The big crash

We’re baaack! But at least when we crashed, we crashed with good company. Read:

Amazon cloud goes down, takes every hot startup with it on BusinessInsider.com.

12 Comments on "The big crash"

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  1. Annie,

    I did ask my webmaster if the Amazon outage was the result of a terrorist attack. I wasn’t quite joking.

    About the technology – I came across some extraordinary information in the book “How Good People Make Tough Choices” by Rushworth M. Kidder. It is a book about ethics. Early in the book he tells an incredible story.

    The Chernobyl nuclear meltdown was caused by two Soviet engineers who were screwing around! They started shutting down the reactor on purpose, and had to override six different sets of computer driven alarm systems. The alarms kept saying “STOP! REVERSE COURSE!” and they kept going.

    Here’s a quote:

    “When the cleanup crews got into the facility sometime after the explosion, they found valves padlocked in the open position to prevent them from automatically shutting down in a fail-safe mechanism that might have prevented the disaster.”

    “Poor ethical decision making” may be far too mild a term for what these two guys did.

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  2. Ox Drover says:

    WOW! Donna, sociopaths playing games with a nuclear reactor for “fun and games” to see just how far they could get…I hope to hell they died with radiation poisoning in the most painful way possible.

    Some of these stories of what sociopaths do is just enough to almost STOP YOUR HEART, it is unbelievable and yet SO EASILY BELIEVED…that is the kind of thing that they would see as FUN! Sheesh!

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  3. Annie says:

    In all my years reading about technical disasters I’d never heard that! But I can’t say I’m surprised.

    I’ve worked with many versions of those guys (the Chernobyl engineers). And those guys were ALWAYS knowingly put there by ‘snake friendly’ management, and inevitably replaced ethical and conscientious workers who understood the rules (and the reasons for them) and would push back if they were asked to do the wrong thing.

    The problem for snake-friendly management who want to populate technical areas with people who will gladly break the rules if asked – because that management has to setup arm’s length arrangements to avoid responsibility – is that they can’t always control which rules get broken or procedures overlooked.

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