Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Ominous Omens and Portentous Portents...

Something has happened at work.

That's... basically all I know about it. Something has happened. I don't know what, or to whom, or who all might have been - or become - involved. I can't even say with any certainty just how serious the event itself actually was. Serious enough, I presume, but in the absence of information it's more than a little hard to say.

Whatever it was, it has thrown us into a tizzy of tightening security, upholding propriety, and generally making sure that only what is Right and Decent prevails. Our computers are now set, by policy, to throw up a screensaver after ten minutes of inactivity... and then require a password to reactivate. (Some of us - ahem - were already set that way, thank-you-very-much.) As IT folks, we've been told to lock our computers Any Time we move away from them, even if we're only moving to chat with someone in the doorway of our own office. We've been told that People Will Be Checking On This. We've been instructed to keep various cabinets (the one with installation discs and various hardware) firmly, and perpetually, locked. We've been told not to let anyone else use our computers, ever, no matter how dire the circumstances.

We have, as a matter of policy (and there are slightly complicated but very solid reasons behind it) never monitored people's Internet browsing activity. Apparently, as of this morning, we've started. I find this intriguingly suggestive, but there's always the possibility that this is some sort of bizarrely overblown "Edward Snowden Therefore We Must Be Seen To Be Doing Something" sort of thing. I have no way to be sure - at least, no way that wouldn't, in itself, be a distinctly career-limiting move.

Now, I'm not opposed to tightening our security. Stopping to review both official policies and actual day-to-day practice is a good thing. I mention all this because it means, among other things, that I will not be able to throw things up here on the Blog o' Doom between projects at work - or in the half an hour or so between the time when I arrive at work, and the time when the work day officially starts, for that matter. If we're going to be monitoring as closely and as thoroughly as I've been led to believe, then even that would be noticed... and possibly seen to reflect badly on the department, or maybe just on me. In any case, it's a risk I don't care to take.

That means that my time for throwing together amusing little tidbits to toss out on Ye Olde Blogge has now been confined to my evenings. That is also the sole and solitary time that I have for my other writing projects. And since I am currently knee-deep in such a project, that means that the time I have available to compose things for the blog is effectively, well, unavailable.

I will not be closing the blog. I may not even shift to a lighter posting schedule. However, it's extremely likely that you'll be seeing more filler here - things that I found humorous or entertaining, but that don't require much time or attention to compose and post.

Remember, folks: if you trust your co-workers, the terrorists win. Or something like that.

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