Things you wish you could say (at work)


We do ‘scrum’ here. Or ‘standups.’ Whatever. It’s actually a good idea: A quick, daily meeting for whomever is available to see what’s up.

I’m antisocial and don’t want more meetings, but I like these. It helps that the company is actually listening to what is and isn’t working (Which is why some groups are techncially ‘scrum’ vs. ‘standup’) but there’s some interesting ground rules.

One my coworkers chafed at initially is that scrum updates (led by a ‘scrum master’) are meant to be non-technical. I think this was presented badly: it came off as “Don’t confuse the less technical Scrum master with jargon” but I think the intent is that these sessions are for updates, not problem solving. If only it had been worded like that.


Dear $Boss

PCI serial cards (of the multi-port variety, COM1 up to COM6). Nice.

Pity it only supports up to Win7 and there’s no support for Win10.

Here’s hoping we can get a working driver for Win10.

Next time do your homework properly and specify Win10 as the target OS.


Problem solved, mostly. Somehow, someone finally got through to them and this decision has been tabled until after our major project that happens every 5 years and gets us all of our operating capital until the next round.

Unfortunately, because this decision was deferred until now we are behind on purchasing equipment, installation, storage, cabling, etc. (because the cloud would have handled ALL of that), by the time it gets to our shop in September, they’ll say that they need 800 virtual servers built by next week. Not even kidding. Then it’s our fault that the project can’t get started. Then they act like Trump trying to put a man on Mars and offer to just back the money truck up for us to pull out as much as we need to pay for whatever overtime is required to make it happen. Come on. There’s only 4 of us. Still, it makes for a happy Christmas.

Here’s a fun number: $700,000. That’s the estimate just for the cabling.


Ah, going with the audiophile cables from Amazon, I see.


I actually like the daily standup meetings. We did those when I was in Qatar, just a quick 5-minutes: how did yesterday go, what’s on for today, what do you need from me to make it go smoother? They had a tendency to go to like 10 or 15 minutes because we genuinely liked each other. It’s a good problem to have. I still miss those guys. They were the best part of that deployment.


This is for a tech situation, not military, but I feel it’s also worked best here when it’s in the midst of our cube-farm: This way people can be more or less involved as needed. For example, the stand-up is primarily for ticket-workers, but if we do it in the open Senior Engineers can chime in if there’s an issue they caused… I mean, an issue they’re intimately involved with.


Had to look that up. I can’t think of an equivalent from my lexicon. Interesting. But my brain is fried right now. It’s been a long week, and going to be a busy weekend, so I’m looking forward to mid-February, when I should get a break.


My work may be using it wrong, but it’s entered CorpSpeak from Rugby by ‘Agile’ development. Which kinda-sorta-maybe works when you’re part of a network team, not the developers it was intended for.


A scrum is like a huddle, but with more aggression. I feel that standup meetings from members of the same team should be a huddle.


I feel like our office is designed to prevent collaboration. It’s one hallway with rooms on either side, each holding desks for between 2 and 4 people. [Ossifers are in 2-person rooms.] The doors are balanced such that they swing closed unless you prop them open. Depending on the random state of the HVAC, they tend to be all closed most of the time.

We do have one small conference room at one end, but it’s frequently in use and there’s no break room. Some of us have phones. We do not have any chat or instant messaging capability outside of our personal cell phones. Using anything else (e.g. Slack) is a technical violation of policy, as we are only to use official systems for official business (glaring exception being our personal phones).

I do almost all of my work on my personal laptop using the commercial internet that we only have because we get civilian students in our classes and they can’t be allowed on our official network. At this point, I think I would quit if they ever take that away.


Yes, @Sig, that makes my group’s current complain about our current assigned space seem trivial. We’re just complaining because we don’t have real desks (just tables) which is admittedly an ergonomic nightmare. And that we’re in an area devoid of good food options. And that it smells funny.

I will admit some ‘1st world problem-ness.’


We are in the middle of an office refresh - new paint and carpet/flooring, and updating some lighting. It was a good time to consider rearranging my office. The desk I had was too big for the way it was placed, but moving it to a different wall would not fit with my workflow, so I’m trying out replacing the desk with a couple of tables, similar to one that I was already using. So far, I can tell that the new tables are too tall to comfortably type, and they’re not height adjustable. (My old table is height adjustable and has a keyboard tray.) I may have to try adjusting my chair higher or something, but that may necessitate raising the old table.
I’m supposed to be getting some drawers when the dust settles, like a rolling mini filing cabinet but with shorter drawers. My old desk had two regular side drawers and a long file drawer, and two shorter file drawers in the return. That was a lot of storage.


I have intentionally kept my ‘footprint’ minimal at this job. The old job I expanded over time. (My desk space, I mean… But eating fast food lunches means that, too.) This one I’m trying to keep minimal.

But then I realize I currently have 2 monitors, a laptop, and my iPad open as displays. Plus the cell phone.


I know what classes I’m teaching next week.


Why the hell is this a silent install?


Because no one wants an installer that plays sound clips every 30-40 seconds like:

  • “Hey, I’m installing over here!”
  • “Wanna kill all humans?”
  • “This software is licensed! For your security, we will replay this message every ten minutes while the application is in use!”
  • <random belch & fart noises>
  • “Let’s sing the Installing Song!”
  • Selections from the developer’s cache of karaoke night recordings.
  • “Is this annoying? Is it now? bzzzzzzz…”


“Spamspamspamspamspamspamspamspam… SPAMLY SPAM!”




(link for the uninitiated:


It’s warm inside.

Seriously. The heat can’t keep up in this place. My toes are cold. I should be wearing mittens


For your toes? You don’t need that extra thumb… just use socks.