Sharky

Questions that Sharky gets a lot

Q: What's a pilot fish?

A: There are two answers to that question. One is the Mother Nature version: Pilot fish are small fish that swim just ahead of sharks. When the shark changes direction, so do the pilot fish. When you watch underwater video of it, it looks like the idea to change direction occurred simultaneously to shark and pilot fish.

Thing is, sharks go pretty much anywhere they want, eating pretty much whatever they want. They lunge and tear and snatch, but in so doing, leave plenty of smorgasbord for the nimble pilot fish.

The IT version: A pilot fish is someone who swims with the sharks of enterprise IT -- and lives to tell the tale. Just like in nature, a moment's inattention could end the pilot fish's career. That's life at the reef.

Q: Are all the Sharky stories true?

A: Yes, as best we can determine.

Q: Where do the Sharky tales come from?

A: From readers. Sharky just reads and rewrites and basks in the reflected glory of you, our readers. It is as that famous fish-friendly philosopher Spinoza said, "He that can carp in the most eloquent or acute manner at the weakness of the human mind is held by his fellows as almost divine."

Q: Do I have to write my story in Sharky-ese?

A: No. Not at all. Just be sure to give us details. What happened, to whom, what he said, what she said, how it all worked out. If Sharky likes your tale of perfidy, heroism or just plain weirdness at your IT shop, he will supply his particular brand of Shark snark.

Q: I've got a really funny story, but I could get fired if my old trout of a boss found out I told you. How confidential is what I send to Sharky?

A: We don't publish names: yours, your boss's, your trout's, your company's. We try to file off the serial numbers, though there's no absolute guarantee that someone who lived through the incident won't recognize himself. Our aim is to share the outrageous, knee-slapping, milk-squirting-out-your-nose funny tales that abound in the IT world, not to get you fired. That would not be funny.

Q: How do I get each new Shark Tank tale emailed to me?

Easy. Subscribe to the newsletter.

Q: Where are the Sharkives?

Tales of old can be found in Sharky's archive.

Hammer time

Hammer time

There’s a tool for everything.

Memory-Lane Monday: Hard copy

Memory-Lane Monday: Hard copy

It’s a legacy system called a map.

There are only so many shapes

There are only so many shapes

And really, it could happen to anyone.

Throwback Thursday: That’s entertainment!

Throwback Thursday: That’s entertainment!

Maybe so, but we’re in the news business.

Shiny!

Shiny!

Maybe you could get a smaller buffer.

Time-Machine Tuesday: Not so much

Time-Machine Tuesday: Not so much

A little learning is an arrogant thing.

Open source of distraction

Open source of distraction

He certainly has the nerve.

Flashback Friday: See, I fixed it

Flashback Friday: See, I fixed it

And doesn’t the printer smell pretty?

Throwback Thursday: Vroom vroom!

Throwback Thursday: Vroom vroom!

Fast on the streets but slow you know where.

A good rep that’s bad news

A good rep that’s bad news

Is it too late to start whistling while you work?

Spiked punch

Spiked punch

For the love of troubleshooting.

Should auld acquaintance …

Should auld acquaintance …

Everyone was glad to see THAT year finally end.

Help wanted

Help wanted

Looking for someone under 30 with 20+ years of experience.

Throwback Thursday: Doesn’t ‘new’ mean ‘perfect’?

Throwback Thursday: Doesn’t ‘new’ mean ‘perfect’?

Note to boss: Never assume.

It’s all been documented

It’s all been documented

Naming conventions are for conventional people.

Hello? Hello?

Hello? Hello?

Just be glad she didn’t pick up.

Memory-Lane Monday: Even worse than you thought

Memory-Lane Monday: Even worse than you thought

Just a lucky guess, right?

Thumper

Thumper

Remember: Thump, don’t whack.

Throwback Thursday: Hardly worth mentioning

Throwback Thursday: Hardly worth mentioning

Well, she thought you were looking for some weird explanation.

Not even remotely right

Not even remotely right

Can you see me now?

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