You are here
"Standard Deviations" of the "Average" System Administrator
The nice thing about standards is that there are so many of them from which to choose. System administrators often function according to "personal standards" that are in fact not standards at all. By comparison, electricians and plumbers adhere to strict quality standards that are externally verifiable. Compliance with standards (and a way to certify compliance) goes beyond certifying the administrator to certifying each site for compliance. Should there be standards for system administration? What current standards are there? Are they relevant? What might future standards look like? What would be the costs and would they be worth the trouble? I will discuss potential answers to these questions and solicit alternative views from the audience. I will explain why I believe that if we are to be respected as a guild of craftspeople, we must learn—like electricians and plumbers—to utilize standards strategically and effectively to uplift the profession and encourage respect for its practitioners.
Open Access Media
USENIX is committed to Open Access to the research presented at our events. Papers and proceedings are freely available to everyone once the event begins. Any video, audio, and/or slides that are posted after the event are also free and open to everyone. Support USENIX and our commitment to Open Access.