“HERE IT IS!” exclaimed Miha’s boss with a victorious look. “See! I told you that I’d find you a computer! Now we can get you doing something other than fetching coffee!” he chuckled.
The ‘new’ desktop was a rather outdated SGI Indy with a brownish patina that made it seem like it had been tucked away in a closet for years. But it was better than nothing! Up until this point, Miha had been doing nothing more than reading through outdated manuals for the one product that the company he was interning at developed and supported. He welcomed the lil’ blue marvel.
Soon after connecting everything and pressing the power button, Miha exhaled a sigh of relief as he watched the boot messages scroll, announcing that one service after another started up and that all sorts of hardware initialized. It'd take a good five or so minutes before the login screen would appear.
Joe - The Other Intern
While the system was going through its start-up calisthenics, Miha figured that he’d pop in and say hello to Joe, the other intern who started the same day that he did. But before Miha could get a word in, Joe interjected, “Check it out, Miha! I found a disk of demo programs and installed these cool 3D apps!”
Miha nodded as Joe fired up the programs. The rotating square, torus, decahedron, and bouncing ball demos all came to life on the screen.
“The best part of it all,” Joe grinned, “is that I don’t have to bring my CD player in anymore. There was a ton of space left on the box, so I just ripped my whole collection!”
“Yeah, heh, pretty cool there! Guess what, I finally got a computer!”
“Way to go!” Joe replied while doing a combo sweep and point motion,“You get an Octane like this one?”
“Nah,” Miha replied, “Just a second hand Indy XL for now, but better than nothing right!”
“Keep plugging away man, “ Joe snorted, “now that you’re online, maybe I’ll go ahead and share my MP3 stash with you - I've already got 500 megs worth!”
Unlike Miha, Joe had been doing real work from the comfort of a high-backed leather chair in front of a wall sized window overlooking the surrounding grounds with a top of the line SGI Octane at his disposal. Now, this wasn’t because Joe was any smarter or better than Miha. No, had Miha entered the building 15 minutes sooner, then he would have the VP of Software Development’s office, with its perks. Like a smug jerk, he even used the VP’s “#1 Boss” mug at the coffee machine.
Of course, the playing field would be leveled in about a week when the VP came back from his vacation, and the two interns’ new, permanent computers arrived, but for now, Joe took pleasure in reminding Miha of his assumed position.
It didn’t take long after getting his 'new' Indy for Miha to start wondering if he could go back to reading through tech manuals while waiting for his real computer to arrive.
While Joe was in his ivory tower zipping around with 3D whatzits and his MP3s, Miha was having trouble doing things like displaying emails with attachments or minimizing windows. It’s not like anything didn’t work, it was just too slow to be productive. Joe had gone ahead and gave Miha instructions on how to connect to his machine, but it was pointless. Not just because of performance, but the network seemed glacially slow and his computer's hard disk was nearly maxed out.
Ironically enough, he was able to eventually get some work done, but only if he stayed well past the end of business - it was as if his computer was possessed!
The explanation came soon after in the form of an angry mob.
Let’s Get Him
“Excuse me, but is that your computer?” asked a passer by one day while Miha was in the midst of a cursing fit.
“Yeah, the stupid paperweight...” Miha started to reply but trailed off as he noticed the crowd of co workers gathering around his desk.
“THAT COMPUTER” began a red faced engineer who was leading the crowd, “IS OUR QA DEPARTMENT’S STOLEN WEB SERVER! WOULD YOU MIND TELLING US HOW IT CAME TO BE IN YOUR POSESSION???!?”
Feeling that his life may very well be in danger, Miha did his best to stammer, “My....b-boss...gave it....Imma intern!!!!” which was apparently enough to make the crowd migrate to his supervisor’s office where they may or may not have exacted some sort of revenge on the true server thief.
Soon after, one of the members of infrastructure group stopped by to shut down the computer and pack it up for transport and, with that, left Miha back where he started - back to reading through technical manuals while Joe worked in the lap of luxury.
But it all ended up well. About a week later, both his and Joe’s permanent computers arrived, making Miha once again productive. But Joe was left to explain to the VP why his once-pristine computer was now overflowing with MP3s and demos of spinning cubes.