So I ran in to a weird problem that I thought I would share the reason for it and the solution. I had some PDFs that had form fillable fields. They were filled out by people and sent in. The problem was that the all the fields were blank unless you clicked on them, then the data was shown. After some googling I found out that if a person fills out the form on a Mac using Preview instead of the actual adobe reader, it saves it in a buggy way. The way to solve the problem is to open the file in adobe acrobat, export the data, then import it back in.
I got a Computer Science & Engineering degree a few years ago. Most of the things I learned in school I have never used in any job. I never need to draw a finite state machine, or know how the path a hard drive takes to get at non-continuous data, or understand the caching mechanism of the L1 cache is, or Von Neumann architecture. Most of the skills I have needed in my job, I have learned on my own, or I have learned because the problem came up at work, and I had to learn the skill extremely fast. However, this week, I ran into a problem that would take me a long time to figure out the problem if I had not had my computer theory classes.
An employee was trying to get a sum total of several record together to equal 0, but even though the math was right it was coming up with 7.13249493E-14. This looks like a big number, but it is really just the computer’s way of writing in scientific notation 7.13249493 x 10-14, which is really 0.0000000000000713249493. This is a very small number, when I saw this I knew what it was.