It’s not the Traffic that crashed the Obamacare Website but Bad Website Design

Posted by PITHOCRATES - October 6th, 2013

Week in Review

The Obamacare website got off to a less than illustrious start.  That is, it failed to work.  The Obama administration said the website failed because it was overwhelmed by so many people wanting to log on at the same time to get them some Obamacare.  But people who actually know how to design websites said it wasn’t a capacity problem.  The problem is something common whenever the government tries to do anything.  They just did a poor job designing the Obamacare website (see Obamacare architecture flawed: Experts by Reuters posted 10/6/2013 on The Times of India).

Days after the launch of the federal government’s Obamacare website, millions of Americans looking for information on new health insurance plans were still locked out of the system even though its designers scrambled to add capacity.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which oversaw development of the site, declined to make any of its IT experts available for interviews. CGI Group Inc, the Canadian contractor that built HealthCare.gov, is “declining to comment at this time,” said spokeswoman Linda Odorisio.

Five outside technology experts interviewed by Reuters, however, say they believe flaws in system architecture, not traffic alone, contributed to the problems.

For instance, when a user tries to create an account on HealthCare.gov, which serves insurance exchanges in 36 states, it prompts the computer to load an unusually large amount of files and software, overwhelming the browser, experts said.

If they are right, then just bringing more servers online, as officials say they are doing, will not fix the site…

One possible cause of the problems is that hitting “apply” on HealthCare.gov causes 92 separate files, plug-ins and other mammoth swarms of data to stream between the user’s computer and the servers powering the government website, said Matthew Hancock, an independent expert in website design. He was able to track the files being requested through a feature in the Firefox browser…

[Matthew Hancock, an independent expert in website design,] said because so much traffic was going back and forth between the users’ computers and the server hosting the government website, it was as if the system was attacking itself.

Hancock described the situation as similar to what happens when hackers conduct a distributed denial of service, or DDOS, attack on a website: they get large numbers of computers to simultaneously request information from the server that runs a website, overwhelming it and causing it to crash or otherwise stumble. “The site basically DDOS’d itself,” he said.

Did you catch that?  President Obama and the Democrats have lambasted corporations for outsourcing American jobs.  Called them a whole bunch of nasty names.  Unpatriotic.  Greedy.  You name it.  And yet here they are.  Outsourcing the design of the Obamacare website.  So I guess the Obama administration is unpatriotic, greedy, etc.

Those “92 separate files, plug-ins and other mammoth swarms of data to stream between the user’s computer and the servers powering the government website” does not fill one with a lot of confidence that our private and personal data they’re collecting will be secure.  Complicated systems are more subject to breaking down.  And getting hacked.

If these people who actually know how to design websites are right that means the Obama administration lied to us about what was wrong with the Obamacare website.  Of course, president Obama said if we liked our health insurance plan and our doctor we could keep them.  Which were lies.  It seems like the Obama administration has a habit of lying to the American people to get what they want against our will.

Not only that they sic the IRS on their political enemies.  As well as using the IRS to suppress voter turnout on the right.  By making it harder for Tea Party groups to be politically active like they were in the 2010 mid-term election.  Who rose up in opposition to Obamacare.  Had the Obama administration not use the full weight of their powers to suppress the Tea Party during the 2012 election President Obama would not have won reelection.  And Obamacare may have already been repealed by this time.  For it was conservatives that sat home and didn’t vote for Romney.  Because the Tea Party wasn’t active like in the previous election to motivate them.  Or they were intimidated by the left and were afraid of the IRS.  Further reasons to fear the data mining of the Obamacare website.  Which the IRS will have access to.

Perhaps we should be grateful that they designed the Obamacare website poorly.  For it will let us keep our personal and private information secure for a little longer.

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President Obama sees Restaurant Servers as Rich People not Paying their Fair Share

Posted by PITHOCRATES - September 14th, 2013

Week in Review

People are all for raising taxes on the rich.  Little did these people realize that they, too, were rich (see IRS wants more tax money from restaurant servers by JOEL GEHRKE posted 9/9/2013 on the Washington Examiner).

President Obama’s policies are doing a number on income for restaurant workers. First, Obamacare’s employer mandates led major restaurant chains to cut server hours. Now, the Internal Revenue Service has proposed a new rule to collect more tax money from servers.

The IRS, beginning in 2014, will require restaurants to withhold the automatic gratuity added to large checks, rather than allow servers to take the tip money home with them each night…

The new rule could lead restaurants to stop mandating the tips for large groups.

Rarely are restaurant servers lumped in with that greedy 1%.  Those greedy rich people.  But here they are.  Being treated as greedy one-percenters who don’t pay their fair share of taxes.

Interesting that the same people who support an increase in the minimum wage and expressed solidarity for the fast-food and Wal-Mart workers recently on strike want to take away a server’s tips.  People who actually earn below the minimum wage and depend on their tips to earn a living wage.

This is yet another example of the true cost of the welfare state.  Why we can’t keep increasing government spending.  And increasing the debt to pay for it.  Because someone has to pay the taxes that pays for this spending.  Or pay the taxes that pay for the interest on the debt that pays for this spending.  And guess what?  The rich 1% isn’t rich enough to pay it all.  Even if we taxed them at 100%.  So the IRS is going to shake down single mothers struggling to support their children by withholding their tips.  And after that they will tell these single mothers’ children that there is no such thing as Santa Clause.  Just to be mean.  For it appears they enjoy being mean.

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