My Wordspace

A dumpster full of various musings over life, God, scripture, and any random thought that may fly by meanwhile. Comments welcome.

Archive for February, 2007

Blinding Confusion

Posted by Iszi on February 27, 2007

Dazed and confused
blinded by the ruse
drowning in distraction
conviction surrounding me.

Questions unanswered
infecting like cancer
spinning with query
seeking what cannot be seen.

How did this start?
When will it end?
Will I ever know
my true meaning again?

So many desires
burning like fire
caged by my burdens
everything smothering me.

Searching for freedom
dreading the treason
straining to unravel
the mystery of deity.

How did this start?
When will it end?
Will I ever know
my true meaning again?

I just don’t understand
I wish I could comprehend
how I came to this place
or how I can be free…

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Posted in My Lyrics/Poetry, Venting | 1 Comment »

Old news for Disciple, but still GREAT!

Posted by Iszi on February 22, 2007

So, I was going to the Disciple website to look up information on tickets to their Scars Remain tour and saw a couple great bits of news I wanted to

Scars Remain Tour / Game On on CBS
2007-02-05 17:17:18

We are two weeks in to the Scars Remain tour and the shows have been amazing. Thanks so much to everyone who has come out to the tour so far. Family Force 5 just joined us last night in Minneapolis and we look forward to having them with us for the rest of the tour. Fireflight and Decyfer Down have been a blast to work with, we have truly enjoyed their company. Joey has been making video tour journals of the last couple of weeks so be sure and check them out at myspace.com/disciplerocks. They should also be up on the media section of this website very soon. Check out the rest of the Scars Remain tour dates on the Tour section. ‘Game On’ was featured on a commercial for the CBS show Criminal Minds. It was played after the Super Bowl episode and will replay a number of times over the next couple of days. Go to CBS.com to watch the trailer for this Wednesday’s episode.

Game On!
2006-10-24 20:38:52

This is pretty cool! Yesterday, we officially locked in a deal to have the theme song for WWE’s next pay-per view event. WWE Cyber Sunday will be live on pay-per-view on November 5, 8 p.m. and will be in Cincinatti, OH. The song “Game On” from our new album Scars Remain will be played 5 times during this pay-per view event, and will be known as the theme song throughout the evening. Last night night on WWE RAW, on the USA Network, they gave a promo of “Game On” being the theme song and showed the album artwork and the release date while playing the song for about 60 seconds. This is by far the best promotion we have ever had! Last night aired in front over a million people. The WWE is not known for being a “Christian” tv show, and that is why this is such an awesome opportunity to be able to get our music in front of so many people. Our team is working very hard with this song and they have also been able to get “Game On” to air on ESPN’s NFL Live on Nov 1 and 2 during the plays of the month. It will also be heard during Fox Sport’s The Best D— Sports Show, the NFL Network’s Total Access show, and Speed TV’s Speed Report.

Of particular excitement to me, are the following excerpts:

“‘Game On’ was featured on a commercial for the CBS show Criminal Minds. It was played after the Super Bowl episode and will replay a number of times over the next couple of days…”

“WWE Cyber Sunday will be live on pay-per-view on November 5, 8 p.m. and will be in Cincinatti, OH. The song “Game On” from our new album Scars Remain will be played 5 times during this pay-per view event, and will be known as the theme song throughout the evening.”

And the real kicker, which I love…

“The WWE is not known for being a “Christian” tv show, and that is why this is such an awesome opportunity to be able to get our music in front of so many people.”

It’s amazing what God can do with our music when we put away the misconceptions that Christianity has brainwashed into us nof what “Godly music” should sound like. Rock on Disciple, and praise the Lord!

Posted in Christianity | 1 Comment »

I just can’t stand Service Desk stupidity!

Posted by Iszi on February 20, 2007

Working in IT, I get to deal with a lot of stupid stuff mostly due to user ignorance and/or laziness.  This is commonly known as PEBKAC and is generally accepted as part of the job.  So, in dealing with users I try to offer a bit of forgiveness whenever they say or do something that just doesn’t make sense in the given situation.  When the IT Service Desk exhibits user-level ignorance and moronishness however, that’s when I blow a gasket.  These people should know better.

In today’s example, a user is calling in to check on the status of a requested change to their SAP account.  SAP changes require a few approvals.  Firstly from the user’s manager, and second from the Data Owner in charge of whatever permissions the person is requesting.  If the request hasn’t yet been approved by the user’s manager, the Data Owners never see it.

In this particular case, the user’s request hasn’t been approved by their manager yet.  This is clearly visible on the online request form, and is also noted in a trouble ticket open from when the user previously called in to check on the status of his request.  After the manager approves the request, my approval will be needed for some basic display roles, and some other roles requested will need approval from another Data Owner.

Here’s a bit of my conversation with someone from the IT Service Desk (Referred to as ITSD) on the subject.   Names have been stripped and/or changed to protect identities:

ITSD says:
hey

Iszi says:
?

ITSD says:
i have john doe on the phone, he wants to know when his SAP CMP role change is going to be done

Iszi says:
Last I checked, my answer was “When it is approved”.  Did you look at his ticket?

ITSD says:
yes smarty pants

Iszi says:
well what are you coming to me for?

ITSD says:
and ibecause it doesn’t have that you approved it yet

ITSD says:
that’s why

ITSD says:
never mind i will talk to (ITSD Manager) about

Iszi says:
It’s not MANAGER approved yet.

Iszi says:
I can’t approve anything until the user’s MANAGER has approved it.

ITSD says:
there is no need for you to get smart

ITSD says:
at all

Iszi says:
Not getting smart, getting defensive…

ITSD says:
well you don’t need to do it with me

What part of “not approved, I can’t do anything” is hard to understand?  It’s in the ticket, it’s on the form, why am I even hearing about it?  Sadly, this is not a rare occurrence.  All too often the ITSD (not this person most times) calls me with an issue, and it goes like this:  Me – “Did you check the ticket/form?”  ITSD – “Yes, and you said this in it…”  Me – “Does it look like there’s been any change in the situation on the user end?”  ITSD – “No”  Me – “Then why are you coming to me with this?!?!”  ITSD – “…”

Or worse:  Me – “Did you check the ticket/form?”  ITSD – “No”  Me – “Well all the info you need is in there, go look and then come to me with questions!”

This is just ridiculous, and I’m getting tired of it.

</end rant>

Posted in IT, Venting, Work | Leave a Comment »

Finally Updated Photoblog

Posted by Iszi on February 18, 2007

It’s been a little over 2 years now, but I’ve finally updated my Photoblog! There’s some more recent pictures of myself and Tiffani-Anne, updated tags, and I’ve also updated my WordPress Avatar with a crop-out of me from the February 2002 picture with my wife. Go check it out! The cuteness is irresistible!

Posted in Photoblog | 1 Comment »

Packed Car

Posted by Iszi on February 13, 2007

There’s a word for this, and I think it’s “O.M.F.G.!”.

http://www.local6.com/news/10991469/detail.html

That’s all I really have to say. Oh, and that lady should be shot. Yes, that’s all.

UPDATE:

Looks like the car’s not the only problem.  Here’s another news channel’s coverage on the story:

 http://wbztv.com/local/local_story_043180147.html 

Apparently, there’s someone trying to blame this on OCD.  I don’t know what it is, but there’s decidedly something not right about that lady.

Posted in Cars, News | Leave a Comment »

The Road Won’t Know What Hit It

Posted by Iszi on February 13, 2007

Generally speaking, I enjoy driving. I enjoy it to the point that I will usually insist on driving whenever I go out with my friends, no matter whose idea it was to go where we’re going and no matter how far it is. That’s just the way I am.

I’m also a fast driver. I’m sitting on two speeding tickets right now, one for 80 MPH in a 65 zone (Actually clocked at 85, but I guess the trooper gave me a break for my first ticket.) and another for 77 in a 45. I’m not generally an agressive driver, and don’t typically pull any “stupid” or “crazy” maneuvers in traffic, but for some reason driving fast just feels natural to me and I can’t drive any other way. Really, I’ve tried. I’ve even gone to set the cruise control to “just” 5 or 10 over the limit on a 65 MPH highway and I still can’t contain myself. It’s kind of like when I climb stairs. With my long legs, taking them one at a time just doesn’t feel right – I’ve got to take them in doubles (or when I’m in a real hurry, triples).

Thirdly, I like my car to have a good bit of get-up-and-go. This of course, goes naturally with fast driving. Still, I don’t want my car to just be able to go fast. I want it to be able to get to fast in a hurry, without too much strain or complaint.

All that being said, the past few weeks have felt especially long. Since before the end of last month, my Mark VIII has been sitting in the driveway with a half-dead transmission. One day on the way to work, third and fourth gear just went out on me. The drive home was real great, watching the gauges to make sure the engine would survive the 30-mile trip in 2nd gear. (Through which I must say it performed rather admirably.) Since then however, it has stayed pretty much parked except for an occasional jog around the corner to the store.

To get to and from work, I’ve been either borrowing my step-dad’s Bonneville or catching a ride with a friend. While the Bonneville is equipped with a Supercharged V-6, the car (a ’94 I think) is beginning to show its age. So being that it’s my step-dad’s car, not only do I not want to get caught driving it as I normally would drive mine, but I also have to worry about whether or not it would survive my normal driving habits. The friend that’s been driving me also drives pretty fast, but it’s still not the same as being behind the wheel myself.

Finally, I’ve received news that my taxes have been submitted and should be direct-deposited with a week. The return is expected to be more than enough to cover for the transmission replacement, and also numerous repairs and upgrades that I had been planning to make to the Mark to begin with. Now the only problem is I just can’t wait.

Every day around this time, my foot just gets the itch to lay down some rubber and get to hauling some serious ass outta here. When the day finally comes that my Mark VIII is alive again (and kickin’ harder than it ever has!) you can be sure the road won’t know what hit it.

Posted in Driving, Mark VIII, Venting | Leave a Comment »

Password Maintenance Woes

Posted by Iszi on February 12, 2007

I’ve just got to vent this right now.

My company has got to have quite probably the STUPIDEST password maintenance rules and policies in the world! Not only are there probably a dozen different systems that you might have a password in, but each one of them has their own specifications to be followed.

For example, differences may be:

  • Length requirements.
  • Dictionary exclusions
  • Allowed characters
  • Required characters
  • Expiration schedules
  • Reuse schedules
  • Change frequency

So, if I would want to have one password for all systems (which is a general security no-no of course, and even against written policy for some systems) or even a few systems, I would have to first make sure that it meets the length and character requirements of the system that demands the most complex password, then make sure that it doesn’t fall under any dictionary exclusions in another system (which has been known to kick passwords out for words of as few as three letters), and then make sure it isn’t excluded by the reuse policy in any of the others! Oh, and if I change a password in one system but it doesn’t jibe with another, I might have to wait a whole day to update the first one again!

Yeah, and by the way: You’ve got to do this every month, or 60 days, or 90 days, or whenever depending on which system you’re in! Sound confusing? Well it is! Of course, on the technical end, it’s supposed to be confusing – it is a security matter after all. But, on the human end the extreme complexity in itself can become a security risk. People will naturally want to simplify parts of their daily life which are complex. And the more complex, the greater the desire to simplify.

For example, let’s say you want a person to change their password once a month. Consider this a conversation between user and their computer. User is italicized, computer is bolded:

Okay password change today, no big deal. We can handle this. Just breathe in, breathe out. Concentrate. Yeah, I’ve got it!

Good job. One problem. The password has to be longer than that! Oh, really? Hmm, let me think. Okay, I’ll add another word or throw some prefixes/suffixes on there, how about that?

Great, but… What? You need more character types. *sigh* Fine. I’ll throw in a number and a special character here and there. Happy?

Almost. What now? Well, you’ve got some words in there. Isn’t that what a password is? No, I mean *real* words. You know, stuff I could look up in a dictionary? We can’t allow that. Oh my God. Okay, how about I substitute some l337 5p34k in for some of this? Is that good enough?

I think so, let me check… Oh, no no no no! We can’t have this! What the bloody hell now?!?! Well you see, you used this password last year one time when you came up for renewal. Remember, (insert number) passwords ago? What the F&$K?!?!

Okay, that does it. I’ve got to be able to remember this thing somehow! I know: I’ll use my son’s name, the nickname we use for his soccer team – I know *that* can’t be in the dictionary – a number sign, and his jersey number! How about that? Well, let me see. Wow, that’s PLENTY long enough, you’ve got all the character types, no dictionary matches, and I don’t think you’ve ever used this before. It looks like a great password! No one will ever guess it, superb job!

Finally, thanks! Now let me update this other system that I use in the same program. Oh, wait. This one doesn’t like that password. Some of the characters you used aren’t recognized. Well $#%&! Fine, how about I change this bit? Is that good?

Yeah, that’s fine. Okay, thank you! Now let me go back and make that other one the same, so I don’t forget…

Woah, wait. You want to do what? I don’t want to forget these passwords, so let me change the first one that I made to match the other one! Well, I don’t have a problem with you doing that… just not now. See, you just changed your password a few minutes ago and I can’t let you change it again now until tomorrow.

Some computers just deserve to be shot.

Anyway, my key point is here. See what password the user ended up going with? Believe it or not, this accounts for the way probably 75% of users end up making their passwords. When I was doing computer migrations – where we needed to know the user’s password – I saw this all the time. Kids’ names, jersey numbers, pet’s names, vacation plans. Anything that will be easy for them to remember, all common-knowledge stuff for anyone who might know the smallest bit about these people. Or worse, they end up writing their password down somewhere near (or attached to) their computer so they won’t forget it! (Yes, I have seen this done.)

They choose the simplest way to deal with the most complex system, thereby nullifying any security benefits that are supposedly gained by making the system so complex! And for those who don’t do this? Well, I used to wonder why people called in so often with forgotten passwords. I guess I have my answer.

Posted in IT, Office Life, Venting | Leave a Comment »