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Submission + - The Hacker Lifecycle (

An anonymous reader writes: Hacker Benjamin Smith deconstructs the cycle of education, production, and rest that will be familiar to many software and hardware engineers. He breaks it down into four steps: 1) Focused effort toward a goal, 2) structured self-education, 3) side-projects to sharpen skills, and 4) burnout and rest. He writes, 'As my motivation waxes at the beginning of a cycle, I find myself with a craving to take steps towards that goal. I do so by starting a project which focuses on one thing only: building a new income stream. As a result of this single-mindedness, the content or subject of the project is often less interesting than it otherwise might have been. ... [Later], I almost always decide to teach myself a new technical skill or pick up some new technology. ... This is usually the most satisfying period of my cycle. I am learning a new skill or technology which I know will enhance my employability, allow me to build things I previously could only have daydreamed about, and will ultimately be useful for many years to come. ... [In the burnout phase], I’ll spend this period as ferociously devoted to my leisure activities as I was to my productive tasks. But after a few months of this, I start to feel an itch...'

Submission + - The Unspoken Truth About Why Your IT Sucks ( 1

Lucas123 writes: If you expect IT to be used to reduce costs, increase capability and reduce work load, then along with the technology you need competence to advanced knowledge of possibilities, the creativity to derive or invent solutions with that knowledge, and the (un)common sense to assess the implications of such solutions. As Computerworld columnist Jeff Ello so eloquently puts it, 'Technology is unable to produce intelligent results without intelligent direction, a truism encapsulated in the formerly popular computer acronym GIGO, 'garbage in, garbage out.' Everyone claims to value competence. And yet your IT still — for lack of a better term — sucks. It's just that simple. What goes unspoken, or at least unheard, is that the way the typical organization positions and utilizes its IT resources sucks.'

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A computer without COBOL and Fortran is like a piece of chocolate cake without ketchup and mustard.