Sunday, July 10, 2005

Nifty Little Project

Joel on Software - Project Aardvark Midterm Report

In a nutshell, you go to and get an invitation code. You tell your uncle to go to and type in that same invitation code. You each get a little program to download and run. When you run the program, your uncle's computer screen shows up in a window. When you move your mouse, his mouse moves. When you type something, it appears on his computer. Etc. And now you fix the problem and log off, and peace is restored...

Neat, simple-sounding product that might be useful for helping your uncle troubleshoot his computer, but might also have applications for Customer Service folks trying to reproduce user-reported problems. Instead of asking back and forth questions over a series of emails ("Tell me what version of IE you're using"), a CS agent could simply connect to the user's computer, find all the answers they need and duplicate the problem easily. Or perhaps show the user how to avoid future problems.

Even more intriguing is that the product is being built head-to-toe by four summer interns. Fascinating stuff.

Learn more this coming Thursday if you're in NY and like wine, cheese and interns:
If you're in New York, come to the Project Aardvark Open House! You'll get free wine and cheese and you can pepper the interns with questions about sockets programming in person. The open house is Thursday, July 14, 2005, from 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM, at Fog Creek Software, 535 8th Ave., 18th Floor, New York.

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