Archive for Scenerios

Scenerio 1: The Wayward Uncle

You have an uncle who is planning on retiring after a lengthy stay as an Army helicopter pilot.  His future lies in a cabin on some lake in the Pacific Northwest where he can fish all day.  He has some technical skills, being a pilot, but he doesn’t want things too complicated.

He has approached you about his extensive mp3 collection of music from the late 1960s.  The nearest department superstore (the only hardware source in the area) from his cabin is a 50 mile drive and he doesn’t enjoy making special trips for his computer.  He wants his music to be dependable and accessible at all times at the cabin, but he also doesn’t want Internet access.  The computer will be wired into his home speaker system so he can listen to it while entertaining and relaxing.  He wants to be able to pull up a media center screen and build easy playlists.

What do you suggest to him with regards to hardware and software?


I am going to add a new category today that needs your participation to thrive.  I often am approached both at and outside work to come up with solutions to a person’s individual technology needs.  These requests can be as simple as “How do I make my iPod do this?”  to “I am planning on creating an online form for my small business and I need to access my email all the time.  How do I accomplish this?”

This isn’t the situation where you say “I can tell you for fifty an hour.”  It’s more of a satisfaction of someone knowing they can count on me than anything else.  I have decided to add a category for these one-time, quick suggestions.

This is where you the reader, can make a small content contribution that will be greatly appreciated.  I will begin posting scenerios, some of them made up but thoughtfully crafted.  I don’t want this site turned into a help forum and as IT admins, I know we have a tendency to eat our young (a.k.a. RTFM, “Google it yourself”, etc.) when it comes to asking for advice, so I want to keep this fun, not to create a shortcut to an answer.  I will be taking your suggestions for topics at

Once a scenerio is up, the comments section is for your suggestions, questions, or discussion.  I myself will be posting comments to these, as I don’t want to play “supreme overlord” in this process.  Your comments can be as simple or complex as you want. Spend all their money. Spend their retirement.

Just remember that as with all things in life, there is a catch: Mikey just implemented digg-style ranking on the comments.  (Oh, you are quite welcome 😉 ) This will push the best comments to the top and focus on the most effective solutions.  If a majority of the voters want to go cheap on the solution, so be it.  If there is a consensus that Ubuntu has the best options, that bird is going to fly. If Windows Media Center (I know) is the best solution, let them eat cake.  What I am looking for is the best as determined by our expert panel, the readers.

Well, I will see how this goes.  I am going to come up with the first few scenerios and see what happens.  Please try to avoid making this an advertisement (Akismet is watching and Akismet loves you).  I will handle problems as they arise with this decision, but I will also maintain order.  Personal attacks against other posters are off limits.  Vote the comment down if you have a problem with it.  Lert’s make this fun.