“I’ve lost all my work!” That was the first thought in my head as I found out that the Media Editing Suite, affectionately called “Andy Land”, had been flooded with water from the ceiling due to a … well, I still don’t know the cause really. I’ve listened to words come out of people’s mouths, but I can’t make sense of it. Frozen and thawed pipes. HVAC units failing. Antifreeze. The cause is immaterial. The incident has caused countless people headaches and almost criminal wastes of time.

So while waiting for a backup to occur on the Mac Pro that was in the room – it was still running when the Building Manager, Cartland opened the door and then kicked of the power – I created a therapeutic video. Nothing special, just some footage that I was able to recover from the Blackmagic 4K camera that I used just six days before. Yeah, you heard right. I was able to backup the hard drive on the Mac Pro, which I turned on today and got connected to some of the other equipment that I was able to get running.

My work, for the moment, is safe. I wasted a good amount of time the last couple of days. We had visitors from Michigan State that I would have liked to spend more time with. Other UMW personnel have lost some of their work time as well. If it wasn’t for Cartland coming in on his day off, the flood may have been discovered a lot later. DTLT folks have been displaced from their ITCC work spaces – only 7 months old – obviously the building isn’t able to walk by itself yet.

It’s been bittersweet this new building of ours. Student love the space. It’s a roaring success in terms of filling a need. I continue to hope that it remains worthy of the talented students we have at UMW. But Tuesday, February 17, 2015 was a setback for that hope. Next we’ll talk about who’s fault it was and who pays for the damage and what’s “covered”.

As I said on Twitter, “it’s just stuff”. But it’s also a representation of work, and not just mine. The people who helped order and receive the stuff. The people who delivered and even set up the stuff. We do our work to get paid, mostly. Some of us are lucky enough to work at things we’re passionate about. Sometimes we have to work on things we shouldn’t have to.

Our work is beyond the machines. Sometimes it’s inside of them, and we work to keep them working so that they can help us create more of our work. If the machines stop working, we can lose our work. Bits and bytes dried up and blown away. Or flooded and washed away with corrosive water. Something is keeping those bits of my work alive, and I’m grateful to whatever (and whoever) it is.

Now, can we please get back to work?

2 Replies to “A Setback”

  1. HOLY *******! How did I not hear about this travesty on the twitters (user error here).

    I cannot even imagine what it feels like. It makes me nostalgic for the low tech room in DuPont.

    But I admit seeing Brit Vector’s web site makes me smile.

    Dry dreams for Andyland…

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