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Comment: Re:WWJD? (Score 1) 831

Thanks, that brings up some really interesting questions and points.

FWIW my whole point in jumping into the discussion was in reaction to someone's comment that this was driven by hate. I really don't think that's the case, for the most part. Also, a lot of people here are quick to paint the "other" side's arguments as outlandish, backward, and bigoted. Again, I don't think that's the case.

Anyone who is truly interested in coming up with a solution should be able to see at least some merit in the concerns of both sides. Even if we ultimately decide in favor of LGBT and against those with religious objections, we should be able to see that the religious viewpoint has some valid points. I can understand where both sides are coming from, at least to a degree, and that's why there's not a trivial, obvious, winner-takes-all solution.

The idea of not requiring someone to participate in the actual event is an intriguing possibility. That would still leave some cases that allow for apparent discrimination, but it also seems to address a lot of the "guilt by association" type of concerns - maybe it could work. It reminds me of a local story here - the police department was invited to participate in the Gay Pride parade. In addition to providing security for the event, they were also in the parade itself - you know, riding around on the motorcycles in some choreographed formation like they often do in parades.

One of the officers felt that being in the parade as a performer was taking it too far, so he asked around to see if someone would swap assignments with him. He was open to taking an assignment to provide security or in a traffic assignment or whatever (which he had also done at a prior year's Gay Pride parade), he just didn't feel right about being a performer in the parade. Anyway, just for asking to see if anyone would swap assignments with him, he was suspended and an Internal Affairs investigation was launched and the department issued a statement that an officer was put on leave for refusing his Gay Pride assignment. The officer ultimately resigned before the investigation completed, but it always rubbed me the wrong way that the reaction was so extreme. He wasn't trying to shut down the event, he offered to participate in a more typical police officer capacity, but because he didn't feel good about being an actual performer it basically derailed his career. There has to be a more balanced and tolerant want to deal with that type of scenario.

Comment: Re:WWJD? (Score 1) 831

Ok, so go back to the KKK example: you act as caterer for their event and someone snaps a picture of you there and starts making a fuss because you're supporting their cause. Would you try to explain yourself, or distance yourself from their event? Hopefully, yes. If someone you respected saw those photos would you hasten to explain the situation? Probably. If you tried to run for political office, would your opponent be able to use those photos against you? Again, yes.

Pause and ask yourself why that is. It's because in all of those cases it's a reasonable assumption that your involvement in them denotes some degree of agreement if not outright endorsement of that cause. If you were to deny it, it would sound hollow and people would be skeptical.

Another reasonable assumption is that if you really, truly objected to those things you'd step aside and choose not to participate. You would still respect their rights and not try to shut them down, you might even go out of your way to help them find some other caterer to handle the job. But since you so deeply object to what that organization represents, you can't in good conscience aid in their event. You're not looking to make some big deal out of it, you just would like to quietly and discretely step away and let someone else cater for their event.

It seems reasonable that there should be some way to accommodate this type of gentle, conscientious objection. If market forces ultimately put this person out of business, so be it. It just doesn't strike me as completely wrong (or hate-driven as someone earlier asserted) for the caterer in this scenario to decline to participate. They aren't trying to shut the event down, they aren't trying to prevent other caterers from taking the business. Is it so wrong for them to have the freedom to choose to politely decline the job?

Comment: Re:WWJD? (Score 1) 831

Sure you're celebrating it. You're making a cake to honor it, you're having your bed n' breakfast host it, you're taking pictures to commemorate it (to name a few of the most popular examples that have resulted in lawsuits).

For the sake of an explanation, assume the activity was something sinister, e.g. a KKK rally, and someone saw you baking cakes for it or acting as the official photographer. If you were to later say that you were just there on business and didn't actually support that stuff, a lot of people would find that pretty hard to believe. If you ever tried to run for a political office, your opponent would have a field day with this, don't you agree? Why, because it sure looks like you're acting for the benefit of that cause, that you support it. I hope it's obvious that I'm not at all trying to suggest these two are the same, btw, just illustrating the point that doing these types of things sure looks a lot like advocacy. And that's the rub for these people - there's no way to discretely bow out on the grounds that they feel wrong to be doing things that are akin to advocacy.

And you're not having to "determine" anything because the sexual orientation of the people involved is inherently obvious. It's not akin to e.g. not selling produce to someone because they are gay - the sexual orientation is not only front and center, it's part of the transaction details. As a cake shop owner you aren't the one bringing LGBT into the picture - you just happen to sell wedding cakes with a boy and a girl on them. If you refuse to create a cake w/ two boys, you can get sued and if recent court cases are any indication, there's a good chance you'll lose.

Comment: Re:WWJD? (Score 3, Insightful) 831

I disagree that this is about hatred; in fact, I think you have to be calling many people blatant liars to make it about hatred. Granted, on either side there are likely some who are driven by hatred, but that's always going to be the case. It seems that many (and probably the vast majority) of people on both sides are pretty normal people who genuinely feel the way they say they do. Trying to vilify people on one side or the other doesn't help and is disingenuous.

Personally I can see merit in both sides and I bet if you give each argument and fair chance you would too. And that's why the issue is such a difficult one. It's only through setting up absurd strawman arguments that you can really dismiss the whole debate.

On the one side, it looks like we're dealing with discrimination all over again. As with racial discrimination, it seems wrong to avoid doing business with people just because of their sexual orientation. Separate but equal never worked and simply wasn't right.

On the other side, it seems like you have the government forcing people not just to tolerate - but to actively celebrate - something that is deeply abhorrent to them. They would otherwise be inclined to let people live their own lives how they want but when forced to be involved they honestly feel wrong, deeply wrong, about being forced to tacitly condone things like same sex marriage.

Both sides sincerely feel like the other side is taking away their rights and feel the others' suggested way to deal with it is unfair. Hatred isn't necessarily a part of the equation at all.

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.

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