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  1. Your dishwasher is broken…

    December 26, 2012 by Steve Modica

    Steve ModicaI started in the computer industry around 1988 as a computer engineering co-op student with a small company called Herstal Automation. Herstal built memory boards for very old HP 1000 A600 and A900 computers.  These computers were some of the very first real-time computers ever made.  Auto companies and the medical industry used these to monitor real-time processes like engine performance or patient vital signs. (more…)


  2. Hurry up and wait

    December 18, 2012 by Steve Modica

    Steve ModicaMaybe you’ve heard that expression before.  “Hurry up and wait.” Military guys love to quote that.  It’s a reference to the military giving soldiers very important things to do, but then having them sit around idly because the people they are supposed to be doing them with aren’t ready. (more…)


  3. 19 Hours of Panic

    December 12, 2012 by Steve Modica

    Steve ModicaFor you old timers, you may remember a story where the USA’s largest Internet service provider went down for 19 hours.  For you younger folks, you can read about it here:

    http://articles.philly.com/1996-08-08/business/25644646_1_outage-america-online-aol (more…)


  4. Busy busy busy

    December 3, 2012 by Steve Modica

    Steve ModicaWhen I used to work at SGI, I would often wonder what “C” level officers did.  I once got to ask Ed McCracken what he spent most of his time doing day-to-day. At the time, he was CEO of SGI. (more…)


  5. Clone Detectors

    November 26, 2012 by Steve Modica

    Steve ModicaBack when cell phones were new, a number of vendors had “clone” problems.  People were cloning phone serial numbers so they could get free cell service. (more…)


  6. Bugs..

    November 19, 2012 by Steve Modica

    Steve ModicaMany years ago when I was a “smoke jumper” support guy for SGI, I got to see some of the strangest problems on the planet.   Mind you, these were not “normal” problems that you and I might have at home.  These were systems that were already bleeding edge and being pushed to the max doing odd things in odd places.  Further, before I ever saw the problem, lots of guys had already had a shot.  So reinstalling, rebooting, looking at the logs, etc., had all been tried.   (more…)


  7. Small Tree Announces Support of 4 TB SATA Drives

    November 8, 2012 by Joe DiBenedetto

    4 TB Drives Provide Robust Stream Count Improvement over Previous Drives

    GraniteSTOROakdale, MN, Nov. 8, 2012 — Small Tree, the Mac shared storage and networking specialist, announced today that its GraniteSTOR TITANIUMand ST-RAID lines of shared storage systems now support Hitachi’s new 4 TB SATA drives. As a result, media production professionals can achieve far greater performance on video-editing projects.
    (more…)


  8. Win a Free Workflow Consultation from Small Tree

    November 5, 2012 by Joe DiBenedetto

    Small TreeShared Storage Specialist Giving Away Free Consult to Lucky Media Production Facility 

    Oakdale, MN, Nov. 5, 2012 — Wasting time copying files or recovering dropped frames are among the biggest headaches facing media production professionals. For those facilities not using its robust and affordable shared storage systems to alleviate such headaches, Small Tree is giving away a free workflow consultation to one lucky media production facility through a contest on the company’s Facebook page –www.facebook.com/smalltreecomm.  (more…)


  9. Warning: Advanced Technology Ahead

    by Steve Modica

    Steve ModicaI remember the days when CPUs were stuck in a rut.  They were barely hitting 1Ghz.  Networks were running at 1Gb and beyond and CPUs and storage just could not keep up. Clients wanted redundant, failover capable servers that could handle 600 clients, but SGI was running out of ways to do that.  We couldn’t make the bus any wider (128bit computers?) and we couldn’t make the CPUs any faster.  What should we do? (more…)


  10. Oh… That’s a compiler bug

    October 22, 2012 by Steve Modica

    Steve ModicaThe worst possible answer to a customer problem is that it’s a hardware bug. Hardware bugs are expensive to fix. You not only have to replace the hardware, you may also have to replace everything you’ve got on the shelves. You can’t do this until you’ve “fixed” the problem, which might cost millions of dollars and take months. Hardware problems suck. (more…)