Shark Tank: Unclear on the Concept

Hundreds of PCs on this large factory floor run the same graphical application day after day, and the monitors are showing signs of burn-in from continuously displaying the same image. Tech-support pilot fish pulls one of the monitors to show to manager as an example. "That looks pretty bad," manager says. "Can you make a screen capture of that so I can send it to the other managers?"

Pragmatist

User gets an error message on a report and calls IT pilot fish for help. But fish can't get access to the file -- he's not authorized to view the report because it contains confidential data. Still, he can easily reproduce the report and the error -- and he does. "It's because I still have full access to all the files used to create the report," he sighs. "Now when I get a call, I just know it will take me a little longer to actually see what the user is talking about."

Theorist

Only six keycards open this server room door, but there's also a keypad for emergencies -- and since the keypad code hasn't been changed in years, the entire engineering staff knows it. When things start to go missing from the server room, pilot fish suggests giving everyone keycards, so at least their entry will be logged. "No," says the chief engineer, "they shouldn't have access to that room." But they know the keypad code -- they have access right now, fish says. "They have the code for emergencies," says the chief. "They shouldn't have access to the room at any other time."

Optimist

"You locked me out of my account," irritated user complains to help desk pilot fish. "Why did you lock me out? What did I do?" Your account is automatically locked out after the third unsuccessful attempt to log in, fish says while resetting the account. You do know that, right? Silence. User: "It works now. Will I have this problem tomorrow?" Fish: "I hope not."

Realist

Pilot fish is taking a networking course at a local college, and because a new classroom needs to be wired for a network, he and a fellow student get the assignment of plugging cable into the patch panel. "We're terminating the wires for about an hour," says fish, "and the other guy says, 'Hmm, I hope this is all done right.' I ask him why and he tells me, 'I'm colorblind; I can't tell the difference between some of these colors.' So I spend the next hour checking all the wires and reterminating them into the patch panel."

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Copyright © 2004 IDG Communications, Inc.

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