LOPSA News

  • 21 May 2018 6:42 PM | Anonymous

    Log from channel irc://irc.lopsa.org/#lopsa-live starting 2018-05-16 16:33:16 -0400


     » Topic changed to "2018 Candidate Session May 16 @18:00Pacific/21:00Eastern" by ChanServ. 16:38
    JNRII 5 Minutes until the LOPSA Live Candidate Session 2018 20:56
    JNRII k, my other clock is slow (how does that happen these days?) 20:56
    JNRII 3 Minutes until the LOPSA Live Candidate Session 2018, are we still missing Brian? 20:57
    scott5 yes. 20:57
    AndreeJacobson I'm here... 21:00
    scott5 Hi everybody. I’m Scott and I’m currently chairing the leadership committee. 21:01
    scott5 Welcome to the 2018 #lopsa-live candidate session. 21:01
    scott5 All of our candidates except Brian are present and our moderators are as well. Brian sends his regrets, as he is busy with something else. 21:01
    scott5 In order to keep it all under control, there will be rules to follow. To explain the procedure, I'll turn it over to Jim who will be the public face moderating the session tonight. 21:01
    scott5 Take it away Jim. 21:01
    JNRII Hi, I'm Jim (JNRII)and I'll be one of your moderators tonight. My co-moderator is Bruce (BruceDavis) and the format will be as follows: 21:02
    JNRII 1) Brief intro from the candidates 21:02
    JNRII 2) The moderated Q&A 21:02
    JNRII We will handle the questions by having anyone with a question direct message Bruce with your question and he will feed me the questions in the order they came in. I'll post your question to the candidates and give them time to answer. 21:02
    JNRII The candidates will take turns answering. We will go in alphabetical order, but who starts will be rotated to allow for everyone to have a turn being first. 21:02
    JNRII Time to get started with the introductions. I'll prompt the candidates to introduce themselves. 21:02
    JNRII First up: Andree Jacobson 21:02
    JNRII Andree? 21:03
    AndreeJacobson Hey, I'm Andree. Recently moved toCalifornia, got stuck in traffic 21:03
    AndreeJacobson So on my phone, please pardon typos :) 21:04
    AndreeJacobson Have been at a nonprofit in new Mexico for the last 8 years as a cio working with Los alamos national lab and the local universities. Recently took a job with Tesla, and went from management to engineering. I'm more a sysadmin now than I was before 21:05
    AndreeJacobson Plenty of experience in HPC and that's my focus area. Large scale is where it's at with me mostly, a little bit of a jack of all trades in networking, storage, etc... 21:06
    AndreeJacobson That's it. Over and out. 21:06
    JNRII Thank you Andress 21:06
    JNRII Andree (and I'm not on a phone) 21:06
    JNRII Next: Mark Lamourine 21:06
    markllama Hrrm (I start with that alot) 21:06
    markllama I'm currently working at Red Hat on various automation things to do with Jenkins and containers and integration, being a thorn in the side of management and pure developers over installation and administration stuff they create. 21:07
    markllama I've been doing stuff like this since the late 80s in various capacities from lab manager, (power ac, space) and DC work and internet infrastructure. Though other people are better experts than me in all of those areas. 21:08
    markllama I've benefited from the LOPSA community in all of it's evolutions since that time and I'm free now to try to contribute back to some of the hard work. 21:09
    markllama I guess that will suffice to prompt questions. 21:09
    markllama Neeeext! 21:09
    JNRII and our final candidate, Branson Matheson 21:10
    sandinak Hi, I am Branson Matheson (sandinak)... I've been a sysadmin for 30ish years and worked on everything 21:10
    sandinak from VAX VMS to FreeBSD, NASA Shuttle projects to networking TSA security checkpints, 21:10
    sandinak Internet search engines to cryptographically secure Cell phones. 21:10
    sandinak I have more recently spent alot of my time in operations for Cloud engineering using CMS tools. 21:10
    sandinak I have a strong general background in most areas of systems engineering, networking, security, unix 21:10
    sandinak and hardare. 21:10
    sandinak I am a frequent teacher at Security and Sysadmin conferences on topics including Ansible for Operations, 21:10
    sandinak Social Engineering and Security Tools for sysadmins. 21:10
    sandinak In my spare time I enjoy working on several open source tools and initiatives .. especially 21:10
    sandinak around Show Lighting and DMX. I also play several instruments and love Rush. 21:10
    sandinak I have high hops of contributing to LOPSA in the areas of information sharing and community buildin 21:10
    sandinak ( yes.. i cheated ;) 21:10
    markllama snorks 21:10
    sandinak You can see more about me at linkedin.com/in/sandinak .. but I love the work I do and I love sharing my knowledge 21:10
    sandinak EOF 21:11
    JNRII NO questions so far? Please, message Bruce 21:11
    BruceDavis I am anxiously awaiting to hear your questions 21:11
    JNRII Noone asks, you get mine :}, guess I can ask one. How do we grow LOPSA as the role of SYSAdmin evolves? 21:12
    markllama Should we ask each other contrived questions or concede defeat? This was my idea so I feel a bit responsible. 21:12
    JNRII Andree, You first please. 21:12
    AndreeJacobson Ok. So outreach is thr way to go. 21:13
    cat-xeger I think it's a great idea to at least do some sort of intros, and I'm sorry to be too fried to think of questions. 21:13
    AndreeJacobson I really like the mentoring program and would likebto see it grow strong 21:14
    markllama I'm really not sure. We've tried lots of things over the years. We probably need to keep doing those things. 21:14
    markllama get people identifying as "sysadmin" and get them talking to each other and pointing back to LOPSA as a place. 21:14
    markllama keep doing it. 21:14
    JNRII Branson? 21:15
    sandinak I think that sysadmin as an art has like everything else evolved already and continues to change as 21:15
    sandinak new capabilities, softare and tooling come online. I think the mentor program works .. but has a 21:15
    sandinak limited scope ( only so many mentors for .. ahem so many mentees ). I like the idea of LOPSA perhaps 21:15
    sandinak starting to build a stronger body of knowledge that can evolve directly into instruction either 21:15
    sandinak via screen casts/vidoes or in person. 21:15
    sandinak cheated again 21:15
    JNRII k, we have questions starting 21:16
    sandinak but I mean that sincerely.. LOPSA has struggled with membership I think more because the value proposition 21:16
    JNRII This one, from sandinak: Why do the candidates want to be part of LOPSA 21:16
    JNRII Mark, you first please. 21:16
    sandinak to be effective we must be lucrative to the potential members .. and I think that means bringing up to date and current training to the front. 21:16
    markllama Hehe. Umm. LOPSA are my people. they're the community that has supported me and been there when I had questions or needed to bounce ideas, learn things, lean on support. 21:17
    JNRII Andree? 21:17
    markllama I'd like to think there are a half dozen or more people who are now members who feel welcome because I personally invited them. 21:17
    markllama and I want to make sure that there's a place for them when they find us 21:18
    AndreeJacobson When i was first introduced to LOPSA at a LISA conference, I immediately identifed with the crowd. Great folks. Lots of talent. 21:18
    AndreeJacobson A place where its ok to be us, but also have a group of people whonunderstand *exactly* what you are going through on a day to day basis. 21:18
    AndreeJacobson Other folks don't really get this, sysadmining is easy... And fast, takes no time, and is free... :) 21:19
    sandinak looks at AndreeJacobson 21:19
    AndreeJacobson We know we do it for the fun of it, and being around people who know that, is worth a lot to me 21:20
    markllama kinda wonders too. 21:20
    markllama listens 21:20
    JNRII k, we have a question From: <atsaloli> Any ideas for engaging with academia? What can you do to help LOPSA engage with academia? (As a board member.) 21:20
    AndreeJacobson I could go on and on, but it would be repetitive. 21:20
    JNRII Branson, would you start this question please. 21:20
    sandinak I wanted to answer the alst one if I may cause I did ask it 21:21
    JNRII Sorry, thought you did, go ahead. 21:21
    sandinak So I have been a part of LISA and LOPSA on and off over the years and supported it because of my dedication to the craft .. and because of the great things they produced. 21:22
    sandinak I was asked once before to join the board and didnt' because I didnt' have a clear vision .. this time I did .. and mostly that i think because of the fairly large evolution 21:22
    sandinak going on in our craft .. LOPSA can be the leader in how people evolve .. AND still support joe-bag-o-donuts sysadmin that still has a rack of servers in a community bank. 21:23
    sandinak that's one thing I see is us stretching across a larger swath .. so I wanted to help fill new ideas .. and backfill old ones. 21:23
    sandinak As far as engaging with academia .. I think that if we can start to gather the right information about what our members are facing as challenges 21:24
    sandinak both in new associates coming from college .. and as tools and systems evolve.. we can bring that info to academia and partner with them to start addressing those challenges 21:24
    sandinak EOF 21:24
    AndreeJacobson So, academia is a beast. They (traditional cs/ce/ee programs) don't want to teach sysadmin because its not science. They way to engage them is to find colleges that DO teach sysadmin / network admin, and to engage in their outreach efforts. If im elected, I would not mind being part of the team (i.e., just me) that does some of this. EOT 21:24
    JNRII Mark? 21:25
    AndreeJacobson Yeah @sandinak i can cheat too... 21:25
    sandinak HA! 21:25
    markllama We actually have one example of "engage with academia" in Nicole Forsgren's (sp?) work 21:25
    sandinak definately .. and SESA 21:25
    markllama Understanding not the tech which moves too fast, but the human side, how the tech interacts with people, how people learn and work with systems. Those things change slower and and subject to study by people who aren't mathematicians and engineers 21:26
    markllama Study sysadmin. as a task 21:26
    markllama THEN you can try to do things better. 21:27
    markllama now how to get the right people interested and putting in the resources... we have to talk to academics. 21:27
    markllama fin 21:27
    JNRII k, From Bruce: How do you see LOPSA gaining credibility and recognition outside of the IT community? 21:27
    JNRII Andree, please start 21:27
    AndreeJacobson Well, we need communication, and insiders... One problem is often thatbuts hard for the sysadmin (often stuck away in a basement somewhere) to talk to the people in leadership roles... 21:29
    AndreeJacobson How do you explain, that having warranty on a storage areay you are maintaining is important... If it costs moneyz and there are none. 21:29
    AndreeJacobson I'd like to trybto find somefolks that have moved from lowly admins jnto higher positions and get their perspective. 21:30
    AndreeJacobson Eot 21:30
    JNRII Mark? 21:30
    markllama This is the same question we've been asking for a couple of decades. I don't have an answer, except to keep doing what we're doing (which is often trying new things or the same things again) and I don't think trying again is a bad thing 21:31
    markllama people change, times change, you never know, you might find the right person, place, hook. 21:32
    markllama I'm game to try or re-try things on the group's behalf 21:32
    markllama anyone want to re-do "A Day In The Life"? 21:32
    sandinak Only if I get to be Simon. 21:33
    markllama (didn't think so, but the T-shirt was awesome) 21:33
    markllama next? 21:33
    JNRII Branson, the floor is yours. 21:33
    sandinak Guess that's mee 21:33
    sandinak So .. the answer to this question is predicated on scope 21:33
    sandinak if you're talking w/in an organization that benefits from sysadmins ( eg .. a business, school, etc.. ) then LOPSA needs to have a value proposition for the org 21:34
    sandinak that means as mentioned. .. training .. not just on tools and services that an org can benefit directly from 21:35

    Continued in next post

  • 09 May 2018 8:39 PM | Anonymous

    Note: We have changed forums. We will be using the #lopsa-live channel on irc.lopsa.org instead of the slack channel. If you are having difficulties with irc.lopsa.org, try webchat.freenode.net, IRC, or Non-SSL IRC

    The Leadership Committee is conducting a moderated LOPSA Live session on the #lopsa-live channel on irc.lopsa.org. This session will be your opportunity to ask questions of the candidates running for the LOPSA board.

    We are only having one session this year, as described in the title, on Wednesday May 16 at 6:00PM Pacific/9:00PM Eastern

    Please join us and come prepared with your questions! Additionally, you're welcome to send questions to the Leadership Committee in advance of the sessions.

  • 01 May 2018 7:56 PM | Anonymous

    Our candidates for the 2018 board are:

    • Brian Globerman 
    • Andree Jacobson 
    • Mark Lamourine
    • Branson Matheson 


    As of today, we have four candidates and five open positions for the board. The team has made a concerted attempt to get additional candidates so that we can have an actual election, but at this point, it appears to not be in the cards.

    As the official voting period is in June, I am going to extend the eligibility period to just prior to the second scheduled LOPSA-Live date of May 15, 2018 in the hopes that we can get at least one more candidate and have an actual election.

    Anyone who may be interested in serving on the board can send an email to the leadership committee <leadership> at <lopsa.org> and we will go from there.

    If there are no additional candidates prior to the first LOPSA-Live, then it will be cancelled, as it serves no practical purpose. The same will apply for the second one.

  • 01 May 2018 7:53 PM | Anonymous

    I've been a sysadmin of some sort since the mid 1980s and a member of the community since I attended my first LISA conference in 1993. My involvement in the community has varied since then.  I worked on the Day in the Life project in the 1990s.Most recently I've been writing book reviews for :login:.

    Currently working at Red Hat, I've been a vocal advocate for sysadmins in the design of OS and service management software, whether on conventional hosts or containers. 

    I no longer have a Grand Vision for the profession of system administration.  We've been struggling for recognition and understanding since before LOPSA was formed and we'll be struggling for a long time to come.  In the mean time I think it's critical to work with people both inside and out of the profession to improve the standards of practice, training and communication.  Efforts exist already in all of those areas and as a member of the board I'd look for ways to strengthen and broaden those efforts. I also think it's critical to engage academia to study system administration goals and processes rigorously to understand and improve the state of the art not just in technology but in human factors.


  • 20 Apr 2018 4:43 PM | Anonymous

    The Leadership Committee has been working to get you a strong candidate slate for the 2018 election! Your participation is key to us having a strong organization, so please plan to take part in the election.

    Here's our planned election timeline:

    • May 1 - Final slate and candidate statements
    • May 16 - LOPSA Live
    • June 1 - Open election
    • June 22 - Close election
  • 20 Apr 2018 4:40 PM | Anonymous

    To Whom It May Concern,

    Greetings - I am Andree Jacobson; at the time of writing, the CIO for the New Mexico Consortium (a non-profit in Los Alamos, NM) - but I am transitioning into an Infrastructure Cluster Engineer role for Tesla's autopilot team. I also run a small consulting company that assists local companies with systems design, implementation, and training on computer systems. However, even outside the professional world, I am a long time computer systems and networking administrator. I’ve practically been on any system I could get my hands on since before I started school, started small - but now it’s the very large and complicated systems that motivate me. The point I’m trying to get across here, is that I’m passionate about computers - one of man’s greatest technology creations. I find it fascinating to see how we keep coming up with new uses, how the field of Computer Science is still growing and morphing rapidly, and we’re right here in the middle of it! It shows no sign of slowing down either. I am however also baffled with the lacklustre of education and prestige for the field of Systems Administration, especially at scale. Ever since the early days of computation it seems that people who know how to operate these systems always take a secondary role, yet the world’s whole infrastructures rests in the hands of a handful of very talented individuals who are often ignored. I’m running for the board of LOPSA because I believe in the organization’s mission, and I would be proud the have the opportunity to represent this particular group of people.


  • 20 Apr 2018 5:33 AM | Anonymous

    My name is Branson Matheson and  am putting my name in the hat as a Board Member for LOPSA.  I am a 30 year veteran of system administration and the many disciplines that make up our doctrine. I believe I am a strong candidate given my experience, vision and support for a stronger community. I am asking for your support that together we may continue to improve LOPSA.

    My experience provides strong capabilities to support many goals.  I am an active participant in our sysadmin community and have worked in a wide variety of environments including large corporation, government contracting, startup and small and large-scale internet services provisioning. I plan, manage, teach and speak around the world at a diverse set of security and system admin focused conferences such as LISA, LOPSA-East, Cisco SecCon and Shmoocon. I have a history of developing  concepts and ideas into successful tools. I have a strong desire to see system administration develop to meet the evolution of our Art, while also providing support to individuals and organizations that must continue to maintain existing systems and environments. 

    I envision LOPSA continuing growth as a haven for system administrators of all stripe; and becoming a larger part of the core of our community.  As sysadmins we are finding that the power of the internet has developed and changed how we practice our art. This evolution should lead to stronger bonds among peers and collaborative groups such as engineering, networking and security. I will work to find creative ways for LOPSA to provide or produce services that can enable our community and the groups we support to communicate effectively and improve the ability to provide high levels of service.  

    As a board member I intend to work with the league and community to promote ideas and develop new resources used to support our day-to-day job functions, improve the security of our existing offerings and help enhance our chosen profession.  Through these enhancements I hope to continue expanding LOPSA as the leading community for system administration.  I am asking for your support. 

  • 20 Apr 2018 5:30 AM | Anonymous

    I am running for reelection as LOPSA Treasurer.  During the past two years, my major accomplishments in this role have been:

    • Reinstatement of LOPSA's 501(c)(3) status, which has been revoked due to past delinquencies in IRS filings
    • Set up system for timely and transparent management of accounts payable
    • Provided detailed bi-weekly reports to LOPSA Board of current bank balances and P&L
    • Consolidated bank accounts for easier management of cash flow
    • Full participation as LOPSA Board member in online and face-to-face meetings

    I have been working in the IT industry for the past 23 years, and have been a system/network administrator for thirteen of those years. I hold graduate degrees in Geology/Geophysics. Current areas of specialization include Windows and Linux server administration, LAN/WAN and wireless networks, cloud (Microsoft Azure and Office 365) administration, and network/host security. Due to working in a medium-size (~260 person) company where I hold a number of roles, I consider myself an IT generalist. This requires ongoing training both to ensure my skills remain current, and to learn new topics as job responsibilities evolve. LOPSA has played a significant role in my career development through professional conferences, trainings, meetings, and networking opportunities with peers. As a LOPSA board member, my commitment would be to expand these opportunities, and ensure that other system administrators recognize LOPSA’s considerable career benefits and become involved with the organization.

  • 11 Apr 2018 1:48 PM | Anonymous

    We are happy to announce our new initiative, KnowledgePress! Share your knowledge with the community while increasing visibility and traffic for your own blog. With KnowledgePress, you can contribute articles without sacrificing the health of your blog or having to use other than your preferred blogging platform. We will be accepting submissions immediately. 

    KnowledgePress

    KnowledgePress submission will be reviewed by the Community Manager, then distributed. Distribution will be over our various social media channels as soon as an article is approved. Submissions will also be indexed at https://lopsa.org/KnowledgePress. A weekly digest of KnowledgePress articles will be sent to all Members over e-mail. 

    Your submissions should include a link to the article on your blog. If you'd like to select a section of your article as a preview please include the quote in your e-mail, otherwise a blurb will be selected for you by the editor. 

    We're excited to see read your articles. Please send your submission to community@lopsa.org

  • 09 Apr 2018 6:05 PM | Anonymous

    LOPSA is excited to relaunch our Mentorship Program on more stable footing. Sharing our excitement is our first mentee, Adam Snetiker. We picked his brain about participating in our program and present the interview below. If you'd like to contribute as a Mentor or participate as a mentee check us out at https://mentor.lopsa.org/


    [Q: Could you please introduce yourself to our readers and tell us about your current background and experience, and your aspirations with regard to the field of system administration?]

    It all begins with my love of design. I've always been impressed by anything that looked really cool and stopped me dead in my tracks. I always wanted to get into the field of special effects, but when I went to college at Indiana University (Bloomington), I noticed the Informatics major. Not knowing much about it other than that it was a new, hot field related to IT, my family and I decided it would be a more practical major than fine arts. It was all about choosing a cognate area, and I chose Telecommunications which allowed me to take courses in Flash, 3D modeling and animation, DVD authoring, video editing, and TV studio and field production along with the required courses in Java programming, mathematical foundations and others.

    My first few roles were in DVD menu design and authoring. After being laid off, I began to teach myself the basics of web development which led to a content management role producing marketing and client retention content for mortgage companies and their loan officers. After being laid off from that role, I began self-study in advanced web development tools including various JavaScript frameworks, automation tools and more. After failing to grasp some of those concepts and build up my skills without proper instruction, I decided to return to school to begin pursuit of a career in one of the more traditional areas of IT including networking, system administration and cybersecurity. Currently, I'm taking these courses in pursuit of an Advanced Network Specialist Certificate of Achievement at Moorpark College, and eventually will be going after a Cybersecurity certificate when those courses are developed in the near future.

    Two of the required courses for the certificate that I have already taken include Microsoft Windows Administration and Microsoft Windows Server Administration. Both of these courses completely opened my eyes to System Administration as both an area of IT and a viable future career path by making me look at computing in a completely new way. Immediately, I was blown away by the sheer number of useful tools available in Windows that I never noticed as a general user and the fact that these tools have always been right there on every PC I have owned. I am amazed the power they give administrators to perform both simple routine maintenance and complex tasks that enhance system performance and allow management of all devices in an organization.

    [Q: How did you find LOPSA? When did you join? Why did you join? ]

    I decided to search for professional organizations and joined LOPSA and others in an effort to make valuable connections with people and continue learning outside of my current classroom environment. In addition to LOPSA, I am currently a student member of the ACM, IEEE, ISSA and OWASP, and have attended a few conferences.

    For a long time, I have followed thought leaders and industry experts on Twitter and other social media platforms and have occasionally sent emails soliciting advice or asking questions. Generally, I have gotten their opinion which I value very much, but have always hoped to find a mentor I can turn to for help in establishing myself as somebody who can add value to an organization as an IT professional. Thankfully, I came across LOPSAs mentorship program and was recently accepted and matched.

    [Q: What do you find appealing about the LOPSA mentorship program? You mentioned you've been looking for something like this for years, could you tell us more about that, and what excites you the most about the program? What do you hope to get out of it?]

    What excites me the most about this program is the ability to interact with someone who is a current practicing professional with experience in areas of IT in which I hope to build a successful career. What I hope to get out of it is specific feedback that will help me to establish a focused plan of action that includes careers I should target at the entry level and the most important skills for success. Eventually, I hope this feedback process will repeat itself as I work through my career so that as the specific skills and job titles change, the focus is still on making sure they are in sync so I can continue to advance and add value.

    [Q: How has your interaction with your mentor been so far?]

    We have sent several messages back and forth through the LOPSA Mentor web page, have connected on LinkedIn and have scheduled a Google Hangouts meeting next weekend. My biggest hope is that this person becomes a valuable connection that will be able to hold me accountable and notice the progress I make while being able to continue pushing me further towards success.

    [Q: Anything else you want to communicate to our readers (who are both seasoned professionals and students and everything in between.]

    The biggest thing I would emphasize for readers is to become somebody in the eyes of other people. Networking is the best thing you can do for yourself regardless of what career level you're at, but make the extra effort to send a message so that people know who you are. Take me for example - if I was just another person who filled out the form on LOPSA's mentor website, I wouldn't be featured in this newsletter. Instead, you're all reading a story written about me.

    Adam may be found on LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/adamsnetiker) or contacted via email at adam.snetiker@ieee.org. "I look forward to meeting anyone and everyone and hope we can all work together to advance our careers and continue learning together."


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