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"Here in my car", said 80s pop hero Gary Numan, "I feel safest of all". He obviously never shared the same stretch of road as me, then. Automotive tales of mirth and woe, please.

(, Thu 22 Apr 2010, 12:34)
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Traffic Police
I was working at a small software company on a project for Bedfordshire Traffic Police. The aim was to install a system in their storeroom so that they could keep track of their equipment. The officers would have to log in and scan the items that they were taking out or returning. There were a couple of forms that would be automatically printed out to be filled in by the officer if he returned a breathalyser or mace spray in a "used" state.

I had recreated these forms from the samples I had been given but I didn't have a logo image to use so as a temporary measure and to get the spacing right I used two small images on the forms, the Rainbow characters, one form had a George logo and the other Zippy. I requested a copy of their logo several times from my contact at BTP but it was not forthcoming.

As the project neared completion, a date was agreed when I would install the system in their storeroom. I made a few more requests for a BTP logo to put on the forms but by the Friday afternoon before the Monday morning installation, I still hadn't received one so George and Zippy remained. "Fuck 'em" I thought and went home.

During the following week I got the system up and running and showed the officers how to use it. They loved the Rainbow logos, everyone who saw them had a good laugh about it. I explained that it was just a temporary thing until I replaced them with the BTP logo. By the end of the week, as the system was up and running without problems and the officers knew how to use it, they were told by their boss to start using it for real.

Several weeks passed before I was finally emailed a BTP logo and could patch the system with the updated form designs. That's several weeks of forms being filled in each time someone was breathalised or had to be restrained with mace spray that featured a small picture of a Rainbow character. I'd love to know if any of these documents ended up in a court room and what on earth the prosecution and the defence made of them.
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 11:01, closed)
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(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 18:24, closed)

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