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Hi. I'm a Unix Administrator, mathematics enthusiast, and amateur philosopher. This is where I rant about that which upsets me, laugh about that which amuses me, and jabber about that which holds my interest most: Unix.
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In preparation for an anniversary

Posted 10-16-2012 at 05:20 PM by rocket357

It's been nearly a year since I started working at Rackspace, so I've been thinking alot over the past few days about how my life has changed since I started this insane wild ride. Aside from the expected "I live in San Antonio now", or "I make better money now", or even "I can't begin to explain how much I've learned in the past year", there are deeper, more subtle changes that have had oddly profound effects on my day to day life.

For starters, its impossible to overlook the effects of going from "big fish in small pond" to "incredibly tiny fish in a vast ocean". At my previous job I was *the* Linux tech people turned to for problem resolution. Here at Rackspace, I'm just another tech. I like to think of myself as contributing to the team, or pulling my weight, etc... truth is, I have no clue how I survived before without the collaboration capacity Rackspace has. There are people here that are blisteringly brilliant, and I learn as much as I can from them. Sometimes it feels like I'm not contributing (especially the first few months!), but then I get in a discussion with one of my SSE's and our Network Security team, and I point out an issue that wasn't readily apparent to everyone else. Contributing? Yup!

Another issue that has come to mind is the frightening realization that my previous job was a very sheltered setup. It was one tiny corner of the internet, hidden away behind two low-bandwidth links on a few public ips from our upstream providers. At Rackspace...well, we're insanely more "connected". While this means crazy reliability, it also means crazy *visibility*. As such, the kind of stuff that occurs at Rackspace is incredibly more diverse than my previous job. We have to be on our toes more..."Head on a swivel", as the Marines used to put it. I can't shuffle through the day with my head buried in a tech book anymore...if I'm not eyes-front paying attention and on alert, I'm not doing my job. Oddly enough, that hyper-alert status seems to have carried over into my home network, as it slowly creeps more to the "locked" side the longer I stay at Rackspace. I mean, seriously...I'd read the man pages for bridge before, but actually going "oh, yeah, that's the right tool for *this* exact job!" and then setting one up? It would have never occurred to me a year ago. HAVP? Privoxy? My own DNS servers? (well, ok, I've done that before). I'm afraid I'll have a datacenter in my living room if I stay here much longer =) (My wife would likely state that we're already there).

Ahh, the crazy life. I wouldn't have it any other way. Here's to you, Rackers, and here's to i++.
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