Posted tagged ‘RBS and NatWest’

Fat fingers and four clicks

June 22, 2012

A computer glitch has affected customers of the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and NatWest. Wages haven’t been paid in, direct debits haven’t been honoured and cash is unavailable at the cash line turnstiles. This is the digital age and like Daddy Bear’s soup- we’ll just have to lump it.

Fat finger syndrome has afflicted financial markets before. The business blunder of an operative inputting incorrect information causing chaos in the market has been here since dotcoms existed. In 2002 a trader at Bear Stearns entered a $4 billion sell order instead of one for $4 million. The Dow Jones took a 100 point drop. As a disclaimer, there is no evidence that chubby pointers have contributed to RBS and NatWests problem.

Talking of fingers, I’ve always had trouble with texting. Now, the keyboard – and its predecessor, the typewriter- has a lovely system in place: the QWERTY system. You know where you are with a QWERTY. Words flow like the rivers of Babykon. My words don’t flow when I use my phone; it is a non-QWERTY.
Now non-QWERTY phones in our cluttered times save space and I can see where the manufacturers are coming from (Asia, predominately) by having the system alphabetically unlike the alphabetical soup of QWERTY. The only flaw in the design is the position of the s. The s sits at the back of the p,q and r. You have to pump four beats in the bar to get a s. s is a popular letter, for heaven’s sake. The s should have been placed in the next button: giving a fluent s, t, u, v- stuv. stuv with the not very important v at the end. The four-pronged w, x, y, z is OK because apart from ZZ Top fans, Rip Van Winkle and those darned scrabble experts, nobody uses a z.
If you count the letters in this blog, you’ll find there are more esses than any other letter. S is for super and supreme. We also wouldn’t have any plurals without it.