by Scott Kirsner

Remembering IT Land, The Information Technology Theme Park

Dec 01, 20062 mins

Many theories surround the closing last month of IT Land, the Kissimmee, Fla., theme park that opened in October. Maybe it was the hours: open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Or maybe the attractions just weren’t enough fun to lure vacationing CIOs and their families. Whatever. Last week the derelict property was sold to a time-share developer.

¿The CIO/Vendor

Ferris Wheel

Each CIO shares a car with a vendor; per-seat licensing prices rise steadily until the CIO threatens to jump into another car, at which point prices begin going down.

¿Whack-a-Bug Use your rusty coding skills to eliminate errors from a piece of just-released software. The prize: You get to keep your job.

¿Mr. Gates’ Wild Ride Scramble to patch Microsoft security holes before hackers can take advantage of them.

¿Concession Stand Burritos, pizza, Mountain Dew and Red Bull.

¿Live Dinner Show Hour-long song-and-dance in which programmers explain why their project is six months late, doesn’t meet half the requirements and has no documentation. Jaw-dropping tap dancing!

¿The Project Management Railroad Wonderfully slow. Frequent, unexplained stops. Try to avoid being hijacked by business unit heads with different priorities.

¿The LAN Log Flume Try not to lose your lunch as the network goes down—then up—then down—then up. You end up all wet.

¿Parachute Drop Drop in to a far-flung branch office, solve all their problems in 48 hours, catch the red-eye home. Collapse.

¿Pirates of the Pacific Rim Visit the Beijing branch office and try to explain to employees why it’s not OK to buy all their software at Ye Olde Bootleg Bazaar.

¿The Haunted Data Center Mainframes crash for no reason! Backup tapes vanish inexplicably! Specters of past CIOs and their bad decisions appear and linger! There is…no…way…out.

¿Budget Bumper Cars Either you wind up with neck pain or your CFO does.

¿The Next New, New Thing Souvenir Shoppe Baseball caps, golf shirts, fleece vests and tote bags emblazoned with the logos of hardware, software and service providers. Everything XXL.