Ellis Morning

Ellis is a Computer Science graduate who fought in the trenches of Tech Support, occasionally crossing enemy lines into the Business Analyst and Project Management spheres of war. She's now a freelance writer and author of sci-fi/fantasy adventure novels about a spacefaring knight errant on a quest for justice and enlightenment. Read more at Ellis' website.

Unseen Effort

by in Feature Articles on

Hermann Safe Co. Safe

Anita, a senior developer, had recently been hired at a company with around 60 employees. Her first assignment was to assist with migrating the company’s flagship on-premises application to the cloud. After a year of effort, the approach was deemed unworkable and the entire project was scrapped. Seem a little hasty? Well, to be fair, the company made more money selling the servers and licenses for running their application on-premise than they made on the application itself. Multiple future migration attempts would meet the same fate, but that's a whole other WTF.

Classic WTF: The Mainframe Database

by in Feature Articles on
As our summer break continues, we tend to get nostalgic for summers past, for the way things used to be. Like they were back in the mainframe days. Wait, what? No, not that. Anything but that. Original --Remy

IBM System360 Mainframe

George, an independent contractor, usually spent his first day home from a business trip plowing through the emails that'd piled up in his absence. In the midst of this grind, he received a call from Lucinda, a Microsoft contact from South Africa.

Worlds Collide

by in Feature Articles on


George had gotten a new job as a contractor at a medium-sized book distributor. He arrived nice and early on Day 1, enthusiastic about a fresh start in a new industry.

Demo Most Dear

by in Feature Articles on

Cars in traffic in Auckland, New Zealand - copyright-free photo released to public domain

Reese was driving home from work one day in 2012 when his cell phone rang out over his driving music. It wasn't a number he had stored in his contacts, but the area code and prefix were clearly from his office.

Best of 2020: Science Is Science

by in Best of… on
You do not need formal training from a compsci program or similar before you're allowed to be a developer. But sometimes, when your job role already contains "engineer" in the title, people think you can handle any engineering task. As we continue our review of the best of 2020, here's a tale of misapplied human resources. Original --Remy

Oil well

Bruce worked for a small engineering consultant firm providing custom software solutions for companies in the industrial sector. His project for CompanyX involved data consolidation for a new oil well monitoring system. It was a two-phased approach: Phase 1 was to get the raw instrument data into the cloud, and Phase 2 was to aggregate that data into a useful format.

A New Bean

by in Feature Articles on

Roasted coffee beans

It was Paramdeep's first corporate IT job. He was assigned a mentor, Rajiv, who would train him up on the application he would be supporting: a WebSphere-based Java application full of Enterprise Java Beans.

Slow Load

by in Feature Articles on

LED traffic light on red

After years spent supporting an enterprisey desktop application with a huge codebase full of WTFs, Sammy thought he had seen all there was to be seen. He was about to find out how endlessly deep the bottom of the WTF barrel truly was.


by in Feature Articles on

Merge-short arrows

Trung worked for a Microsoft and .NET framework shop that used AutoMapper to simplify object mapping between tiers. Their application's mapping configuration was performed at startup, as in the following C# snippet: