Thursday, August 19, 2004

Excuses (reprise)

THIS time I mean it ...

The dog server ate my homework.

I believe the military has several "technical" terms for the situation. Believe it or not, I really didn't get too upset. Now, I wasn't HAPPY by a long stretch of the imagination, but I think I surprised a few people by not ranting and raving.

The problem was related to the replicating software, which when it got out of synch started eating files. They have since deactivated the off-site server and have us linked to the home office through the T-1 line. (a solution deemed "too slow" when we first moved)

The IT guys were talking Tuesday about getting a second PC for everyone in my department and keeping them in the home office, running us from off-site using PCAnywhere - the advantage to this being the speed between the "real", home office PC and the server. (Probably a $15,000 solution) Another option was to move us off-site folks to a T-3 line. (A $30,000 + solution)

Everyone seemed happy with one solution or the other, except for me. Maybe it's just that I'm cheap, or maybe it's because when I worked at the Fortune 500 retailer, we never did ANYTHING that cost money as a first option. So, when my boss was telling me what the options were, I suggested a THIRD option - why don't we wait before spending any more money and SEE if the direct connection over the T-1 line works?

Too slow, says the IT guys - it my take you (gasp) THIRTY SECONDS to open a file!!! Uh, yeah, whatever. That might be inconvenient, but I don't think it's a hardship worth $15,000 or more.

(Of course, I still remember the dark ages when you had spreadsheets too big to leave the "autocalc" option on, so you entered all your data, hit "calc" and went to get coffee, used the restroom, got a snack out of the machine, chatted with the guy in the next office, and still had to wait 10 minutes after you got back to your office for the "calc" to finish and release your PC so you could do something else.)

"I don't think program XYZ will even run the way we have it set up now," says the IT guy.

"Have we TRIED it?" says I.

"Well, no."

"How 'bout I call one of my employees (I've been at the home office this week) and have her try it?"

So we did ... and it worked just fine.

Miracle of miracles, they decided to hold off for a couple of weeks before spending any more money.

Now, I wonder if I could argue for a cut of the savings?

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