Thursday, October 17, 2002

I've been going to vendor presentations lately. One one hand, it keeps you up on industry trends. On the other hand, it gives you bad cases of equipment envy.

I'm infatuated with a new piece of hardware sold by Fluke Networks, the de facto standard for electronics testing equipment. But even with a pedigree like that, I don't think I could justify a cool $52,000 CDN plus change to either my co-workers or my wife. "But honey, it does throughput tests. Please?"

I find the cabling and TCP/IP conectivity aspects of my job very satisfying. Either they work, or they don't. Once they are in place, they last forever (or at least until someone makes a change). Hardware tends to be ultra-reliable - I've only run into three wonky network cards in as many years. The big problems seem to crop up when there is user-configurable stuff. A properly laid-out and thought-out network can be a dream for the end users. Even high-usage places like EyeWire weren't really taxing the network capacity. When and if I leave this place, I wouldn't mind becoming more proficient and involved in the setup of data networks.

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