"A few years ago, on a BBS I used to frequent, in a
tech forum long since forgotten, one of the users asked a bunch of
the regulars where they got their experience. "How does one learn
routing, mail server administration or just heavy duty Perl?"
That's a good question.
Most of us had learned it working at universities, where we
learned admin skills on the job. However, this user's situation was
slightly different--he was unable to go back to school and learn
these skills. And without them there was little chance he could get
a job at an ISP.
An idea popped into my head that I quickly suggested: a geek
cooperative. Geeks forming their own ISP and learning those skills
on the job.
The idea gained acceptance, but no one took on the idea. About a
year later, I decided to pursue the idea with some local geeks I
was affiliated with, and we've learned a lot more than simple
system administration. Through various ups and downs, we've
achieved more than I could have imagined, and impressed quite a
number of people. It's an idea that I think could well serve a lot