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Useless computers cost £2bn


Hold up! Before you read on, please read this...

This post was published more than 13 years ago

I keep old posts on the site because I often enjoy reading old content on other people's sites. It can be interesting to see how views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have, to put it mildly, mellowed.

I'm not a believer in brushing the past under the carpet. I've written some offensive rubbish on here in the past: deleting it and pretending it never happened doesn't change that. I hope that stumbling across something that's 13 years old won't offend anyone anew, because I hope that people can understand that what I thought and felt and wrote about then is probably very different to what I think and feel and write about now. It's a relic of an (albeit recent) bygone era.

So, given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views may well have changed in the last 13 years. I have written some very silly things over the years, many of which I find cringeworthy today.
  • This post might use words or language in ways which I would now consider inappropriate, offensive, embarrassing, or all three.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken, and embedded material might not appear properly.

Okay. Consider yourself duly warned. Read on...

The Guardian reveals today that, over the last seven years, the Government has spent £2bn on computer systems which have then been abandoned as they were not fit for purpose. Just to put that into context, it’s enough to have employed almost 20,000 nurses over for the same period of time.

This Government’s record on IT projects is abominable. From the CSA computer upgrade that didn’t work to the £12bn NHS computer system which is being rewritten as it was ‘not fit for purpose’, and from the loss of half the country’s personal data to the national police website which never worked, it seems that this Government is simply incompetent when it comes to the management of IT projects.

Even after condemning the MTAS computer system as useless and rapidly running away from it, this Government felt it would be a good idea to rehire the company which designed it for another NHS IT project.

Is there anything IT-related that this Government can get right? And in an ever-more technological society, can we trust this lot to represent the best interests of the citizens of the United Kingdom?

Computer Junk

Computer Graveyard: Extra Ketchup, modified under licence

This 1,247th post was filed under: Miscellaneous.

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Comments and responses

Comment from Jonathan Rothwell

    14.58, 06/01/2008

With this in mind, I wonder if the Prime Minister centres text on his reports by repeatedly pressing the spacebar?

This government seems to be one of the most incompetent, as far as IT goes, that the world has (well, perhaps barring the US government, who seem to think that they can beef up their army’s security simply by switching to a different operating system).

Comment from Mort Karman

    02.21, 09/01/2008

Will the UK government by my Horrible Product computer?
Perhaps I can then use the money to get one which works.
I hae releated my problems with H-P computers on this blog before.
I have been given three of them as replacements by Walmart in the past year since we can;t get any of them to work right.
H-P via their tech support in India tells me how to bring the things back to square one and reprogram everything.
This worksfor anywhere from a few days to a few months and the same thing happens.
My wife has a Dell which works fine.
On Sunday evening we had a tornad warning in the area and all fire and emergency people were called to duty and shelters opened.
I have a Storm Preditor program on my computer which is real time from the National WeatherService.
I use it and my police fire scanners to alert other disabled and elderly folks of instant update.
It is usually a few minutes faster then the TV and radio news and they all say it helps. Sort of brings me back to the old days as a newsman)
My @#$!!& H-P computer deceided to act like my first wife in the middle of the emergency. ((that means the H-P put out, but not like it should)
I quickly switched the Storm Preditor to the Dell and we got through the eening intact.
The tornadoes passed a few miles to the north and other them some power outages, a couple house fires caused by lightening , and some tree branches all over the place everything is okay.
Just the type of computer the UK government needs.

Comment from Mort Karman

    19.38, 10/01/2008

As you can tell from my last post, I was not having a good day health wise.
I should not try to write when my blood sugar is down around 50.
On the other hand, perhaps the UK government can use another senile old man in quality control.
I could be the Minister in charge of SPELING and TYPOOS.
At least I would have a lot of similar people to work with.
Or I could stay here and do the same thing for this administration.

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