Linux Networx Remembered

I learned over the weekend that Linux Networx was purchased by Silicon Graphics Inc. (SGI) and on Thursday all the employees were let go and the doors to the building were locked. SGI made offers to re-hire some of the employees, but most were only given a small severance.

I worked for Linux Networx a year and a half ago. I had worked for Larsen Davis for 8 years out of college so the job change to Linux Networx was a pretty big one for me. My fears were put to rest quickly after starting work at Linux Networx. There was a very positive, energetic vibe that came mostly from the employees. I made some good friends and got to work on some fun projects. There's a lot more I could say about my time at Linux Networx, but I'm going to focus on cycling.

When I started at Linux Networx in January 2005, I was a recreational mountain biker. I was pleased to find several other mountain bikers at the company and started attending group rides. We had some great rides, including a very memorable trip to Moab.

Many of the mountain bikers were also road cyclists and they introduced me to it. I put slicks on my mountain bike and did a few rides - it worked OK, but definitely demonstrated that a real rode bike is the way to go. So after some looking, I found a nice bike on eBay that hadn't sold and the seller was in Utah and not too far away. Dave Olsen, my primary road biking mentor at Linux Networx, went with me to help evaluate the bike. That was my first road bike, a 2002 Schwinn FastBack Pro - Reynolds steel frame, aluminum fork, Shimano 105 - not the latest or greatest, but the bike had a great feel. We would do lunch rides 2-4 times a week riding all over the south end of Salt Lake Valley. We would also do some after-work rides - some mountain biking, some road rides. We also did a few century rides together and did spinning during the winter. In short, we had a good time riding together.

Sadly, it didn't last long. I was laid off August 2006, but since my new job was fairly close to Linux Networx I would meet up with them for a ride now and then. But people kept leaving and the riding group kept shrinking, and now it's gone.

I credit my stint at Linux Networx with greatly enlarging and improving my cycling. I became a competent road cyclist, I improved my mountain biking skills, I increased my cycling strength and endurance, and made many good friends. Jason has encouraged (bullied?) us to do the Seattle to Portland (STP) ride with him this year (I'm already regsitered), so that will be a fun reunion. And I'm sure many of us will get together at the Cycle Salt Lake Century, which has become a tradition. So while Linux Networx the company is gone, and I miss those days when we'd see each other at work each day, our friendships remain and we still get to ride together a few times a year. Thank you, each of you, my Linux Networx friends.

Update: Jason reminded me of some other good rides - here are some photos of the Blackhawk and Timpanogos mini-epic rides:


JLow said...

Well said! My enthusiasm for and frequency of mountain bike rides has never been the same as it was at Linux Networx.

It was an awesome group that was very supportive. We often joked about how, like President Bush, we supported the No Child Left Behind Act while on the trail.

I have so many fond memories of riding with this group: Adobe Tire in Corner Canyon, flash floods at Lambert Park, Cameron's Pass over Yellowfork, Timpanogos with 6" of snow, cooling off in the lake at BlackHawk, Levi's near death experiences, and waiting for Charlton at Timpanokee while he appeared with a taco'ed rim.

It was a great time in my life and as hard as I try I can't seem to get the magic back.

sherpa said...

Good comments, great post, and fun photos. We definitely had something special there and you've done a good job of pointing out how rare it is/was.
Although I still ride quite a bit, it's just not the same. However, I'll get my LNXI Pack fix when we ride the STP together. I'm looking forward to it. Woo-hoo!

KanyonKris said...

Well said! Thanks for reminding me of some of those other rides - I've updated the post with 3 more photos.