discussions of various subjects - emphasis on food and recipes, travel, art, gardening

=,=`==ivy==`=,=

forum guidelines . eyeglasses  disclaimer - read me . recipes from our kitchen . blog from our kitchen 

how to put a Webster's Online Dictionary search box on your site


etherwork.net
discussions of various subjects - emphasis on food and recipes, travel, art, gardening
 
Register Log in Log in to check your private messages FAQ Memberlist Search Usergroups etherwork.net Forum Index

postal code - just what exactly is it for???

 
This forum is locked: you cannot post, reply to, or edit topics.   This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies.    etherwork.net Forum Index » anything and everything (within reason) - archive
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
llizard (aka ejm)
Administrator


Joined: 06 Oct 2004
Posts: 548
Location: Canada

Slogan:

Come to Life. Come to Laziness.

PostPosted: Tue 11 Jan, 2005 2:28 pm    Post subject: postal code - just what exactly is it for??? Reply with quote

I just got a letter returned to me from our stellar boo! postal boo! service. Why was it "returned to sender"? stomp Apparently the recipient was "unknown/moved". I know for a fact that the recipient is neither unknown nor moved. The recipient is my sister.

However, I confess that I did make a small error in the address. I left off one word that I now know is absolutely essential for the poor brainless ones who work (and I'm afraid I may be using that term loosely) at boo! Canada Post boo! . Yes, I neglected to put "avenue" after her street name. I included her first initial, last name, the house address, the street name (or "avenue" name for those literal ones out there), the city name, the province AND the postal code. Yes. The postal code was there. The postal code was correct.

I did a reverse look up of the postal code to see if perhaps I had made an error about the street (avenue) name. No. There it is in black and white.

So. What exactly is the postal code for??

edit: I just used the handy service at mapquest to discover that there is only one possibility of "avenue" for my sister's street (avenue) name. There is no "drive", "cresc", "road", "street", "line", etc. etc. for that name. Only "avenue". stomp stomp stomp


Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
David (login problems)
not logged in






PostPosted: Wed 12 Jan, 2005 8:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it's known as "care in the community". The hospitals for mentally ill people are now being closed after getting a lot of bad press. The modern solution is to find give them jobs in the postal service and local government.


Back to top
David (login problems)
not logged in






PostPosted: Wed 12 Jan, 2005 9:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm laughing, but not in a good way. stomp


Back to top
DataRyder
registered


Joined: 14 Nov 2004
Posts: 92
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Wed 12 Jan, 2005 9:46 am    Post subject: Re: postal code - just what exactly is it for??? Reply with quote

llizard wrote:
So. What exactly is the postal code for??


I don't think the postal code is being used as efficiently as the postal authorities would have us believe and yet we are told that without its accurate use, mail won't be delivered.

(For forum members living outside Canada, a fictitious example of a Canada postal code might look like this: U8X 3K9. Needless to say many of us only remember 2 or 3 postal codes at best. It's far too complicated for more. In the days before the internet we actually had to go down and look up codes in little books provided by the post office.)

I once sent a letter to my parents house in Victoria B.C. Canada. I made a mistake and the last number in the postal code was written incorrectly. The letter came back as undeliverable. I remember being quite angry at the time because even with my incorrect postal code, the letter would have gotten to within 50 or 60 houses of where my parents live. If our last name had been Smith or Jones this may have been forgivable, but our last name is anything but usual.

My parents house sits alone at the end of a cul de sac. While looking up my parents correct postal code on the internet I noticed that their house is the only house in Canada possessing that postal code. The only house mind you. I decided to conducted an experiment.

I decided that if the almighty postal code was so necessary, so accurate, so efficient that just the postal code alone should be sufficient to deliver mail. I bought a cheap post card and sent it. The address looked something like:

Mr. & Mrs. DataRyder sr.
Victoria B.C. U8X 1K9
Canada

By rights it should have reached them. It didn't. A week later the card was returned to me as "Insufficient Address".

http://www.factscanada.ca/friday/friday-2001-01-01-05.shtml
Quote:
'When a person deposits a letter in a mail box, the box is cleared at a scheduled time and the letter is taken by truck to the main post office where parcels, large envelopes and metered mail are separated and the rest is sent to be cancelled. Mail [...] is sorted by street names into letter-carrier routes or sent to postal stations for the letter carriers, who sort it by street and house number for delivery.'


If in the final analysis mail is sorted 'by street and house number' why the need for something as cumbersome as a 6 digit alpha-numeric code?

DataRyder




Last edited by DataRyder on Wed 12 Jan, 2005 3:07 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mats
registered


Joined: 14 Oct 2004
Posts: 503
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Wed 12 Jan, 2005 9:52 am    Post subject: Postal Code devised for automated bulk sorting Reply with quote

If I remember correctly, the postal code was designed to facilitate automatic bulk sorting . At the time (70's) there was concern about 'privacy'. Codes were never to be lower than a block-face. So, a code can let a machine sort mail down to individual mail routes for carriers but cannot identify an address.
For this purpose, it works well. I don't know of Canada's mail volume, but I would guess it is huge. To sort it all by hand would be difficult .

If a letter gets into the right stream through this automatic sorting, then, I would guess it is up to the individual carrier to make sense of the rest of the information on the envelope. This cannot be easy as many letters are addressed in "handwriting " (one of the worlds hardest-to-break codes).

I think that the break in the chain for your letter occurred here.

In talking to carriers about their problems, I have yet to run into one of those that you all "poor brainless ones". Rather, I find them to be people who try their best with sometimes difficult problems. (no, I'm NOT a mailman).


Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
llizard (aka ejm)
Administrator


Joined: 06 Oct 2004
Posts: 548
Location: Canada

Slogan:

Come to Life. Come to Laziness.

PostPosted: Wed 12 Jan, 2005 10:09 am    Post subject: Re: Postal Code devised for automated bulk sorting Reply with quote

MEF wrote:

If a letter gets into the right stream through this automatic sorting, then, I would guess it is up to the individual carrier to make sense of the rest of the information on the envelope. This cannot be easy as many letters are addressed in "handwriting " (one of the worlds hardest-to-break codes).

I think that the break in the chain for your letter occurred here.


ahem... the name, address and postal code were clearly printed in block letters on the envelope. Only a blind person would have been unable to decipher what was printed. The only thing that was missing was "avenue" after the street (avenue) name. And I repeat, the postal code was correct.

While I do agree that for the most part, Canada Post is actually delivering mail correctly AND that any postal carriers I have met have seemed compos mentos (sp??) and reasonable, I have to say that many postal workers who work (shuffle around) behind the desks at the offices I have visited do not display these same stellar qualities.

It's my feeling that the temporary Christmas staff (who DO work) had been released by the time this particular letter was delivered and that the regular jobsecureforlife hungover staff had taken over.

But maybe I'm just being mean.... stomp


Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mats
registered


Joined: 14 Oct 2004
Posts: 503
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Wed 12 Jan, 2005 4:59 pm    Post subject: Mistakes happen Reply with quote

An imperfect system.




Last edited by Mats on Fri 14 Jan, 2005 9:34 am; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
llizard (aka ejm)
Administrator


Joined: 06 Oct 2004
Posts: 548
Location: Canada

Slogan:

Come to Life. Come to Laziness.

PostPosted: Wed 12 Jan, 2005 5:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MEF, there are always exceptions who actually do their jobs. It's quite likely that almost all of the postal employees do their jobs.

However, this particular letter that was erroneously returned to us was handled by people who were not being particularly creative. They let the machines do their work for them.

I get back to the original query. Just what is the postal code there for? When I did a reverse search of the postal code, the result turned up four (4) houses on the street name that was printed on the envelope. If the postal code is really being used to sort initially, the letter would have been sent into a section that was for this street alone.

This is clearly NOT what happened. In fact it seems quite clear that the postal code was not used at all.

Another case in point: we received a letter to our house that was addressed (in neat and tidy printing) to a name not ours, our house number with an extra number one tacked onto the left side of the number, a street name that was our street name but with "street" instead of "avenue", a city name that was not our city, the correct province and a postal code that tallied with the city indicated by the postal code on the address. Now, if the postal code had been used for initial sorting, the letter would not have ended up in our city sorting area. And even if it did, one would think this city's sorters would have noticed that the city name looked just a little odd to them. I used the internet to "people" search the name on the envelope and turned up the address that was written on the envelope.... (Incidentally, the envelope was not sticky or wanting to stay attached to other letters that were delivered in the same bunch)

Granted, these things happen relatively rarely and usually the post office appears to deliver the mail correctly. But it still seems to me that the postal code is not being used for anything but to give us grief.


Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
CAM
registered


Joined: 14 Oct 2004
Posts: 494
Location: Canada

Slogan:

Can't Do It In Real Life? Do It On Llizard's Forum

PostPosted: Thu 13 Jan, 2005 1:14 am    Post subject: competence and letter handlers Reply with quote

I suspect that someone may have made a mistake.


Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
llizard (aka ejm)
Administrator


Joined: 06 Oct 2004
Posts: 548
Location: Canada

Slogan:

Come to Life. Come to Laziness.

PostPosted: Thu 13 Jan, 2005 8:26 am    Post subject: Re: competence and letter handlers Reply with quote

CAM wrote:
I suspect that someone may have made a mistake.


No doubt. la la la


Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
This forum is locked: you cannot post, reply to, or edit topics.#phpforum   This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies.    etherwork.net Forum Index » anything and everything (within reason) - archive All times are GMT - 5 Hours
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001- 2004, 2006 phpBB Group
Theme created by phpBBStyles.com | Themes Database

-,-`--ivy--`-,------

                      *
                     *
                    []
                    ||
      *          *  ||*
    *          *  *|  |
        *__    _*_ |__|
        \*/    \*/ | *|
ejm      Y      Y  |__|   =(}
        _|_    _|_


Webster's Online Dictionary
with Multilingual Thesaurus Translation

English Non-English

HTML coding for the Online Dictionary search box