Thursday, May 21, 2009

Define Temperamental

Temperamental: of, related to, or caused by temperament; subject to changing and unpredictable emotional states; moody, capricious; sometimes used figuratively to describe user-unfriendly or unstable machines or software that are either complicated and/or have poorly written instructions and are subsequently...

Does this describe your office IT guy from time to time? Or maybe you don't have a full-time IT manager, it might describe the recent college graduate that happened to be computer savvy and was thus dubbed the IT guy in your office. Well, that's me -- I went to work as a project manager after receiving a degree in construction management and was immediately dubbed the IT guy because I was apparently the only one with an understanding of computers and technology that reached beyond the basics.

I have been around computers for about as long as I can remember. I used to take them apart and put them back together just for fun. Or, I'd crash the system and have to restore it because it was my fault and my family didn't have the money to have someone repair it. (I would just like to point out that it is likely that I was usually on the computer at the time it crashed, and therefore, to my family, any time the computer crashed it was, of course, my fault.) When I first started in college, I was majoring in computer engineering. But somewhere along the line, I fell in love with construction and my computer engineering degree turned into associate's degree in computer systems technology. Because of the different requirements for the construction management degree (which seemed like complete opposite of computer engineering), I ended up with more credits than most graduate students and a very well rounded education. So after graduation, when I went to work in the construction industry, (an industry starving for technologically savvy people), it was no surprise that managing IT became a large part of what my employers would ask me to do.

So I understand what it's like to be the Temperamental Techie in the office. I might come across a little annoyed when my primary responsibilities have been interrupted with someone's question about Microsoft Excel or why they can't connect to the Internet for the third time in an hour. Often the answer is simple, "You forgot to put an equal sign in your equation" or "Did you check to make sure your network cable is connected?" My favorite scape-goat answer is "Restart your computer" (that one takes care of 80% of the problems). At other times, I might come across especially nice and willing to help because sometimes work can be boring or I'll be looking for a good excuse to get out of a meeting.

My goal for this blog is to help you better appreciate your office IT guy, and hopefully bring a little bit of consistency and peace to his temperament by having you come to me instead. I realize that it's not exactly the valet service you get from your office IT guy here, but I will be posting all kinds of useful information about basic computer stuff that will be at your disposal to use around the office and even at home. Please ask me your questions, and I'll try to answer them in a timely manner.

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