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Comment: Re:Hmmm .... (Score 1) 112

by JoeMerchant (#47970551) Attached to: A DC-10 Passenger Plane Is Perfect At Fighting Wildfires

Wing exits on the new 737s may still be in and out... I fly enough Southwest sitting in the exit rows, I should know, but the place the people really crush to is the "pilot's doors" - my Aunt was a stewardess for 30 years, she was on a 747 that had tires blowout and they deployed the slides for evacuation - no fire, no belly landing, no biggie, just some flat tires and a decision to use the slides instead of waiting for stairs to arrive... most people kept their cool, but two things were memorable: 1) the passenger wearing a dress, but no underwear who didn't keep her dress down on the ride down - blisters all the way up, and, most people kept their cool, but one guy had to get to the exit faster, he grabbed my Aunt by the hair and removed handfuls of it... she didn't notice until later - lots of adrenaline flowing in both of them at the time.

Comment: Re:Business (Score 1) 275

by JoeMerchant (#47951839) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How To Avoid Becoming a Complacent Software Developer?

I looked at hiring Objective C programmers in 2006, unless you wanted to go hang at the Apple conventions in San Francisco and troll for new hires - it was pretty hopeless. Sure, we could hire programmers and pay them to learn Objective C, or we could just develop with C++ in Qt and let the trolls port it into Mac-ese for us.

Comment: Re:Business (Score 1) 275

by JoeMerchant (#47951833) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How To Avoid Becoming a Complacent Software Developer?

Replacement is often not an option... and if you can't displace/replace a bad manager, it's probably time to find a new place.

In my past, I have promoted past bad management, once, but that was unusual and required upper management that a) cared, and b) recognized the situation for what it was.

The more conventional solution is to shop around for another job, then jump when the jumping is good.

Comment: Re:Hmmm .... (Score 1) 112

by JoeMerchant (#47941447) Attached to: A DC-10 Passenger Plane Is Perfect At Fighting Wildfires

That's on older Boeing jets (the ones named after the noise their tires make when falling off and hitting the tarmac... )

Airbus, and I believe the new Boeings, have outward opening emergency doors - they're heavier, harder to make right, require much more maintenance (look for double, triple, and thicker skins around Airbus doors the next time you board one...) but, if you're ever seated in the exit row when it really hits the fan, you want an outward opening door.

Comment: Re:You guys are always entertaining! (Score 1) 392

by JoeMerchant (#47920807) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Any Place For Liberal Arts Degrees In Tech?

The dogmatism that I have seen and heard on the job and here on Slashdot makes all of you come across as delusional and self aggrandizing.

LOL, you know, I won't dispute the point. Because I agree with it. It's been true for a very long time, and is widespread.

What I suggest is that being an asshole isn't due to a lack of critical thinking skills, it's a personality defect which can subsequently be overcome. ;-)

I would append that thought with the idea that some of the most, ahem, challenging colleagues I have encountered seem to have genuine neurological deficits in the social skills areas - they are barely aware of just how bad they are and have little to no clue how to do anything about it.

For some, electroshock therapy seems like a good first line treatment option, but, back in the real world, laughing at them is usually the most productive way through the situations they create.

Today's scientific question is: What in the world is electricity? And where does it go after it leaves the toaster? -- Dave Barry, "What is Electricity?"

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