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Comment Sprint is not the only one (Score 1) 112

Sprint is also running a phone-leasing plan that lets people pay an additional $22/month for an 16GB iPhone, with yearly upgrades.

T-mobile doesn't carry contracts anymore, and gives monthly payment plans for phones. The one I have (an Android one), I pay an extra $5-10 a month (can't remember the actual number) which will get paid fully in a year. Should I decide to quit t-mobile, I have to pay the remainder of the phone upfront.

I like the way things are going. No contracts and no subsidies, with monthly payments as a low barrier of entry.

Comment I Do Not Like The Trump, But... (Score 1) 442

"Honestly, I think it's wonderful; I want to rebuild our infrastructure first, ok? I think it's wonderful."

But there is a lot of sense in this. Obviously, both targets (going to Mars, fixing our infrastructure) need not be mutually exclusive. But we live with a significantly impaired political system where nobody funds anything unless it is a pet project that pours tax moolah into their districts. It takes a act of God/Cthulhu to get something on a bill.

And we really need to fix our infrastructure.

And that should be in our agenda first and foremost. If we can do the Mars thing as well, that is great. But we need to get infrastructure (along carbon footprint reduction) in our list first and foremost with everything else (even our precious dreams of space exploration) secondary.

Comment Re:Sure it can work (Score 1) 418

Don't also forget the fact that 'basically everywhere else in the entire fucking [developed] world' also gets a legal minimum of 4-6 weeks of paid vacation every year too. Everyone, from CEO to burger flipper. Admittedly most white collar Americans DO at least receive some vacation from their companies, but the fact it's not required is a bit scary. And pity those working in smaller businesses or in blue collar occupations where the vacation is minimal at best.

For those people, there is no vacation. Everyone is working multiple part-times because no one wants to give full time employment with all those pesky handouts... err, benefits. Welcome to the world where everyone is a "freelancer". #fileitunderfuckingracetothebottom

Comment Re:Great thing, but can this really work? (Score 1) 418

...actually, the "educated northern whites" in America are more likely than not to quit the workforce entirely. They do this because they can. They don't have to have a mere 12 months for their children. They can stay out of work indefinitely.

That's a part of the situation that's missing entirely from this discussion. An American female professional may be out of the workforce for YEARS raising children.

That may in fact be the reason that this works for Netflix. They are working with an entirely different set of expectations.

Bingo. I would generalize this more by replacing ethnicity with income (and anyways, in this country, income is a probabilistic proxy for race.) Couples above a certain income bracket can get the luxury of taking paternity leave (my wive quit her managerial job 7 years ago to care for our kids.) Our incomes can afford us that. She is Japanese and I'm Hispanic btw.

At some point she will go back to work. But for the time being, the benefits in terms of education and emotional stability are enormous.

OTH, people making less cannot afford that. And that is detrimental to family dynamics. Society suffers. And this is an extra cost that we can all collectively afford. Anyone who says otherwise because heterogeneity and what not are full of bullshit, and simply committing the logical fallacy of affirming the consequent.

I would actually say, instead of asking if this can work in a society like ours, give us tangible, logical reasons why it should not/cannot despite the fact other societies (not all homogeneous) can make it work.

Canada is not homogeneous, not as heterogeneous as ours, but it is certainly not homogeneous. Australia is on the same boat. So the "heterogeneous" argument is full of shit on my book.

Comment Re:Unlimited for one year (Score 1) 418

I agree, but I have seen people 'milk' the system in illogical ways. Not to long ago we had a temp worker who after 6 months of good work, we hired full time. The day after she completely stopped working and pretty much did nothing. She must have felt we would not fire her for racial reasons. It took months to get rid of her.

As I said, those people exist. But in my experience (personal and professional) those are outlliers. People need to really get me some hard evidence to convince me such people are the norm, or at least a minority large enough to indicate a trend worth looking.

Comment Re:Unlimited for one year (Score 1) 418

Is that a year per kid, or a year total in your career? If its a year per kid, I'd be tempted to keep having kids. If that catches on, we might wonder if Netflix is encouraging rapid population growth.

If you - the generic "you" - are truly tempted to have kids because of that, you - the generic you again - are a moron. There are some people on welfare that are like that, but welfare has hardly produce a deluge of baby-popping single moms or families. Are we to believe that such policies then, specially when affecting a class of highly educated people, would actually encourage rapid population growth?

There is "slippery slope", and there is "reaching deep into the ass to pull an outrageous claim".

Comment Re:Oh bullshit (Score 2) 144

In more civilized countries, the effect on your chances to secure an education matching your leanings and abilities is pronouncedly less

Really? Where are these "civilized countries" of which you speak?

You need to get the fuck out of whatever bubble you live in and travel the world a little. Really, go to Germany, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Luxembourg, Finland, the Czech Republic, Taiwan. Go travel and talk to people. See how they live. It will fucking blow your mind.

Comment Re:Oh bullshit (Score 1) 144

Just another example of the classically American naive conceit that "poverty happens" to people randomly, like a strike of lightning from the blue, and not (mostly) from a series of really bad life choices, something which is plausibly heritable.

Stupid poor child. He/she made the bad life choice of being born out of poor uneducated parents.

Stupid poor child that happened to be born when his father's job went to China and his savings evaporated during the Enron-Apocalypse.

Stupid poor child, who told him to be born out of a crackhead parent?

Stupid poor child, who told him to be born out of a mother that was abandoned while pregnant?

Poverty is a function of moral failure as per the great self-made-man American myth.

Comment Re:It is called risk-taking (Score 1) 318

There are times to play it safe, and there are times to take a chance and risk it.

And for someone fresh out of university with no driver's license, which time is this?

The time will be once you get your driver license and get a job and accumulate some experience. Then, that will be the time.

Stop playing the helpless victim. Use your brain.

Comment Re:trick them into it ... (Score 1) 318

That's the problem. If they think there is another offer, they will tell you to go take that one and not continue wasting their time.

I did the working from home thing. Worked OK until the startup got bought out, IT went to a consulting company and devs went offshore. Because you are generally not bumping into the office denizens on a daily basis, when something breaks and fingers start getting pointed, those fingers will get pointed at the person not there... which is the person working from home.

Not to cast judgement of a situation I know nothing off, but to me that sounds you did it wrong. Just because we work from home, that does not mean we are invisible. And that is the thing, blame gets thrown to those that are invisible. And that happens whether we work from home or from the office. Obviously, it is easier to occur in the former, which is more imperative to have your presence known.

Whether I work from home or work, I keep tabs on what I do. I don't start my day with a draft e-mail stating what I did yesterday and since last week. And I do not close my work until I have sent that draft to myself. Then, anyone that asks me for a report on what I'm working on can get it immediately. Manager doesn't ask me for a regular status report. Whatever, I send it regardless. Every important meeting I make sure I'm sure to participate, in presence or by phone/teleconference/whatever. Whatever the job, we have the urgency to establish ourselves as SMEs of something, to own a system or responsibility, to build credibility, to be on top of politics (oh yes, you can get a whiff off politics even when remote), and most important of all, to never lose composure when dealing with shenanigans.

Only when the environment is so dysfunctional that this is not possible, but then, it would be a losing proposition regardless of telecommuting.

Comment what a load of unsubstantiated crock (Score 1) 318

If you can do the job from home, so can some guy in India who gets paid 10% of your wage. Working from home is code for "Easy to outsource", and is not something you want to look for in a job.

Yeah, because the majority of people in IT who get outsourced were working from home... oh, wait.

Seriously, how far up the ass do you guys have to come up with such lame statements? Do you guys even think before you post them? Just think about it. Thousands of people get replaced all the time via offshore? The overwhelming majority of them worked with a required presence, in an office or a factory.

So how the hell do come up with such opinions?

Whether you work from home or from an office is irrelevant to outsourcing. We are all going to deal with it, so the question is whether we have the skills to delay it, and the skills to rebound quickly at another place, and the social skills and network connections to deal with this permanent feature of a global economy.

This has been going on for 15 years now, and it is an extension of the transition from work-for-life to oh-shit-everyone-is-a-contractor-now that has been going on since the late 80s. Where have you guys been?

Comment It is called risk-taking (Score 1) 318

Why are people so quick to assume that they can't ask for something, and negotiate their compensation?

Because when I have asked for things, the result has ended up being "we went with another candidate for this position", and "how can I make myself a better fit for your company in the future?" has gone unanswered.

Well, duh. That's the risk you have to take. It's like anything. You ask for something, and you risk getting a "no". And "risk" is the operative word here. Risk implies possibility, not certainty.

Fine, don't ask. You will never hear a "no", but you will never get what you want. To make an omelette you need to break some eggs. Interviews and job offers are nothing more than conducting business, between you and the prospective employer. And in business, like in anything else, there is a fine balance between risk-taking and rewards.

There are times to play it safe, and there are times to take a chance and risk it.

Comment This is how (Score 1) 318

Honestly, the best way to get a "work from home" job is to quit looking at jobs that want a presence.

Which brings us back to the original question: How can someone who recently graduated from university find a job that doesn't require a presence?

By having a linkedin profile first and foremost, and then going to dice and and search for jobs with telecommuting as an option. I shit you not, the jobs are there. Perhaps they are not the most numerous of all, but if you, the generic you, spent an hour every day perusing through those job openings, you will have about a half a dozen decent leads.

Then you look at those jobs, and you look at those requirements. Then you ask yourself, am I a match? If so, then apply. Rinse and repeat until that shit delivers what you want.

If you are not a match, then get a job that requires a presence that can lead you to acquire the desired skills. Wait a couple of years acquiring skills, experience and connections, all the while searching for the desired types of jobs until you get a feel for it, a feel of where the industry is headed, which skills are common in telecommuting jobs, etc.

Then, when you are ready, you apply. You search and apply till you get it.

This advise works for anyone, fresh out of college, or veteran from the trenches. It also work for anything other than telecommuting jobs. Define what you want, research and understand what it takes to get what you want, get those things, then go get it.

As far as IT is concerned, the most common types of jobs that are amenable to telecommuting are sysadmin/L3 support/JEE administrator jobs, Dev/Ops and freelancing with Ruby or Python (JEE/C++/C# work is less common in the telecommuting realms.)

And if you have a lot of experience, you can branch into business analysis, architecture or security, which are also open to telecommuting (the more experience you have, the greater the chances.)

Citations: 20 years doing this shit, both in person and telecommuting.

!07/11 PDP a ni deppart m'I !pleH