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14th ShipIt Day a Success at Six Feet Up

written by Dayna Colbert on Monday March 21, 2016
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Six Feet Up hosted its 14th ShipIt Day, where team members work on a project of their choice for 24 hours. The project must benefit the company, and must be completed in the 24 hour time frame. Some of our Sixies stayed up almost the full 24 hours and managed to fit in lunch time yoga! We turn it into a competition, where the winner won $200 to donate to a charity of their choice.

The warmer weather surely inspired a few Sixies, as clean-up was definitely a theme. Here's what we accomplished:

Team Spring Clean Up

Jen, our Director of Accounting, worked on moving files from previous years to make room for our 2016 files. To do this, she had to organize and purge boxes and boxes of files. She moved from enough boxes to cover her living room floor, to three file cabinets. Not only did she clean out old files that are no longer relevant, but moving forward our files will be organized, neat, and quickly accessible. She successfully completed her cleaning project!

Team Slap Cat

Rob worked on reducing noise and effort to manage our OpenLDAP infrastructure. There was a lot of additional, irrelevant information in our user information, so he removed the clutter and set up a script so that moving forward, all users will be entered into our systems in the same format. He began to capture detailed information on our systems in LDAP to enable more automation using Salt and to answer questions quickly. Rob's clean up was also completed!

Team Cat Slap

As they were working on the same database, Matt chose to name his project Team Cat Slap. He chose to work on cleaning up the DNS entries spread throughout the Six Feet Up infrastructure, which included adding in missing entries as well as deleting unused entries. Many of the unused entries were left over from clients that had either migrated to a new server, or had cancelled hosting with us. This clean up will help minimize confusion when creating new servers. While he was one of the Sixies up past midnight, he cleaned up about half of the DNS entries.

Team Web Marketing

Gabrielle focused on making some long overdue key updates to the Six Feet Up website, mainly around the support section of the site. She fixed our support request form and updated information about the company's maintenance plans and support options. She is also full of ideas for the site, as she developed a strategic plan for revamping and simplifying the site later this year. Gabrielle was also one of the Sixies who successfully completed her ShipIt Day project!

Team MarketQueens

Colleen and Dayna set out to prepare marketing materials to contact 150 prospective clients. This included hand-writing notes, hand-folding envelopes, and documenting the physical addresses of prospective clients. Throughout the course of ShipIt Day, they realized that they needed to adjust their approach. While they did write over 150 notes, they were not able to fully prepare 150 envelopes. They still had a great time on their first ShipIt Day!

Team TracHackAttack

Christine, Anthony, and Chrissy took on the challenge of adding much-needed upgrades and features to our project ticket system (Trac) -- the heart and soul of every project we work on. Both the underlying infrastructure and the Trac system itself was upgraded, including the hardware, OS version and batch modifying tickets. Useful features were added by the team such as exporting a list of tickets and relevant information into an Excel file, the ability to drag and drop file attachments, and improved ease of lookup for existing issues. Lots of look-and-feel issues were addressed such as responsive design, usability and styling of pages. Team TracHackAttack also successfully completed their project!

Team Automate Plus NG

Calvin, our 14th ShipIt Day winner, worked to intergrate our two platforms we use for support tickets and monitoring/alerting, and did double duty helping out a few of our other teams and staying up until 6:30 AM! Now when emergency tickets come in, they can be escalated automatically to the correct admins on call. In doing so, he got to check out some of the really interesting tools that Amazon Web Services (AWS) has to offer by hooking the API Gateway product together with their Lambda Microservice platform to streamline this process. In doing so, he didn't have to build any servers to host the integration. As the winner, Calvin chose to donate to Kiva, the micro-loan site. At the end of 2015, Sixies were able to choose a Kiva project to fund, and Calvin would like to keep the momentum going!

In the past, the team has held ShipIt Days with other groups such as Roche, so, if you're interested in joining us on our next event, please contact us!

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Dayna Colbert
Project Manager
Dayna's Recent Posts:
14th ShipIt Day a Success at Six Feet Up (03/21/2016)

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