An ISP of their own (was RE: [rescue] Being jobless)

Daniel de Young daniel at
Thu Jul 31 14:53:08 CDT 2003

On Thu, 2003-07-31 at 11:11, N.Miller wrote:

> > Well, most certs are passable if you have half a brain, some 
> > understanding,
> > and a good memory.  They don't really test your ability to think.  They
> > test your ability to know.  So most certs mean your a walking 
> > dictionary...
> > doesn't mean you know how to apply all that knowledge (yes, this is an
> > extreme view).
> Ditto on that.  I had a CCNP on my lab staff that new the hardware
> backwards and forwards, but couldn't troubleshoot to save his fricking
> life.  I had a 20-something UNIX admin with the same attitude, who
> had better trouble-shooting skills.  From him, I could understand
> the "certs are everything" attitude--he was trained to think that.
> The network guy was old enough to know better (he was older than
> I am).

> I have considered studying for several certs, but just don't have
> the proper mind-set for all the memorization b.s.  I'd much rather
> shell out the cash, spend a week in a cram lab setting, and immediately
> take the test.
> I don't know whether employers/other professionals take them seriously,
> but one of the good things about the SANS GIAC certifications is that
> you have to do a practical *and* the practical is scored partially on
> it's 'originality'--meaning to get a really high score, you need to
> know what came before and think of new and different approaches/
> applications.

I've reached the point where I'm sick to death of HR departments
scheduling interviews almost completely based on string searches for

Since I'm not working much, I'm going to just get the friggin things and
see if my phone rings a little more.  I decided to pay for the GIAC/GSEC
because they have a great reputation.  Took about a month to experiment
and write the practical, but I got great feedback and my instructor
asked if he could use it to teach with so that really made it worth it
to me.  Then I took Mon-Thurs study periods with a Friday test.  Each
test was on 3 modules and there was 2 tests. Each module takes approx 6
to 8 hours to read (well).  The whole thing took me 1.5 months.  Having
been a tinkering soul, the only stuff I had little exposure to was the
managment stuff in the CBK.  However, if I ever take another test that
asks me about physical topologies I'm going to scream!!!  BUS IS A

So now that GSEC is done, I took a couple long CISSP pre-tests at and scored 80% with just the CBK information
covered by the GSEC.  So I'm going to write the CISSP test when it comes
to town either Sept.14th (SF) or Sept.27th (Sac).  I'll prolly spend 2
weeks of prep time boning up on the management and law stuff.  In the
mean time I'm going to take a CCNP test per week for the next 4 weeks. 
If giving them what they want doesn't at least get me a few interviews,
then I'm going to start pumping gas or something.  It might not pay as
well, but it's a heck of a lot more stable!!!

If CISSP, GSEC, CCNP doesn't interest them enough to where they'll
actually take a look at my resume... then I don't know what will...


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