Ai-yay-yay-yay-yay

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Copyright still retained by Scott Adams and original image can be found here

One more inevitable thing that cannot be helped. My joining the brood doesnt help elevate my previous position. 😐

A kid’s dream

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I hail from a middle-class family but I was able to play in the houses and offices of our more well-off relatives. During those times I always associated the “table” as a symbol of power and success. My mother is a public school teacher and I attributed her position with her photo clippings and plastic covered wooden table. I dreamed that someday I would have a table of my own that would bear the title of supervisor, manager, or simply put a boss.

In the childish view of somebody who have observed how hard it is to do manual labor, the “table” espouses a position of power; a capacity to make other people follow my whim. I would sometimes pantomime signing papers and giving people tongue lashings. It seemed like an easy life wherein my job entails sitting on a chair and transforming pieces of paper to near priceless artifacts with the simple flick of the pen in my hand.

Fast forward 25 years or so later and I can only shake my head on the foolishness of that dream. I could say that I am a supervisor but my work has not gone lighter than when I started. I am writing this piece after taking a break on my 15th hour since I started working. Those who are higher than me work more hours than I do as they seemingly take on a lot of tasks and projects. If I could talk to my past self I would have said: your dream is good my so innocent friend, but you do not understand the gravity of the responsibility that comes with that luxurious job. Tasks do not come easier as you progress your career. On second thought, jobs worth keeping become more complex and more frustrating.

Salut to all who thinks moving up the ranks mean less work. Cherish your innocence while it lasts.

Btw, I heard CEO jobs are actually easier… 😉

Welcome to reality! A parody.

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The image below was posted in a yammer group and I felt inspired to write a parody. All resemblance to real life are imaginary. It is not meant to reflect my place of work. Now with the legalese out of the way…

welcome-to-apple

There is work and there is your life-at-work.

The kind of work that has your and your team's fingerprints all over it as documented in the metrics you worked all night and submitted 1 day late.
The kind of work that you'd never compromise on, except with that tiny incident one that we don't really like to talk about as the metrics doesn't agree with it.
That we don't expect you to sacrifice your weekend but expect you to do it anyway because we over committed and under-estimated.
You can do that kind of work here. People here think safety first, where CYA is the norm and security, as we defined it, is the top most priority.
People come here to swim in the deep end but you need a swimmer and diving certification before you can do that. And you need to sign a waiver. Afterwards we still don't let you do it because it is risky and it wasn't an activity approved by HR.

They want their work to add up to something. We don't know yet but the laws of physics say that energy is not lost so it must go somewhere. I think it becomes a paycheck or something.

Something big, at least as was stated in the executive memos. Something that couldn't happen anywhere else except for Dilbert cartoons.

Welcome to the place where dreams meet the pavement of reality. In the wipe out kind of way.

Bashwk to basics

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It was the first time to generate and send the report. It deals with downloading a lot of access logs, combining them based on certain scenarios, filtering out the cruft, slicing and dicing per service accessed and then tallying the responses to see if they meet the SLA.

The first manual extraction took around 4 hours to create the report for the most critical service. After that, I sat down and created the bash+awk script to do the slicing, dicing and tallying part. It took me 3 hours to create and test the script but after that I can generate the reports for 6 services in 30 minutes, where the bulk of the time was spent in downloading the latest logs (~10minutes) and pasting the data in Excel to create the “bayoootiful” graphs.

I figured if I can automate the rest then the reports can be generated under 15minutes, and I can hook it up on a continuous service so it will send it automatically every night. After that I can work on getting rid of the need to go through Excel if I can find some API to generate it and publish them as PDFs. JFree perhaps but my Java skills are already rusty. I also need something native if possible as I cannot install stuff on the office machines. The zLinux servers are pretty much off limits though I think there is a python interpreter installed.

One thing I can say is that automation and f/loss rocks. The script is too specific and covered by IPR so I cannot post it here but it is something that most scripters should be able to do.

ciao!

I am Human

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I woke up on the wrong side of the bed today so I need to vent out and nitpick… 🙂

I want to reiterate the advocacy of minimizing the use of the word “resources” when referring to members of your team.

A resource is a finite, inanimate stock or tool. A hammer is a tool therefore it is a resource. My time and skills are resources but I don’t want to suffer the indignity of being categorized as a tool. I am neither a tool nor a resource; and I would appreciate not being abstracted to the same level as a computer. Computers are dumb, they can only follow instructions.

Use FTE to refer to the workload unit, but use team member, colleague, personnel or employee when referring to the human being. Respect the person doing the work. The IT industry may be being overhauled and optimized with automation, but this remains a creative industry and not a place for human automatons. Each member is unique and brings something special to the table.

ciao!

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