The official name of the U.S Pentagon rebuilding following the damage the building sustained on September 11th, 2001. The name "Phoenix Project" is derived from the mythological bird of rebirth and immortality.

On October 18, 2001, slightly over a month after the 9/11 attacks, full scale demolition began of the entire damaged area. The goal was also set to reoccupy everything affected at the point of impact by September 11, 2002.

On November 19, 2001, four weeks ahead of schedule, demolition was completed. The reconstruction phase of the project began that same exact day.

February 25, 2002, the first slab of new limestone was placed on the face of the Pentagon. By April 5th, 2002 the structural concrete work was completed and by June 11th, 2002 the last of approximately 4,000 pieces of new limestone was placed on the face of the Pentagon.

On August 15th, 2002, tenants from the affected part of the Pentagon moved back in, and sure enough, by September 11th, 2002, the area affected by the initial point of impact was reoccupied and operational. A total of 3,000 Pentagon tenants returned to work. Although the true date in which the U.S Pentagon went back to being fully operational is when the entire west side of the building was February 14th, 2003 (Valentine's Day) was reoccupied.

All in all, the project rebuilt 400,000 square feet of office space damaged on 9/11, removed 50,000 tons of debris, involved 3,000 people and cost 526 million dollars.
The Phoenix Project was a Bulletin Board System (BBS) ran by hacker Loyd Blankenship with help from Erik Bloodaxe from mid 1988 to March 1, 1990. The board was owned by Loyd (a member of the hacking group Legion of Doom) and he hosted it at his home in Austin, TX. It became one of the most infamous BBS's because of its involvement in the E911 Case and the resulting Steve Jackson Games raid.

In February 1990 a stolen document describing the basic operation of the telephone 911 system was published in the online hacker magazine Phrack. A copy of the magazine with the stolen document was made available on the Phoenix Project. Although it was also available on many other BBS's the Secret Service began investigating Loyd and Erik. The Phoenix Project was targeted because of it's standing in the underground hacking world and Loyd's prior hacking arrest.

After getting a search warrant on February 28th, Secret Service agents raided Loyd's house and workplace (Steve Jackson Games) on March 1st, 1990. Equipment, documents, and computers were taken including the BBS which effectively took it offline. Steve Jackson Games also had computer equipment taken though it turned out their computers did not contain any incriminating evidence on it. Steve Jackson attempted to get their computer equipment back, but after continuously being rebuked by the Secret Service he filed suit. Steve Jackson eventually won Steve Jackson Games v The United States Secret Service and received damages as the judge found the Secret Service to have acted outside of statutory seizure provisions. Loyd on the other hand, never received his Phoenix Project BBS computer back from the Secret Service.

A popular 'business fable' by Gene Kim, Kevin Behr, and George Spafford. In the manner of Goldratt's The Goal, this book tells the story of Bill, and IT middle-manager suddenly promoted to Vice President of IT following an organizational purge. Bill inherits an IT organization with many chronic issues: overwork, late projects, and production failures. From his initial challenge of simply getting a new laptop to making transformative changes to the business, Bill must learn and apply the principles of lean manufacturing and later on modern devops practices. Our hero overcomes these challenges in part via his wise Yoda-like mentor who provides key insights that move Bill on his journey. In a straight up novel the deus ex machina of this would annoy me, but here it's okay to have the author so directly proxied by this character. An appendix provides more academic background and further reading.


A good, quick read for anyone struggling with the pace of change in IT or who needs to help implement devops but has to first come up to speed on philosophies and goals. The narrative approach makes it approachable and gives motivation for adoption of process control techniques like Kanban. It's targeted towards traditional line managers and executives who need to learn to think holistically to support the modern business enterprise.


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