The Early Days: Part II

The government took down Napster but, there were still bit-torrents like Kazaa.  Man that site was my best friend.  Not literally, but it was the first time I download a Muse song.  This was in like 2002 or early 2003.  Download speeds were like 1.5Mbps and it would still take like 5 minutes to download a 4MB .mp3.  (Nowadays, emails can be bigger than 4MB and are almost downloaded instantaneous.)  As I progressed through high school I took a typing class.  To this day I still can’t break 50 wpm.  Honestly I think it’s a dexterity thing.  I’ve been cracking my knuckles since like 1st grade.  Also, I’m not the best speller.  I blame the Modern English language.  I took 4 years of Spanish and 2 semesters in college and learned more about the English language and why it’s the worst language in the world.  Ask people from other countries they’ll tell you.  Like the whole order of words, verbs and conjugation.  Spanish, French, Italian and other Latin based languages that aren’t English got it right.  For example, if you want to say I like red apples in Spanish you would say Quiero las manzanas.  Which is way more efficient then, “I like red apples.” Because you conjugate Quere with o you know that it means “I” like.  Instead of two words you get one.   You see.  More efficient.  Don’t even get me started on pronunciation or spelling.  Well, now that you mention it in Spanish you know that every letter has a distinct pronunciation.  So when you spell it and say the word it will be the same every time.  English on the other hand has all these exceptions. “I before E except after C.”  Probably due to the fact that we borrow French, Latin and Spanish words from other languages all the time. These words are called loanwords.  God I hate English.

Speaking of language, IT has its own language.  And mastering this language takes years.  I think the biggest learning curve for anyone trying to learn IT language is the fact that almost everything has multiple names and uses.  For example, if I asked you what do you call the thing at the end of a network segment (or you ask what the heck is a network segment).  You would probably respond with four different names for that thing.  They’d all be right.  Just when you talk to the subject matter expert they will probably scoff at you when you use the word that isn’t the most right.  Try talking to a Cisco guy he would say that’s the end device because its’ at the end of the network and doesn’t forward anything to another part of the network.  To the Cisco guy everything is a device.  But, really it’s just a PC.  And that’s probably why non-IT folk get so upset with us.  Probably due to that fact that we just treat them like another device on our network.  Another “thing” we have to manage.  But, that’s not how all of us IT people treat non-IT folk.  For the first 6 months I was in Help Desk and Client Support I really tried to treat every issue and problem as if each were as import and unique as the person experiencing the problem.  That quickly wore off.  Soon, the only attention was when something wasn’t working.  I’m getting ahead of myself.  I will explain more later.

It’s kind of amazing if you have every watched when there’s a problem and the end user will almost stop at nothing to find someone in IT to bitch at until they agree to help them.  I was hiding one time after I accidentally broke something.  I knew the risk of changing the particular part of the system during production hours and I was a little over confident.  Once it broke I sort wanted to see how long it would take someone to find me.  Like hide and go seek.  Except that I kept moving.  I didn’t stay in one place.  Well in case you were wondering it took 10 minutes.  Damn I gotta find better hiding spots.  If only they put that much effort into their jobs everyday I bet, they probably wouldn’t be working in an entry level position for 10 years.


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