Thursday, February 15, 2007

Back Home

I survived my first week on the road. Made a minor mistake going through immigration when I got back to Heathrow but corrected it 5 minutes later. Initially I got in the wrong line -oops I mean queue. There are actually 4 queues at Heathrow but not all are very clearly marked. There are queues for EU citizens, non-EU citizens, IRIS and UK visa holders.

At first I thought that the line for visa holders was not open because there was nobody in it, but after 5 minutes I saw somebody walk into that line and immediately bypass all the non-EU citizens.

IRIS is also a way to speed up immigration at Heathrow. They implemented this project in 2005 which utilizes biometric technology to look at iris patterns to identify an individual. This along with passport information is scanned into a computer. When going through immigration you walk into this little booth it scans your retinas and if the computer recognizes you you're through. I'm not sure it makes sense to sign up for this program since that had a longer queue than the visa holder line. We'll see how it goes.

I ran into an interesting blogging situation while in Germany. I logged in to the admin console to post and the entire site was in German. Since I didn't understand German I wasn't sure what link I should click on to change the language. Luckily I've posted enough that I knew what buttons to hit to publish my post. In talking with one of my colleagues we think that one of our company's products is actually being used to direct users to different language sites depending on what country they are in.

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