August 7, 2008: No New Job For Me

Check out the slow motion lightning on Today’s Big Thing.  This is truly awesome.  Thanks to Vikas for the link.

I was pretty tired when I pulled myself out of bed at six thirty this morning considering the fact that I did not fall asleep until sometime after one in the morning.  I am covering the early morning shift today for someone at work so it is just this one day this week.  It fit perfectly into my schedule to cover this shift today except that I had not planned on working so late last night.  So today I am very tired, but that really isn’t anything new.

Tomorrow is 08-08-08.  Just interesting.  In just over three years we will have 11-11-11 which is the coolest.  That is, if a date can every be cool based on the recurrence of numerals within it.  It is on the boundary of cool at the very best, I think.

My morning was incredibly busy as I worked on the same project that had kept me up so late last night.  I have been determined to get to the root cause of this major issue that we have had at the office.  It has been going on for two or three months and has caused countless issues and I would be so happy to have it resolved.  Not just for the sake of getting it resolved but also for the opportunity to show up the “escalation” people who are supposed to have been able to fix this for us quite easily but have been unable to even grasp the core of the issue after two months with it.  This is my first serious bought with the problem but it is a tough one indeed.

By mid morning I actually had the solution to the issue and was quite gleeful indeed.  What a relief if was to figure that mystery out, and quite a rush as well.  This has been plaguing all of us for quite some time.  It is quite the feather in our administration team’s caps as well as the engineering team who claim to be our next level of escalation have been completely lost in this issue and unable to come up with a single clue.

Not one hour after completely embarrassing the engineering team, again (first time was two months ago, then someone else on my team showed them up pretty bad yesterday, then again this morning) their manager called me to tell me that they had decided not to offer me a position on their team.  Ha ha.  Talk about being a soar loser.

It is sad, of course, to not be offered a position for which you interview.  In this case, though, it is a bit embarrassing to be turned down by a team that so conspicuously can’t do their own jobs and need me to do it for them as it is!  The issues of the last few days were nothing compared to the issue that I resolved for them a few months back and that issue did not involve a “problem” that they could not solve but a massive architectural disaster that they had caused.

Oh well.  After this morning it would have been embarrassing to have gone to work there anyway.  People that I work with, that I really respect, have no respect for this team and would not be at all impressed if I was to switch over there.  In hindsight (with the wine of sour grapes, of course) staying exactly where I am seems like the far better decision anyway.  I am thankful, in some ways, that the decision was not really mine to make as I was far more likely to make a poor one.

Most of my evening was spent supporting Jeremy remotely as he worked to install a dozen computers at dad’s house with OpenSUSE 11 Linux.  It is actually a rather challenging project because the computers are so old with the slowest being a Celeron 433 and the fastest being a few Pentium III 1GHz and several different speeds in between.  Anything without a PC133 memory interface is being considered “obsolete” and will not be used for installation at the school.  Even a PIII 667 will do the trick – it is amazing how much performance one can eek from a Pentium 3 with enough PC133 memory.  But fall back to the older memory systems and the performance is just too slow, in my opinion, for desktop use.  The PIII 667/133 has been my “drop dead line” for desktops for six years at least.  That machine had just enough performance to make it the longest lived useful desktop platform of which I know.  These days, having the 1GHz machine is quite noticably better, however, and we are trying to get as many of those installed as possible.

I worked the early evening with Jeremy on the installs and then spent the late evening writing a script that can be run against the machines to take them from the raw install state to a finished product.  I am used to using RPM and YUM on Linux but now I am automating with Zypper which is similar to YUM but a little different.

I got to bed at a reasonable hour and listened to a little more of “Shadow fo the Silk Road.”  I am now halfway through the book.

If you need more cool stuff, check out the face on this girl after performing a pretty incredible landing into a pond.

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