I went to my high school reunion last week and got the age-old yet awkward question: What do you do now?

The quick answer? I work for a company that produces computers no normal human being would ever need in their home.

The long answer? I work for a company that produces computers no normal human being would ever need in their home, but use every day and at the most critical points of their lives.

Let me elaborate.

No basement-living “gamer” would ever need a Stratus server unless their heart would actually explode if they missed 2.5 seconds of WOW. (Again, I said normal person.)

However, a casino running billions of dollars though slot machines, tables and other betting arenas might actually have their head of security’s heart explode if they went down for 2.5 seconds, because those fancy slot machines are nothing more that expensive terminals run by a computer in the back room . And if that computer goes down the casino shuts down. That is where Stratus comes in handy.

Similarly, a road-side car repair shop might not need 24/7/365 uptime levels for their Dr. Pepper orders and tire-rotation record keeping. Toyo Tires, however, loses hundreds of thousands of dollars with a single split-second fail. Any fault at all and the entire batch of tires must be thrown out and restarted. They use Stratus to keep their production systems running without fail.

On second thought, I might take that road-side repair shop comparison back. Sheetz is one of our favorite customers. What is a Sheetz?, some of you Northerners might ask. According to their website, “Sheetz is a mecca for people on the go,” and it’s true. Gourmet sandwiches, espresso, gasoline and cigarettes are all available to travelers without them having to leave the seat-warmed cushions of their car. If you need to ask why a gas-station-turned-In-And-Out-Burger-turned-Starbucks might need fault tolerance, you have never been 7/8ths through a three-day road trip running on fumes of gasoline and even less coffee.

And so, comrades of (many) years past, I make really cool stuff. And you?