A little vicarious fun watching a website implode

Subject: General Tech | November 8, 2013 - 01:07 PM |
Tagged: oops, blame canada

Drop the politics for a minute and sit back and read about the technical side of the failures at healthcare.gov.  It's not about what the site is or what it represents, it is a look at how a poorly designed and implemented site plan can cause huge problems.  If you are involved in this type of work it will give you a chance to feel smug about your own successes and if you are thinking about getting into this line of work you can get an idea of the possible problems you will face trying to set up and maintain a major website.  Blaming Canada and CGI Federal can be fun but perhaps not the complete story though you can be sure some of the Slashdot comments will.

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"The War Room notes catalog IT problems — dashboards weren't showing data, servers didn't have the right production data, third party systems weren't connecting to verify data, a key contractor had trouble logging on, and there wasn't enough server capacity to handle the traffic, or enough people on the help desks to answer calls. To top it off, some personnel needed for the effort were furloughed because of the shutdown. Volunteers were needed to work weekends, but there were bureaucratic complications."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

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Source: Slashdot
November 8, 2013 | 01:07 PM - Posted by Jeremy Hellstrom

Go political and I will kill your comments, keep it clean.

November 8, 2013 | 05:16 PM - Posted by praack

Hmm maybe on or two comments regarding having Canadians run a US government healthcare website (bit of irony i would say).

but really- 2 weeks of testing? 1 test that failed with 200 people? and all is well for a system that is to handle millions per minute?

the cost is what is to be expected of a US Government sponsored site- too much cost due to low oversight and poor contracting.

Just wait for the Point Release costs.......

November 8, 2013 | 06:53 PM - Posted by windwalker

With the ridiculous requirements of absolute stinginess and borderline absurd complexity it's a miracle any systems governments try to contract out actually end up shipping.

November 8, 2013 | 08:07 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

They have fixed what was not broken on the government do not call website! Now, on the file a complaint web based form, the provide information form entries can not be edited, if one character is wrong, the complete field must be re-entered, where before all the fields could be edited! The web page has a new look, almost exactly the same as the previous web page, with a few colors changed, but now with reduced functionalty! The government needs to standardize its web page design, and its IT hiring practices across the entire system, subcontractors included! With every department/bureau/office required to use a standardized IT HR department (staffed with certified IT professionals) to fill the government IT positions, for all government offices! Letting some government non IT trained appointees do their own IT hiring leads to problems, such as healthcare.gov is currently experiencing!

November 9, 2013 | 03:56 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Why did we use a second-rate outfit ?
Someone got paid off I suspect.

November 10, 2013 | 06:47 PM - Posted by paid off (not verified)

The contractor that won the bid failed to pass all the normal requirements. But they did contribute to Obama's campaign. Not so much paid off as advanced investment... ;)

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