet access for now. Those that been on the Internet “forever” should try being offline for awhile! Lots of ideas turn-up for improvement!