This is why, now and then, we reinvent the wheel

Flashback to the 1980s, when this Cobol programmer has a new job -- and his first assignment is whipping up a new report for a major application. What he doesn't know is hoe he's expected to do it.

01/29/15

Technically, you CAN do that, but...

This school district gets its PCs from a local computer company that does a perfectly reasonable job of building them -- but the keyboards are a problem.

01/28/15

So THAT'S why they think it's "their" printer

It's more than a few years ago, this pilot fish is the first network administrator at a small private college, and his users were just getting used to the idea of network-attached printers.

01/27/15

Are you REALLY happier knowing why?

Sysadmin pilot fish gets a request from a department manager to restore a file directory. It's marked "high priority" -- and it says all but one of the files have gone missing. What's going on here?

01/26/15

Sometimes a demo works just like it's supposed to

It's a few decades back, and this pilot fish works as an installer for a minicomputer vendor -- with one customer who's just very unclear on a key computer-room concept.

01/23/15

Whatever works

This company's phone system keeps having intermittent issues, but when IT calls the phone company's support line, the techs there insist no one else is complaining and there's nothing they can do.

01/22/15

Yeah, we've had years that felt like that too

Consultant pilot fish has written a relatively simple program for this accounting system to roll up costs by months and years. So why is it taking so long to run -- and generating so many journal entries?

01/21/15

Budget cuts? Welcome to the club

Budgets have been tightened at the site where this IT pilot fish works, and the effects are visible in almost every direction. So why is management suddenly interested in sponsoring employee clubs?

01/20/15

Good thing this could never happen today, huh?

It's the 1980s, and a couple guys from this public gas utility's IT shop drop by the Engineering department to get the serial number of what they're sure is the only mainframe terminal in the building -- right?

01/19/15

Gotcha!

Desktop support pilot fish at a healthcare research facility finds a phishing email in his inbox one day -- or at least that's what it sort of looks like.

01/16/15

Your new IT TLA is ATM: Always Talk to Maintenance

This pilot fish works in maintenance at a major airport, and he gets word that the networking group will be installing a new link from one end of a runway to the other in order. But they know what they're doing, right?

01/15/15

Why we love outsourcing, Purchasing, and vendors

This pilot fish's company has outsourced software purchasing to -- well, someone who appears to be seriously reading-impaired, or maybe just understand software licensing.

01/14/15

Why "over-engineered" is NOT a dirty word

Inventory time is coming around, and this pilot fish is assigned to write a program to do a parts explosion -- but the specs sound just a little questionable to this programmer pilot fish.

01/13/15

Now aren't you glad you cleared your weekend?

This application upgrade is running behind schedule, so a senior manager on the business side agrees to work over the weekend to help get caught up. There's just one little insurmountable problem...

01/12/15

Coffee break

This pilot fish installs several phone systems connecting an oil refinery to offshore drilling platforms. But a few weeks later, he's called back -- turns out calls to the platforms fail several times a day.

01/09/15

Grounded

It's a winter day, and this part-time computer tech is talking with his boss, who's sitting at the console writing code -- and suddenly says, "What was that? Something just rebooted the computer."

01/08/15

How much do you want it to be?

It's the 1990s, and this pilot fish is the IT guy for a small manufacturing plant, working with a programmer whose approach to fixing problems is more than a little dubious.

01/07/15

Pretty sure it's the annual inventory fail

This organization decides to outsource its central supply function to other departments, and that leads to the usual game of musical locations -- and a discovery.

01/06/15

Did I mention that I didn't change my password?

Pilot fish logs into a user's PC to install software and leaves voice mail to let him know the job is done. But soon fish has TWO voice mails saying the user can't log in -- and he didn't change his password.

01/05/15

No benefit, no doubt

This IT department is interviewing candidates for an Oracle database programmer, and the hiring manager doesn't want to waste time when a prospect clearly isn't going to make the cut -- and he has a plan for that.

01/02/15

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