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Comment Go in the morning! (Score 1) 370

I still like the theater on one condition: I go to morning showings. I took a few hours off work and went to Episode VII the day after it was released at a 9:30 a.m. showing. It was me and about four other people in the theater. The evening and afternoon shows were sold out for at least a week solid. (No, I'm not interested in debating the merits of Episode VII. It was one of the rare films I just wanted to see right away.)

Eliminating the crowds eliminates 90% of the nuisances. And it's nice giving a film your full attention now and then, even if I only do it a few times a year.

Comment Re:Should Work The Opposite Way (Score 1) 82

You can get a decent pair of them for $30 or so. I have a pair that I wear at the shooting range. They are outstanding. The only downside is that if it's a windy day it can get pretty annoying with the wind noise in your ears. (more expensive pairs probably have solved this, but I'm cheap.)

Comment Re:Lifespan? (Score 1) 23

Hell, even if I have to buy a new couple $ MOF strip to slide into my phone every couple of months, the potential to have an on-demand, low cost, non-invasive, early stage lung cancer detector is huge!

My brother in-law, a competitive bicyclist who never smoked and rarely drank died of lung cancer at 33. He wasn't diagnosed until he was Stage 4 as it just seemed like a nasty cold or potentially a fungal infection.

Getting this technology to be widely available, cheap, and easy would potentially save 150,000+ lives a year just from early lung cancer detection



Comment Re: It has always been that way (Score 1) 181

This is where anti-trust laws kick in. The specific term in this case (BMW tires) would be Tying Products. Where the function of a product is tied to another product for which the manufacturer is the sole source provider. In the example given, if BMW were to put an artificial limitation on the tires (say an embedded RFID chip) that was required for the vehicle to function, and that no other tire manufacture were able to reproduce the RFID chip, then they would most assuredly wind up in court and likely losing or settling.


Comment Re:It has always been that way (Score 1) 181

Only that even if Apple applies the same rule (15-20% cut of subscription fees) to Apple developers, it means that Apple is still keeping 100% of the subscription fee.

They are directly competing, they have a monopoly over the eco system, and they are placing a burden on other players in the eco system that does not harm them.

It would sure appear as though they are on shaky ground here.

Comment This isn't a victory for Behring-Breivik. (Score 3, Insightful) 491

Someone once pointed out that hoping a rapist gets raped in prison isn't a victory for his victim(s), because it somehow gives him what he had coming to him, but it's actually a victory for rape and violence. I wish I could remember who said that, because they are right. The score doesn't go Rapist: 1 World: 1. It goes Rape: 2.

What this man did is unspeakable, and he absolutely deserves to spend the rest of his life in prison. If he needs to be kept away from other prisoners as a safety issue, there are ways to do that without keeping him in solitary confinement, which has been shown conclusively to be profoundly cruel and harmful.

Putting him in solitary confinement, as a punitive measure, is not a victory for the good people in the world. It's a victory for inhumane treatment of human beings. This ruling is, in my opinion, very good and very strong for human rights, *precisely* because it was brought by such a despicable and horrible person. It affirms that all of us have basic human rights, even the absolute worst of us on this planet.

Comment Re:How about... (Score 1) 281

Then you need to do more recruiting. If the corporation is more interested in meeting diversity targets, then you don't need to worry about qualifications; just go find someone and hire them for the job. I'm sure the cafeteria janitor can become a PM or developer.

I'd recommend actually working in a hiring management position prior to spouting off such nonsense.

The Corporation in this case, is the State, so we get held under a pretty hard magnifying glass when it comes to hiring practices.

The State has diversity statutes that deal with HOW we hire people, not WHO we hire. For example, FTEs must be interviewed by a panel that includes 3 people: 2 from management, 1 from the same/similar classification. Of those 3, at least 1 must be a woman and 1 must be a minority.

The point of that requirement is to minimize the impact of a racist line manager (which absolutely still exist).

The statutes don't say that I MUST hire a diverse team. I as a manger though, with experience in working in a homogenous white-bread young-middle aged dev shop where out of 80 developers we had 1 girl, 1 Indian, and nothing but white guys, feel that having a more diverse team creates a much better work environment.

Having a multi-cultural team of people who respect each other and each other's cultures has created great bonds within the team. Sure, it's a bit more challenging to get through the storming, but at the end of the day, I have a better team to show for it.

I would never hire someone for a position I did not feel they were more than capable of handling. I look for candidates that show not only the immediate skills I need, but the knowledge, ability, and desire to grow into what I'll need next year. And those people are all around, of all races, and of any gender.

So IF that cafeteria janitor has spent their nights completing their college degree, and has the cafeteria staff running like a well oiled machine with schedules, inventory management, new employee training, etc... then yeah, they might be the very person I'm looking for. But if they aren't looking to move into a PM role, and they aren't looking to expand their skillsets, then no, they would not likely be eligible for the position regardless of their race or gender.


Comment Re:How about... (Score 1) 281

Nope. My contractor group is about 35% H1B visa workers.

I work for the State, so we do not sponsor anyone for Visas, they have to work out sponsorship on their own. They must be legally able to work in the US, and that is vetted thoroughly. But by state statute, I am not allowed to ask or judge by their type of residence status, only that they are legal. I typically only find out that someone is on an H1B visa when elections come around and they volunteer the information, or they request a 2+ week absence to return to their home country to renew their visa.

For FTEs, since the state will not sponsor, all of them are legal residence, some of them are 1st or 2nd gen Americans, but they are all full citizens.

From the contractor side, it's rough. The problem we face is that IT unemployment in the metro area hovers around 1-2%, which means getting new local talent in is limited to poaching skilled employees, picking up layoffs/terminations, or getting college grads at the end of the school year. And as this is a State gig, we don't really have the money or benefits to poach :(

So yeah, when we post contractor positions, I'll get 70-100 resumes, and 90%+ of them are likely H1B visa workers.

So like I said, I can only work with what I get.


Comment Re:How about... (Score 0) 281

Maybe we should judge people not based on the color of their skin but on the content of their character?

Absolutely. But part of our social responsibility is to evaluate our ability to do so. So if we follow hiring practices that we believe allow us to hire based on only the candidate's performance, yet we find that our team's breakdown differs wildly from the local racial distribution, then we have a problem.

It means that either
A) Our hiring methodology is not unbiased and we are engaging in some for of racial or social profiling.
B) Society has a function of racial or social profiling that is skewing the labor pool.
C) The identified subgroups are in some way disadvantaged in the competition for the positions we fill.

If the problem is A, then it is something we need to resolve within our practices. It is something that is litigable. It is a risk to the organization. And it likely means that we have someone on the hiring process that is a complete douche nozzle.

If the problem is B, then we should be looking within our communities to see why the labor pool is being affected. Typically this is where we are going to start looking into disproportionate imprisonment of minorities, low income neighborhoods resulting in low income schools, with lower performance measures in graduation and college participation, racial real-estate problems. and so on...

If the problem is C, then it may be something that shouldn't be solve, or that takes a very specific approach to solve a portion of. For example, I'm not likely to get a significant middle eastern labor pool for a hog farm, I don't think that we as a society should force people to change their beliefs in order to achieve a perfectly balanced workforce. More likely to occur though, is hiring a project manager/analyst who speaks English as a second language. ESL devs I don't have a problem, as long as they can communicate well enough to handle requirements, testing, and reporting. But I need my project managers to be able to hand direct and sometimes tense discussions with senior management, business users, customers, etc... I need someone in that role who has an excellent grasp of the English language and the mannerisms in which people express themselves. Just as I worked with fluent Portuguese speaking PMs in Brazil, German speaking PMs in Germany, I look for English speaking PMs in the US. I have PMs who are ESL speakers, but they have studied and practiced extensive and have a great command over the language. But if I want to get more minority people into this career path, I'm going to need to drive for more ESL training to get non-native speakers to be able to perform at the levels we need.

So yeah, hiring in order to hit racial population % is only important if your hiring process is racist. But looking at racial % of labor to identify if you have a hiring problem, and what type of problem you have is an extremely valuable exercise.


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