So I work at a pretty big college and am in charge of checking various things to make sure that they’re working. About 1800 things all told, worth tens of millions of dollars. When I started this job my team was expected to check about 20-30 servers manually, semi-hourly, to make sure that they log in okay, keep an eye on 3 other screens with network monitoring tools, watch over a personal email as well as a shared account with my coworkers, monitor environmental changes in the server room environment as well as the office environments, handle print jobs and, just because we’re already in the building, interact with professors and teaching assistants dropping off and picking up tests for our scan tron operator. Also handle a lot of tapes and monitor our backup and restore system. I am the bastard operator from in hell.

Actually that’s not all true. Since I started my latest job description I immediately set about gathering resources and researching ways to make my job a bit less manual, and that’s one of the things I intend to use this weblog for- to share some of the techniques that have helped me go from typing 7 hours a day to glancing up every 15 minutes to make sure nothing broke. Yep, I’ve managed to replace a great deal of my job with a series of small shell scripts. And I intend to outline some of the things I’ve learned in the process, as well as give some concrete examples that will help others accomplish things like never get their electricity cut off because they forgot the due date, make sure their blog is still there and serving pages in the dead of the night, and anything else I can think of that uses computers to make our lives easier. That’s in between posting embedded videos of me singing dreadfully and reposting animated pictures of cats doing stupid shit.