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Flint 07-26-2006 10:47 AM

Friday July 28th is System Administrator Appreciation Day

Flint 07-27-2006 11:18 AM

Another one: My manager is at my desk, and notices a screensaver running on my PACS workstation (this is a 3 mega-pixel dual landscape monitor setup.) I'm running the "starfield" screensaver that is standard on XP. My manager says, suspiciously, "is that something you added on there?" I explain that it is a standard screensaver inculded in Windows, but she remains vaguely under the impression that I am "hacking" the computers.

Another time, a nurse who had called me to set up a web application on their floor, followed me around telling me about which machines had screensavers on them, and she knew that "we aren't supposed to do that" so could I "take them off." I tried, with no success, to explain that what they were probably told was not to download screensavers. I took the screensavers off of all their PCS, they were running the standard XP "scrolling text."

9th Engineer 07-27-2006 11:49 AM

Alot of the 'computer guys' now are coming with computer engineering degree's rather than electrical eng degree's. At least at my school CE encapsulates both EE and software engineering. it's a pretty tough degree though and it gives great options (I'm told) so I'm not sure how many of them stay in IT before moving up.

glatt 07-27-2006 12:02 PM

Many years ago, I would give pointers to new co-workers on how to do searches in a database we used. I mentioned to one guy that if you put an apostrophe after a search term it would find any longer words that used that word as a root.

A few day later, he came up to me asking "where's that stromboli key again?"

Flint 07-28-2006 09:01 AM


Originally Posted by Flint
Friday July 28th is System Administrator Appreciation Day

That's today, people!!!

Shawnee123 07-28-2006 09:35 AM

Just sent a big thanks out to our IT dept, without whom we would be lost!

glatt 07-28-2006 09:57 AM

Me too. By e-mail. The helpdesk called me back twice, but hung up after one ring each time.


rkzenrage 07-28-2006 10:40 AM

I am a bit of a hypocrite though. I have a basic working knowledge when it comes to cars that are pre-computer/aluminum/fuel injection.
However, I have no desire to know more than I do about the current Star Trek crap we drive, I just drive it and let others work on them when it breaks down. That is their job, if they look down on me for not knowing how to reprogram the fuel to air ratio on the chip, fuck-em, if they let it show I'll take my jack somewhere else.
It is a service industry, I don't know where most computer geeks lost sight of that (though I have to say, some of the guys and gals where I used to work did have a refreshingly outstanding service attitude and did a great job due to it. The exception in my experience and from what I hear, most places).

Kitsune 07-28-2006 11:01 AM


Originally Posted by rkzenrage
It is a service industry, I don't know where most computer geeks lost sight of that

The attitude comes from changes in the industry that turned a lot of positions from interesting ones that involved a lot of new and interesting technology with opportunities to learn and be creative to ones that involve thoughtless, reptitive actions and waking up at any and all hours of the night to make sure Joe User doesn't see a nanosecond of downtime. Plenty of people in the IT field look down on end users because plenty of end users look down on them. The tolerance for interruptions in service has decreased in recent years as more and more corporate function and profit drives are based on the technology that used to fuel the boom.

Just as being a pilot used to be a prestigious career (they're treated like glorified bus drivers) declines in the IT field have decreased the value people place on their jobs and, therefore, the value they put in dealing with customers.

rkzenrage 07-28-2006 11:40 AM

Gonna' bite them on the ass, just like anyone who treats their customers poorly.
It is not Joe user's fault, the decision to take it out on them is ill conceived. I have heard this many times in many forms, "management made a bad decision, so I'm gonna' take it out on my customers". Yeah, that makes perfect sense.
Don't like customers, get out of service... always good advice.

Flint 07-28-2006 12:33 PM

I take care of my customers - their computer illiteracy pays my bills! And when I need to convince the big bosses upstairs of something, guess who is ready to step in as my advocate? My customers. I build relationships of trust, and everybody benefits.

rkzenrage 07-28-2006 12:37 PM

S-the way to do it... the only way.

Kitsune 07-28-2006 01:15 PM


Originally Posted by rkzenrage
I have heard this many times in many forms, "management made a bad decision, so I'm gonna' take it out on my customers". Yeah, that makes perfect sense.
Don't like customers, get out of service... always good advice.

I'm not disagreeing with you, but I will note that it is management's responsibility to ensure that their service reps work in an environment conducive to quality service. The helpdesk at the company I work for sees a high turnover rate: people usually last about three months. The quality of service? Abysmal.

Does management ever take heat for it? Nope. They bring in replacements, provide them with poor training and a shit environment, and then spend their days beating the helpdesk for all the complaints they get. People get frustrated and quit over it. Vicious cycle.

rkzenrage 07-28-2006 01:26 PM

I agree and it is management's fault, constant poor service always is.

Flint 08-06-2006 05:25 PM

True Story
I'm watching King Kong, my cellphone rings, someone is telling me "the mouse is stuck" . . .

Me: "Can you see the cursor on the screen?"
User: "Yes, but it won't move!"
Me: "Okay, do you know where the power button is? Just turn the computer all the way off and then turn it back on."
(This level of user doesn't have Restart on their Ctrl+Alt+Delete menu)
User: "I tried that!"
Me: "And what do you see on the screen now?"
User: "The mouse is stuck, it won't move!"
Me: "Hmmm...I'm gonna say it's probably come un-plugged. Have you checked the wires?"
User: "Yes, I tried that too! Should I call <Manufacturer>?"
Me: "No, they won't be able to diagnose this over the phone. I'll come look at it."

:::driving down the road to get my callback pay:::

:::cellphone rings again:::

User: "I fixed it!"
Me: "What was the problem?"
User: "I shut down the computer and completely re-booted it. I had to shut down both systems."

They had to shut down "both systems" . . .

I'm thinking this means not just the monitor but the actual computer too!

:::back home to finish King Kong:::

I'm still charging for this.

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