While the rainy days have forced me inside, it's given me time to reflect on some of the things I've been putting off. Each year, I have to prove my IT knowledge with a required certification in one of the many proprietary "business solutions" out there. I've never been an advocate of using these as a measurement of a how much someone knows. On the contrary, I've silently snubbed anyone that made it a point to add every IT certification they've gotten since birth to the end of their sigs. While there are a few certified individuals that coincidently know what their talking about, the majority simply take the easy way out by resorting to "brain dumps" and "exam crams". Years ago, after spending 3 months of night classes while holding down my day job, I received one such certification. I worked with a recently hired employee that had also become certified. The first time we discussed a routine computer-related problem quickly showed he had not gained anything from the certification process. Even though I had no problem with the individual, his verbose claim of being certified lost all credibility to me. And the only thing worse was encountering those same people that decided to switch career paths, get a few certifications and expect to be hired at a level most IT people have taken years to acquire with the necessary work experience. I can't speak for any other cerification process other careers require. But they do seem to have more of the necessary checks and balances in place to prevent a "paper (insert job title)" from being born
"In Italy for thirty years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, bloodshed - but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love, 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock. So long, Holly." - Harry Lime - The Third Man
note: the cuckoo clock is actually a German invention and not credited to the Swiss.