Friday, July 25, 2014

Unimagined Futures: The childhood dream I should have had

When December rolls around this year I'll have spent 20 years living and breathing Macs. Looking back in hindsight it makes absolute perfect sense that I ended up a Mac SysAdmin -- I've spent more time with Macs than I have with anything other than myself.

I never realized that I'd slipped into sysadmin roles during middle school and high school -- I was just that weird Mac kid who knew how to do things. Like turning off the sound on the fancy LC 575 I was playing with after school,  shift-booting, turning off Foolproof, and then playing Glider until it was time to go home. I also "extracted" stuck floppy disks from Mac Classics, and in high school I shuffled around the RAM in the Power Mac 5400s so my friends and I had the fastest machines in the Computer Graphics lab and made sure all the iMacs in the newspaper and yearbook office were up to date on their software.

I never imagined that as an adult I could do these sorts of things as a job. Sysadmins were creepy creatures like Dennis Nedry from Jurassic Park or pocket protector wearing nerds with taped glasses.

I tried to do so many other things before I wound up a sysadmin. I was too utilitarian for graphic design, too focused on classifying existential phenomena for philosophy.

Turns out being utilitarian and detail oriented are handy when figuring out what's gone wrong with someone's computer. It also doesn't hurt that I grok how Macs work.

[finally posting this unsaved draft from earlier this year, more to follow in a similar vein]

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