My idea for a sitcom…based on my experience as a developer!

I was having a chat with my fiancé today, telling her about a little idea I have for a sitcom. It is very much along the lines of The Office meets Dilbert. What it really is though is a form of career catharsis where by I can purge some of my darkest moments working in the IT industry. I decided I should include a few episode guides for my sitcom, titled "Is it me? Or am I working with the cerebrally damned!"...

Episode #1: What'cha working on their Dave?

After emerging from his office disheveled and wreaking of booze after a tryst with his skanky wife, Dave's boss decides to perform a pop code review on an unsuspecting Dave. Resting his mammoth gut on Dave's shoulder, he commandeers Dave's mouse, and randomly clicks on the IDE design surface while mumbling unintelligibly. Luckily for Dave, the lunch van serves lamb tataya on Thursdays, and the boss's attention shifts yet again.

Episode #2: I've got it! We write a web page that creates a spreadsheet that executes a macro that starts the whole development team crying!

During a JAD workshop, the lead architect proclaims the solution to the on-line application requirement. Dave struggles with the concept of a HTML page that creates an Excel spreadsheet in code from a template that contains an email macro. This macro will email the spreadsheet to a user who will export the spreadsheet into a CSV file, then run a VB6 application to load the CSV file and "pump" it into an Access database for use in reports. Dave introduces the hot lens of the projector to the pale face of the architect, and is promptly relieved of any further meeting facilitation duties.

Episode #3: Did you send me this change request? I'm going to kick your head in!

It's just another day at "The Department" when Dave's colleague makes a life limiting move and sends a defect report to an overworked and socially aberrant tester. What ensues is certainly not in any of the Rational/IBM manuals for cohesive team collaboration.

These are some of the highlights of the first 8 years of my career, and I have to thank some of the queerest and misaligned individuals for the memories. As the Carpenters put it, "We've only just begun". Feel free to leave some of your "fondest" memories 🙂

Comments (5)
  1. Frank Arrigo says:

    skanky wife ? mammoth gut ? who has been your inspiration for the boss in the sitcom?? not me i hope

  2. The second episode is just great… I would love to see that one…

    Maybe someone can persuade Microsoft to make MSTV kind of like MSDNTV but for more general entertainment and more freeform ideas (kind of like VBTV i guess 😉 )

    But I love these… It is so true…

  3. John Davies says:

    I worked for a machine vision company and we were about 50% through a project to inspect small plastic parts.

    The president and VP call me into a meeting to discuss strategy for the future of the company. The president announces, "We were thinking, since we are so good at inspecting small plastic parts [debatable], we want to start making small plastic parts."

    I pointed out that we didn’t have a factory facility, didn’t know what kinds of plastic exist, where to buy plastic, how to melt plastic, create forms, deal with labor issues, etc. We also didn’t know who to sell the parts to and we would be competing with companies that are already geared up to make small plastic parts.

    The VP said, "Well we can learn".

  4. Dean Harding says:

    What about:

    Episode 4: It’s going to take *how* long?

    The boss asks Dave for an estimate on that new feature he’s going to be working on, and Dave tells him "2 months". The boss doesn’t like that, since he wants the feature out the door ASAP, so he goes to another developer and asks how long *he* thinks it’ll take. He says "1 1/2 months", but that’s still not good enough, so the boss continues going around to various developers until he finds someone who says "oh, I could do it in a couple of days". The boss then goes back to Dave and says "you’ve got a week, and that’s being generous – Tony over there says he could do it in a couple of days".

  5. Ross H says:

    Episode #4: You see, we have this brick…

    Dave’s boss takes time out of his busy schedule of golf, luncheons, and flirting with the front desk secretary to do some product revision and growth strategy planning with the developers. He starts off by comparing the product to a brick and spends the next hour reiterating why it is a brick and how the staff needs to add mortar and more small bricks to meets the future needs of the company and potential customers. That evening, one of Dave’s colleges sends a brick through the boss’ car window (too bad about the security cameras).

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