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Even Dirtier IT Jobs 175

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the summon-mike-rowe dept.
snydeq writes "InfoWorld's Dan Tynan offers up 7 'even dirtier IT jobs' in a follow-up of last year's 7 dirtiest jobs in IT. Number four? Zombie console monkey. 'Wanted: Individuals with low self-esteem and high boredom threshold willing to spend long hours poring over server logs and watching blinking lights on a network console.'"
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Even Dirtier IT Jobs

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  • by larry bagina (561269) on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:08AM (#27476265) Journal
    cmdrtaco's toilet slave.
    • by PhxBlue (562201)

      cmdrtaco's toilet slave.

      Oh, c'mon, mods. It's a joke. Laugh!

    • by denzacar (181829) on Monday April 06, 2009 @12:13PM (#27477205) Journal

      Dirty IT job No. 5: Fearless malware hunter
      Wanted: Go-getter with inquisitive nature and a high tolerance for gore, sleaze, and the baser instincts of humanity.

      Hunting malware means crawling the deepest, darkest, nastiest corners of the Web, because that's where the bad stuff usually congregates -- such as drive-by installs on porn and warez sites, says Patrick Morganelli, senior vice president of technology for anti-malware vendor Enigma Software.

      "Due to the nature of the sites we need to monitor, one of our first questions in any job interview here is, 'Would you mind viewing the most offensive pornography you've ever seen in your life?' Because that's what a lot of malware research entails."

      Even employees not actively involved in malware research can encounter deep nastiness, he says. One time an employee merely passed by a support technician's display while the tech was remotely logged in to a customer's PC. What the employee saw on the tech's screen was so disturbing that he quit shortly thereafter.

      Sounds a lot like something like this. [penny-arcade.com]

      • by JWSmythe (446288) *

            Funny that. I knew a porn company who someone had put the word "Nintendo" in the meta tags. They did receive a C&D from Nintendo. :)

            If I hadn't seen it myself, I would have assumed it was just written for the comic.

    • Being Larry Ellison's date [whosdatedwho.com] is conspicuously missing from that list. Does /. run on Oracle??
  • by falcon5768 (629591) <Falcon5768@comcast. n e t> on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:10AM (#27476291) Journal
    Website maintainer after being /.ed would be #8
  • ironic... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Brit_in_the_USA (936704) on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:13AM (#27476337)
    ...or Quantum mechanics at work. By publishing this story we can't now read it.

    Why can't it become routine to (also) link to a cached copy?

    If the /. editors won't implement it, why not a user with a bot looking for fresh stories and doing a ~1st post linking to cached copy?
  • by blind biker (1066130) on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:16AM (#27476381) Journal

    When you look into your children's eyes and wonder what will they wear, eat, buy their books and toys from, somehow you feel you can do less-than-dreamlike jobs.

    It's not pretty, but it beats being unemployed - and being responsible for a family.

    • by MyLongNickName (822545) on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:18AM (#27476413) Journal

      And, perhaps, fulfillment can come from sources other than work...

      • And, perhaps, fulfillment can come from sources other than work...

        It had better. Most jobs get tedious in a few months at most. And thats for the better ones.

      • Yes, I had this in mind exactly, but I failed to explicitly say it in my post: screw career - a warm, loving family where everybody feels protected and safe, that's way WAY more fulfilling than a career.

    • by Smidge207 (1278042) on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:21AM (#27476453) Journal

      When you look into your children's eyes and wonder what will they wear, eat, buy their books and toys from, somehow you feel you can do less-than-dreamlike jobs.

      I have two boys and couldn't disagree more; I just beat them and gamble away my wages.

      =Smidge=

    • And people ask me why I won't have kids...

    • by iamacat (583406) on Monday April 06, 2009 @12:03PM (#27477071)

      So are you saying that your only alternative to naked, starving and illiterate kids is a night shift job as bestiality porn site QA engineer? I think most people have more pleasant, even though lower-paying choices. I just looked at my kid's eyes and I think, if it comes to that, she needs a sane dad more than XBOX360 or a 4 bedroom house.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        a night shift job as bestiality porn site QA engineer?

        I don't see any problems with that job.... Why so dismissive? It's not as if you're the person blowing the horse or being taken from behind by a donkey. I'd object to that, but doing some QA on perverted stuff? Pffffff....

      • by phulegart (997083) on Monday April 06, 2009 @02:12PM (#27478885)

        So, when your choice is making a living wage as the night buy doing QC for a porn site, or working at McDonalds or the corner Gas Station... you say hell yeah Fast Food because it will keep you saner?

        So, when it is a choice between your kids eating and not eating, not whether or not they get an XBox, how tasty does that porn based job look now?

        My current boss is a shit. I'm paid $8.25/hr to repair laptops all day long. Not just replacing boards, but replacing power adapter ports and more when necessary, as well as software issues. I'm in the US of A. Sure, being the QC for a disgusting porn site would be crap WORK compared to what I do now (satisfying work, crap wage)... but I've walked a path few choose to walk. I've seen the choice of "DO work that keeps you sane and go homeless due to lack of money" and I embraced it. I lived in a van for more than a year. I'm going back to living in it. I don't get paid enough to support living, and I don't have the schedule that allows for another job, there are no third shift jobs here, and I can't find another job. I'm not the spouse of a Marine, which is what 95% of the jobs in town are geared for, since this town is a support system for two Marine bases.

        So step down from the pedestal you are on. it isn't the difference between nice and extravagant gifts that we are talking about. It isn't about an XBox or a 4 bedroom house over a 3 bedroom house... it is the choice between homelessness and a two bedroom apartment for a family of 5 (mom and dad in one, all three kids in the other). if you really think it is all about having the money to afford a new console, or making due for one more year with the old one, it is time you woke up. Some of us have to make due with $16k a year. Some of us who work those jobs that fit into your quote "I think most people have more pleasant, even though lower-paying choices." don't make a fraction of what is needed to survive... not thrive, just survive.

        And do you really think working as a dish dog at Applebys or Outback or Longhorn or TGIF or any of those places is really a "more pleasant" lower paying job? How about working fast food? Again, is that more pleasant? What is your frame of reference as to Lower-paying and Higher-paying? What pay range caps the "Lower-paying" scale?

        • by Firethorn (177587)

          Computer ate my first response...

          So, when your choice is making a living wage as the night buy doing QC for a porn site, or working at McDonalds or the corner Gas Station... you say hell yeah Fast Food because it will keep you saner?

          So, when it is a choice between your kids eating and not eating, not whether or not they get an XBox, how tasty does that porn based job look now?

          Everything is a trade off, I think. I have to agree, personally I'd have put it in terms of healthcare and a non-leaking roof, not an X-Box or other toy. When you have kids, as many of those 'responsable' types on TV and writing advice columns, you do what you have to do to take care of your kids. If that means being QC for gay midget porn or a garbageman, so be it.

          Still, where the line varies from individual to individual. There's a reason that clerking often pays less

        • by iamacat (583406)

          Sounds like it's time to pack your van and move to California. We are paying $20/hour to the cheapest handyman we could find and have to book his time weeks in advance. Home based daycares run for about $900/month, so you could beat your current salary just by taking in two children. Even with moderate IT skills, you should be able to do way better. Heck, if I could find a trustworthy programmer with basic skills to work on my own ideas 40 hours a week, for 3 times your salary, I would gladly hire him/her a

      • by Zerth (26112)

        I'd think the camera maintenance guy would find it worse.

        Can you imagine the director dropping of a camera for you to fix and finding a big smear of donkey juice on the CCD and horsecrap in the lens fitting?

        I don't think I could deal with that.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      It's not pretty, but it beats being unemployed - and being responsible for a family.

      A statement which further reinforces my view that having children signals the end of happy life, and the beginning of some kind of badgered and miserable existence, regurgitating the dregs of ones own aspirations into the insatiable beaks of thankless offspring.

      And to think. People bring this on themselves.

      • ...and I have been avoiding calling him. I'm supposed to congratulate him, but I know damn well he's destroyed a really nice lifestyle he had going. I tried getting drunk enough to sound happy, but then became frightened that I'd blurt something heinous.

        I wish I were better at lying.

      • by Kjella (173770) on Monday April 06, 2009 @04:01PM (#27480335) Homepage

        A statement which further reinforces my view that having children signals the end of happy life, and the beginning of some kind of badgered and miserable existence, regurgitating the dregs of ones own aspirations into the insatiable beaks of thankless offspring.

        Of course, if nobody cares about you or depends on you then noone will miss you. It's so simple to do, just not establish those deep bonds and your life is carefree. If you got run over by the bus, a few friends, relatives and coworkers would attend the funeral, shrug and say "terrible shame" and get on with their lives. Noone would cry for you, noone would call out your name, noone would reach out for you in the dark wishing you were there. No kids means you can just split up, take out a divorce if necessary, and go your separate ways- You never have to worry about my kids and your kids and our kids, you've never got commitments deeper than those you can just break away from. It's also an empty life. I want my life to have mattered to someone other than just my selfish self. Not like go down in history but having deeply touched the people closest to me.

        If I ask a girl out on a date I could become happy or sad, but if I don't my heart is just empty. They come in equal measure, if I didn't care much about the date it'd be small and if I was madly in love with her it'd be great. If your boss asked you to write a big and important piece of a business critical software you'd feel pride - and worry. Your solution is say "Can't I just work on this little insignificant piece? That way anything I do won't really matter". and of course you can. Here's what you're missing about most parents I know - they're full of love and full of worry. They wouldn't worry unless they loved their kids, it's the positive love that is the source and the worry is just a reflection. I would surely like to have someone that would have such a special place in my heart, including the rough times.

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          Of course, if nobody cares about you or depends on you then noone will miss you. ... If you got run over by the bus, a few friends, relatives and coworkers would attend the funeral, shrug and say "terrible shame" and get on with their lives. Noone would cry for you, noone would call out your name, noone would reach out for you in the dark wishing you were there.

          So you're saying that I should have children in order that, upon my inevitable death, they shall be struck so great an emotional blow that they will

        • by glenstar (569572)
          Who is this Noone fellow? Sounds like a very caring individual.
      • by DeathElk (883654)

        Au contraire, Mr Freak. It is so easy to generalise. I'm sure there are plenty of folks who, as you describe, lament the abandonment of "freedom" for a life of drudgery and commitment. My suggestion to them is to turn off the playstation.

        For years I had dreaded the possibility of a partner falling pregnant. Then it happened - not much changed until 9 months later. The moment I looked into my newborn daughters eyes whilst sitting alone in the quiet maternity ward, I had a profound experience. I realised that

    • by Mr2cents (323101) on Monday April 06, 2009 @02:00PM (#27478705)

      And paradoxically, it seems to be difficult to get a job when you're unemployed. When I didn't have a job I felt like I was begging for a chance, so I got a job at an cable company/ISP helpdesk. Five months later I got a job as an embedded software engineer (what I was looking for).

      It was a pretty lousy job, when I came home I felt completely empty. You get verbal abuse, everything from people who don't know the first thing about computers, all the way to undisguisable idiots. Still, I can advise everyone to do it for a while. You get a lot of people skills, and you get a lot of direct feedback from people struggling with technology. This is invaluable when you start developing these things yourself, as your mental image of the end-user is is less self-centered. It has helped me staying very alert about intuitivity and consistent mental models.

      PS: the verbal abuse was sporadic. People call for help, and most of them seem to be aware that yelling first and then asking "can you help me?" isn't very productive. If you really want to thicken your skin, get a job at the payments helpdesk, not the technical one. If you can help them, you also receive a lot of gratitude.

    • by drsquare (530038)

      Sometimes, under the right circumstances, in the right places, you can make more money being unemployed than doing a low paid job, especially when you have kids.

  • by spookymonster (238226) on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:17AM (#27476405)

    Puts a whole new twist on the old zombie mantra:

    Zombie: Braiiiins! Need more BRAIINS!!!
    Employer: Yes, you do... your work experience is attrocious!

    • by corsec67 (627446)

      Fortunately, there are stores that specialize in brains [ipernity.com], but I don't know if that is a Japan-only store.

  • by shoppa (464619) on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:19AM (#27476433)
    My nomination: A PHD (Plumbing Hardware Dispatcher) in Google's TiSP Program [google.com].
  • Dirty IT job No. 7: Disconnect/reconnect specialist Wanted: Able-bodied individuals with affinity for adapters, plugs, prongs, and dongles; willing to crawl under desks and squeeze into tight spaces that have never seen daylight. Strong stomach required. Disconnect machines from one site, reconnect them at another. It sounded so simple Garth Callaghan couldn't quite believe someone would pay his company, 127tech, to do it. Now he employs three full-time employees and 30 contractors, who spend half their time unplugging and replugging machines for commercial movers in Richmond, Va.

    Doesn't sound difficult, until you've got someone with a B.S. in Computer and Information Technology who reattaches the cables running down the front of the desk (why are there holes in the back?), thinking it's a job well done.

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      That job would literally probably kill me. I'm allergic to dust mites. Trust me, there is a market for people to crawl under desks and plug/unplug things (which was always my least favorite aspect of MIS work, not least because I'm two meters tall. Where's my #$%@#%^ trunk monkey?)

    • With more and more new holes to plug crap into that look more and more similar, it's not even a trivial job either. You don't want to know what I've found plugged into what socket. USB in Firewire is easy. But analog VGA in a 9 pin serial is quite a feat.

      Excuse me now, I have to try to pry that RJ45 from a RJ11 jack.

      • Excuse me now, I have to try to pry that RJ45 from a RJ11 jack.
        If someone has really managed to get a RJ45 into a RJ11 jack I doubt the jack is still in a usable state anyway.

        • by tenton (181778)

          If someone has really managed to get a RJ45 into a RJ11 jack I doubt the jack is still in a usable state anyway.

          This is likely the case. GP, may I suggest cutting the cable instead of trying to pry it out?

      • by 0racle (667029)
        You're joking right? Connectors have been next to impossible to plug into the wrong port for a while, and the few that still are (audio) are colour coded.
        • You're joking right? Connectors have been next to impossible to plug into the wrong port for a while, and the few that still are (audio) are colour coded.

          Make something idiot proof and the world comes along with a better idiot. You obviously haven't done any low level tech support. Be amazed at the time, effort and ingenuity that people will put into doing something completely wrong.

        • by Zerth (26112)

          You've obviously never seen someone hammer a proprietary connector into a mini-USB port.

        • Oh yeah?

          Take Analog VGA and Serial 9pin. Look similar. Are even (almost) the same size. It does take a little force, I give you that. And it does require the person trying to ruin it to pry apart the socket a little. That there are WAY more pins that should fit into WAY fewer sockets isn't really encouraging either. But all that has not discouraged at the very least two people so far.

          Yes, the VGA pins were bent and rendered unusable, why are you asking? No, this didn't keep neither person from claiming that

  • I had to ask myself this question the last time I was crawling through an underground crawlspace below a very old building so I could run drainage tubing from our new server room.

    That was pretty dirty.
  • Finally (Score:5, Funny)

    by nizo (81281) * on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:33AM (#27476607) Homepage Journal

    Zombie console monkey...

    Finally, a job that really COULD be replaced with a shell script.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Coworker: "Hey, I checked ps and your new monitor script has zombie status for some reason"

      Me: "That means it's working!"

  • by tygerstripes (832644) on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:33AM (#27476619)

    Next time: the world's seven wettest oceans!

    • by Daimanta (1140543)

      That's actually possible(and maybe even usefull). The goal would be to locate the oceans(seas is the more likely goal) containing the highest amount of pure(devoid of any kind of salt) water. And I bet that there have been countless of studies who have investigated this.

      And yes, I like being pedantic.

      • And yes, I like being pedantic

        No, if you were pedantic, you would note that there are only five oceans, not seven. the point gp was making is that all of the jobs are dirty.

  • Data Miner? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mochan_s (536939) on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:37AM (#27476665)

    Zombie console monkey. 'Wanted: Individuals with low self-esteem and high boredom threshold willing to spend long hours poring over server logs and watching blinking lights on a network console.'"

    Data miner?

    Sounds awfully like data mining except for the blinking lights on the console but rather the status output of your data mining software.

    • At least data "mining" conjures up an image of dirt or dirtiness, even if only figuratively. Frankly, I don't see what's "dirty" about poring over server logs unless it somehow involves finding pr0n.

  • by David Gerard (12369) <slashdot.davidgerard@co@uk> on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:43AM (#27476737) Homepage

    Taken "offline for maintenance", i.e. applying a plunger to it after it got Slashdotted.

    This is what they get for spreading a story over eight pages.

  • Dirty Jobs (Score:5, Insightful)

    by reidiq (1434945) on Monday April 06, 2009 @11:45AM (#27476783)
    If I see this on Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe, I'll give it a reason to be dirty.
  • Well, I can't RTFA, because it's probably slashdotted, but I have done some stuff in my career, which would make a lots of folks hurl. Like, looking at Unix kernel dumps caused by bugs in the TCP/IP stack or network device drivers . . . or deadlocks (register four has the PID of the process holding the lock, unless the code grabbed the lock on an interrupt).

    At any rate, a lot of folks would abhor doing such stuff. I found it challenging, but fun. Some of the folks that I worked with would have rather just looked at blinking lights the whole day.

  • I did this (Score:5, Interesting)

    by zaren (204877) <holdthis@mail.com> on Monday April 06, 2009 @12:00PM (#27477021) Homepage Journal

    For a month or so, I did this as a temp job. My job consisted of manually logging into a server every two hours and manually running a command to gather log files, and then another to send those files to a second server. I honestly have no idea what kind of system I was logging into, I just know that I was told they were unable to automate the process, so there needed to be a warm body to run the commands. For that, I got to sit in a windowless basement data closet with no access to TV, radio, or open Internet. At least it was a paycheck, and I got to catch up on some reading, writing, and sleep.

    • by KeithJM (1024071) on Monday April 06, 2009 @12:18PM (#27477263) Homepage

      I got to sit in a windowless basement data closet. At least it was a paycheck

      But did anyone take your stapler?

    • by vlm (69642) on Monday April 06, 2009 @12:23PM (#27477341)

      I honestly have no idea what kind of system I was logging into, I just know that I was told they were unable to automate the process, so there needed to be a warm body to run the commands.

      I did something remarkably similar in the early 90s, until I wrote a nice semi-automated procomm script. As I recall I got it down to selecting a different "dialup number" for each file, hitting enter, and waiting for it to complete the rather elaborate process as I watched, and then started the next one. Or maybe it was Telix. Although it was cool to program, it actually de-evolved my job from lots of typing to literally, "alt-d, scroll down to the next one, hit enter, wait". Anyway after several months, I was rather tired of it all, got a new job, and informed my literally astounded cow orkers about my script (astounded like, mouth hanging open). Boss offered me a better job and more money, but new boss was already expecting me, new job looked like more fun anyway, etc.

      It was a VERY large mainframe oriented company, and despite it being the mid 90s, they still did not institutionally understand it was possible to "program" one of those little PC things. Seriously!

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by amoeba1911 (978485)
        I'm not surprised, most people do not understand the power of a computer. I got a temp job in late 90's that consisted of endlessly copying and pasting things. So, I wrote a script and the script finished several weeks worth of work in just 30 minutes.
    • by Locke2005 (849178)
      I just know that I was told they were unable to automate the process And you couldn't figure out how to prove them wrong? Change the login init on the remote machine to run a script which issues the desired commands instead of bringing up a shell. I'm not sure about logging in, but I suspect this can be done by minicom called from a cron job. Not really my area of expertise, has anyone else actually completely automated a task like this?
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by jonaskoelker (922170)

        I suspect this can be done by minicom called from a cron job.

        You also suspect the system has cron. Why? ;-)

        • by Locke2005 (849178)
          Well, if he's on slashdot, then he must be running Linux! (Yes, I am typing this into firefox running in WindowsXP as we speak.) Yeah, with Windows there is a task scheduler and HyperTerminal to automate calling out, and startup tasks and a primitive scripting language to automate things on the remote end. More difficult, but I think it could be done under Windows as well. I just assumed the Unix/Linux terminology would be easier for most people to understand. Almost anything can be automated, the question
      • Re:I did this (Score:5, Insightful)

        by The Dancing Panda (1321121) on Monday April 06, 2009 @01:26PM (#27478223)
        You'd be surprised how much you don't care about automating yourself out of a paycheck.
      • by vlm (69642)

        I suspect this can be done by minicom called from a cron job. Not really my area of expertise, has anyone else actually completely automated a task like this?

        No no no, not "suspect" you mean "expect".

        http://expect.nist.gov/ [nist.gov]

        Actually, "suspect" is a pretty good Infocom text adventure.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by operagost (62405)
      So did you burn the place down?
    • by pwizard2 (920421)

      My job consisted of manually logging into a server every two hours and manually running a command to gather log files, and then another to send those files to a second server. I honestly have no idea what kind of system I was logging into, I just know that I was told they were unable to automate the process, so there needed to be a warm body to run the commands.

      hmmm.... It seems like cron and a simple shell script (or the Windows equivalent of those tools) could do those things very easily.

    • by PPH (736903) on Monday April 06, 2009 @01:00PM (#27477873)

      You think you have it tough? Try a job where you have to live in a bunker and enter "4 8 15 16 23 42" into an old Apple II every 108 minutes.

      You young punks have it easy. Now stay off of my lawn!

      • by dkleinsc (563838)

        Luxury. I had to get up in the morning at ten o'clock at night half an hour before I went to bed, drink a cup of sulphuric acid, work twenty-nine hours a day down at bunker, and pay bunker owner for permission to come to work, and when we got home, our Dad and our mother would kill us and dance about on our graves singing Hallelujah.

  • by nysus (162232) on Monday April 06, 2009 @12:17PM (#27477255)

    Websites that make you browse to a new page to they can bump their page views to advertisers can rot in hell.

  • Truly Dirty IT Job (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Chagatai (524580) on Monday April 06, 2009 @12:38PM (#27477537) Homepage
    Sorry, but most of these jobs are not that, "dirty," compared to my last job. I did systems administration work for a meatpacker. This meant that several times a year I would go to feedlots and slaughterhouses to help out with the systems. There is nothing like working in a place where you can be walking on guts and dung as you go up and down to the computer rooms. (And by, "rooms," I mean, "modified coat closet with an air conditioner sticking in a hole cut in the wall.") Some of my favorites:

    -One abattoir had the intake for the server room on the roof... directly under the exhaust tower for rendering. Even when we moved the equipment into the new offices, I turned on the disk array and got a face full of rendered pork from the fans.

    -One place in Texas was a nightmare. Imagine extension cords stapled to the wall for systems, where they were wired so the pronged end was the, "hot," side. Yep, it could double as a cattle prod if needed.

    -Communicating with the people at these places was impossible. One night crew person sounded exactly like Boomhauer. It was always fun trying to understand her.

    -Other people didn't like the fact that we in IT were generally smarter than them. I got one woman who liked making up big words to sound more intelligent than she was. On one occasion, she said that her screen was, "tricating." I had to ask her a few times to repeat the word to understand it. After I found out that she meant that the column size for her green screen console was wrong, causing the lines to wrap improperly, I told her I had never heard of that word before. "Oh, you're young," she said, "that's why you don't know it." Yeah, neither did Merriam and Webster, and they're pretty old, too.

    -Another plant in the south had an adjacent, "smoking room," in someone's office, so the fans were sucking in both slaughterhouse smell and nicotine. Lovely.

    -And it was always fun walking on the floors when we had to check out the equipment, since we in IT stuck out like sore thumbs. I remember going to check an electronic scale once and watching these workers with sharp knives cutting things and staring at me. I was thinking, "Why don't you look down at what you're doing with that sharp blade instead of me? You know, that piece of meat that has... an... eyeball looking back at me... oh, boy...."
    • -Another plant in the south had an adjacent, "smoking room," in someone's office, so the fans were sucking in both slaughterhouse smell and nicotine. Lovely.

      This is not my story, but a former coworker who'd been in the industry for longer than I. When I was a System Support Engineer (SSE) for SGI I often worked with a guy from out Florida office who'd been doing hardware and software support for various high end computer companies for most of 30 years. Apparently he'd worked for HP early on doing the equivalent of SSE (no idea what they called it then) work. His office had the support contract for one of the big Winston-Salem offices. In those days W-S appa

      • by Pig Hogger (10379)

        smoking was not prohibited ANYWHERE in the building, including the server rooms. The company was absolutely opposed to to any policy that might imply in any way that smoking was dangerous to anything. HP actually charged them three times the normal support rate, and according to my coworker they were probably still losing money. The canister disks failed so regularly that he practically had scheduled weekly visit to replace them.

        I can relate. I worked for $PRESTIGIOUS_TOBACCO_COMPANY, and on the mainfra

    • One place in Texas was a nightmare. Imagine extension cords stapled to the wall for systems, where they were wired so the pronged end was the, "hot," side.

      In the "old days" we used to call that a "widowmaker" for good reason :-)

    • by Burning1 (204959)

      -Other people didn't like the fact that we in IT were generally smarter than them. I got one woman who liked making up big words to sound more intelligent than she was. On one occasion, she said that her screen was, "tricating." I had to ask her a few times to repeat the word to understand it. After I found out that she meant that the column size for her green screen console was wrong, causing the lines to wrap improperly, I told her I had never heard of that word before. "Oh, you're young," she said, "that

  • I did this for several years. I think this one should have been the #1 on the list. There are some things that just cannot be unseen.
  • Wimps (Score:5, Interesting)

    by PPH (736903) on Monday April 06, 2009 @01:14PM (#27478069)
    That "Disconnect/Recconect Specialist" in TFA is a wuss. I've worked in a lab building built entirely on a raised floor. Not just the lab, but the offices and everything. This wasn't actually an IT job, much of the cabling being instrumentation. But we had employees with no concept of modern day sanitation. Have some lunch leftovers? There's a hole in the floor and its closer than the garbage can. It'll do. So now we've got rats. Or. more aptly RATS. And rats don't live forever either. And when they die, other rats ....... There were also a few instances in which I believe someone couldn't make it to the men's room it time.
  • 108 Minutes (Score:3, Funny)

    by DarthVain (724186) on Monday April 06, 2009 @02:10PM (#27478855)

    Save the world they said... Tropical Island I was told....

  • Any of these sound okay to me. As long as I'm just about never working more than 40 hours a week (30-35 preferred) with some time off besides (doesn't even have to be paid time off), decently-paid (not that much, really, by urban standards), and don't have to move out of low-cost smaller-town middle America? I'm game. Low levels of office politics and irrelevant meetings would be bonus points.

  • by afabbro (33948) on Monday April 06, 2009 @04:10PM (#27480423) Homepage

    Wanted for position as Slashdot Editor: Individual with poor spelling skills, no journalist background, and weak memory. Ideal candidate has foaming-at-the-mouth Orwellian fantasies about "rights", rabid Linux advocacy background, and atheist bias. Apple and/or Obama fanboy a plus. Must absolutely have zero graphical design skills (we will check). Inability to optimize JavaScript preferred. Good candidates are those that put their feet up on the sofa during documentaries. Apply online.

  • Aaaah, yes.

    I did plenty of "dirty" things, but the most memorable must have been the four weeks spent in the server closer, watching a network analyzer to try to understand why the router would randomly go down.

    It was in a huge car dealership, so being in the closet insulated me from the douchy car salesmen that poked fun at my (company) car (one of those tiny jap subcompacts) each time I came in or went out. However, I got my revenge on them plenty of times, since they were expressly forbidden to use e-m

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