• Subject: Re: Telecommuting???
  • From: DAsmussen@xxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 21 Aug 1997 23:40:15 -0400 (EDT)

David,

In a message dated 97-08-20 13:34:55 EDT, you write:

> I'm interested in peoples experiences with Telecommuting for AS400
>  developers.
>  
>  Has anyone tried using a VPN via the Internet to folks homes?
>  
>  Is a 28.8/33.6 dialup connection enough for a developer to be 
>  effective?  Is an offline source editor necessary?

I telecommute every-other week, and have been quite happy with the situation.
 My primary client may have a different opinion, but they aren't expressing
it in the current Y2K environment :-).  We don't use VPN.  Here are the
problems/benefits that I have personally encountered (although many don't
affect a local assignment), and should affect just about anyone trying to
telecommute:

Problems:
1.  I was SUPPOSED to dial in to the development 310.  The problem was that
they used an older IPCS on the 310, which limited my speed to 9600 BAUD
despite the modem's capability.  I obtained the dial-in number for the
production 320, which had the modems attached to an ASCII WSC.
2.  Our local "tech services" department doesn't support WIN '95 or NT, which
rules out BOTH of my home systems -- and I'm certainly NOT installing 3.1 and
hauling a desktop down there for a week to install connectivity software
(they don't offer an installation diskette).  I'm on my own for tech support,
so I purchased NetSoft Portfolio.
3.  My visibility is down at the office, and the 10+ phone calls I receive a
day aren't nearly as high-profile as standing in front of the bosses' cubicle
explaining something to someone that should already know better.
4.  Anything less than 19,200 BAUD is slow.
5.  Research long distance rates PRIOR to working LD from home.  LD is a
cutthroat business in the US, and money is to be had seeking the lowest
bidder based upon anticipated usage.

Benefits:
1.  From a technical standpoint, I get more done at the office than I would
EVER get done on site.  People tend to think harder on those "easy" questions
before calling me than they do when they can walk down to my cubicle.
2.  My PC emulation software is FAR more reliable on my C: drive than it is
on the network on site.
3.  If you have an ISP other than AOL, your mail comes faster.
4.  I can spend my "wait time" doing something productive, rather than just
"looking busy".
5.  In many instances, you have a better PC at home than you do at work.
6.  Even 19,200 BAUD is faster than one of my clients' subidiaries runs
through a gateway for interactive jobs.
7.  Working off-site, you free up space for other people to work at the
office.  Unfortunately, many of these people will slash your throat given the
chance.

If you have any specific questions, feel free to write me directly...

HTH,

Dean Asmussen
Enterprise Systems Consulting, Inc.
Fuquay-Varina, NC  USA
E-Mail:  DAsmussen@AOL.COM

"A problem is a chance for you to do your best." -- Anonymous
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