Proposal: How about a professional Amiga certification?
And now for something completely different.
Hi guys and gals,
Some of you know me, most of you don’t. I’ve been in the Amiga scene for all 28 years of its life and like many of you I’ve had periods of increased and decreased passion for the platform - sometimes making money from it, and other times just enjoying having a cool retro computer on my desk.
And like many of you, I’ve learned a lot about the Amiga ecosystem – both OS and HW, and I find that the Amiga forces me to think about fundamental computer concepts that are increasingly less mainstream now that easy computing has become so ubiquitous. For example, I hold a Microsoft MCSA networking certification. This (in theory) means that I can plan, implement and maintain an enterprise-scale network of Windows based computers. But I never really use this knowledge. When I went to setup AmiTCP on an A4000 I was surprised to find that it was the first time I’d had to seriously think about network topology since… well… since the last time I needed to setup a network on an Amiga! And while I was setting up the network, I had to figure out what kind of wireless bridge I wanted to use, what SANA drivers were best optimized, whether I should consider an alternate stack like Miami or Roadshow.
How often in Mac, Linux, or Windows do you seriously have to sit and think about the tradeoffs of the TCP/IP stack you are using?
In fact, I’d say I’ve spent far more hours repairing and upgrading Amigas and installing and configuring AmigaOS than I ever have or will any other platform. And that’s saying something since I was the Operations General Manager of Interconnection.org – the largest NGO<->NGO refurbishing/repair operation in the US!
This got me thinking, if we’ve spent hundreds or even thousands of hours studying Amiga, why don’t we have anything to show for it? My particular MCSA certification is for Windows 2000, which is considered legacy (end-of-life) by Microsoft, but is still a valid professional certification. But when it comes to networking, computer repair, programming, or just about anything else my Amiga knowledge is the true foundation.
So this is my proposal: a legitimate professional certification on legacy computers, starting with Amiga. The aim of the certification is to demonstrate that the possessor has deep knowledge of the implementation and maintenance of Amiga software and hardware. A certification and governing body could be formed virtually within the Amiga community and refined over time.