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Comment Re:Logical failures (Score 1) 619

There's entire segments of code that are usually obsolete or do nothing... worse yet, silently fail; users just get tired of reporting bugs and find their own workarounds,

This. I've had to completely rewrite code like this that performed dismally, and was shocked when I saw how deep the crap was. It was obviously just a shit-throwing exercise, and when the wall was full, they shipped it. I've also had the joy of managing offshore groups, only to learn that the team had no experience with the product they were hired to code/test. Where I come from, that's called criminal fraud. Yet the shit keeps flowing...

One particularly memorable episode was an offshore team hired to write some integration code. After 4 months of silence (except for billing, of course), we finally dragged them into a demo session...which lasted about 5 minutes, ending with their team arguing heatedly with each other in Hindi, because they obviously hadn't done more than hacked a "hello world" app during their 4 billed months. Suffice to say lawsuits soon followed.

But that also raises a question I've pondered for awhile: why isn't there more news about the lawsuits against these "firms" ? I've personally witnessed several, yet I don't recall hearing anything similar in the news (tech or otherwise). Do these outfits just suck it up and settle silently, with the plaintiffs keeping silent as well, to cover their arses ?

Comment Re:More proof (Score 1) 415

More proof of systemic racism: even though the white recruiters ...

Um, why do you think the recruiters were white ? A quick scan of job posts on DICE/etc. that include a recruiter's name would lead one to believe many (esp in SillyCon Valley) are Indian (which may also be relevant to diversity issues due to racial/cultural biases).

Comment Re:This improvement a plus (Score 1) 83

Hmmm, if so, then there are probably at least 6 other RDBMS's - mostly owned by deep pocket corps, and actually based on Pg - that ORCL could sue and actually hope to collect a check. Given Pg's open source nature, suing them would at best remove the code, but not contribute a single dime for that new dock on Larry's island.

Comment Re:Define reasonable (Score 2) 602

Actually, I think its better than that.

(IANAL, but have negotiated numerous consulting contracts) Most contracts require fairly explicit language to be enforceable. "Reasonably available" == "meaningless" as far as a contract is concerned. If someone declined to cooperate with Suntrust's definition of "reasonable", Suntrust now has to decide if its worth their legal teams' time/money to pursue legal action. My guess is they'd threaten, then disappear. And if it was really urgent, they'd start discussions for a consulting contract. As stupid and draconian as their contract may be, they are in the business of finance, and know that money talks, and bullshit walks.

Frankly, I'm surprised their legal team even put that in the contract. Probably some AVP forced it in over legal's objections.

Comment Re:Too early to ask - wait a few days (Score 2) 283

Actually, wrt to Samsung, no need to wait. They just released the S2 tablets. Very thin/light, doesn't seem to be as infected with the usual Samsung bloatware (tho the floor model I played with did show some unsightly bloatware warts). Nice Super AMOLED screen. Camera seems a bit dated, but I don't use tablet cameras anyway. But it is a bit out of the OP's price range. ($400 for the 8 inch, $500 for the 9.7 inch)

I share the OP's pain: have an old-ish Nook HD I picked up cheap when they cleared them out. Great screen, but mostly an abandoned product that's very underpowered for all the junk websites shove down the pipe these days. I tried to sideload "real" Android on it, but it was too flaky to rely on. I'm not a fan of iOS (not Apple hate, just personal preference), so the new iPads aren't too interesting to me. I'm not a Samsung fanboy, but they seem to deliver pretty good product for a reasonable price (tho their last generation tablets had some issues).

I just need to convince myself to pry open the wallet about $500 wide...

Comment Re:Amazon's Self-Reinforcing Decline in Hires (Score 1) 396

Actually, their problem extends beyond the bad reputation; its a bit of a self perpetuating cycle.

They've erected significant barriers in the interview process to avoid hiring lower performers, but they have a pretty high turnover. As a result, I suspect that they're grossly understaffed (a manager as much as admitted it when I interviewed there a couple years ago). So if you manage to navigate the hiring gauntlet, you're setting yourself up for long hours and high stress. Pay is pretty good (tho not particularly better than their SillyCon Valley peers), but its pretty well known that most people don't last more than 2 years.

Hard to imagine why high-demand IT people would choose to work there, but it does seem to have a lot of cachet in Seattle. Bottomline: Its not a place to build a career, especially if you also want a home and family.

Comment Re:Good luck with that (Score 1) 190

While your analysis is very much spot on, you've missed the biggest barrier to moving off of Oracle. In many instances, those Oracle instances (and the various Oracle or Oracle-partnered apps running on them) are guarded and tended by Oracle consultants. And an Oracle consultant's primary job is to own and control the client's management.

In the distant past, I worked at a major aerospace firm that was trying to move away from Oracle (due to the inability to provide analytics on very large data volumes). Problem was, the managers were essentially owned by the Oracle consultants. Any technical question about the new implementation had to be vetted by the Oracle consultants - who, of course, went to great lengths to exaggerate any possible issues, and would even fabricate fictitious issues, to infect the management with FUD. Needless to say, the project was eventually scrapped (not replaced by Oracle, but completely scrapped).

I've seen and heard of similar situations at other large organizations. Sometimes, technology is the least of the challenges in such projects.

Comment Re:Amazon AWS (Score 2) 150

This. AWS has a GPU tier (kinda pricey, but probably cheaper than standing up an equivalent on your own). I'm guessing your FEA/CFD will probably need GPUs. $50K will rent a lot of GPU time. Not sure how available the spot instances for them are.

otoh, if you're looking to use regular CPUs, Azure has an infiniband tier that may be a better interconnect for HPC purposes than AWS's 10 Gbps VPC's.

Comment Re:Need to be adjustable (Score 2) 340

The biggest problem is that decent standing desks aren't cheap, and companies treat them like a luxury

Not a it yourself, as I did. Took an old TV cart I wasn't using any more, bought a few pieces of 1x4 and a few bolts, applied a bit of maker elbow grease, and now I've got a perfect solution, including a nice spar to mount a 28" monitor (to free up valuable desktop space). Hopefully your company will let you bring it in (not a problem for me, I work from home). Its not adjustable, but I just piled some books up to determine where the right desktop height should be, and then built to that height. I could probably get fancy and make is adjustable, but its not all that important.

I'd also suggest getting a memory foam bath mat to stand on (4+ hours on your feet can get tiresome), and maybe a tall chair (I just bought a cheap barstool that works great).

Comment (Score 1) 193

Funny coincidence, just as I started reading this thread, I got a call from an unknown number. I let it run out, then looked it up on Sure enough, a scammer. Now added to my cell phone's (rather lengthy) reject list.

Also, has a few humorous recordings of someone scamming the scammers...good for a few chuckles.

Comment 2006: "There's no real estate bubble..." (Score 3, Interesting) 252

I recall watching CNBC (yes I know, bad choice) circa early 2006 and watching some real estate manipulator say (paraphrased), "Of course there's no real estate bubble, there's an infinite demand for housing!".

I also figured out when the 2000 tech bubble was about to burst: I was at the local grocery store and overheard the following conversation between the clerk and bag boy as I was checking out:

<clerk>: "The manager said you don't need to come in to work tomorrow."

<bagboy>: "*chuckle* Hehe thats ok, I'll just stay home and day trade..."

I literally went home and cashed out 90% of my mutual funds after that. Unfortunately, my judgement failed me a couple months later, when I bought back in...and lost most of it...

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