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C&EN Special Issue – CAS Celebrates 100 Years

June 11, 2007
Volume 85, Number 24
Web Exclusive

The Only Constant Is Change

Kris Woods, Manager, Data Center Operations

When I think about CAS, a theme that jumps out at me is constant change. One significant change that I was privileged to play a small role in was the establishment of the organization's current data center and the building that hosts it. I was honored to be among the first people to turn over a shovelful of dirt at the groundbreaking ceremony back in 1999.

I had specific reasons to look forward to the new facility. For example, I knew it would have a sophisticated new power system to get electricity to the computers that need it. The previous data center had one aging power system that needed to be shut down for maintenance on occasion. On one such occasion, the technician tasked with turning the power system back on was called away on an urgent matter. When the time came, I was left with the task of powering up this piece of high-voltage equipment.

I try to avoid situations and sentences that contain the terms "I" and "high-voltage." However, I found myself throwing an ON/OFF switch on this piece of equipment that was the size of a man's shoe. While I did this, my manager stood beside me holding a long wooden 2-by-4. If I lit up like a Christmas tree upon throwing the switch, his plan was to beat me off it with the 2-by-4. My manager might have had other instances where a long wooden 2-by-4 would have come in handy in working with me. I am happy to report that this event was not such an instance.

Looking back, I recall that it was with great relish that I fulfilled my minor part in CAS's establishment of its current Data Center.

Woods received a B.A. degree in history from Ohio University and started working at CAS in 1997 after having worked within a regional bank's information technology group.

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