vintage computers in active use

Swift Griggs swiftgriggs at
Fri May 27 15:01:16 CDT 2016

On Fri, 27 May 2016, Guy Sotomayor Jr wrote:
> I was at IBM from 1979 through 1997.  Started in Boca Raton and finished 
> up in Austin.

It was the Boulder site the whole time for me. Used to be a printer and 
tape drive manufacturing site. Then they converted the manufacturing 
floors to hosted data centers for Global Services by and large.

> There was a lot of politics going on the entire time I was there.

Nothing changed when I was there. It was the second-most political place 
I've ever worked in. The only reason I've seen worse is that I've lived 
through a couple of apocalyptic H1B wipe-outs in large companies. I 
wasn't around for the bulk of IBM's offshoring.

You wanna see some depressed computing experts, tell them:

1. You are fired. 

2. You can stay around for time-and-a-half plus a modest bonus if you 
train your barely-speaks-english-and-is-here-illegally B1 or B2 visa 
holder. They uhm, *might* get H1B visas later, but for now we'll just 
thumb our nose at the law. We are fat cat corporations with lawyers. We 
don't have to care. You won't either, since you won't be here but for 
another 60-90 days. 

(lived through two of those, watched people cry a lot at work, have 
nervous breakdowns, develop stress-related issues they'd never had, etc... 
no fun)

3. Okay... now you are fired. BTW, the jobs are "going to India" but 
staying right, here. We know that just adds insult to injury but what are 
you going to do, get *our* pet congressperson / senator to help you? 
Buwuhahahah. We gave them $3,000,000 bucks last year. You gave them $25. 
Good luck. BTW, we really value you as an employee and appreciate your 
contribution. Kthxbye. 

> were considered the ?stars? of the division) would be better applied to 
> OS/2 (we cancelled SW that customers had already paid for). I don?t 
> think any of us who were ?drafted? into OS/2 stayed more than a year 
> after that.

Sounds pretty typical. Customers were never #1.

When I was there, the worst I saw them:

1. Pirate/steal huge amounts of software from other vendors and use it in 
their hosted environments. I had to tell my boss point blank: "I'm not 
your felony pirate boy." on more than one occasion.

2. Fire people who found security problems. I watched a couple 
genius-level guys who were just young-and-curious get whacked this way.

3. Hire managers who were barely *literate* much less competent. My 
manager once asked me as he was banging away on a Lotus Notes document 
"What is the difference between y-o-u-apostrophe-r-e [you're] and your?" 


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