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Staff Profile: Matthew Taylor

Matthew Taylor, IT Guru at Flow Science
Another Flow Science employee who hates
to have his picture taken.

Title: IT Administrator

Education: BBA in Computer Information Systems, University of Texas at El Paso

How long have you worked for Flow Science?

Just over a year.

What is the best part of your job?

Definitely my coworkers. It's a pleasure to work with so many bright people; the problems that come to me are genuinely interesting, and usually difficult, rather than commonplace IT work like password resets.

Why did you choose to come and work for Flow Science?

I moved to Santa Fe to work for the state government, and most of the department I was going to work for was laid off when I arrived! Thankfully I found Flow Science. I feel very appreciated and needed here. And I learn something every day.

What is the most interesting project you are working on right now?

The soft underbelly of the engineering software world undoubtedly comes off as pretty dull, but helping put together an enterprise-level, virtualized, automated software build system was fascinating and rewarding. And the developers are going to love it.

As the only one among 25+ in the office who drinks decaf coffee, and yet maintains an incredible energy level, what is it that keeps you going all day long?

Beep… beep… Sorry, couldn't hear you, time to replace the fuel rods again.

What's the craziest (most interesting? intricate? delicate? confounding?) IT matter you've been subjected to so far at FSI? In your career?

Another one for those who need help going to sleep at night: One day, no one could print on one of the color printers. It turned out that someone had loaded a web site onto it. Why does a printer have a web server in it?

I used to do tech support for Staples. I had a user whose PC wouldn't turn on. We went through some steps, and when I asked him to check the power cable, he said, "I can't see it." Tried to help by describing what he should see. His machine was under the desk, so I asked him to get down there. "No, I can’t see it because the lights are out." The power was off in his building. I once spoke to a friendly grandmother who was convinced HP stood for "Hecker Pecker."

What's on your iPod right now?

Lots of 80s nostalgia; more new wave 80s than hair rock 80s. And plenty of underground stuff: French new wave, unlistenable electronic noise, 70s punk, and over-sincere indie crooners who chose their guitars for maximum irony. Let's not name names.

What is on your reading list? Do you have a recent favorite?

At work, I have a stack on my desk right now that includes "Managing projects with GNU make" and "Version control with Subversion." I enjoy those kinds of things more than should probably be allowed.

At home, I finally got a chance to delve into Keith Richards’ biography, which I've wanted to read for a while. I can't believe the man’s memory is so clear.

If you could choose anywhere in the world, where would you travel to and why?

There are so many places I'd like to go! I still haven't been to Europe, and that's high on my list. The Hagia Sophia has always caught my imagination, with its scale and history, so Turkey’s on the list too. I want to see Frida and Diego's blue house and all the Aztec and Mayan ruins in Mexico, assuming the sad situation there clears up during my lifetime.

Who has had the greatest influence on you and why?

I’ve heard people talk about who helped them realize that virtually nothing they knew or had heard was true, and for some of them it was Vonnegut or Joseph Heller, but for me it was Hunter S. Thompson. I was much younger than I probably should've been when I first read his work, just a precocious child.

It’s sad that he'll be remembered for his drug abuse, rather than for his relentless search for truth.

What is one of your most important accomplishments?

I finally got a degree! Late bloomer?

How would you describe yourself?

The kinder, gentler IT guy. You have to watch the old IT guy sketches from Saturday Night Live; I like to think of myself as the opposite of that guy. Much as I try to hide it, I'm as nerdy as they come. If I had glasses, they'd be held together with tape. If I had a pocket, it would have a protector.

What helps you get out of bed each morning?

The kids! No matter how late they go to bed, they're up with the Sun. Maybe more "force" than "help."

What did we not ask you about that you wanted to answer?

"Who let you in here?"

Who has the best New Mexican food in New Mexico?

Breakfast at the Pantry is hard to beat.

Red or Green?


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