Guess I'll throw in a little history for those interested
(sick?) enough to read my l'il 'ol diary.
I'm currently a DNS Admin/Monkey-boy for Digex in Beltsville, MD.
Most of my time, thankfully, is spent working on pet coding
projects for my boss. The rest of the time is spent
performing DNS mods for our customer base. :-P
Previously, I was a Systems Engineer for Cidera, formerly known as
Skycache, in Laurel, MD. Talk about your kick-ass, never-
forget-it type of job. It basically amounted to performing
whatever needed to be done to get this startup off
the ground. Primarily, this focused on scripting different
projects for monitoring, babysitting the networks,
SysAdmin'g our uplink servers (FreeBSD/Alpha,
NetBSD/Sparc), etc. Very fun stuff. I really miss working
with the folks over there... Mag, MikeD, Lisa, Julie
(Lisa's evil twin sister), Jack, Cliff, Dana, Bert, Todd,
Moose, Brad, Mark (yes, even you Mark) and Keith (sorry if
I forgot others... I know I
I managed to stick around to the 2nd round of layoffs in
April of 2001. By that point, the company realized their
burn rate would far exceed their capital reserves (VC go-go
juice). They've since had a 3rd round of layoffs...
they're now around 30 headcount (down from over 300 at the
peak). I'm still fairly shocked, even with the market
conditions. They had a tear-shit-up type of product...
they just didn't have the business sense to get it moving
(charge the customer? what's that?). The president/owner
is Doug Humphrey, the same Doug Humphrey responsible for
the original Digex, before it was sold to Intermedia and
carved up like last year's Thanksgiving turkey.
Really, it was/is a really sweet product. For those
outside the industry, it doesn't make much sense. For
those that really "get it", it's a downright groovy idea
(given the cost of land-based connectivity). They managed
to integrate a caching solution with a peering arrangement,
delivered via multicast feed over satellites. In layman's
terms, they are able to feed a full Usenet feed, web cache
hits, A/V objects, etc. over a satellite feed (approx 45M
or the rough equivalent of a DS3), distributing to all the
receiving dishes at the same time. From what I heard, it
was nearly a 90% savings over an equivalent terrestrial
solution. Pretty cool, eh?
Ok, I think I'm done with that.
Right now I'm busy hoping the economy will turn around by 2002 Q2. I'm starting to see hints of the economy turning north, although it might just be your typical fluctuations in customer spending and/or the onset of the holiday shopping season. I went on Dice the other day and was disturbed at the decrease in the volume of job postings. I remember not_so_long_ago that the total count was well into the 6 digits. The other day? Approximately 38,000. Scary.