Re: What's the most technical task you ever did as part of your job?

Subject: Re: What's the most technical task you ever did as part of your job?
From: Keith Hood <klhra -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: Wade Courtney <wade -dot- courtney -at- gmail -dot- com>, TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 25 Jan 2013 16:36:02 -0800 (PST)

I have what I think is a 3-way tie.

Once I helped build, and did component-level troubleshooting, repairs, and modifications, on an electromechanical system that used ultrasound to test for flaws in the walls of nuclear reactor containment vessels.  In addition, I researched and wrote test plans for QC during the construction phases.

One job, I was a computer instructor, teaching system administration on UNIX servers (Solaris and HP-UX).  I had to write course materials and do presentation graphics for the classes, and then teach the classes.  I got the job because my resume showed experience as a teacher and working on UNIX computers.  Both of those were flat-out lies.  I was desperate for a job and the company was desperate to hire new people - it was expanding dramatically because they got a big contract from the Air Force, and my acting in that interview was perfect. I had 3 months to teach myself UNIX.  I managed to keep that job 3 years and got a raise, and I got to where they included me in the teams that worked with customers to set up new programs, so I can truthfully say I didn't entirely suck.

At a different job, the bosses wanted  API documentation for Java applications.  It took me 4 months, working on it in gaps between the other docs I had to write.  I had never touched API docs so I started studying the materials I could find on the Web.  Installed Sun JavaDoc and learned how to use it.  Started experimenting with batch files and chron jobs.  When I finished I had a fully automated system that ran once a week.  At oh dark thirty Monday it would rename all the existing output files, zip them, and move them into an archive.  Then it would run JavaDoc against a library of more than 50,000 class files, spit new API docs for them into the right folders on the server, update the intranet Web site that provided links to the API docs, and send out emails.  And the hit counters on the Web pages proved that the developers literally never once accessed those docs.
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References:
Re: What's the most technical task you ever did as part of your job?: From: William Sherman
Re: What's the most technical task you ever did as part of your job?: From: Wade Courtney

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