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Comment: Re:And I'm the feminist deity (Score 3, Interesting) 290

software dev pays well, but compare the pay to those of the fields you compared it to. All of them make significantly more than software devs do. Friend of mine, his wife is a dentist, she's pulling in nearly 300k a year

Yes, dentists are well paid - eventually - but they start earning late, a few years after a software dev, they have a much larger school debt to pay off, and just like a software dev, the early years don't pay so well.

You can't just look at peak earning power, but at lifetime earnings at a given age, and it takes a long, long time for a dentist or doctor to pull ahead. BTW, you can certainly make $300k as a software dev at a big company - that's common for tech track paygrades equivalent to a second-level manager at the big names. Of course, there are far fewer such positions than there are dentists in America, and for someone capable of both I'd recommend dentistry, but the gap isn't as big as you might think.

Comment: Re:And I'm the feminist deity (Score 4, Interesting) 290

The problem with this is that companies don't really pay that well for the labour, skills, experience, talent and education necessary to succeed in IT.

"IT" is a crap career no one should enter. Answering calls on the helpdesk? No thanks - well, better than starving, but so are a lot of things. But we were talking about software development

Why would girls want to sit in front of a computer for hours on end, sometimes, even evenings and work also on weekends in order to launch etc.?

Check out the hours lawyers work, or the oncall duties as a surgeon (or a vet - but dentists, that's the job!). It's not the hours that's the problem, it's the lack of dignity of the profession. When the field was doubling every few years, that meant most software developers were in their 20s, and management could get away with treating all of us like college students. My work environment is more like a dorm room or college lab than a professional office environment - that's what we need to push back against.

As far as pay, after your first 5 or so years in the field, jobs that pay well are there for the taking, though you may need to move to where the work is. If you're past your apprenticeship in the field and you're not making at least 1.5x the national median income, you're likely at a bottom-tier employer: shop around. While we may top out lower than the doctors and lawyers, they don't hit peak earning potential until later in life - a doctor or dentist is typically in his 40s before lifetime earnings net of school costs put him ahead of a plumber or other skilled tradesman.

Personally, I think many women are put off by the limited social interaction involved in the job, or at least that's my theory for why so many female software developers choose career advancement into management or product management over the dev tech track.

Comment: Re:Who cares if it kills companies? (Score 1) 96

by lgw (#49770951) Attached to: Tech Bubble? What Tech Bubble?

The best thing they can do is forgo significant earnings because they have to be more timid in the 10-15 years leading up to retirement. If they didn't have to fear massive bubble collapses, your average investor could likely earn an extra 30% on their retirement accounts.

OK, but that's been true for 400 years, and isn't actually a barrier to retirement. You've IMO correctly understood the rules of the game, and under those rules anyone can retire on his own wealth, needing only to invest enough of his after-tax pay every year. I've been living on half my after-tax pay for 15 years now, and in another 5 or so I'll have the option to retire (though continuing to work would certainly improve that standard of living). You don't need to be nearly so frugal as "half" if you have 30 years instead of 20.

Comment: Re:females operate on emotion, not logic (Score 5, Insightful) 290

And that must be why there are more battered husbands shelters than battered wives shelters ... oh wait ...

Did you know most domestic violence in initiated by women? Did you know that by far lesbian relationships have more physical abuse than any other gender pairing? Abused men are just SOL - why do you need support or a shelter? Just man up! Perhaps not an argument for rationality, I'll grant you.

Comment: Re:And I'm the feminist deity (Score 4, Insightful) 290

Or, just maybe, we could teach children of both sexes that it's a harsh fucking world out there, and if you don't learn the skills needed for a good job, your life will suck forever. No? Well, the social pendulum will swing back that way eventually, from the opposite extreme we're at now, and once that happens you won't need much to get everyone interested in fields that pay really well, and won't be displaced by automation.

Programming

Google's Diversity Chief: Mamas Don't Let Their Baby Girls Grow Up To Be Coders 290

Posted by samzenpus
from the starts-at-home dept.
theodp writes: Explaining the reasons for its less-than-diverse tech workforce, Google fingered bad parenting for its lack of women techies. From the interview with Google Director of Diversity and Inclusion Nancy Lee: "Q. What explains the drop [since 1984] in women studying computer science? A. We commissioned original research that revealed it's primarily parents' encouragement, and perception and access. Parents don't see their young girls as wanting to pursue computer science and don't steer them in that direction. There's this perception that coding and computer science is ... a 'brogrammer' culture for boys, for games, for competition. There hasn't been enough emphasis on the power computing has in achieving social impact. That's what girls are interested in. They want to do things that matter." While scant on details, the Google study's charts appear to show that, overall, fathers encourage young women to study CS more than mothers. Google feels that reeducation is necessary. "Outreach programs," advises Google, "should include a parent education component, so that parents learn how to actively encourage their daughters."

Comment: Re:Who cares if it kills companies? (Score 1) 96

by lgw (#49770061) Attached to: Tech Bubble? What Tech Bubble?

There is no level of diversification or foresight that can protect the masses from major bubble collapses.

Sure there is. It's so easy, you probably can't see it. Just stay away from individual companies, even individual industries, invest broadly across the market as a whole and ignore collapses - just ride them out. If you invest in some SP500 or "all stocks" fund, or whatever, you've own the same micro-% of the American economy before, during, and after the crash, and through the recovery. The exchange rate between USD and "micro-% of all sticks" may fluctuate wildly for a while, but just don't sell in a panic and you'll be fine in a few years.

The closer you get to retirement, to more you'll need some share of your investments in quality bonds, so that if you need money to live on through a crash bottom you won't need to sell stock. (Government bonds are not quality bonds any more - after the US government punished ratings agencies who dared question the rating of US debt, you can never again trust any sovereign debt rating in the US - just steer clear of the category.) The old-school rule of thumb was "your age as a % in bonds", but that's from a time when interest rates were quite high. Less than half your age as a % in bonds is probably a mistake, however - you need something to be selling that's not stocks when everyone is screaming about the end of the financial world in every decade's crash.

Don't over-think the problem, don't act out of emotion, just accumulate wealth and have patience. In times when everyone seems emotional about the market, make damn sure you're not being emotional before you take any action. I've sailed through the dot-com crash, the 08 finance crash, and I'm fully expected the next one will be along soon enough, but you just keep accumulating "micro-% of all stocks" regardless and, sure enough, you become more wealthy over time.

Comment: Re:And so preventable (Score 1) 170

by lgw (#49769943) Attached to: <em>A Beautiful Mind</em> Mathematician John F. Nash Jr. Dies

We used to care about liberty more than safety. Freedom mattered once. The right to be stupid, to make bad choices, to do the wrong thing, was seen as fundamental - after all, we need no "right" to do what everyone else says we should, liberty only comes into play when others disapprove of your actions. This didn't used to need explaining. Now, we're basically fucked - we raised a generation that embraces total control of our lives by the government, that can't even see what the argument against it would be, as long as the government forces us to do the right thing, how could that be bad? History will repeat itself soon enough, and that question will sadly be answered.

Comment: Re:Great Idea (Score 3, Insightful) 645

by lgw (#49766255) Attached to: Greece Is Running Out of Money, Cannot Make June IMF Repayment

Companies shouldshould try to pay as little as possible. That's the system: it depends on human greed at every exchange. Any system that doesn't is purest foolishness.

BTW, if you expect the police to "find the guy you beat you up" today, lets me say from experience the police give 0 fucks about you as a victim. The problem many large cities face today is the propensity of the police themselves to beat people up for fun and profit. I doubt private policing could actually work, but lets not pretend the current system is some fucking utopia, OK?

Comment: Re:Thai music is heptatonic (Score 1) 77

by lgw (#49764333) Attached to: Favorite musical scale, by number of pitch classes?

What I meant is while western music scales mathematically divide the octave into 8 intervals (12 including the black keys), Thai instruments divide their "octave" into 7,

Look again at a piano keyboard. Notice there are 7 white keys and 5 black keys for each octave? There are seven letters in the western scale, so people get confused by that.

But it's even more confusing, as the western scale divides the octave into 12 notes, and then does LSD while smoking crack before inventing the notation for those 12 notes and related "keys". If we ditched the oddball half-step from E to F, we'd have 6 letters with sharps and flats giving 12 notes/octave, and it would all make much more sense when compared to the 7 notes/octave of the Thai scale.

You can divide up the octave many ways and still find pleasing harmonies - interference patterns between nearby notes being themselves notes which must fit with the chord. You can use a traditional scale, or do your own oddball thing (as Rush did on later albums, where the scale is offset a bit from where we expect, making it sound like a tape played at 80% speed).

Comment: Re:And so preventable (Score 0) 170

by lgw (#49764057) Attached to: <em>A Beautiful Mind</em> Mathematician John F. Nash Jr. Dies

Stop treating everyone as children. Adults are moral entities with agency, and can damn well decide on their own whether to wear a seatbelt or not.

I find it fascinating what we freak out about, versus what we tolerate.

Exactly: we seem t have a collective fetish for forcing others to make the same choices that we would, instead of respecting one another as people just like us, each with the right to find his own distinct path to happiness.

"For the man who has everything... Penicillin." -- F. Borquin

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