When your printer breaks down, your email account won't work or your files go missing, who do you call? Yep, that amazing, fix-all individual known as the system administrator.
When your printer breaks down, your email account won't work or your files go missing, who do you call? Yep, that amazing, fix-all individual known as the system administrator. That's sys admin for short or, in some circles, device doctor or tech therapist. With nary a complaint nor a grunt of despondency, this heroic IT worker comes to the rescue, somehow magically making your computer answer to you again.
That's why, on the last Friday in July every year, companies all over the world celebrate System Administrator Appreciation Day (aka SAD). This year will see the 17th annual event on Friday 29 July. For 24, glorious hours sys admins everywhere will become the centre of attention and the focus of gratitude.
What happens on System Administrator Appreciation Day?
Each company celebrates System Administrator Appreciation Day in its own way. That said, it's crucial that your sys admin is spoilt absolutely rotten. First up, he/she should not have to do any work whatsoever. Second of all, his/her morning coffee should be delivered from the hands of the most skilled barista in town. Thirdly, there should be gifts and tokens of appreciations a-plenty. Most sys admins are pretty keen on gadgets of any kind, but cake and ice cream are also really, really important.
The official System Administrator Appreciation Day lists other practices crucial to 'proper observation', namely: pizza, cards, words of gratitude, balloons, streamers, confetti and custom-made t-shirts. And, while you're advertising events, snapping selfies and posting away, don't forget to add the hashtag #SysAdminDay, so fellow partiers all over the world can see what you're up to.
The history of System Administrator Appreciation Day
If you've not heard of System Administrator Appreciation Day before now, you must be wondering how it all started. Well, back in the year 2000, a man by the name of Ted Kekatos saw an ad for HP's then-new LaserJet 4000 printer. In it, a system administrator was sitting inside his cubicle, while outside, users were queueing with flowers and fruits in their arms. Ted immediately decided that this scene could and should become a reality and, thus, he organised the first ever System Administrator Appreciation Day. At the same time, he quickly registered the Sys Admin Day domain.
To spread the word, Ted put together an email and forwarded it to every address he had. Then, he got on to as many computer magazine editors and tech journalists as he could find, and the event started creeping into the press. Getting Robert X. Cringely's attention was a major win – he wrote about it in his popular column.
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