Donny When I got here, sig, myself, Mike/interdictor, and crystal were here. Then later on 3 other people joined us, Chris Anderson, Jim McCallum, and James Winston. We all rode out the storm on the 11th floor.
Donny We rode the storm out like anybody else would on the 11th floord of a building, we just had fun. We have a balcony on the 11th floor, so while the wind was blowing on the other side of the building we were on the balcony enjoying the wind and seeing things fly through the air.
<Donny> Around 6:20am we lost power so we went down to our data center which had power because we had a generator and that’s when things really started to get scary.
<Ardonik> So you were forced to ride out the rest of the hurricane from the basement level.
<Donny> We started hearing windows break, we didn’t realize that our windows were double paned, and Sig an Mike were standing about 2 feet away from one of the windows when a big piece of metal flew from somewhere and crashed into the window and broke one of the panes. That’s when our instincts took over and we started preparing for the worse.
<Ardonik> From the 11th floor? <Donny> We moved bookcases in front of the windows in the data center, which are the windows that the webcam is facing out of by the way, and we use cat-5 to type 6 of them together with a file cabinet in for good measure. We tied all of them to the door and too some shelving we had in the room as well. <Donny> Basement level? No. 10th floor. One floor down from our main office.
<Donny> The storm was real bad from about 4am until 2pm or so if I remember right. So it was a long experience. Actually, my window in my office blew out at 3:45pm, I remember that one.
<Ardonik> Ten hours. <Ardonik> Not an experience most of us would care to repeat! <Donny> The windows in our build room, where we have been staying never completely broke both panes. So the bookcases didn’t really help any. But we did lose 4 windows inside the data center itself. But we did have a wall between the windows and the datacenter anyway. So nothing was effected. <Ardonik> Now, you were basically barred in the data center. Was internet or phone working during that time? <Ardonik> Where you able to call loved ones and tell them where you were?
<Donny> Internet was up, all of the fiber is under ground here. Phones were down. There were aboput 100 other people from other companies and building engineering that rode out the storm in the building as well.
<Ardonik> Donny: Okay, so there were a lot of people in that building. <Ardonik> I’m really glad you all made it.
<Donny> There were no calls in or out for at least 3 days. Except, my dada could always get through to me for some reason, it was really weird. So he told everybody how everything was going.
<Donny> Originally. But most left after the first day of no power.
<Chiacomo> Where was your dad calling from?
<Ardonik> With its underground fiber intact, did your data center never lose connectivity as a result of Katrina?
<Ardonik> What I’d like to know is how “interdictor” turned from a small group of people around the country into what’s essentially a household name at this point. <Wohali> ardonik: /. posting I think did it first. (check when the /. post happened)
mike(interdictor) did LJ to share w/friends
snaxxy I am here through a livejournal connection- when I first “friended” interdictor, he had a little over 200 friends and from there entered into irc. I consider myself to be a irc fledgling, but the wonderful folks here have been extremely patient and helpful with my learning curve.
selcouth says first LJ post was http://www.livejournal.com/users/interdictor/2005/08/27/
Moved to IRC after LJ became too large (due to /.)
<Wohali> Once they finally got him out of St. Bernard Parish via helicopter, they simply dropped him at an I-10 intersection, where he waited alone for hours until a passing ambulance driver took pity on him. Wohali The logistics are more FUBAR than is widely reported; CNN/etc got the hype correct but they have been focusing on the high-visibility efforts Wohali ardonik: Everything is summarized in the blog. Ardonik Wohali: noted. Wohali Monday.
<snaxxy> I am in Austin, TX, and am helping the Capital Area Food Bank with their relief efforts, when I am not at my day job. The food bank took in 1.5 million pounds of food last Saturday- some of that was directly airdropped to I-10, Baton Rouge, NOLA, other areas of LA, and Mississippi…One load was picked up by a group of Marines, who’ve been working non-stop. They would not accept any of the supplies, only food, (diapers, bottled water) only food (canned meats, granola bars), ready to eat was the highest priority.
www.atypical.net/mm/nagin.mp3 = mayor of NOLA interview
Ardonik Is #interdictor directly involved in relief efforts now? and in what way?
Wohali Ardonik: The scanner channels that we transcribe, we get that info directly to various RL contacts (e.g. thru snaxxy) as well as inform those who live in the area (e.g. interdicter, other channel denizens) Wohali these are pasted to #interdictor-digest, which is logged as well Wohali the log: http://nola.heavycomputing.ca/%23interdictor-digest.html
Ardonik Wohali: so your job is to take the RL scanner feeds and translate them on IRC ’round the clock?
Wohali That is one of the largest efforts under way here. Unfortunately we do not have enough volunteers to keep transcribing every feed we find. Wohali Our greatest need are folks who can volunteer 1 or 2 hours to help transcribe
Donny ok. I can continue now. The 82nd airborne played a surprise raid on our data center while half of our people were sleeping. Don’t like having guns pointed at my head. Ardonik Wohali, snaxxy: wow.
Ardonik Donny: are you telling me that you were raided during this interview? Amgine Donny: May I ask, how is DirectNIC planning to deal with the current “Forced Evacuation” orders? snaxxy [will address untaken supplies after Donny] Ardonik snaxxy: go ahead Donny Yes. We were raided. They saw our light on. Ardonik snaxxy: well, wait for Donny Ardonik Donny: are they telling you to evacuate? Donny Amgine: There is a forced evacuation of citizens of New Orleans. We are part of the rebuilding team. We are excluded. Now our employees can’t go hang out at their houses though. Amgine <nod> So, in effect, you’re being quarrantied? Donny We don’t have to evacuate. Ardonik Donny: for the record, what was the loca time when the 82nd airborne visited you? Ardonik *local Donny We just can’t live in the city, that’s basically it. Donny 12:45am. Donny They were “protecting the security of the city”. Donny Sorrry. Ardonik Donny: where is your crew living? At the datacenter, or do some of them go home? Ardonik Donny: don’t apologize. Donny They were “protecting the security of the city and the building.” Amgine <grin> It is good to know we have such protections in force, yes? Ardonik Donny: and now that the order has been given to evacuate all non-rebuilding personnel, are you stranded in the city? Donny We live in the data center. I sleep in a closet. I sleep on 3 leather couch cushions that are taped together with duct tape. Sig does the same. Mike and Crystal have an air mattress I think.
Ardonik Donny: so the military and NOPD are providing security to your area. Donny Cat-5 cable is good for belts though. Sig didn’t bring a belt, so cat-5 works great. Ardonik I can just imagine wearing a cat…never mind Amgine <chuckle> Donny NOPD, NYPD, about a million different police forces are here. Plus the miliatry. Ardonik Donny: so you’re not affected by either the raid or the forced evacuation. Ardonik Donny: and your team will be allowed to continue its work? Donny No, I’m not affected. They are just a bunch of kids doing their job. I could see their scared faces. Donny Yes, we will continue to do our jobs. Ardonik Okay.
Ardonik Next question is for snaxxy. Ardonik I’m guessing you’re the one who’s obtaining the feeds that the interdictor team transcribes? Ardonik snaxxy: how are the transcribed feeds being used?
snaxxy I am not the best to address that- as I’ve said iirc, I’m more of people focused than computer, but this has given me the opportunity to learn from some of the best! Wohali Ardonik: I can take part of that question. Our weblogs show that some of the large news agencies have been scouring our logs for info to report Wohali ardonik: As for local agencies, we have tried our best to coordinate with, say, St. Bernard parish (my childhood home) but it is VERY difficult to stay in touch Ardonik Wohali: so you’re essentially providing a primary source to worldwide news agencies about the NOLA situation. Wohali Yes, for sure. Ardonik Wohali: and when something happens on the ground, you report it first. Ardonik Essentially. Ardonik Wohali: no one is compensating any of you for this, correct? michaelloftis [ feeds come from various volunteers on the internet…are mirrored to higher bw servers and then transcribed by our volunteers ]
snaxxy Ardonik: and it’s also helped us communicate with necessary authorities as needed – although I represent myself as an individual, I have the knowledge of how to feed important information to the authorities who might be concerned. Ardonik snaxxy: can you describe this in more detail? Ardonik How has providing the feeds helped you get in touch with necessary authorities when needed?
Ardonik Can I also ask if the interdictor channels have been used to connect loved ones and handle other non-official matters? Donny Can I answer this? Ardonik Donny: go right ahead Donny About 5 days ago, one of our building tenants was wanting to come in and get some servers out of our building. He found us via the interdictor channel. Ardonik Without #interdictor, the servers would still be in your building. Ardonik What were they used for? Donny The only reason why it was funny is that he also has 3 porsches and 1 300z in the garage. And they are 50 feet away from our generator and we see them all of the time. We even had taken pictures of them. And when he asked if his cars were ok, and he said that was them were were amazed, he’s taking me for a ride in a few weeks. Donny Yes. His servers would still be here. Ardonik Thanks for reminding me about the pictures. 🙂 Donny They run some type of oil field company, not sure exactly.
Ardonik Thanks for reminding me about the pictures. 🙂 Donny They run some type of oil field company, not sure exactly. Ardonik I saw them yesterday in a blog link. Are those being taken by your group, too? Donny The pictures? Ardonik Yes. Donny Yes, those are all from us. Ardonik I was trying to dig up the link before the interview. Can you remind our readers again? Donny There really isn’t one page, http://www.sigmund.biz/ is a good start. selcouth (http://sigmund.biz/kat is the main picture link, there are other mirrors everywhere)
snaxxy regarding the Marines “untaken” goods?
snaxxy Not untaken, so much as they didn’t need to accept for that particular pickup on Saturday. The food bank was scheduled to be closed Sunday and Monday for the holidays- and rightly so, because their staff have been working 12-14 hour days. Food is still moving in and out of our food bank.
snaxxy CAFB [austinfoodbank.org] is working with Second Harvest to move food where needed- emergency shelters, including Austin and Baton Rouge, and the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank has set up a secondary site, in Baker, LA. Here in Austin Home Depot donated an old site, which is where the bulk of donations are being processed through.
snaxxy The outpouring from our community is staggering- an emergency call for help at the Austin Convention Center shelter went out on a local TV station during a 10 o’clock broadcast, for 200 volunteers- by midnight 1000 people showed up to help. snaxxy But this is a mere glimpse, this is going on nationwide. If you want to talk about interconnectivity? Myspace bulletins have been flooded with volunteer calls, benefits, housing availability… Ardonik snaxxy: outstanding! snaxxy Heck, I received a Myspace bulletin from George Salisbury of the Flaming Lips regarding a collection of goods in Norman, OK, and when I requested it be substantiated, he quickly provided the necessary information. Ardonik snaxxy: did Austim become a major focal point for getting needed supplies into NOLA and other flooded areas? Ardonik *Austin. snaxxy A local musicians coop which was trying to fill apts, opened their facilities to NOLA musicians as well. Ardonik snaxxy: in addition to all the displaced residents of NOLA itself, many of whom are being moved to Texas. snaxxy Ardonik: Well, I don’t know what’s going on with the other areas of the state, but I do know that Austin has been the hub for most of Central Texas snaxxy okay, that gave me the chills… Ardonik snaxxy: and you’ve been at the center of it all. 🙂 Ardonik I don’t wish to spread the cold. snaxxy you know what makes it worthwhile? Ardonik What? snaxxy to come home tonight, exhausted, little sleep- at my day job, than to a special site that Home depot donated to CAFB to use? snaxxy and helping out here to keep tempers in check? snaxxy the smile on the face of my new neighbor- a close friend just moved out, and said she hoped some nice people moved in…Today a family from NOLA moved in. snaxxy I said hello…. Ardonik snaxxy: a displaced family from NOLA now lived nextdoor to you? snaxxy to see that UT Medical Branch has a large RV with dental services outside of the Austin Convention Center. Amgine Sorry to break in, but are there photos of the DirectNIC people/spaces which are licensed under a free license like CC? snaxxy yes, they moved in this morning.
Ardonik Where do you guys see interdector heading in the next few weeks? Ardonik When do you anticipate a return to normalcy? Will there every be a return to normalcy? Donny I have no idea where interdictor will go over the next week. It was started as just a way for Mike to tell his family how the storm was and if he was doing ok. As things change so with the blog.
Wohali Ardonik: Most importantly I want to thank every single volunteer who has come in, provided information reports, done transcription, helped maintain the wiki, provided us with links to their own efforts, and the like. Without you we couldn’t have gotten as far as we did. Even those who have come online to chat with the direcNIC staff, they’ve been invaluable in keeping spirits high! 🙂 Donny The biggest thing the city needs is just a good cleaning. Once that is done, the levee system needs to be rebuilt from scratch, if not, we should just tear the city down. Engineers shoudl rebuild this city, not politicans.
Ardonik This isn’t anything formal. Just a way to prevent me from having to annoy snaxxy and DamYankee with extra questions. 🙂 Ardonik If I was to point my readers to a homepage for your team, which URL should I use? DamYankee its also private which may or may not b important Ardonik Oh, it’s unimportant Ardonik I know about the wiki–should I use that? snaxxy DamYankee? DamYankee im not even here <g> but yeh the wiki is fine just “not” the admin wiki ok snaxxy snaxxy rity o
Ardonik Where is Camp Crystal located? DamYankee im sure wohali will have to get a bunch of data from the admin wiki but im not sure how much is private so we will let wohali decide re that issue Ardonik I’m not asking for any private wiki or anything snaxxy yeah, i feel more comfortable with that- since i’m not directnic…but am a contributor to nola-intel Ardonik Just a public place that you could say is the center of your efforts
Ardonik http://wiki.nola-intel.org/? DamYankee btw snaxxy logan might be useful in collecting some of those links if you catch him b4 he jets off to sleep snaxxy dang, someone gussied it up, but i need to get some info up… Ardonik You all need sleep 🙂 snaxxy http://wiki.nola-intel.org Ardonik Alright snaxxy tell me about it, but i’ve still got to respond and schedule food bank volunteers- i’m providing secondary support to the Director of Volunteer Services at CAFB Ardonik snaxxy: this being in addition to the regular work you’re doing? snaxxy yep Ardonik AND the IRC stuff DamYankee snaxxy is a regular saint
snaxxy yeah, but i’ve been in such a zone for days, i didn’t realize until today that i had forgotten to drop off the rent check Ardonik Just curious–where is Camp Crystal? I’ll read the wiki if the information is on there. snaxxy DOH! snaxxy its on Poydras… DamYankee oh qwuit that you know that aint your favorite color :-)) Ardonik snaxxy: who can think of rent at a time like this snaxxy one sec snaxxy not me, obviously snaxxy but I apologized and explained why, and when i asked how to pay, she said…the usual. snaxxy nice lady!! Ardonik snaxxy: that’s good 🙂 Ardonik I’m misusing your -media channel, aren’t I snaxxy i think there is a post that has some of the FAQs snaxxy one sec…. Ardonik Ooh, I’d love to have that pic of the team from Camp Crystal about now 🙂 DamYankee actually ardonik this is what this channel was put here for so please continue Ardonik I never caught selcouth’s name Ardonik I’ll use selcouth if I don’t have permission to publish it. snaxxy 650 Poydras – Poydras Center Ardonik snaxxy: thank you. snaxxy the FAQs are actually someone’s comment to a post, and appeared on the first page…but can’t seem to find Ardonik snaxxy: I really appreciate you going through the effort to find them for me. Ardonik I guess this is the place: http://maps.google.com/maps?q=650+Poydras+St,+New+Orleans,+LA+70130&spn=0.017981,0.034573&hl=en
snaxxy darnit snaxxy not as much info as i remembered snaxxy http://www.livejournal.com/users/interdictor/46171.html?thread=3187803#t3187803 Ardonik Did the “Camp Crystal” moniker come about before or after the storm? snaxxy sorry
snaxxy after Ardonik Who came up with it? Ardonik Bah, well, of course it was after, but I meant before or after interdictor became the huge thing it is right now. Ardonik snaxxy: thanks for the link. snaxxy http://www.livejournal.com/users/interdictor/27085.html Ardonik snaxxy: in other words, directnic.com. 🙂 snaxxy heh, sorry sleepy
snaxxy but thought the slogan was worth sharing Ardonik snaxxy: don’t stay up on my account. Please get rest! Ardonik If I need more information, I can always bug you later. I’m starting to write the article in my userspace now. 🙂 snaxxy k Ardonik If I don’t need to be in -media, I’ll leave. I got most of my questions answered
snaxxy kewl DamYankee nite ardonik snaxxy nice to meet you, and thanks Ardonik Thanks, guys. I appreciate it.