Fighting the IT overlords
Years ago, I needed an external direct Internet connection out of a lab. The first solution was to call a broadband provider and install a DSL line, but the IT department was trying to stop labs from adding more such external lines and started pushing its own solution.
Setting it up was complex because the people working on the infrastructure had never heard of this. I believe I was their Guinea Pig. As well, requesting changes was always difficult because it required second level support and the first level staff didn’t know what I was talking about.
One day I decided to document the process to help future generations. For my own amusement, I started writing it as a letter for “future occupants of the lab” where I detailed this big mistery of our ongoing, silent war against a dreadful enemy: the IT department. Later, when I was moving to a different job, I added other things to that document that I thought important in the day to day operations of a lab like that. The final document was nearly 100 pages long and had this cover page saying “To the future lurkers of Roberto’s Lair.” I did re-read the document a couple of years after I left that job and found it in some archive. It was poorly written, filled with typos and with fragrant errors. But I had fun writing it.
That was many, many moons ago.
Recently I had an exchange with someone online. The guy said he thought my name was familiar but we ended up not figuring out where he might know me from. Until today.
- From: [REDACTED]
Sent: Friday, June 24, 2011 1:58 PM
To: Teixeira, Roberto S
Subject: I knew I knew you!
- I knew I knew you! I had to check it to make sure I was right and I think I was. Aren’t you the guy who wrote the document about the IT overlords? We have two copies of that document here with lots of annotations bt we still use them. I need to scan and send them to you.
I’d love that.