Thursday, September 22, 2011

I Suffer So That You Don't Have To

Now I understand why the San Francisco Symphony web site doesn't have full instructions for ordering tickets so that you can choose your own dates, locations, and ticket quantities. From a public relations / competence standpoint, this would be embarrassing to say in public:

  1. Start at the Compose Your Own Subscription URL and buy tickets to at least three (3) concerts.
  2. Wait overnight for a batch job to update your account so that when you log in you always see subscriber prices.
  3. Log in and use the single ticket system to buy the balance of your tickets.
  4. When the tickets arrive for the programs you bought using Compose Your Own, phone or go to the box office to swap the crappy undesirable seats you were assigned by Tessitura.
This is not the database design I would have chosen. I documented any number of enterprise software systems running on top of databases when I worked for Documentum; modern database have extremely large transactional capacity even when they're not running on seriously badass servers. I remember the results of a few tests of object creation speed that were mighty impressive, back in the day. Of course, I have no idea what iron SFS runs its systems on, but I feel confident in saying that real-time database updates such as setting a single field (Subscriber:TRUE) just aren't very expensive.

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