Joy (cithra) wrote,
Joy
cithra

home is good

Today was a pretty crazy day. The sassy virus took the network down about 9:00 a.m. - which is amazing considering that is all the way out here on the West coast, so back in DC people had been online for hours. I think that was simply critical mass, now that I think about it - for the 45 minutes or so that I was on this morning everything was running very slowly.

All the systems I have anything to do with are stand-alone, so I didn't have to worry about that. But I did spend a lot of time telling people "No, it's not just you" and such.

It was an amazing reminder of how dependent I (and the rest of the folks there) have become on the computer as an information repository. We had to do some digging to even come up with the phone number for MITS proper. I'm usually pretty good at writing that sort of emergency information down, but my phone list seemed not to have survived my move to the 30th floor.

Another thing that always awes me is how quiet it gets without the constant white noise of the zillions of fans in the electronic equipment. Since the main result of the virus seemed to be constant rebooting, the received solution was to just turn everything off until they sent out a voice mail saying otherwise. So most people got a whole lot of filing done, let me tell you.

It gets better, though. MITS had just started rolling out version 5.0 of some report writing software that practically everyone in the organization uses daily, only to discover that it breaks Norton Anti-virus. Uninstalling the report software breaks Norton even worse. So when the worm came knocking on our door this morning, there were between 100-600 naked machines sitting out there just begging to be infected... It's a good thing they had only just started the upgrade testing. Although rumor has it that some places back east the local MITS just installed it on everyone's machine without doing any compatibility testing. Hence the breadth of my estimate.

The bright side of this is that everyone seemed to handle it with aplomb and a light-hearted attitude. My stars, I might actually be working with adults for the first time since I left the library.
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