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SAs and the need for Whoops!

By Dale Reagan | November 19, 2008

Systems Administrators (SAs) need some Whoops! time.

In addition to knowledge breadth and depth, system administrators need experience; this is, perhaps, the defining aspect between senior and other levels of technology creators, managers and maintainers.  Been there – done that.  Some less than positive examples (usually experienced early as a SA):

And, of course, there is the plus side to Whoops! time most likely a combination of:

  1. luck and
  2. experience (time based creating and resolving Whoops! situations.)

Examples include solving simple, complex, dynamic real-world problems:

Why should you care?

Do you really need a Scotty or LaForge on your team? If you are a manager who supports technology (especially computer technology) then you need to provide your team with Whoops! time – otherwise they will most likely only be able to provide a canned solution like:

One of the great things about companies like Google is that they both provide and require that their folks spend time on special projects (what I am calling Whoops! time) that include some exploration/experimentation/discovery time.  A number of these projects actually come into use (while most are abandoned.)  The projects that are abandoned are probably the most beneficial – the engineers involved gain significant experience in what won’t work or simply what is a bad idea; this should bring them closer to a future winning/useful project.

Learning and Whoops!

Why do young folks seem to learn computer related solutions so easily?  Part of the answer is that they have grown up using computers, Ipods, cell phones and the like.   Another part is they are still explorers who are willing to try new things (Whoops!); stay young, explore, make time for and enjoy some Whoops! time.

Impossible is just a point of view under existing conditions (your limited view/understanding.)

Topics: Computer Technology, Media and Communications, Problem Solving, Site Progress, Unix-Linux-Os | Comments Off on SAs and the need for Whoops!

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