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Comment Re:Just stop being sheep already. (Score 1) 283

This is what happens when your freshly minted MBAs get to run the shop. They think everyone with the same job title are interchangeable widgets. Newsflash: they're not!

The reality of software and services is sales runs are cyclical. When employees are widgets (like factory workers) the company hires them when the sales get hot, and they lay off when the sales go cold. However, with software and services you have other options that can smooth out those cyclical ebbing and flowing by making architectural decisions up front. By making decisions, like allowing on line automated upgrades, payments, and the like you can avoid the jarring changes to personnel - while allowing for real structural growth for long term hires instead.

Comment Every Good Job I Got Was Through Friends (Score 1) 283

If you want to be successful at getting your foot in the door of a traditional company - try talking about your desire to find a job with your friends and family. With luck and the right contacts you can get in by someone inside vouching for you.

The very first adult job I acquired out of high school was working in a lamp store (lamp repairs and lamp creation from parts, heavy lifting and unboxing and boxing for delivery, lamp installation for display in store, sales and register, and cleanup). I got the job through my girlfriend at the time, who's parent's CPA worked for the owner who just so happened to be opening a new store. I got the job the day of the interview because they all vouched for me.

My current job (career - 20+ years on the job) was through a college friend who already worked at the company. I had the right skill set they needed, at the right time - they were scaling their operations, and he vouched for me - which gave me added points over my competition. This all through a short conversation I had with him about my need to find a job (the student loans and credit cards were maxed out and I was worried about how to make the next month's payments).

In some ways, I think if you are open to it and can communicate with others, the universe will provide. And don't get me wrong, there were times when I had to take the burger flipping type jobs in a pinch - but I always saw those things as stepping stones to something better. It's all about your attitude regardless of the slings and arrows of misfortune thrown your way.

Comment This is the lesson if Google buys your company... (Score 1) 283

If Google buys your company - take a cash buy-out. Once Google owns your technology - they are going to do with it what they want to anyway. No use you hanging around for that.

Do not stay on-board because you have better things to do - like start your next business, retire to a sailboat in the Caribbean, or pursue other interests (do you like to write? Write a book and put it up on Kindle.) People put so many limits on themselves; they really need to expand their comfort zone.

As for Age Discrimination: that is real and should be dealt with if found in a company. Hypocritical for a company that supposedly supports diversity. Everyone should be interested in combating this because we are all going to get old one day, assuming we don't die first.

Comment Let the magic smoke out... (Score 1) 178

From the article: "...the chips are biologically safe..."

I guess it all depends on your definition of 'biologically safe.' I bet it wouldn't be very safe if the chip were to get an overloaded electromagnetic pulse at its operating frequency. Gives DOS attack a new meaning.

On a positive note, it might get hot enough to cauterize the area around it thus preventing infection.

Comment Re: Not a problem at all (Score 1) 1149

...individuals are ultimately responsible for their own actions....

You hit the nail on the head there - people should be judged on their actions (or to steal better words from MLK, "the content of their character"), rather than the color of their skin, or their affiliations.

This is a key point in the political context: think about it, if we all walked in lock step with the party line at the exclusion of all other ideas (for those of us who associate with a political party) there would be no opportunity for change, negotiation, or reconciliation for the population at large. Diversity is critical to the functioning of our American government, regardless of your political bent.

Comment Re: Should have listened (Score 1) 1149

In the 1900s (and earlier) people came here to work hard and succeed. While that still exists in many cases, in others we have people looking for handouts or looking to do harm because of their hatred for the US. Immigration isn't a simple topic and today's world doesn't make it simpler, not for the US anymore than for Europe.

I call BS on that. Have you ever heard of the "Sacco and Vanzetti" case?

Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti were Italian-born American anarchists who were convicted of murdering a guard and a paymaster during the April 15, 1920 armed robbery of the Slater and Morrill Shoe Company in South Braintree, Massachusetts, United States. They were executed in the electric chair seven years later at Charlestown State Prison. Both men adhered to an anarchist movement that advocated relentless warfare against what they perceived as a violent and oppressive government.

Or, the Wall Street Bombing of 1020?

The Wall Street bombing occurred at 12:01 pm on September 16, 1920, in the Financial District of Manhattan, New York City. The blast killed 30 people immediately, and another eight died later of wounds sustained in the blast. There were 143 seriously injured, and the total number of injured was in the hundreds.[1]:160–61 The bombing was never solved, although investigators and historians believe the Wall Street bombing was carried out by Galleanists (Italian anarchists), a group responsible for a series of bombings the previous year. The attack was related to postwar social unrest, labor struggles, and anti-capitalist agitation in the United States.

... and others:

The Los Angeles Times bombing was the purposeful dynamiting of the Los Angeles Times building in Los Angeles, California, on October 1, 1910 by a union member belonging to the International Association of Bridge and Structural Iron Workers. The explosion started a fire which killed 21 newspaper employees and injured 100 more. It was termed the "crime of the century" by the Times. Brothers John J. ("J.J.") and James B. ("J.B.") McNamara were arrested in April 1911 for the bombing. Their trial became a cause célèbre for the American labor movement. J.B. admitted to setting the explosive, and was convicted and sentenced to life in prison. J.J. was sentenced to 15 years in prison for bombing a local iron manufacturing plant, and returned to the Iron Workers union as an organizer.

Comment Re: Should have listened (Score 1) 1149

Ya cause in the 1900's they were treated fairly

No they weren't -- the reason we have all of these European ethnic groups associated with a 'white' race is to dissociate themselves with their immigrant status and heritage - precisely because they were being discriminated against.

The bigger irony to this story, is these same people who have immigrant backgrounds (and that would be all European Americans) turn around and discriminate against new immigrants.

Comment Re:Dropping Out of Social Media (Score 1) 190

...Now it seems that everyone must not only tell you where they stand on issues, but they have to tell you why you're wrong for not taking the same stance. Day after day with the smug condescending memes, fake news pieces from whacked out websites, pointless hoaxes that Snopes debunked years ago ad nausem. After a while it just gets on your nerves and you either join them, drop out, or go insane. ...

What you are describing is really the propaganda battle in a cultural war that the Liberals didn't know existed before Trump was elected into office, and the mainstream Conservatives, while aware, didn't realize how hard it would turn on them and bite them in the butt. This war has been going on a long time: e.g. Powell Memorandum in 1971, and if you count the white nationalism/supremacy part of this - it goes back to colonial times and the advent of slavery. Trump spoke to these people and his win has emboldened them even more than before. They have mastered the tools of social media, and will try to destroy you if you do not align with their world view.

Comment Personalized Web Crawler... (Score 1) 325

Back in the day we were used to time-shifting our collection of information, and the viewing of information. This was accomplished on BBSs - such as FIDONET - by up and down loading content for later viewing with offline viewers. You would just set up some automation to run during off times (while you were asleep for example). Back in those days -- even as slow as things were, your time didn't seem to be wasted as much as today.

I don't have a bad connection - I stream videos no problem - so I can only assume the problem is the advertising cruft layered on top. As a result, I'm in the early stages of putting together a web crawler of my own...basically I go to the same sites day after day -- so most of what I read comes from the same sources - so why not crawl those sites and draw down what I want to read at my leisure? I can also automagically separate the multimedia from the text, and deal with that as I want to - rather than how a standard browser decides to do for you.

Website owners and ad people have gotten lazy - and disrespectful of users; time to claim back our time.

Comment Re: Doing it wrong? (Score 1) 600

I think the real issue here is 'access to' versus 'elimination'.

If you are your own boss, or you are a hobbyist, then this question is irrelevant. You can and should have access to every capability - it is up to you to manage based upon your own capabilities.

In a business with a gaggle of programmers that is evolving over time, it is a different story. In that situation, you have developers of all different skill levels potentially, coming into and leaving the business if you are growing, and you have to take into consideration the risks associated with allowing poor code to impact your paying customers. In that case, I think it would make sense to create access limits for different programmers based upon their skill levels and areas of responsibility. You could also cross train and provide options for people without this access to prove they can be trusted to get higher level access to more of the 'shoot yourself in the foot' tools/constructs - which would expand your cadre without risking your business in the process.

Comment Re: Doing it wrong? (Score 1) 600

It's not a simple as that. If you are on a team of developers who are building applications on top of clearly defined APIs, all the heavy lifting from a systems perspective should already be done for you. This is to ensure the company doesn't end up with 15 different versions of the same code in each release that needs to be maintained in the future. I think mostly it comes down to the bottom line: a business doesn't want to spend money on building the same library over and over again.

There are instances when low level systems programming is needed, and whoever is assigned that task should have the freedom to do what is needed to ensure the systems provided can perform at the desired level and provided whatever is necessary for security and so on. There is nothing canned that can do that, so you better have your best developers on that given the potential impacts to your customers and therefore to your bottom line.

If you work for yourself - then do what you want since you're calling the shots.

Policy choice is relative to your business risk/exposure. Ultimately whatever you choose to do with your own programming (if you work for yourself or you're just a hobbyist) will be proved out by your clients/users when they use (break) your software and systems. On the other hand, if you work for someone else as an employee, then you are bound to follow their rules, regardless of your views. You can try to change it, or you can find another job elsewhere.

It's not simply a matter of these things being beyond anyone's ability, but it is also true that there are different levels of skills and experience that exist in a business environment. A good choice would be to partner your systems developer with your brightest applications developer to cross pollinate. Unfortunately, my experience also suggests that many companies don't do a good job of mentoring and growing talent within the company. People get assigned to silos and languish unless explicitly transfered to the group with a different focus. It really comes down to the philosophy of your employer.

Comment Arrogant maybe? (Score 1) 229

At first, when I read the title I thought to myself, "how arrogant." What about people who are primarily verbal - and don't do math, or don't care to do math? Are they not equally fulfilled in their lives? How rich - a scientist who makes sweeping generalizations in a scientific journal.

If he had prefaced it with, "I have observed in some people that...blah blah blah," then yeah, that would be defensible.

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