EppsNet Archive: Technology

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 →

Do You Want to Take the Human Race to the Next Plateau?

 

In 1986, Steve Jobs famously challenged John Sculley, asking him if he wanted to keep on making sugar water or help Apple change the world. While that did not quite work out the way either of them intended, the challenge itself still holds. Do you want to spend your next decade developing more digital distractions to amuse people while they stand in line at Starbuck’s, or do you want to take the human race to the next plateau? — Geoffrey Moore Read more →

Occam Has Mislaid His Razor

 

Silicon Valley Discriminates Against Women, Even If They’re Better — PBS NewsHour An academic says that Silicon Valley is “not a meritocracy.” He doesn’t offer any evidence to support that. He just looked around and noticed more men than women in the high-tech workforce. The fact that there are more members of Group A doing X than there are members of Group B doing X is not evidence that members of Group B are being discriminated against in their efforts to do X. In particular, he says that only 3 percent of tech firms in the Valley were founded by women, as though founding a tech firm is a fun thing that everyone should want to do. Founding a startup is an ultra-high-risk activity that requires insane amounts of time and sacrifice. Do you want to have friends? A social life? Do you have a family? Do you want to… Read more →

High Dropout Rates for STEM Majors is NOT a Problem

 

The University of Colorado has a $4.3 million grant to research the “problem” of 40 to 60 percent attrition rate among STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) majors. Someone is missing an obvious point here, which is that there should be a large dropout rate for STEM majors. Incompetent technologists and engineers create disasters. The music department, the English department, the philosophy department, etc., etc., can graduate their incompetent students without worrying that they’re going to build a collapsing bridge, blow up a space shuttle, disintegrate a Mars orbiter — you get the idea . . . Read more →

IT Recruiter of the Day

 

From an actual job ad: Killer, Profitable, Stable and cutting edge technology company looking for genious!!! It’s funny when someone misspells the word “genius”! Why are random words like “Profitable” and “Stable” capitalized? Because the recruiter wanted to highlight the adjectives? Then why isn’t “cutting edge” capitalized? Why isn’t “cutting edge” hyphenated? Read more →

IT Recruiters

 

I’ve worked with some great IT recruiters but they’re the exception, not the rule. I spent a lot of time on LinkedIn recently as part of a job search, and it doesn’t make you feel good about IT as a serious profession when you see how many IT recruiters are former waitresses, bartenders, shoe salesmen . . . honorable professions, but not likely to give a person a good understanding of technology and the people who work with it. Here’s a sample phone conversation I had with a recruiter: “First question,” the recruiter says. “Do you have any experience with software development? Because that’s key for this position.” “Uh, that’s all I’ve done for 25 years. Are you looking at my résumé?” “Yes, but I don’t see anything about software development.” “Are you sure it’s my résumé?” “Yeah . . . I don’t see anything that specifically says software development.”… Read more →

How to Lose Your Job : A Fictional Memoir (Part I)

 

Because of the huge productivity differences between good programmers and bad programmers — 10x? 28x? More? — my biggest leverage point as a development manager is my ability to hire people. At my last job, we had an HR Director named Lucy. In every one of our annual Employee Satisfaction Surveys, Lucy’s group had the lowest scores in the entire organization. Nobody liked or respected her. She was, however, close with the CEO, which made that irrelevant. Lucy’s friend Kathy Slauson runs the Slauson and Slauson recruiting agency, so that’s where we got our programming candidates, who were mostly terrible. The Slauson agency doesn’t specialize in IT candidates, although they do have a “technical recruiter,” who unfortunately knows nothing about technology. They don’t bring candidates in for in-person interviews. They take whatever candidates give them in the form of a résumé and they pass the résumés along to clients like… Read more →

It’s a Seller’s Job Market in IT Right Now, Especially for Agile

 

I recently concluded a 3-month job search. As part of my networking, I met a number of unemployed people in other fields who were having trouble not only getting jobs, but even getting interviews. I talked to a lot of people and averaged about an interview a day, including phone interviews, mostly for development manager jobs. For every development manager job, there are multiple development jobs, so if you’re a developer, your situation is even better than mine was. I live in Southern California, but the demand is not just local. I had multiple contacts from companies outside the SoCal area that can’t find qualified candidates. I’ve been working again for over two months, I no longer have an active résumé on job boards, and I still get emails and calls every day from recruiters all over the country. Agile and Scrum are in demand The situation with Agile and… Read more →

There Is No Digital Divide

 

We all know poor people are on the wrong side of an uncrossable technological chasm known as the "digital divide." Their lack of iPads and data plans and broadband is just one more way they’re doomed to stay poor right up until they become the shock troops of the zombie apocalypse, am I right? — There Is No Digital Divide – Technology Review Read more →

I’m Addressing the Shortage of Women in Technology

 

I keep hearing that there aren’t enough women in technology, like this is a problem. The most obvious explanation is that women don’t want to work in technology. If they want to work in other fields, fine. If they want to raise their kids, even better. I did some tutoring for a girl taking AP Computer Science. She’s a junior in high school and wants to be a veterinarian. Afterwards, she told her dad, “If I decide not to be a veterinarian, maybe I’ll be a programmer.” Don’t let it be said that I’m not doing my part to address the shortage of women in technology, even though I think it’s baloney . . . Thus spoke The Programmer. Read more →

NTSB Recommends Ban on Driver Cell Phone Use

 

States should ban all driver use of cell phones and other portable electronic devices, except in emergencies, the National Transportation Board said Tuesday. The recommendation, unanimously agreed to by the five-member board, applies to both hands-free and hand-held phones and significantly exceeds any existing state laws restricting texting and cellphone use behind the wheel. — latimes.com DISLIKE! Busy, productive people need to talk and text while driving in order to jumpstart this economy! Yes, some of them will die, but it’s a net win because the benefits outweigh the costs. Read more →

Race Against the Machine

 

We don’t believe in the coming obsolescence of all human workers. In fact, some human skills are more valuable than ever, even in an age of incredibly powerful and capable digital technologies. But other skills have become worthless, and people who hold the wrong ones now find that they have little to offer employers. They’re losing the race against the machine, a fact reflected in today’s employment statistics. . . . There is no economic law that says that everyone, or even most people, automatically benefit from technological progress. — Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee, Race Against The Machine Read more →

Living in the Digital World

 

A 2011 study by telecommunications giant Ericsson found that 35% of iPhone and Android users check their email or Facebook account before getting out of bed in the morning. Read more →

A Sad Interview

 

I did a phone interview today with a programming candidate. Of the first six questions I asked him — and I don’t start with the hard questions — he gave a halfway correct answer to one. I tried to wrap things up with some easier questions so he could end on a positive note. I struggled to find a question he could answer. It was a sad interview. I saw from his résumé that he’d recently ended a 10-year run in a corporate IT department. Corporate IT departments are usually not on the leading edge of anything, and I have to surmise that he didn’t put in the necessary time to keep up with things on his own. I don’t know how good he was 10 years ago, but at this point, he’s out of work, his skills are stale, and he’s going to have a tough time in the… Read more →

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