Even if I can’t blog at work…

I’ve been writing down thoughts and ideas on post-it notes at work and then sticking them to the inside of my bag to take home.

A Bit of Background

Once upon a time in Milwaukee, there was a large commercial bank (whom I used to work for).  This bank wanted to be the industry leader in commercial banking technology.  They started a subsidiary and gave it a new name.  A few years down the road, this new banking tech. subsidiary got spun off from the big bank and was its own company.  Then a large East-Coast investment firm bought the newly-liberated payment tech. company and gave it a new new name.  Then, once again, the payment tech. company was spun off to begin yet another independent life.  That’s the company I contract for now.

Things are still in a state of flux as a result of all that.  After the latest round of closings, mergers, acquisitions, consolidations, and relocations, there are three Milwaukee-area facilities belonging to this company:  Brown Deer Operations Center (BDOC), Center for Advanced Product Engineering (CAPE), and Woodland Prime.

BDOC is where the payment processing operations happen like check scanning, lockbox processing, statement printing, billing, etc.  It’s also where the servers, tape silos, disk arrays, etc. are housed.  The bulk of actual *work* is done at BDOC.

CAPE (where I work) is the R&D wing where new products are designed and created and architectures implemented and all that fun stuff.  My job is a direct result of this latest acquisition, wherein a lot of people that were on the older product of the investment firm need to be migrated onto the older product of the payment tech. firm.  There’s also a new product being rolled out that everyone will eventually be on.  Confused yet?  Multiply this by around 1000 commercial financial software applications and services and you understand why this is total freaking chaos.

Woodland Prime is corporate HQ for the company.

Sticky Notes

Yellow:

In our code repository, I came across a method to create a dialog box with the buttons Yes, No, OK, Cancel, Terminate (which was localized as “Demolition” in Spanish and German (“Abatimiento” and “Abbruch,” respectively), Repeat, and Ignore.  Why anyone would want a dialog with that many buttons is beyond me.

All of my cow-orkers are geographically separated from me.  One is in Vancouver, one is in Las Vegas, and two are in India.  One of the dudes in India routinely IMs me to call him.  When I do, he won’t talk on the phone but continues to IM instead.  WTF?  Why do I need to call him then?  All I hear is keys clicking away as he types more in the IM window!

The vending machine in the copy room has no prices.  You just have to stick in a bunch of money and see how much whatever you want costs.

An SQL script for a project I was working on (~1100 lines of SQL!), while very well written, had some issues.  The writer’s native language being Hindi, I wasn’t surprised when I found a prompt that said “Do you wish to encounter an error?”  From reading the code, I figured out that he meant, “Do you wish to halt the execution of the script when an error occurs?”  (Generally used for making unattended setups and the like.)

White:

More good news is that *****’s collapse lung is also healing and the ooze coming out of it is a better color.

(That one wasn’t mine – it was posted on the communal board in the copy room.  I’m glad she’s recovering but still.)

Blue

int * a = NULL;
printf(“0x%x\n”, a);  /* BAD!  Never dereference a null pointer! */

On x86, Itanium, SPARC, IBM-Power, ALPHA, SPARC, ARM, PA-RISC, PowerPC, m68k, MIPS, etc.: sizeof (int*) = sizeof (char*) = sizeof (FILE*)

On x86, SPARC, and Itanium, sizeof (int) = sizeof (int*)

In x86 protected mode, what condition exists when one jmps into a nonexecutable page?

Green

Configure RFC-822 addresses for lakemasoniccenter.org and migrate static distlists in /etc/aliases to mailman.

Check who’s in wheel and root on dustpuppy.  Check if su and sudo enforce wheel-membership.

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  1. #1 by Joshua on July 29, 2010 - 6:52 PM

    In case you didn’t figure it out, yellow sticky notes are general and funny, blue is technical reminders, and green is TODO. I have a white pad but haven’t used it yet. The White note was posted in the community copy room.

    • #2 by Christa on July 30, 2010 - 12:41 PM

      I use to do this when I worked at pick n save. There were just so many funny stories that needed to be shared. I wish we would have had a blog back then. That way I wouldn’t have lost all those memories 🙂

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