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Comment Re:Old and died I think PICK AT (Score 1) 429

PICK uses Data/BASIC as its language (suitably obscure). Nowadays, you run the PICK OS/database in a VM/emulator with a TCP/IP wrapper allowing it to communicate with the outside world. Still widely used in financial and accounting systems. ADP sells PICK based solutions. Very fast, very easy to use, very accurate. I prefer PICK over SQL for many databases

Comment Honest Sgt (Score 4, Insightful) 275

So, this Sgt is being honest, and likely will get his hand slapped for it. I work with public IT. Public organizations have contracts with vendors and vendors upcharge like crazy to sell these items, and none of the technical staff can do anything about it, and that's assuming the entity's IT isn't outsourced. This is just one more place where graft exists to line the pockets of donors/supporters/whatever.

Comment Re:Translations (Score 1) 394

Custom software requires lots of specially trained people to update, maintain, and manage the software. When one retires, you lose tons of knowledge. Proprietary software is almost always a poor long term solution if a COTS solution is available for most functions in the areas we're talking about. People outside of your organization know the product(meaning that support is available from the outside and that you can replace staff more easily when you lose someone), the product is supported by a real company(rather than a local devshop for hire that goes out of business in 5 years), people you bring in as end users and such may already have knowledge of the product, you have the comfort of knowing that other entities successfully use the product and you're not starting from scratch on a wing and a prayer(like, say, custom payroll for LAUSD that turned into a $100m loss), you generally have standardized methods of communicating with other systems(can you time and attendance software speak with your payroll software? what about the time and attendance software 10 years from now? what about the next software you bring in that replaces a function done outside of software today?), etc

Comment Re: Idiocy. (Score 1) 394

I work in the public sector. Most users can't themselves. The vast majority of the software used for functions outside of word processing are generally custom or highly specialized COTS software. How do you self-train on RMS/CAD software? What about the custom payroll program still running on an AS400 that's accessed with a terminal emulator?

Comment Re:Idiocy. (Score 2) 394

Half the people in the workforce don't want to use technology but they have to. Cops and firefighters don't give a shit about technology unless it helps them do their job, but I'll be damned if cities and counties don't force them to use software to update their timecard, file incident reports, do performance reviews, setup a schedule, etc. If you don't train them, they don't know. I walk into a place and 25% are proactive people who want to learn, 50% are people who don't care and can learn it if they're forced to, and 25% are people who hate change, hate technology, are technical morons, or whatever but they have to be taught because it's a function of their job. A firefighter needs to know how to operate a ladder truck, and they're trained on it and get good at it, but that doesn't mean that they can operate Linux or Windows or even iOS, but they have to for their job anyways, and if you're giving them software you need to train them.

Comment Re: Idiocy. (Score 1) 394

Fair enough. In this case you system should be treated as hostile when you come back into the office. It doesn't have to effect you even in the office, it just means the network you are on should be quarantined from anything that may be sensitive.

Networks should be like that anyways. I only have access to data I need.

Also it sounds like your role is IT focussed to at least a degree. If you are on site making your employers software work on other peoples system you must be operating in a role of some IT trust. This is not the same requirements as for people who have no idea how computers really work.

That's fine, but, ultimately, I'm an end user. I am not in an IT division that manages our network, infrastructure, procurement, etc. I am in a revenue generating customer facing division and I get issued technology from the IT division. Blanket rules being discussed way up the list by ACs that "Users shouldn't install software" are plain wrong. I'm a user.

Comment Re: Idiocy. (Score 1) 394

Secondarily, the only customer that provides you with everything is the US Government, and that's because they assign you a laptop with everything you need for your job. So I don't need my laptop, and I don't need administrative access on their laptop, because every tool that's necessary for the job is provided to me. Of course, your average, or even your uncommon customer, does not provide you with this.

Comment Re: Idiocy. (Score 2) 394

Let's just talk customer access. Basic stuff. For one customer, I use a Cisco AnyConnect. For another customer I use Cisco VPN Client. For another customer I use Juniper Junos Pulse. etc. All of these software packages require administrative access. Each customer maintains this, uses their own specific version of the software, etc. My company doesn't keep a catalog of every VPN client and every version of every VPN client because it's not feasible to keep that catalog or preload that catalog on everyone's machine.

Now, let's talk remote connectivity. Basic stuff again. GoToMeeting, GoToAssist, Skype, Bomgar, Lync, Livemeeting, etc. More software that requires administrative access. These can somewhat be preloaded, but not all of these are cloud managed, so you deal with versioning again, and for ones that are downloaded every time you execute, you need to be able to run them 100% of the time or every single conference call requires administrative override.

Now, let's talk about what happens when I go onsite with a customer. This customer requires reports written in JETT, this customer requires reports written in CR11.5, this one in CR9, this one uses an Access database, this one uses Sybase SQLAnywhere 9, this one uses Reality/PICK, etc etc etc. All of these require different tools to connect, write reports, etc.

I don't control what my customers do, I make my employer's software run in their environment. Some customers may use the same software, some don't. A lot of the time I'm not even scheduled to be somewhere until the Friday before the Monday they expect me to be onsite on Monday, so it's not like I can pull a customer folder and say "here IT guy, install all this for me, I hope it's up to date from the last time we were there 2 years ago, but probably not".

Comment Re: Idiocy. (Score 1) 394

I'm not a network engineer. I'm an industry grunt implementation consultant who gets stuck doing everything for a customer because the customer can't figure out why our software won't print or why this one workstation doesn't communicate with the server etc etc. I AM an end user. My employer has tens of thousands of us. We're all end users. Like I said, other than desk jockeys

All science is either physics or stamp collecting. -- Ernest Rutherford