Sharky

Questions that Sharky gets a lot

Q: What's a pilot fish?

A: There are two answers to that question. One is the Mother Nature version: Pilot fish are small fish that swim just ahead of sharks. When the shark changes direction, so do the pilot fish. When you watch underwater video of it, it looks like the idea to change direction occurred simultaneously to shark and pilot fish.

Thing is, sharks go pretty much anywhere they want, eating pretty much whatever they want. They lunge and tear and snatch, but in so doing, leave plenty of smorgasbord for the nimble pilot fish.

The IT version: A pilot fish is someone who swims with the sharks of enterprise IT -- and lives to tell the tale. Just like in nature, a moment's inattention could end the pilot fish's career. That's life at the reef.

Q: Are all the Sharky stories true?

A: Yes, as best we can determine.

Q: Where do the Sharky tales come from?

A: From readers. Sharky just reads and rewrites and basks in the reflected glory of you, our readers. It is as that famous fish-friendly philosopher Spinoza said, "He that can carp in the most eloquent or acute manner at the weakness of the human mind is held by his fellows as almost divine."

Q: Do I have to write my story in Sharky-ese?

A: No. Not at all. Just be sure to give us details. What happened, to whom, what he said, what she said, how it all worked out. If Sharky likes your tale of perfidy, heroism or just plain weirdness at your IT shop, he will supply his particular brand of Shark snark.

Q: I've got a really funny story, but I could get fired if my old trout of a boss found out I told you. How confidential is what I send to Sharky?

A: We don't publish names: yours, your boss's, your trout's, your company's. We try to file off the serial numbers, though there's no absolute guarantee that someone who lived through the incident won't recognize himself. Our aim is to share the outrageous, knee-slapping, milk-squirting-out-your-nose funny tales that abound in the IT world, not to get you fired. That would not be funny.

Q: How do I get each new Shark Tank tale emailed to me?

Easy. Subscribe to the newsletter.

Q: Where are the Sharkives?

Tales of old can be found in Sharky's archive.

Throwback Thursday: Some people aren’t satisfied with eight nines

Throwback Thursday: Some people aren’t satisfied with eight nines

Just round up.

Wayback Wednesday: Ditch the glitch

Wayback Wednesday: Ditch the glitch

There is always a root cause.

Ready, set, go

Ready, set, go

You can bet it was something to see.

Memory-Lane Monday: 240 would be twice as good, right?

Memory-Lane Monday: 240 would be twice as good, right?

Maybe it was the way he said it.

Seasonal affective disorder

Seasonal affective disorder

If you want a job done right …

Throwback Thursday: Looks like it’s gonna be another six months

Throwback Thursday: Looks like it’s gonna be another six months

Did you just ask me to sue you?

A lovely spring day

A lovely spring day

No animals were harmed in the retelling of this tale.

Time-Machine Tuesday: Get a room!

Time-Machine Tuesday: Get a room!

Automation, with time limits.

Did you try changing the channel?

Did you try changing the channel?

Not dead. Not even resting.

Flashback Friday: User see, user do

Flashback Friday: User see, user do

Now I know my ABC’s, tell me what you think of me.

Throwback Thursday: And what could be more important than that?

Throwback Thursday: And what could be more important than that?

Nice guys finish first?

A rose by any other acronym …

A rose by any other acronym …

Was the original name best after all?

Listen to Betty

Listen to Betty

It’s dysfunction all the way down.

Out of print

Out of print

Some people are really bad at following instructions.

A ghost in the fax machine

A ghost in the fax machine

Not the best place for things to get weird.

Throwback Thursday: You don’t own it

Throwback Thursday: You don’t own it

That server can’t be in two places at once.

Wayback Wednesday: Educators need some education

Wayback Wednesday: Educators need some education

Caught in a bureaucratic storm.

There’s support, and then there’s SUPPORT

There’s support, and then there’s SUPPORT

The perimeter is a little squishy.

Next time, draw him a map

Next time, draw him a map

Oh, THAT 3302!

Oh yeah

Oh yeah

If only we had met a day earlier.

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