For the past six weeks, I have been on a major learning curve. Like, HUGE. I considered myself fairly proficient with technology. Almost advanced, even. Then I started this job and now I realise what I knew was just a teeny tiny tip of the gigantic iceberg that is all things hardware, software and world wide web based!
All my dreams are about keyboards and data and trying to recover passwords I didn’t know I had to have and understanding procedures that are not procedures but merely checklists. I guess you could say that each night my brain is trying to sort through the learnings of the day and figure out where best to shove it so I can retrieve it again – a defrag, if you will.
I was warned when I started that documentation wasn’t strong and part of my role is to fix that up. I’m bugging everyone in my section with “how do you do this?” then writing up a procedure for it as I go. I’m well aware of the irony of creating the “Infrastructure for Dummies” guide that I wished I’d had when I started but at least the next poor bunny will have a little more to go on than “BIOS settings for PXE boot (Enable)” when trying to reimage a computer for the first time.
The conversation went something like this …
Me: So, how do I do this?
Them: Easy – we have a document for it. Just follow the steps.
Me: Huh. Ok.
[Finds document. Reads document. Scratches head. What the actual hell is a PXE boot? Is it small and green and pointy?]
Me: Uhhhhh. What’s a PXE boot?
Them: Oh. It’s the setting in the BIOS.
Me: [slowly, trying not to upset them] Uh, what’s the BIOS?
Them: [looking at me now like … well, like the dumbarse I am] Uhhh it’s the Basic Input/Output System.
Me: [pause. FUCK. Just say it.] Ooookkkkaaaayyy. How do I find it?
Them: [trying not to sigh] Just turn the computer on and hit the delete key until it comes up.
Me: Well! Why didn’t you say so in the first place?
Don’t get me wrong. They are a great bunch of people and infinitely patient with what must seem like a constant barrage of questions from me. But they’re computer engineers. They know this shit like the back of their hands. I, on the other hand, am a complete novice.
But I do know how to write a step-by-step guide. It’s probably been a great way to cement the learning process and build my confidence a bit at a time in the process.
And all my procedures start with the very basics, such as:
- Turn computer on and hit that delete button until a blue screen of jibberish shows up.