Success!

At this Detroit automaker in the 1970s, almost half the cars come off the assembly lines with steering column electrical problems -- but management has a high-tech fix.

02/16/18

Throwback Thursday: Something in the air

User in the chemical treatment area of an electronics factory has a four-month-old PC that isn't working -- and it takes no time for this IT pilot fish to figure out why.

02/15/18

Why we love REAL power users

It's the 1990s, and this IT support tech is tasked with installing a new laser printer for an engineer -- but he's not ready for what he sees when the office door opens.

02/14/18

Hey, are you getting paid to talk or to work?

This pilot fish has worked as an IT staffer and as a consultant, and he knows there can be some real disadvantages to the better-paid but less stable contracting life.

02/13/18

Some things are better left unexplained

Large organization has a server-based application that sometimes just stops -- and soon it's happening on a daily basis. But the vendor says nobody else has the problem.

02/12/18

No Parking Zone

City hires an IT contractor for the help desk for a few months, and it soon becomes clear that, when it comes to temp workers, HR and IT have very different priorities.

02/09/18

Throwback Thursday: Old PCs never die -- we hope

Pilot fish at this big distribution center is called in to investigate a PC in the shipping area that -- according to the trouble ticket -- is "making a loud noise."

02/08/18

How to win friends and influence software schedules

Regional building-supplies chain wants a major software enhancement from its turnkey business systems vendor, but the project just doesn't seem to be moving along.

02/07/18

Little boxes, all the same

Pilot fish gets a trouble ticket to swap out a network switch at an office he's never been to. But he has the address and knows it's suite 211, so what could go wrong?

02/06/18

Sometimes it just takes the right question

This company has its systems set up so that any power outage will trigger an email that's sent to the support team. So why isn't one server reporting its outages?

02/05/18

Headless, redefined

Flashback to the 1980s, when CRT monitors are very big, and pricey enough to keep using even when they break -- which is a problem when a new hardware tech is hired.

02/02/18

Throwback Thursday: Not hardware, not software...

Pilot fish works for a company that makes computerized optical inspection equipment that's installed all around the world. But at one overseas site, it's all going wrong.

02/01/18

You give US a number, then we'll give YOU a number

It's very late in the day when this networking services outfit is upgrading a client's internet connection. And the ISP's tech support guy is quite helpful -- at first.

01/31/18

Email existentialism

IT pilot fish knows from experience that this user is guaranteed to cause a facepalm, but she still answers the call when the user asks for help locating a lost email.

01/30/18

You meet the nicest people in IT...

This IT department has a resident bully who doesn't hesitate to snipe at his co-workers -- including one he probably shouldn't be poking at. But does that stop him?

01/29/18

Gee, isn't it nice to be wanted?

This company is really happy with the work of an IT consultant who's on a project for them -- and won't let go, even though the consultant feels like he's stuck in a rut.

01/26/18

Throwback Thursday: Oops!

This company has just completed its project to build a dedicated secure server room, and the building maintenance and IT managers have thought of everything -- almost.

01/25/18

Priorities

Programmer is assigned to improve an ancient Visual Basic app with 500 users -- and also to whip up a quick web demo for the boss. Guess which project gets the kudos?

01/24/18

The blue-water metric

This IT manager pilot fish is usually one of the first people to get into the office in the morning -- and that gives him a heads-up on a recurring problem: blue water.

01/23/18

Those military guys always get the hot technology!

This defense contractor's classified IT project is located in an isolated hanger with a windowless, metal-lined computer room -- and what turns out to be a critical flaw.

01/22/18

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