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goobster  ·  149 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: May 19, 2021

I used to work for a company called Sterling Software. We were a government contractor that provided computer tech people to agencies like NASA. I was a SysAdmin for Macintosh computers, at the time, and worked for Sterling, at NASA.

When budget crunch time came around, the Sterling Software contract was "renegotiated". Sterling wound up losing the bid to Volt Technical Services. So on a Thursday, we were all laid off and told to go home. (About 20k people.) On Monday we got a job offer from Volt offering us our old job back, at slightly worse terms.

There's no company that has 20k skilled people sitting around waiting to be deployed to manage the servers and infrastructure at NASA. So we would go through this same performative dance every year or two.

I worked with people who had been at NASA as a contractor for 20 years, and had been employed by 15 different companies.

The only way you get invited back every single time is to be completely irreplaceable (hard to do, but not impossible) or completely inoffensive... you don't rock the boat... you keep weird things to yourself and don't raise your hand when you see problems.

I am absolutely positive there is a development team within Raytheon who identified this issue before it happened, and know exactly why the pilot saw what he thinks he saw. They know which subsystem is having the issue, why, and how to fix it.

But I'll bet the issue is where two systems come together and need to communicate with each other, but each system is written by a different company. Neither one wants to claim ownership of the glitch, but both know it exists, and it is going to take a joint effort to fix it.

But the problem is rare.

And collaborating with another company is hard. Especially if - by bringing it up - you are going to highlight an issue with the system that could potentially have pilots shooting live rounds/missiles at invisible spectral software glitches. That's quite a big issue. And someone isn't going to get their job offer letter when contract renegotiation Monday rolls around again, if they rock this boat and bring this issue to the fore.

Much better for people to think it's aliens.

I'm with Ockham's Razor on this one.