Wednesday, July 12, 2006

People for the Ethical Treatment of Software Developers

Three to an office...
3-2-an office...

Yep, that's what they call me. My wife: "Mrs. 32".

So how did I get labeled with this name? If you haven't been able to see it by now, I'm a pilot. In the pilot world, we have call signs and nicknames. My instructor, upon learning that I had to share an office at work with not one, but two other employees, thought it was so amusing that he decided to start calling me "Three to an Office". It was easy for him to say that since he had his own office.

While the name is unusual and the way I received it is kind of humorous, office overcrowding is a rampant problem here at the Mother Ship.

It seems that the powers-that-be have been hiring new employees much faster than expected. As a result, people are getting shoehorned into offices designed for one occupant. Worse yet, the newbies or those without "game" are relegated to a spacious 6'x6' estate with a steel and fabric view in a "cube farm".

Yesterday, while taking an afternoon coffee break, two of my cohorts (who share an office) and I were discussing chicken and rice. More on that topic in my next post. The conversation then became about Pamela Anderson, KFC and PETA. Then "Dan" jokingly made a comment along the lines of "Developers need to be treated more ethically". So now we have this entry.

When an alien envisions joining the Mother Ship, he/she envisions one's own office, furniture and lava lamps. The reality is you get a room-mate (or two or three), a garbage can in the hallway and soaring 80+ room temps. However, all is not lost. One also gets the occasional debate, the aroma of what a cohort had for lunch, or even dinner the previous night, and the occasional F-bomb screamed @ 95 db. I personally enjoyed playing "bumper chairs" with my office mates. I highly recommend bringing your own crash helmet since the company doesn't provide them and the desk edges are sharp!

Surely such overcrowding leads to loss of comfort, concentration and ultimately productivity. Software developers on the Mother Ship deserve better. At least give us a padded office for our bumper chair sessions, or when we ultimately go crazy. Either way, it will be put to good use.

As I wrap up this entry, I took a quick look in the address book. My instructor, Random Rick, now shares an office with two others. Random, if you're rerading this, your new call sign is "Three to 4325"!


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