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Comment VocTech is the future. (Score 1) 415

IT going forward doesn't need a dozen people with BS degrees. When you're building a house you only need so many civil engineers and architects. At some point you need a fleet of plumbers, electricians and general contractors. Some people insist that a BS is required so management finds the cheapest BS they can. For 10% of my job I would love to hire a 17-18 year old apprentice and just train them in the hands on tools.

I don't need a BS. I don't need an Indian. I just need someone thirsty and willing to learn. I was lucky enough to have an engineering 'apprenticeship' at 16 and it influenced the rest of my career. It was hands on "do this" style learning, exactly how you see journeymen training apprentices.

There will always be a need for advanced degrees but the ratio of degreed:apprenticed needs to change. Doctors have moved to train physician assistants, RNs, and a host of other positions to do most of their job so they can concentrate on what they were trained to do.

If you're a manager looking for 'cheap labor' start talking to the local voctech high schools. Factor in rework and communication 'costs' and pay them well for their age. You'll come out loads ahead. They'll have relevant job experience for the future and you'll have cheap labor. If you have someone set to retire in 5 years just have the 16 year olds shadow them and do any work that they can.

You'll have 'cheap' labor that knows your system inside and out and you can pick the best to hire after HS. It's how all of the CNC and tool and die shops in my area do it. Kids wrap up highschool and get hands on training in something they're interested in. After HS the CNC shops have 18-19 year olds that are getting paid well for their age with no debt.

Comment Wrong, it's easy. (Score 2) 180

Right now there's a pretty easy to switch. Both our Alexa and Google Home have different ... 'levels of education'. The Echo is a bare bones dumb box that can do a few basic things. Google is much better at finding arbitrary search results. It's like confusing 2 co-workers because they happen to both speak English.

For the corporate environment there are going to be internally hosted solutions. University of Michigan has http://lucida.ai/, it started as a PhD project and entirely self hosted. We still host all of our Git servers behind corporate firewalls, we're not going to be sending voice data out to the Big 3. (Google, Apple, Amazon) any time soon.

Comment Re:A Noble Idea (Score 1) 66

There is no equivalent of "the guy who solders my boards".

There absolutely is. My local voctech high school is training them.

You want a 16 year old kid to create your Makefiles? Fuck that.

Why not? Make is probably the first thing that I'd teach them. It drives everything else.

You want a 16 year old kid to grok your network?

Why not? I was about that age when I got into our school's network. Our IT admin went with 'security through obscurity'. You just had to enter your own proxy server. And at the library I found out that I could check my mail and log into IRC from the 'telnet only' card catalog machines.

you are good at doing that level of tedious stuff, you are worth a lot of money..

Not really.

it's almost certain that they are, at best, a cheap prototype vehicle.

Yeah. And if they didn't exist your 'cheap prototype' would still be done by the lowest paid engineer and still need to get done. That's exactly how they should be used, cheap idea and protoype generators.

We've already seen it. It's called offshoring.

Offshoring has an entire different set of problems. It has everything to do with communication. There were times I had enough trouble communicating my idea to peers with advanced degrees in the same location. They were brilliant but had ESL and so there was a communications gap. And that's with people I knew were competent.

I've seen it take a week just to convey a simple thought of what what needed. It's something I could have gotten across to a 16 year old standing next to me in a few minutes. I would absolutely hire a dozen people that went through a Python bootcamp to do work. I only ask that they have the same native language as myself and that I can talk to them in person at least once a week. Beyond that I don't have any need for a BS graduate.

Comment Re: A Noble Idea (Score 1) 66

think you need "digital laborers" to make copies of the finished product.

I don't "need" them. They'd just make my job a lot easier and produce higher quality content than what we're getting out of India.

You should be constantly handing your work off to someone else so you can focus on the next thing. If you're just a peon turning a crank you are going to get replaced.

Comment Re:A Noble Idea (Score 4, Interesting) 66

There are lost of qualified IT professionals that are getting passed over.

Because I don't need and IT professional. CS and IT hasn't had shift towards the trades that all other degrees have had for a while.

When you're building a house you only need so many civil engineers and architects. At some point you need a fleet of plumbers, electricians and general contractors. That's where the engineering and IT work is at my company. Right now people are trying to cut the corner by outsourcing and it's having predictable results.

I don't need a BS CS major. I don't even need a AS. I want a 16 year old that is eager to be in "IT" and I can converse with in English. That's it. I would hire a dozen if my manager would allow it but we're stuck outsourcing to India for the time being.

IT and CS need to come to a realization that part of your job does not need a college education. It needs the skill sets that can be learned in 10-16 week vocational tech training. Every single other industry has a stake in that space but for some reason CS majors insist that the entirety of their job must be done by people with a CS degree.

Hell I would hire someone that could grok Python and just write documentation. I don't even need them to understand it. Turn my trash into perfectly valid Google Style documentation. That would take a huge weight off of my shoulders and improve code around the company. Maybe they might pick up some Python on the way. That's the sort of work that tradesmen give to the grunt apprentices. Doctors have moved to train physician assistants, RNs, and a host of other positions to do most of their job so they can concentrate on what they were trained to do.

As long as the gray beards insist that the only people that can replace them have BS degrees then the company will find the cheapest "BS" degree they can and hire them. Mechanical engineers have had mechanical engineering technologists for a while and they're amazing. It would take me twice as long to do something they do and it would be half as good. It doesn't mean I don't have a job it means I get to concentrate on the engineering.

If you want to see CS and IT shift back to the US then you need to sell your manager on hiring 16 year olds to do your tedious work so that you can concentrate on the hard bits of it. And when those hard bits become the tedious bits, train them and move on. Rinse and repeat. If you're a manager looking for 'cheap labor' start talking to the local voctech high schools. Factor in rework and communication 'costs' and pay them well for their age. You'll come out loads ahead. They'll have relevant job experience for the future and you'll have cheap labor. If you have someone set to retire in 5 years just have the 16 year olds shadow them and do any work that they can.

Comment Tools are tools. (Score 4, Insightful) 202

Remember when computers, CAD, compilers, Simulink, linkers, etc all replaced Engineers?

They replaced the job an engineer did before the time they were invented, it just means Engineers learned to use them and move on. I couldn't imagine trying to write a modern controller / plant model in pure assembly. I can have one done in an hour with Simulink. It just means that I can do that much more.

Scotty's still an engineer even if he doesn't have to do the 'boring tedious' work that we have to do now.

Same shift has happened in the medical field. Doctors of the 1950s have been replaced by physician assistants, registered nurses, and a whole host of other careers. It just means that the title of "doctor" moved on to doing other work.

AI proponents better deliver on their threats. I have way too much work to do and my boss and labor laws won't let me hire 1,000 interns to do a bulk of it.

Comment Re:So wrong (Score 1) 296

No, it's closer to saying everyone needs to learn to type.

I'm a magician to my fellow Mechanical engineers because I know some Regex. Nothing fancy. No massive libraries just a simple tool to change some data. In the future if you don't have a minimum level of competency in typ^H^H^H programming of some sort you'll be near useless.

How many engineers these days will get hired saying they can't type? It'll be that way in 20 years if not sooner.

Comment Re:Error handling and robustness? (Score 1) 175

ASIL-D. ISO 26262. IEC 61508.

If you live in the automotive space you're used to all of this by now. If this is what Nvidia is targeting then Nvidia has taken that into account.

Every ASIL-D chip I'm aware of does exactly what you think it should. End to end ECC and lock step cores.

Comment Rule of Generation (Score 1) 397

Developers should avoid writing code by hand and instead write abstract high-level programs that generate code. This rule aims to reduce human errors and save time.

Which is why we've been abstracting away the hard bits for a while now. We're not manually flipping in digits. We made punch cards, automated punch cards, compilers, and higher level languages.

I couldn't imagine doing non-linear control algorithms with C or assembly. Did simple PIDs in college, understand how to do it and just let Simulink write the DO-178C and MISRA 2012 code for me. It's already certified for critical code.

It's also easy to build a plant model to unit test against and add in SIL/MIL/HIL level testing. I let Windriver and other compilers handle the assembly generation. Again, they're already tested and certified.

"100001010011" and "000010011110"

Great guys.

Comment Re:Let me guess (Score 1) 397

Every decade some non-programmer discovers visual programming and says we are all going to be creating programs by dragging blocks around.

I've been using the same one for the last decade. They're great. What is your issue with them? Or if you have a problem with them do you also have a problem with compilers?

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