The Accidental Techie

Are you an Accidental Techie? I know a few of them.

My wife started out doing document processing in the 80s, and became a sysadmin out of self defense (read: no one else would do it; they were afraid of the computers :-). Then she had to teach everyone else… She discovered she was good at it, and eventually went into business for herself doing technical training and training development. It turns out that she has two related talents; understanding technical gibberish, and translating it into realspeak so that it can be taught to others. Ask her to explain IP netmasks sometime…

My friend Michelle (who hosts is currently a syadmin, and also more-or-less fell into the job; now she’s responsible for a large, geographically dispersed corporate network (and is currently in London, England setting up a brand new office :-). Her formal training is in environmental sciences…

There are others. I think it is the case that I know more women than men are “accidental” techies. However, we have even more women with formal technical educations. I’m not quite sure what to conclude from this :-)

posted at 8:50 pm on Thursday, November 13, 2003 in Random Thoughts | Comments (2)


  1. David Brake says:

    There’s me certainly (though of course I am not much of a techie I am more techie than my UK peers by some distance!). And aiabx. And dmo, I imagine…

  2. Harald says:

    I haven’t been counting the physicists (Andy, Geoff, Seonaid, etc.) as accidental techies, because modern physics is pretty heavily computer-based already. The road to perdition is much shorter than for, say, a fine-arts graduate :-)

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