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Comment: Re:Middle wheel/button seems to work ok, no? (Score 2) 431

by dbrueck (#48895121) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Where Can You Get a Good 3-Button Mouse Today?

Funny you should mention Blender, as that's exactly the app I had in mind when I said I used the middle button/wheel all the time without any problems. :)

FWIW I use some Logitech mouse and this discussion made me notice that the wheel has a ton of subtle, discrete "stops" or positions rather than being a completely fluid or smooth spin. That might be why the middle button doesn't tend to register accidental scroll events.

Comment: Middle wheel/button seems to work ok, no? (Score 5, Interesting) 431

by dbrueck (#48894937) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Where Can You Get a Good 3-Button Mouse Today?

Can you share details on what the problems are with the clickable middle wheel? You mentioned it's "inadequate", but what makes it so? Just wondering because I use the middle-button/wheel all the time and it seems to work as well as the other buttons - no discomfort, no extra thought, etc.

Comment: Re:Awesome (Score 5, Funny) 133

by dbrueck (#48638301) Attached to: Tesla About To Start Battery-Swap Pilot Program

Ooh, I love this game. My turn! (BTW you didn't give me a starting point so I'll just go with your /. handle, but on future turns please give me a subject to start with)

Ok. 'greenwow'... let's see. Well, 'green' is like the Jolly Green Giant, who is big, as was Andre the Giant. He was French. The French sold us a lot of land in the Louisiana Purchase. Louisiana has a really high rate of obesity. Why do you support pediatric heart disease, you monster???

Your turn. Subject is 'turnips'.

Comment: Awesome (Score 1) 133

by dbrueck (#48638075) Attached to: Tesla About To Start Battery-Swap Pilot Program

Stuff like this makes me want to be their customer all the more. They promised they'd do something and are following through, and that something targets some of the big concerns about owning a battery-powered car. And no surprise that at first it's going to be less than ideal; the fact that they're moving forward is great and over time the technology and the processes will of course improve.

Comment: Use social pressure, not gov't regulation (Score 1) 1051

by dbrueck (#48582481) Attached to: Time To Remove 'Philosophical' Exemption From Vaccine Requirements?

Instead of trying to make this be regulated and overtly forcing people to get vaccinated, it could be much more effective to try to address this via social pressure.

Somehow in some places getting vaccinated has fallen out of favor - or at least not vaccinating is no longer seen as being a really bad idea. A coordinated campaign to change public opinion could do the trick, a combination of celebrity endorsements, news reports on how lack of vaccination is hurting the children, social media campaigns that get people to brag that their kids are vaccinated, etc.

If you make it cool/positive to be vaccinated and backwards/dumb to not be vaccinated, the majority of this problem will go away. You'll always have the exceptions, sure, but I'd bet that with them you'd still be well above the herd immunity threshold, so who cares.

We try to solve too many problems via regulation, and having the government force stuff on people comes with its own set of downsides, not the least of which is that people naturally resist anything you try to force them to do.

Comment: Re:Skilled Introverted programmers need not apply (Score 1) 139

by dbrueck (#48509757) Attached to: Want To Work For a Cool Tech Company? Hone Your Social Skills

Please read my other posts - not only did I not complain about a shortage, I went so far as to say that I don't really think there is a shortage.

Regardless, I think you're missing my point: my position is that some people, no matter how good their skills are, are a *net negative*, because tech skills are only a part of the equation (an equation that includes things like interpersonal skills), and that people/teams/companies that don't properly weigh that part of the equation end up paying the price for a long time to come and end being worse off than had they not hired that person. So, no, it's not a good idea to hire people just on the basis of technical qualifications.

Put another way, if someone is applying for a dev job at my company and they have really poor interpersonal skills, I'd argue they aren't qualified for the job. They're at best partially qualified, so we don't hire them.

And it's not the "easy route", not by a long shot. It's actually harder, especially up front, but you do it because you know it's better in the long run.

But is it putting an emphasis on people who are easy to manage? Absolutely. Anything else is insanity. I run a business, not some volunteer organization where you work with whatever you've got.

Comment: Re:Skilled Introverted programmers need not apply (Score 1) 139

by dbrueck (#48507123) Attached to: Want To Work For a Cool Tech Company? Hone Your Social Skills

I turn away people who are qualified (in terms of technical skill) but don't pass the personality test *all the time*.

In the past month alone I've passed on 2 candidates who were very technically competent, but one could barely carry on a conversation and the other was obnoxiously arrogant and smug.

OTOH in the past 4-5 months I've hired about a dozen developers who have a variety of skill levels but are just great to be around and to work with - they have a good work-life balance, they aren't easily offended, they're personable and team-oriented.

It's not at all about finding a "perfect" fit but is about weighing all factors that matter, and things like communicating, being personable, and other social skills are *crucial* to success. Of course it doesn't mean you hire people that are fun to be around but are lousy developers, but it also doesn't mean that you jeopardize the team and/or the business by bringing on someone you have to constantly "deal with" in some way or another. Everyone has their quirks and off days, I'm not talking about that, but people that have to be coddled or who are hyper-sensitive or contentious or can't articulate thoughts or have a normal discussion - it's nearly impossible for really good technical skill to outweigh those kinds of drawbacks.

And for the record, while I agree that there are oodles of crummy candidates out there, I'm also skeptical there is some sort of widespread shortage - we don't seem to have trouble finding candidates that range from "very good" to "superstar" and everything in between.

Comment: Re:Skilled Introverted programmers need not apply (Score 1) 139

by dbrueck (#48505233) Attached to: Want To Work For a Cool Tech Company? Hone Your Social Skills

Oh, it's not on a whim at all. It's the realization that the degree to which a person can work well with, communicate with, interact with, etc. (basically, "fit in with") others is massively important, so much so that if a person is too lacking in those areas then it's better for your team and for your business to not hire them, no matter how good they look on paper.

Comment: Re:Skilled Introverted programmers need not apply (Score 2) 139

by dbrueck (#48504151) Attached to: Want To Work For a Cool Tech Company? Hone Your Social Skills

*sigh* I wasn't. Read the article, then the parent subject line. I was saying that the more general issue is finding people who can be the right fit for a team, regardless of their skill level.

So that disqualifies various sets of people - those who are so extremely introverted that they can't interact with the rest of the team very well, those who are poor communicators, those who are prima donnas, and those who have poor reading comprehension.

Comment: Re:Skilled Introverted programmers need not apply (Score 5, Interesting) 139

by dbrueck (#48502547) Attached to: Want To Work For a Cool Tech Company? Hone Your Social Skills

Nah, you can be /somewhat/ introverted and still do well. But the fact of the matter is that social skills *are* crucial. It's not discriminatory, it's business, and a person who can't communicate well, who can't interact well, is a net negative, no matter how awesome a coder they are. It's not fair to the business and it's not fair to the rest of the team to have to "deal" with the guy or gal who just can't mesh with the team.

I've wasted so much time dealing with prima donnas and socially inept "geniuses" that I don't hire either these days. The very first interview is always a personality interview, and if I struggle seeing the person fitting in with the rest of the team, I don't even bother moving on to a technical/skills phase of the interview.

That doesn't mean we don't hire people that just geek out on tech, but they are people who are passionate but also kind of laid back, people with a good sense of humor, people who can express themselves clearly and can communicate well, people who don't get offended when someone disagrees with them, people just cocky enough to take some risks but who aren't arrogant - they have individual humility while still being very bullish on what they can do to help the team.

If a candidate doesn't have these qualities, then I genuinely don't care if they are the greatest developer in the history of the world - without the right personality type, they are just too much of a hassle and I pass on them and let them be some other company's problem.

The price one pays for pursuing any profession, or calling, is an intimate knowledge of its ugly side. -- James Baldwin

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