Robert was proud of the system diagnostic and monitoring setup he architected, despite his manager Jim's weird insistence that it be done with XMPP. Their company was responsible for managing network infrastructure at a variety of customer sites, so each customer ran a network monitor that used an off-the-shelf Jabber client to phone home. That central XMPP server itself was Ejabberd and would communicate with all remote nodes via SSL, happily returning information that no one but Robert and his team could read. In order to prevent other nodes from talking to each other, they were only buddied with the central XMPP server. It was the "perfect" setup.

As tends to happen with people who do good work, Robert got pulled away from his XMPP system to save another project from sinking. It would continue to work well enough on its own without much hand-holding. When new nodes needed to be added to the system, that duty fell to Robert's coworker Jens. He kept complaining that it was too much work to pair the new nodes with the XMPP server, but Robert brushed it off because for someone like Jens, tying his shoes was too much work.

Jens had been mysteriously quiet about the XMPP setup duties for a while, before he randomly shouted "I just showed you up, Bobby!" one day. Robert assumed he accomplished something meaningless like topping the office high score in Tetris. "Since your XMPP system is so hard to maintain, I took the opportunity to make some improvements! No more painful setup!"

Robert immediately began to feel a sense of dread. Anything Jens touched turned to crap and now he had been messing with Robert's pet project. "What exactly did you do, Jens? Everything was set up the way it needed to be for security's sake."

"First, I got rid of that EJabberwocky setup, or whatever it was. That was pointless- there are much more lightweight Jabber servers out there!. Then I created a single account group for all the nodes so now whenever we add a new one, BAM! It can automatically talk to the XMPP server. This is way more manageable than the junk you had set up."

Every client site was now buddied with *every other* client site. "Dammit, Jens! Why couldn't you just leave it alone?" Robert said, fuming. "Do you realize that now every node can talk to every other node and get information from it?"

"Yeah, well so what?" Jens retorted, taking up a defensive posture. "What are they going to do, have a big chat party? Chill out, man."

"No, this means that anyone out there who has access to our remote nodes can simply log in and get information from every other node on the network, including the ones at customer sites."

"HA! What are the odds of that happening?" Jens scoffed. "Let's take it to Jim and see what he thinks!"

Robert and Jens raced to Jim's office to see who could prove their point first. Robert won but didn't get the answer he was hoping for. "You see, Robert," Jim began to explain, "we can do things the hard way here, or we can do them the efficient way. What Jens has done here will save him countless hours of setup over the course of a year, freeing him up to do even more important things!"

Robert swallowed his pride as they left Jim's office, Jens sneering behind him. Jens destroyed his perfect system, and gave himself more time to screw other things up in the process. Robert was left to wonder if he should give Jens an unexpected Ejabberd to the throat as payback.

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