But isn't breaking things what the QA people DO?

It's the 1990s, and this small startup needs to get online on a tiny budget, which means cobbling together a server from leftover parts. The problem: It keeps freezing.

08/21/18

The Intern

This company brings in a new student intern to work in IT, and it seems like he should be a perfect fit -- but he just doesn't seem able to pick up the technology.

08/20/18

Just think of 6 a.m. as Beta Time

Mainframe programmer working for a large defense contractor finds a way to become a lot more efficient: arrive at work at 6 a.m. At least that's how it MOSTLY works...

08/17/18

Throwback Thursday: How did...er, DIDN'T he do that?

It's 1977, and this company decides its newly constructed data center needs a state-of-the-art system to provide physical security -- which doesn't quite work as planned.

08/16/18

Data conversion? What could be easier?

Small IT service provider has two new customers a hundred miles apart, and a serious barrier to serving one of them: There's no way to exchange data with their system.

08/15/18

Hey, he DID ask!

Computer reseller gets a call one morning from the IT director at a nearby public school system. The problem: Every PC in one school's computer lab has gone silent.

08/14/18

Why IT contractors get gray

Pilot fish is sent to a customer site to deal with a routine issue: getting a terminal controller to do what the customer wants. But that's not quite all that's going on.

08/13/18

Just another day in the IT life

IT pilot fish is sent to a customer site in New York City, and the trip starts fine with a ride there in a company plane and a helicopter. Then it gets interesting.

08/10/18

Throwback Thursday: Back to Plan A

It's a scorching summer day at this manufacturing plant and the heat on the shop floor is almost intolerable, when suddenly the network goes down -- and tempers rise.

08/09/18

Welcome to your new career!

It's July when this IT pilot fish and a co-worker are sent to a customer's site to deal with an issue-plagued system -- but they'll be home by Christmas, right?

08/08/18

Grand Theft IT? Not quite

This company's sales team is getting new laptops, and they're being upgraded 80 at a time -- but that isn't the only reason not much is lost when thieves break in.

08/07/18

Whatever happened to taking a test drive?

It's the early 1980s, and this corporate department decides to replace its old minicomputers with a low-mileage, previously owned IBM System/38 -- from a seller in Japan.

08/06/18

The Genius

This data center is run by a tech who thinks very highly of himself, and makes sure everyone else knows it. Then comes the day when he needs help with a small problem...

08/03/18

Throwback Thursday: Pop quiz

Support pilot fish divides users into two groups -- the ones who will help diagnose problems and the ones who won't -- and he has a way to figure out which is which.

08/02/18

Another successful development project!

This pilot fish is tapped to lead development of a critical application, and after some training it's time to answer a key question: How soon can the new app roll out?

08/01/18

Forget the facts -- we want something to blame!

This data center relies heavily on one major IT vendor, but the company's CEO is having second thoughts about that situation -- and thinks he knows what to do about it.

07/31/18

Never mind that it works, think how it LOOKS!

Flashback a couple decades to the days when this IT pilot fish at a big company has databases to administer, 100-plus PCs to maintain -- and a freshly sprained ankle.

07/30/18

How to negotiate (Extreme Clarity edition)

This small software vendor pitches its system to a sales prospect whose CEO is particularly hard nosed -- and a very tough negotiator who gets straight to the point.

07/27/18

Throwback Thursday: Is this the end for Y2K?

It's early 2008 when this systems support pilot fish starts getting reports that a special Y2K tool has stopped working -- and that turns out to be a big problem.

07/26/18

Unique, redefined

Engineering group at this manufacturer comes up with a new quality-control initiative: Assign a unique identifier to each part. And there's just one potential hitch...

07/25/18

Load More