Yesterday was the last day of my job. I worked there for just about exactly two years. When I started the job, they handed me two buckets and said "Here, carry water." There was a lot of water to carry. I started carrying water with one hand and building pipes with the other.
After a while, I got us to hire Jesse jes5199. I said, "Jes, they don't think these 'pipes' are going to work." Jesse said, "They're wrong", and busted out his pipe-building machinery. Six months later, we had a whole bunch of pipes and were building more as fast as we could to keep up with the water, and I was still running around with a bucket from time to time.
Another six months of that. This was where the learning really started, because now we had pipes to maintain. I learned so much. And then, they did a wonderful thing which I didn't appreciate at the time: in January, six months before I left, before they had any idea I was leaving, they said, "Lindsey, teach everyone else how to do what you do." I said, "Oh, I can do that later; it won't take very long." They said, "Start now."
It turns out I needed all six of those months. It turns out teaching is a good way to learn. And then Jesse left. That was a damn good way to learn, too. In the last six months there are very few pipes that I haven't ripped up and put back together. Most of the pipes have gotten a good scrubbing inside and out. I patched up all of the leaks I could find. I tried to get rid of all the pipes we weren't using anymore. After a year of complaining that we didn't have a wiki, I just went and installed one and wrote a gigantic user guide for pipes in wiki format, which was the only way it could have possibly been written. I got other people using the wiki, too, for that and all kinds of other things. It was awesome. One of my proudest moments at this job was when there were seven distinct users on the recent changes page who weren't me.
Hooray for learning. Hooray for more transparency and a lower truck number and parameter validation that helps you not only while you're running the code but while you're writing it and for my brilliant co-workers who had an even lower tolerance for bucket-carrying than I do. They're all going to be fine. Oh, and along the way we managed to get some things out the door: AstroPortal, AstroPortal, BioPortal, CalcPortal, CalcPortal, ChemPortal, ChemPortal, GeologyPortal, GeologyPortal, PhysicsPortal, PsychPortal, PsychPortal, PsychPortal, PsychPortal, PsychPortal, PsychPortal, StatsPortal, StatsPortal, StatsPortal. Among others.
But look at me, still talking when there's science to do!