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Comment Major Cities Anyone? (Score 3, Interesting) 361

A discussion on salary isn't complete without also discussing the location of these immigrant workers.

Hint: They're always in major cities. National averages don't mean a damn thing when your local supermarket pays more for a meat department employee than your "average H1-B". Why do people see 50-something salary nowadays and think that is par? This is an engineering profession. Even the least skilled should be doing better than a teacher's or a cop's salary.

50k was good...25-30 years ago.

Comment Re:Practicality? (Score 1) 230

You say the idea of being aborted doesn't bother you. On some level you are speaking truthfully, but let us be more specific. That level is, to be exact, the surface level.

Quite the opposite. My views come from countless hours of meditation. It is truly freeing and humbling and sometimes frightening to look inside that far, but anyone can do it. It just takes some courage. Life isn't perfect, and neither is that. I have a picture of my last grave on my phone :D

If you claim none of this bothers you, well, I call shenanigans. In that case you are just too sophisticated to understand who you really are and too refined in your pursuit of approval from a blurred assortment of individuals (the deceit of which is called "society").

Approval? My thinking in this scenario is to make the tough decisions now, so that tomorrow is a better day. I'm never said making these kinds decisions are easy or straightforward, I'm just saying these things just don't cause the kind of deep pain you seem to think it does. Not to a path that hasn't even started. Maybe to the would-be parents, if they let themselves feel guilty.

This surgeon has reduced your life to the value of sparing someone -not from the pain of having headaches, but from the pain of having to get off the couch to take some aspirin.

Close to what I'm saying, but three clarifications would make this more clear:

I'm saying that we've come a long way as a society, with aspirin and cheap food as an example, and if we decide as a whole that this couldn't possibly have any dark implications for the future (reverse evolution) and don't do anything to avoid that, then we're going to get exactly that.

I'm also saying that "people" != "bodies". You're a spiritual person, so I'm sure you're acquainted with this idea.

Most importantly, it is totally different to lose your earthly anchor when you don't have a rope to it yet, then to, say, have a surgeon come for you in your prime years. If that doesn't seem intuitive yet, than just trust me on that, it is not a big deal.

I know this is a painful and personal issue for some, and maybe you have some regrets there, but this is unnecessary. Life is a gift. It can be taken away by anything, but it can be given at any time as well. If you abort one, and then have another later, it could very well be the same child, though it may look a bit different, have a different set of challenges, but such is a life.

That person, deep down underneath your comments here is the real you, the you I believe in. Whoever else you summon to respond is a murderer, and I will expose them as such.

What I'm talking about is a wholly different kind of compassion. One that assumes that, somehow, there is more to us than just a wad of flesh. Actually, that the wad of flesh doesn't matter that much. Yes, when you're self-aware, how your life goes down definitely matters. And I would agree that 5 months into a pregnancy is pushing it, since there is certainly some awareness there. But prior to that, why would it matter?

When I say the idea of my own abortion doesn't bother me, I'm saying I'd be fine with another, different life. And I'd be living it pretty much the same way, so it really doesn't make a huge difference in the big scheme of things. Unless some horrible deformity or disease got in the way, then I wouldn't necessarily be able to live life how I'd want to.

Its going to happen to you too, eventually. We all die. And when you come back, maybe you'll have to deal with a life sentence of disease or deformity of some kind. I hope for your sake you'd be one of my sons or daughters, because you wouldn't need to deal with that possibility (within the testing ability of modern medical science, of course), and if there was a problem, the abortion would happen at 5-6 weeks (been there, done that). No possibility of suffering whatsoever. Furthermore, I'd hope you'd do the same for me.

Comment Re:Practicality? (Score 1) 230

Hypocrite! How would you feel about someone throwing you out and replacing you?

Why are you ashamed? I think you're seeing the jaded outgassing of something deeper, and taking it the wrong way.

I'm not a hypocrite. The idea that I could have been aborted doesn't bother me. A life, any life, is what you make it. I'll share my reasons for this view:

I don't subscribe to this "one life" concept as being a genuinely spiritually valid viewpoint. Twins have different personalities for a reason, and here's a hint: it's not genetics!

Perhaps a lesson is in order: Before you are born you are not attached to that life. As you get older you get attached, and then you reach a certain point in adulthood where you get less attached at time goes on. The young adult years are the most vulnerable. When you get to old age, you more or less are used to the idea of moving on.

The next time you meet or hear about someone who isn't at home in their own skin, like a transsexual, think about what that really means. Consider you might have a person who maybe attached to some other life that they were enjoying, which ended abruptly. Maybe even you have quirks like this. It is certainly worth exploring.

That is precisely why abortion is humane, and "getting rid of stroke victims" isn't. No attachments. A blank slate is a blank slate.

I'm concerned for the long term viability of humanity because I'd like to keep living this life and many more, so to speak. One thing history proves is that society does not last forever, and medicine always goes with it. I happen to believe that our current basic iteration of society will be around a very long time before we would hit our next "dark age", long enough to evolve the entire human race into medical dependency if we go down the wrong path. Once society disappears, then what?

You may not agree with my rather game-like view of life, where "people" come from the soul, and coming back to live another life is a default, and everything is basically cyclical. But I challenge you to define it in a better way, that doesn't subjugate intuition with rote.

In the mean time, while you're figuring that out in your own way, I'll go my way and carve a cleaner, clearer path to future generations by being picky. And I won't force any of my children to live trivial lives defined by degrading, meaningless obstacles simply because I didn't make the effort to be informed or just couldn't make the tough decisions.

Because I'm well aware that how things look and feel from the outside can have no correlation with the amount of struggling going on within. I don't put any currency in how people feel about someone else's situation, because they'll think rather ignorant things like "humanity got along just FINE for thousands of years" when in fact reality was just a little bit more sinister, even if you just look at the tiniest details, like how we can just take an aspirin when we have a headache, or how an hour's wages, even at the lowliest occupation, will buy a fully prepared meat dinner.

That old, suffering world isn't quite dead yet, but we are making great progress, and we're almost there. And almost doesn't mean its time to get all soft and emotional, and cave in to the forces of darkness and randomness just so we can avoid feeling responsible for the world, and blaming it all on elitist programmers.

Comment Re:Practicality? (Score 5, Interesting) 230

Well, if you'll put on your cyncial hat, the in-utero treatment you wish for already exists:


Some of these treatments coming out really make me worry for the future. Random mutations make their way in a consistent fashion into the human gene pool, and stuff like this prevents them from being filtered out. As cool as this would be *now*, given enough generations these mutations will disburse (ever wonder why so many people have blue eyes?) and eventually the entire human race becomes diseased and enslaved to these treatments.

I mean, come on...if you subsidize something, you get more of it. if it isn't strong and healthy, throw it out and pump out a new one. Its not like we're suffering a worldwide shortage of semen at the moment!

And before I hear one more sob story about how great "X" family member was and how they had the disease, let me remind you that our tax dollars are subsidizing the situation (many many times more than a regular child for special needs care)...yes, people feel the warm fuzzies when they encounter a less capable people who deals with their situation in a positive fashion, but that doesn't make it right, or proper.

I don't know, am I just too cynical? I think at a certain point you're gonna get a test result back and either you do the right thing, or you elect to have a human pet that is a drain on society (but nice for you). I think that stinks. Look around, we're already busting at the seams because there is less and less meaningful work for someone who falls below a certain point on the bell curve, and its getting worse as time goes on.

Comment Re:what? (Score 1) 376

NT 3.51 was stable? Yeah, until you installed an update or a service pack, then it would blue screen. Or until you tried to move the machine, then it would blue screen. Or until you connected it to your Arcnet network, then it would blue screen. Or you ran heavy machinery around it, then it would blue screen. Or until you dusted off the case, then it would blue screen. Or until you tilted the monitor, then it would blue screen. Or if you plugged a shop light into an outlet on the same breaker, then it would blue screen. Or until you sneezed, then it would blue screen. Or if you were walking around the machine with hard sole shoes that made sounds when you walked, then it would blue screen. Or if a house fly got near the case, then it would blue screen.Or...

Yeah, like every other piece of Microsoft software at the time it was developed and tested in a clean room walled off from background radiation with 5 feet of lead-studded concrete, and with 5-nines cherry-picked hardware provided by the mfg. Why else do you think that all of a sudden ECC memory was a requirement for all servers regardless of whether it was a financial. Put it in a production environment? HAHAHA. No.

I don't think NT 3.51 was stable, but I do think memories tend to get rose-tinted over time.

Comment Re:Maybe its the HARDWARE (Score 0) 164

Cue the Republitard-creationist onslaught of "this is proof of heaven" in 5..4..3...

It's official, Voyager has hit the map boundary and is hitting the clipping wall! The Matrix is real!

She'll need cheat codes to go any further, but what is the point? There's just an endless free fall void out there! Well, maybe it'll find some unfinished part of the map that got abandoned. That would be cool.

I'm sure religion will find a way to deal. Talking in vague code is humanity's best available toolset to make our limited reasoning seem more important and profound. Like how the pain of labor was caused by an Apple "of sin", even though everyone knows how much the glans resembles an apple...no that's just too obvious and mundane of an explanation....next up, Lolordz CREATED the heavan and the earth, and failed to mention the other tinkering going on. But he didst so because it was not our place in the house of the Lolordz.

Comment Re:$130k a year?! (Score 1) 144

You clearly have not worked for any amount of time on minimum wage.

It is certainly possible. I did it for years. The main elements of survival:

  1. Population density is your friend. That means roommates sharing the rent and utility load, preferably ones making the same wage as you so you're on the same page and skip things like cable TV.
  2. Dry goods: rice, beans, legumes, pasta. This stuff makes prepackaged ramen look expensive. Pay attention to flyers and focus on things that are buy one get one free, and bring coupons. Oh and splurge on a multivitamin supplement so you don't lose your sanity.(cut the pills into thirds otherwise you'll just pee it out)
  3. Never exceed 2000 RPM while driving. You can double the estimated gas mileage of the car. Oh and follow Youtube videos to perform car repairs...your car maintenance costs will drop by 90%. Or just forgo owning a car if humanly possible...they're a huge money sink.
  4. Go to bed early. Bad decisions (financial or otherwise) become a thing of the past since 99% those are usually done after 8 PM, and you can't make them if you're sleeping.
  5. Take classes if you don't have the degree. When you're dirt poor and collecting the Pell grant you're basically getting paid to go to college.
  6. Buying things new is not only stupid, but financial suicide. Plenty of perfectly fine furniture, appliances, and clothes can be found at garage sales. If you're taking classes like suggested above, make friends with foreign students. They'll be jettisoning all their stuff when they leave for home.
  7. If you have (or can beg, borrow, or steal) anything metal, take it to a recycling specialist. This can net you a nice bonus. A dead grill, washing machine, large printer, etc can be worth $50. A junk car can be worth $500+.
  8. Avoid the opposite sex. Much like a car these are a huge money sink. If you meet one, use coupons on the first date. If they're attracted to your thrift you've got a keeper.
  9. Obtain as many credit cards as you can. Then load them up and forget about them. You'll get sued by junk debt buyers eventually, but all you have to do is write a basic answer and show up in court with a halfway convincing motion. They only want to settle. If you grow some stones and refuse to settle and say you would rather go in front of the judge they'll usually just voluntarily dismiss (these guys don't have any stones). So not only are you getting a piece of all the damn money printing going on, you're also freeing money from the debt slavery machine through default (right now almost all money is tied to a bank loan or a fed loan...the only freedom from this can be default).
  10. Get fit and stay fit. This opens up so many doors it boggles the mind. It is hard to climb any kind of ladder, corporate or otherwise, when you're obese.

Comment Re:Sad, but true (Score 2, Insightful) 237

Haha, depends on where you are at I guess. Maybe you need to move? Or just save some of what my grandfather liked to call "fuck you" money. Enough so that at any time you can tell your boss "fuck you" and you go find another job. Otherwise you'll just get bullied by your boss forever.

Anyway, more on topic, I hear there is a shortage of talent in the Bay Area. Although...since there are only so many LGBT software engineers who are good, software engineers who are good but who don't understand cost-of-living, single and straight software engineers that are good but don't understand that California girls are trained from birth to be cocaine-snorting psychotic leeches who will rob you blind (true story), etc.

Eventually you will see companies discover that they could move to tech hubs in places like Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Missouri, Arkansas, etc...and have far less trouble finding qualified people (although like anywhere else you still have to weed through the dunces) because these are places a normal, non-fucked-up person who is missing some critical piece of their logical reasoning would actually consider living. So some companies will move. And while the average income would decrease every time that happens, the quality of life would increase quite a bit.

You might disagree with me for hating on the Bay Area, but I doubt there is anything anyone could possibly say to change my mind, and there are a ton of people who think the same way :D You just can't live a normal life in a place like that. Otherwise there wouldn't be a shortage there, because I hear the scenery is nice and the weather is great...

Another move is that I'm seeing it is popular to move into consulting (especially baby boomers)....so their entire incomes wouldn't necessarily show up on "salary" averages. A savvy consultant will "pay" himself as little salary as possible to avoid donating good money to the bottomless pit of the IRS.

No, things are on the uptick. The smart engineers are collectively getting smarter. The dumb ones are are getting screwed, but that story hasn't exactly changed in the past decades. There was a small blip in the late 90's where any idiot could put on a software engineer hat and make money, and those same idiots have been camping out in the industry like fat squirrels around an empty bird feeder. Eventually they'll go away. :D

Comment Re:Yeah, but $54 for a USB Wifi? (Score 1) 85

Srsly. Since when does a piddly $54 scare away a bona fide nerd. Having tools like this around when you have an epiphany on the crapper is priceless. I mean, come on, any of you could wipe your ass with $54 and still have plenty where that came from...

Ohhh...wait....I just realized something

::cue Willy Wonka meme face::

some of them think playing D&D and working at Burger King makes them nerds...how adorable

Comment Re:Do Canadian credit cards for sub $10? (Score 1) 248

Here's why...

Let's give a generous 5 cent discount, and let's say we drove in on fumes in a mammoth F-350 Super Duty with a 35 gallon gas tank.

35 * $3.55 = $124.25

35 * $3.50 = $122.50

Yield: $2.25

Meh...to make matters worse, my local bank branch is about 8 miles away round trip. If I were to drive there first to get cash..(1/20MPG) * 8 miles * 3.50 dollars/gal = $1.40

Adjusted Yield: $2.25 - $1.40 = $0.85

That adds up to about how much change I lose a week when I do carry cash.

That being said, I go out of my way to pay cash at local small businesses, and when I tip. Its just a courteous thing to do. And if you're a hard nosed bastard, those people probably own homes near yours, and if they go under they foreclose on their home, home values go down, and then the urban gentlemen start moving in. Before you know it, babies of a most peculiar character start coming out of your now drug-addled daughters...

You can't really argue the economics of using cash vs charge, since the banks have really done their math here and have made parity for the way most people live their lives. Using cash isn't practical, but it is the "right" thing to do.

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