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Air Traffic Controller: Windows Crashes Turn Flight Plan Delivery Into Manual Affair

TMO Letters - Air Traffic Controller: Windows Crashes Turn Flight Plan Delivery Into Manual Affair

by , 4:15 PM EDT, April 24th, 2003

In a column today, I took JetBlue to task for "standardizing" on Windows and Microsoft software. A good many Observers then took me to task, largely telling me to get over myself. Having been doing this as long as I have, such criticism is not in the least unexpected, but when I got a letter from someone claiming to be an Air Traffic Controller, it was obvious that I should pass it on. According to this person, a crashed server has been turning flight plan delivery into a manual affair. From the e-mail, whose author requested anonymity:

Just read your article about JetBlue and found it very timely!! I am an Air Traffic Controller at one of JetBlue's "hub" airports. Only a week or so ago, we had JetBlue pilots calling Clearance Delivery to pick up their flight plans. Strangely, none of the flight plans was available. Seems the JetBlue company computer took a dump and therefore, couldn't submit the flight plans to the FAA computer. We had to enter the information manually. I was going to make a smart remark about trusting Microsoft products, but decided to hold my tongue. This happened not just that one day, but on a couple of other occasions lately [emphasis added]. Maybe they SHOULD think about other platforms!!

Obviously, I can't confirm whether or not this person is an Air Traffic Controller, so the letter could be a hoax. Personally, I doubt that, but it certainly seemed appropriate to pass it on in light of my column.

As the writer said: Maybe JetBlue should think about other platforms, especially before bragging about how dandy its Microsoft solutions are.

Bryan
Editor
TMO

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