This is a true story of mind-bending gullibility and proof that only the really stupid get promotion. The names have been changed to protect the innocent.
The .sig is removed too!
It is on a major networking project for the Avionics industry that we find an engineer working on a device driver for an intelligent LAN card which has a Motorola 68040 on it. The project itself has been an isolated blackspot of chaos and confusion on the otherwise clean and white tapestry of this large Companies unparalleled achievements in the industry. You know the sort of thing, huge slippages in delivery, closures of huge projects. Fiscal control which ensures that you have to sign for a paper clip whilst Contract Engineers sit about for months unable to do anything as they dont have PC's.
So one day, to relieve the tension of yet another Team Brief about Management Reorganisations or something similar, the engineer sticks an ``Intel Inside'' sticker to the large expanse of ceramic which is the 68040. As Intel have adapoted a rather garish and some would say tasteless image with these red lettering-on-white backgroud stickers, Motorola have moved to the other end of the scale. To Motorola, less is more - and the logo is in small letters tucked up on one side.
Nothing happended for a week or so until enevitably it was noticed by a passer by. On the project there are many such individuals. They are engaged in furious activity, the gathering of metrics, the production of timescales which show huge slippage but when incorporated into Management reports seem to show on-time delivery. Anyway, as the individual staggered past he noticed the ``Intel Inside'' sticker on the 68040. Feeling a little humerous, the Engineer replied thus :
"Yes, marvellous is'nt it. It is part of the Second Sourcing agreement between Intel and Motorola. As a result of an Anti-trust Federal Investigation they have been forced to Second Source eachothers products. As the supplier of the LAN card is involved in the forefront of technology they are using the new product"
The passer by seemed happy with the explanation and moved on. This was repeated many times during the week. Somebody would remark on the sticker and the same story would be repeated slightly embellished at each recital and becoming more convincing each time.
Enter the new Systems Engineer. Sporting a bow-tie and a hugely polished bald-head he too notices the ``Intel Inside'' sticker. And as with the others he gets the same speech which was now replite with Federal ruling numbers and document references etc. So successful was the recital that the Engineer put a twist at the end :
"The snag is that this card with ``Intel Inside'' is doing some pretty wierd things. The other card with out ``Intel Inside'' is fine. I'm guessing that they have fooled with the microcode as it runs faster."
Now the Systems Engineer was doing his best to slide himself up the greasy pole of the Management Ladder and found that this information could be put to good political ends. Due to the level of chaos, Politics was the only way people could actually show achievement. Back he came for more information, received a long explanation of microcoding and the details of Federal Law and other stuff which sailed clean over his shiny bald head. Oblivious to the smell of bullshit in the air he went off happy.
To fully appreciate the scale of the disaster looming infront of him, you must appreciate that this has now gone on for about 8 weeks and that by now most of the building already knew that it was a joke. The fact that nobody informed the bald-headded one serves as a tribute to the number of people he had annoyed in his relentless quest for power.
The story comes to an end as, armed with the damning information to be used against the LAN team he marches into the Systems Directors office and snitches on the LAN team. He reveals all, that the LAN team are using 68040's Second Sourced from Intel and that we could'nt allow it as there were probably microcode faults and in any case the Law suits could blow up again. How the LAN group's Team Leader could have been allowed to continue with this is anyones guess. The Systems Director looked at him hard and invited him to get out of his f****** office. As our hero backed out of the office, he was unaware that the Systems Director had been chuckling with the Engineer a few weeks agao about the sticker on the 68040. The fact that he may have slightly incorrect now penetrated the bald-one's crainium and he went to verify the facts. During a prolonged verbal beating he realised that the story was the joke of the building and that he, very deservedly was now the butt of it.
The final part is the most scary. As a close observer commented, "It has gone past being the Sublime to the Ridiculous, it is now the Slime to the Ridiculed"
He did get his reward however. In the true spirit of the Organisation which has contributed so much to the farcial running of the project he got Promoted to head up one of the product lines!!! The new joke is watching the perfectly able and competent Team Leaders (etc) finding that they are working for somebody who does'nt know his Motorola from his Intel. We now have people looking for something really silly to beleive in so that they will get promoted too. Something even more ludicrous that the project delivering.
Did you hear of the joint venture IBM and DEC are doing in Super PC's......
Oh that it was'nt, but it is all true.....