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Comment As for me ... (Score 1) 809

It's a fascinating question, but let's just start with the assumption that I get a few billion and the tax man takes half. I have 1.5 billion to work with.

I'd probably start out with setting up a few small charitable trusts with 10 million each, for things that I care about in my community -- food banks, educational assistance for economically disadvantaged students, and housing & heating assistance for the elderly and disabled. They would pay out 5% of invested holdings every year. This would get me on a nice dinner party schedule, with some benefits to attend and give me some causes to work on and with other like-minded people. It doesn't have to be flashy, but it does have to be meaningful to me. This is how I'd meet people and pick up a social life.

I'd build a new house up in the mountains, with room for all my toys. I'd get an apartment in NYC and another house out in southern California. I'd probably move around between all three, through the year. I'd probably do a fair amount of traveling abroad as I felt the need.

I suppose, if my GF didn't care for this life, at some point I'd meet someone that would want to go along for the ride.

Honestly, I'd park most of the money in cash and securities and play it by ear.

Submission + - System Administrator Appreciation Day 2015

ninjagin writes: They might be underneath a desk, hauling cables above your ceiling, swapping out a drive in your data center, putting the blue smoke back inside that old pizza box on the rack, up at 2 am dealing with an alarm, upgrading or patching your systems over the weekend, but wherever they are today, take a moment to thank your friendly neighborhood system administrator, today. We always look to them to fix things up when things go bad, but they are rarely recognized for the majority of their effort — the quiet work they do in the background to keep the bits flying and things running smoothly.

Comment Re:Everybody List What You Think Went Wrong (Score 3, Informative) 552

I work in tech, only for about 25 years, though, and I see (and have seen) women being treated badly all the time. They have a much harder time getting their ideas into play, their opinions heard & listened to, and their work and credibility accepted. It's very hard to push back against it, too, without risk. I could go on, but you don't seem to be open to other points of view on the subject.

Comment Re:contempt? never! (Score 1) 213

Exactly. Thank you for saying this. I can't think of two western nations that have had a longer alliance than France and the US. We owe the very existence of the USA to France -- not just in the war of independence, but in the Louisiana Purchase (roughly a third of continental US land) and also in the war of 1812 where France was our largest (if somewhat reluctant) trading partner. The two nations may grouse a bit at each other from time to time (1820-1865 was a low period, to be sure, and I blame the string of lesser Napoleons), but I can't think of two nations that have been such steadfast partners for a longer total period of time.

Comment What a bunch of hooey ... (Score 1) 146

I've managed a very successful team for many years, and the one thing I don't do is their work for them. They need to do their work, in their own ways, and do it well. If they do, they don't see much of me. I attend most of the meetings (though I do occasionally have to bring one or two along for specific stuff), I do all the HR stuff, I go to the boring planning sessions, and I find out how our work is being received and chart courses for sustaining and improving on that work as needed.

I don't ask for status reports. I don't get in the way of standups. I don't pretend that I'm better at doing their job than they are. I am a facilitator for their work and I am a buffer between my team and other teams. I keep things nice and calm for them so they don't have to stress out or deal with having to interpret all the BS or do BS work. Then I do all the paperwork like the budget and the procurements and make sure our slide in the executive weekly tells the story of our awesomeness.

I listen to their complaints, other folks' complaints, and smooth that stuff out so that people can get back to work. If they need longer to get something done, I make room in the schedule and get new agreements with our customers on the new scope or timeline. If another group is in our way or not keeping up with us, I get with that group's manager and hammer out something we can all work with.

I've always been a very good technical generalist, but not as deep in individual stacks to do all the work. I am, however, a people person. I'm a damn good listener, negotiator and diplomat, and a very good business relationship manager and paper-pusher. Sometimes it sucks. Sometimes I have to have very difficult conversations with others. It's all part of the job.

What is most certainly NOT part of the job is me doing the engineering work. I trust them to get it done. They trust me to get them the time and resources to do it.

Comment Re:... not sure what this really means ... (Score 1) 144

So, if I understand you, we just construct some kind of wrapper around it that can get hot and won't melt and just make steam? ... a wrapper with "... like diamond coating, with a boron flavor to it. :-_)" [from a physics blog I found with google] ... and treat it like a big super-duper-hot pile of burning coal? It doesn't seem very elegant, to my untrained eye. Ah well, it's for people smarter than me to figure out, I suppose. Thanks for helping me frame the question.

Comment Re:Snooping Programs a help (Score 1) 389

On the face of it, I agree with what you relate and I think you are correct. However, the value of the data isn't so much what is said, or who said it, but the relationships between the people that do the communications and learning how they know each other. So, none of the data needs to be especially meaningful in and of itself. Bad things will happen, but these records are (more likely than not) most valuable in sketching out who knows who, and who they have in common.

"The identical is equal to itself, since it is different." -- Franco Spisani

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