EppsNet Archive: Technology

Diversity in Tech Efforts Self-Defeating?

Panelists at the Inclusion in Tech summit lamented that we can’t tell if tech is doing better on diversity because the data stinks. My advice would be don’t worry about it. A lot of the noise around diversity in technology is self-defeating. If you’re a member of an underrepresented group, all you hear is that technology fields are hostile and awful and unwelcoming, you won’t be treated fairly, etc. And you wonder why certain groups are underrepresented? You’ve answered your own question. Why would anyone who wants to have a happy life pursue a career beset by unfairness and hardship? Why not instead be a meeting planner or a flight attendant? Asians are overrepresented in technology jobs but that’s a relatively recent development in the history of these fields. I don’t remember, when this transition from underrepresented to overrepresented was happening, hearing a lot about how technology fields were hostile… Read more →

The More We Rely on Technology . . .

We had a brief network outage at the office, during which Mr. Frick walked over to Mr. Frack’s desk and said, “The network’s down. We can’t do the screen share,” i.e., they can’t see each other’s computer screen over the network because it’s down. I was waiting for one of them — Frick or Frack — to say “Let’s just sit together in front of the one computer here like they used to in olden days” but neither of them ever did . . . Read more →

This is Where Your PDF Resume Will Take You

Received the following advice today: When applying for jobs, never send your resume in .docx format. Fonts don’t always get embedded and hiring managers cannot always open these files. Use PDF. Do we really want to work for managers who can’t open a Word doc? Imagine the world-class mentoring and career development you’re going to get from such a person. I mean, my wife can open Word docs no problem and she can’t even figure out how to turn on the TV. Thus spoke The Programmer. Read more →

More Links on Work-Life Balance

Research behind the flexibility stigma (Article) Tara Siegel Bernard, “The Unspoken Stigma of Workplace Flexibility,” New York Times, June 14, 2013. Don’t become addicted to busy-ness (Article) Christine Carter, “Achieve More by Doing Less,” Mindful, September 14, 2015. Research about dual-centric workers (Report) Families and Work Institute, Catalyst, and the Boston College Center for Work & Family, Leaders in a Global Economy: A Study of Executive Women and Men (2008). Work-life integration (Video) Stew Friedman, “How to Integrate Work, Home, Community and Self,” YouTube video, 19:53, posted by “KnowledgeAtWharton,” May 28, 2008. Managing your life outside of work (Article) Stew Friedman, “Keep Your Home Life Sane when Work Gets Crazy,” Harvard Business Review, February 23, 2015. Research supports benefits of flex work (Article) Adi Gaskell, “Why A Flexible Worker Is A Happy And Productive Worker,” Forbes, January 15, 2016. Five simple tips to reduce the distraction and temptation of checking email all the time (Article) Lily… Read more →

Tech Gender Bias: Men Not as Concerned

According to LinkedIn: Despite a string of revelations that women in tech face considerable headwinds — from persistent gender-based pay gaps (per Bloomberg), to limited VC funding for female-led startups (per Fortune), to sexual harassment (per The New York Times) — just 29% of men say that discrimination is a major problem in the industry, according to data from Pew. In fact, some 32% of men claim that it’s not a problem at all. Here’s why I claim that it’s not a problem: Women are capable of making decisions for themselves. For the most part, they choose to do things other than work in tech and do startups. So what? (Pay gaps and harassment are not tech-specific, obviously.) Thus spoke The Programmer. Read more →

To Young Women Considering a Career in Technology

You’ve probably read a lot of articles about how sexist and awful the culture is for women in technology. I think if anything deters young women from technology careers, it’s this glut of articles saying how sexist and awful the culture is. I’ve worked in software development for 30 years. In my experience — and feel free to discount this because I’m not a woman — the culture is not tough for women. If anything, men give women the benefit of the doubt because they’d like to have more women around. As Holden Caulfield used to say, “I like to be somewhere at least where you can see a few girls around once in a while, even if they’re only scratching their arms or blowing their noses or even just giggling or something.” Yes, I have seen bad things happen to women in tech, but I’ve seen bad things happen… Read more →

One Thing I Can’t Tolerate is Intolerance: The Google Memo

The now-famous Google memo was first published by Gizmodo under the headline Here’s The Full 10-Page Anti-Diversity Screed Circulating Internally at Google. If you’re interested in the topic, you should read the memo yourself, otherwise you’re going to get a terribly slanted second-hand judgment, e.g., “anti-diversity screed.” I’ve read it and I don’t think it’s “anti-diversity” and it’s definitely not what I’d call a screed. I’ve seen that word — screed — used by multiple sources. That’s one way of dismissing and declining to engage with an opinion you don’t like: give it a label like “screed,” suggesting that the author is angry and irrational and not fit to have a discussion with. In my reading though, I found the original memo to be academic and clinical, much less screed-like than the responses I’ve seen. As usual (in my experience), the most intolerant people in the mix are the ones… Read more →

Where Are the Additional Women in Technology Supposed to Come From?

The jobs report for May contained discouraging news: continuing low labor-force participation, now below 63 percent overall. About 20 million men between the prime working ages of 20 and 65 had no paid work in 2015, and seven million men have stopped looking altogether. In the meantime, the jobs most in demand — like nursing and nurse assistants, home health care aides, occupational therapists or physical therapists — sit open. The health care sector had the largest gap between vacancies and hires of any sector in April, for example. — The New York Times We hear a lot about a shortage of women in technology jobs but we don’t hear about a shortage of men in traditionally female jobs. It’s really two sides of the same problem. Unless a lot of women suddenly appear out of nowhere, the only way to get more women into professions where they’re currently under-represented… Read more →

Why is Alexa an Improvement?

A neighbor is giving me a tour of his home improvement gadgets . . . We walk into the living room and he says, speaking slowly and distinctly, “Alexa, turn off all the living room lights.” After a couple of seconds, the living room lights dim and go out. “Why is that an improvement?” I ask. “I could have turned the lights off and on 15 times by hand in the same amount of time.” Later, I told my wife about this . . . “Maybe you’re sitting down and you don’t want to get up to turn out the lights,” she suggested. “You want to sit in the living room in the dark?” Read more →

Quantum Teleportation Breakthrough by DARPA-Funded Physicists

Two separate teams of scientists funded by the Pentagon’s research arm have revealed significant breakthroughs in the field of quantum teleportation which could have a major impact on cybersecurity and encryption. — RT America Forget security and encryption I want to disappear one place and appear someplace else. What’s the holdup on that?! Read more →

Is Tech Addiction Making Us Far More Stressed at Work?

I like this juxtaposition of links on themuse.com. “Is Tech Addiction Making Us Far More Stressed at Work?” sandwiched in-between links to 25 Chrome extensions and 10 apps that you must have in your life right now> Read more →

What Would We Do Without Consultants?

Digital technology? You mean, like — computers? Read more →

Sarcasm Detection Technology

Quartz: Researchers have developed an extremely effective “sarcasm detector” Sure they have . . . Read more →

When is Diversity Not a Dilemma?

I just read yet another brief — Solving the Diversity Dilemma — regarding lack of diversity in the STEM workforce. If members of Group X are underrepresented in some professions, they must be overrepresented in others. For example, I used to work with a nursing organization . . . women far outnumber men in nursing but for the five years I worked there I never heard anyone talk about the shortage of men in nursing being a dilemma, crisis, etc., or suggesting that anything be done to change it. I work in a STEM field. It’s a good job for me but not for everyone. My son (age 21) for example, never showed any interest in it and I don’t think he’ll be any less happy in life because he’s not working in STEM. There are pluses and minuses like any other profession. Simple but possibly valid explanation for STEM… Read more →

60 Million Students

#HourOfCode had an incredible first year. Thank you to all who helped propel this movement. http://t.co/bHAAWMYJiG. pic.twitter.com/IS1nU89XRe — Code.org (@codeorg) December 29, 2014 Read more →

People Who Don’t Want Me to Know Things

What I want to know is why there are so many people who don’t want me to know things . . . What the 1% Don’t Want Us to Know Natural Cures “They” Don’t Want You to Know About 20 Terrifying Facts Food Companies Don’t Want You to Know 11 things the Koch brothers don’t want you to know What hospitals don’t want you to know about C-sections 5 Things Hackers Don’t Want You to Know The Sad Secret Successful People Don’t Want You To Know 7 Rip-Offs Corporations and the Wealthy Don’t Want You to Know About Something Most Christians Don’t Want You to Know 11 Secrets Supermarkets Don’t Want You to Know Conspiracies: Five things they don’t want you to know The 25 Shadiest Things Drug Companies Don’t Want You To Know 11 Secrets Pilots Don’t Want You To Know Bottled Water: 10 Shockers “They” Don’t Want You… Read more →

Raising Our Kids

Let's just hope these tablets are better at raising our kids than cable. — Paul Danke (@pauldanke) June 24, 2014 Read more →

9 Links

Data Structure Visualizations Good Tech Lead, Bad Tech Lead Google Java Style Guide to 12 Disruptive Technologies How to Write a Cover Letter The Landing Page Optimization Guide You Wish You Always Had Selendroid: Selenium for Android UX Axioms by Eric Dahl Yelp’s got style (and the guide to back it up) Read more →

The Cure for Missing Attachments

I wrote an email in Outlook 2013, concluded by saying “Details are in the attached doc,” then clicked Send without attaching the aforesaid document. I must not be the only person who does this, because when I clicked Send, this dialog box appeared: Obviously, Outlook is looking for words like “attached” or “attachment” in emails that don’t contain an actual attachment. It turns out that this behavior can be turned on or off in the Outlook Mail options:   I have to admit that I don’t remember if “warn me” is the default option, or if I turned it on at some point in the past and forgot about it. Read more →

It Would Be Important to Get There and There is Probably a Way

I often say, “Well, it’s just over on the other side of that canyon. So all we have to do is go.” It is always surprising to me that other people would expect me to tell them how we’re going to get there directly. That it is not enough to say, “Well, it would be important to get there and there is probably a way. Let’s go.” — Doug Engelbart Read more →

Next Page »