System engineer, HC gamer, music lover... Our longtime colleague Bruno Krsnik has a wide range of interests and above all, of course, his love for everything that has IT in its name. Find out what his working day is like, how he found himself in IT and what he does when he's not "pounding on the keyboard" at the office.
In a nutshell, what jobs and tasks are considered your function?
In Perpetuum, I work as an IT systems engineer. I am responsible for ensuring undisturbed IT system performance and implementation of new and upgrading existing technologies in business environments. In other words: installing and repairing (no, not all IT engineers are developers). I count eight years of working at Perpetuum and a total of 12 years in the IT field.
What exactly attracted you to IT and your job?
It all came naturally ever since I was a kid. Ever since I became aware of computers (primarily games), I've shown a great interest in them. Before I got my first computer I had a big collection of discs (booters were big back then), later CDs. I got completely hooked on the first 'real' games: Grim Fandango, Broken Sword, Monkey Island, Age of Empires, GTA, Baldur's Gate, Diablo… That affection lasted for quite a while, only the game titles changed.
Within all that fuss about playing games, a gaming community appeared ((mIRC channels, Gamer forum, LMinfo...) where I first got in touch with people that were already working in IT companies in and around Zagreb. I remember the thrill when I met a person who worked at IBM. He helped me solve a big problem with the LAN network to configure Call of Duty and I was super impressed. At that moment, somehow I knew what I wanted to do, I just needed to choose the direction to follow. I wasn't interested in coding so the hardware guys and system engineers around me at the time helped me make up my mind so here I am – system engineer at Perpetuum.
How does your typical day in Perpetuum look like?
Typically I sit at my computer, put on my headphones and start pounding on the keyboard. Every day is different, we have a lot of clients I have to take care of so every day is a little adventure of its own. One day an email system crashes, the other day a backup doesn't go through, on the third day we need to implement a new solution for a client... Just imagine all the IT problems you have in your everyday business operations, multiply it by ten, add new implementations and migrations of current solutions and magical 'consulting' and you'll get the notion of what the everyday life of a systems engineer looks like.
What was your favourite project in Perpetuum and why?
My favourite projects, in general, are those which give me the biggest headache. For example, I had a client migration (near the Hungarian border) which took three days straight and downtime wasn't an option (the company was dependent on email orders). Working hours were between 10 in the evening until 7 in the morning. During the daily operations which don't affect the workflow were running. I don't even have to say how much fun it was being woken up at 7:20 with information that the email system crashed while four tow trucks were waiting in front of the factory for the merchandise. Fun times!
What is the future of systems engineers?
This subject is already widely debated on various blogs, forums and portals. The generally accepted conclusion is that „classic“ systems engineering, as we know it, is more or less dead. DevOps is mentioned as a logical step that existing systems engineers should consider but, of course, that depends on which market we are talking about. Systems engineering in Croatia is not the same as in Ireland, where systems are more complex and automation is needed to save time and nerves. That will come to our county on a larger scale. Cloud-based services are already largely present in the world, and by then...
What would you recommend to someone who wants to head out in the same direction?
IT is changing day by day so every day there is something new to learn and different possible career development directions. Of course, some IT areas are more profitable than others, each one of us has a choice to enter IT for money or love for technology. However, everyone must be prepared to keep learning as long as they are in IT. This includes learning new technologies and programming languages that might not be that interesting but are needed for your work...
What do you do when you're not at work?
After many years of 'hardcore' gaming (code: World of Warcraft, Excess, Knight Online, Counter Strike 1.6, Diablo 2, Call of Duty 2), I've decided to move away somewhat from the whole gaming world and focus on my 'always-in-the--second-place' love - Music. I currently have more than 500 LP's in my vinyl collection and it's growing quickly. It's mostly international music, except for a few exceptions – records from the ex-YU production „Jugoton“ that I managed to get from older collectors in various garages (so I could enjoy the hits of Mirzin Jata, Oliver Mandic, KIM, Divine Angels and other evergreens of the Yugoslav area).
Today I'm more focused on the genre that someone once named "lo-fi deep house" but who knows how long I'll stay interested in that. It's already the third or fourth genre in the four years since I started collecting. It all started with the standard great artists (Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, AC / DC, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Bob Marley, Queen, Santana), followed by a 'not-sure-what-I want' phase involving Air, Tindersticks , Tool, NIN, Thievery Corporation, but also Buena Vista Social Club, Angela Canales, Edith Piaf, etc.
Finally, what song would you suggest to us as an entry into your current musical preferences and what is your last musical discovery?
One? Uh, if only one, then I would not risk it: Tell – Floating Lands. And the last discovery... The new record that was released recently, Harrison BDP - Confusion of Sound and the song from the same EP. Of course – the 'latest discovery' keeps changing almost from day to day 😊