This is probably the sweetest Onion article I've ever seen.
I'm currently digesting and metabolizing the aftermath of a sake tasting at Naomi. The owner knows more about sake than I ever intend to, so they do a double tasting--once with some of the sakes chilled, and then again at the end when they've had a chance to warm up a little bit (sake is smoother and easier to drink while cold, but it hides some of the complexity and flavors). I think overall I had...probably 10 or 12 ounces of good strong sake. The sakes are interleaved with an obscene amount of food--"for no DUI", says the owner. A Naomi sake tasting with friends (without prior communication my dojo friends were waiting for me) is hard to beat.
So, while there's maybe 70 people in my office, I work for a very large company which is owned by an even bigger company. As far as I can tell, it's a sensible, well-run conglomerate, and conglomerates often do responsible things like security audits. There's a critical application running on an old machine that cannot be patched into modernity because it breaks, so it's not very secure. A few weeks ago I got to start rewriting that application, and tonight I stayed at work a bit later to cut over to the new version, converting the old data at the end of the day. I think it went pretty well, although there will inevitably be a score of phone calls tomorrow. But not to me. Because there are other people who get paid to shield me from the outside world, which is a nice feeling most of the time.
As it happens, there's another application. Let's call this original machine Machine A. At first we thought this application ran on Machine A. Makes sense: you go to Machine A to use it. But I couldn't find it on Machine A. In fact I finally tracked it to Machine B, and there's just a funky bit of redirection from Machine A to Machine B. The application uses a database, and I was supposed to move the data as well.
Machine B isn't running a database. And the application server that would have the database information is inaccessible because the guy who maintained this thing left the company in June. Some phone calls and emails reveal that the database is actually a production database in Illinois which can't be moved. Well, that's fine. One less thing I have to do.
There's no source code. Well, there kind of is. There's an outdated version. It doesn't compile. Actually I'm not really sure how this application is running at all. But I'm supposed to move it. I cobbled together the outdated source code from several applications on Machine B, but the actual source was lost in a hard drive crash at some point. I might be able to get the source, but I'm not sure if the woman to ask actually works there any more. I can decompile some of the source from binary code that I think the server is running, but that's still incomplete.
Is it just because I'm from New England that "You can't get there from here" has any non-humorous meaning?
I sense another rewrite coming on. Let's hear it for job security!