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Job Worries over Automation Expand / Collapse
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Posted Tuesday, September 17, 2013 8:47 PM


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Comments posted to this topic are about the item Job Worries over Automation






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Post #1495743
Posted Wednesday, September 18, 2013 6:39 AM
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I think the 90% reduction is in the number of people who have SysAdmin access. Not in the number of actual workers. I'm sure there are people there who have the SysAdmin access that probably don't need it and shouldn't have it. I would expect an org. like the NSA to do periodic checks of users "need to know" and amend permissions accordingly.
I work in IT at an USAF airbase and we are NOT allowed to connect anything to the USB ports except specific pieces of government HD's and floppies. Yes floppy drives. I heard in a new report on NPR that the NSA had no such restriction. But now they are considering it.
Post #1495897
Posted Wednesday, September 18, 2013 7:05 AM
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I think this story will give context to the cut back in SysAdmins: http://www.npr.org/2013/09/18/223523622/officials-edward-snowdens-leaks-were-masked-by-job-duties

Post #1495913
Posted Wednesday, September 18, 2013 7:15 AM


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In the wake of Edward Snowden, the NSA is obviously going to shake up things internally. I'm surpised they would outsource administrative positions to contractors. Quite frankly, that was a stupid decision for an agency responsible for sage guarding the nation's security intelligence. In terms of historic screw ups, I'd rank the NSA leak right up there with the Navy's decision back in 1941 to park their entire Pacific fleet in Peal Harbor. Outsource your web developers and janitors, but keep the system administrator teams small, well compensated, and on a short leash.

But the federal government is a different IT universe. What happens there doesn't necessarily indicate what's trending in corporate America or even local government IT departments.
Post #1495918
Posted Wednesday, September 18, 2013 7:16 AM
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The point of automation is not to remove employees, but to free up employees to do other work and earn more revenue for the company. In the case of a governmental organization that would translate to having more employees available to do other tasks that can't be automated or require a human to make decisions and control. The term I learned while studying robotics was 'displacement' of workers and it really is true to what I have seen during my 20+ year career in IT. There is always ebb and flow but ultimately more workers are always needed because more tasks are always waiting for a human to perform.
Post #1495919
Posted Wednesday, September 18, 2013 8:26 AM


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And SQL Server 7.0 is self-tuning and eliminates the need for a DBA...

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Post #1495943
Posted Wednesday, September 18, 2013 8:53 AM


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Some news reports describe that Edward Snowden as a SharePoint administrator whose job was to post classified documents and move them around into protected folders. That is something that could be automated with less hands-on human involvement.

Also, there are encryption options that allow admins to manage documents and databases while still not having access to encryption key and reading the data.
Post #1495951
Posted Wednesday, September 18, 2013 9:09 AM
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@Grant - reminds me of company management that still sings the song "If we just buy this off the shelf product, we won't need a development staff." Uh, yeah right. Never mind all of the customizations that management also wants.
Post #1495970
Posted Wednesday, September 18, 2013 10:48 AM
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I was told 25 years ago to go into another line of work because changes in technology would make programmers obsolete.
Post #1496020
Posted Wednesday, September 18, 2013 12:09 PM
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bspring (9/18/2013)
I think the 90% reduction is in the number of people who have SysAdmin access. Not in the number of actual workers. I'm sure there are people there who have the SysAdmin access that probably don't need it and shouldn't have it. I would expect an org. like the NSA to do periodic checks of users "need to know" and amend permissions accordingly.
I work in IT at an USAF airbase and we are NOT allowed to connect anything to the USB ports except specific pieces of government HD's and floppies. Yes floppy drives. I heard in a new report on NPR that the NSA had no such restriction. But now they are considering it.


That was my first take on it as well.
Post #1496061
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