Mon. Feb. 5, 2018 Some sportsball game happened and no one died

51F with 92%RH and kinda clear here in Houston this AM.

Seems that there was a sporting event yesterday. Given that it was in the middle of a city with a large Somali immigrant population, they decided to take extra precautions against terror murderous attacks.

Great BIG .fed and .gov presence. Great opportunity to see what an active police state might look like if you are inclined to believe that way. Keep your eyes open on the web for AAR and analysis. What we know for sure is: air cover; loads of intel-from stingray flying overhead to social media monitoring; roadblocks; papers required for access; weapons free zones (and not in the fun way); etc.

Thankfully no problems. If the jihadis listened to Sun Tzu, they would have ‘attacked where your enemy is weak.’ I’m genuinely thankful that they didn’t. I’m horrified by what TPTB think is required to have a safe game. How in the heII did it come to this? Soldiers with HMMVs manning roadblocks in the street….

I watched about 10 minutes of game when the wife succumbed to peer pressure (family rooting for Pats) and turned it on. I was mystified by the tide ads (seen in passing without paying attention), don’t know what to think about the coke diversity special, and that was it. Oh, saw the Bud ad about canning water for relief efforts.

I guess it was a good game if you are into that. I realized when discussing it with the wife, that I stopped watching the NFL after Superbowl 20, Da Bears! Don’t miss it.

Plenty of madcap shenanigans in big cities as a result. Don’t be there is good advice and appropriate in this case.  ADDED- and I note that there is plenty of video showing it is not the usual suspects.

As we start this week, let’s remember absent friends, and OFD, and the others in our lives that might need help….

nick

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72 Responses to Mon. Feb. 5, 2018 Some sportsball game happened and no one died

  1. Miles_Teg says:

    Wimminz Australian Football League is much more exciting. You have lovely ladies trying to rip off each others shorts and kicking each other between the legs…

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-02-05/aflw-collingwoods-sarah-darcy-gets-two-weeks-groin-kick/9397238?section=sport

  2. Chad says:

    I found the Dirty Dancing spoof to be particularly hilarious. Of course, I was subjected to watching Dirty Dancing 1,000 times in my youth, so I have the movie about memorized (I know, I know. Somebody take my man card and tear it up).
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KUoD-gPDahw

  3. dkreck says:

    I was impressed by the Bud ad’s attempt to make it look like they jump in and bottle water in the middle of the night, just to altruistically help. As I asked others at our little party, “What do you think FEMA pays for that water?”

  4. dkreck says:

    And for funny Dirty Dancing was good but I really liked Danny McBride as Crocodile Dundee.

    https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/danny-mcbride-explains-bizarre-crocodile-dundee-super-bowl-ad-1081553

  5. Chad says:

    I was impressed by the Bud ad’s attempt to make it look like they jump in and bottle water in the middle of the night, just to altruistically help. As I asked others at our little party, “What do you think FEMA pays for that water?”

    The craft beer lovers among us will quickly point out that water is pretty much all that Budweiser cans. They just change to label from “Bud Light” to “Water” as needed. 🙂

  6. JimL says:

    Heh – right now there’s a bit of a war between Sam Adams fans (Boston) and Yuengling (America’s oldest brewery – in PA). Seems the Iggles were supported by the green bottle folks with the bird on the bottle, while Sam Adams supported the Gnats.

    Truth be told, Sam Adams’ selection of beer is pretty good. Yuengling won’t be turned down, but given a choice…

  7. JLP says:

    Some of the local lads were involved in a rather important sporting competition last night so I stayed up past my bedtime to watch.

    It was a good game, even if the Patriots didn’t manage to win like they usually do.

    I know people say they like the commercials, but I dislike advertising in almost all its forms, even clever / humorous. I made generous use of the mute button. As for the half-time show; meh. It was more dancing than singing and just not what I would choose to listen to.

  8. Ray Thompson says:

    I suspect the singing was lip synced. So it was basically gyrations and noise. I did like the lighting effect at the for Pepsi. Amazing technology. The Prince logo in the street lights was clever.

  9. Jenny says:

    -5 F in Anchorage. It’s a dry cold and no wind so not as bad as it sounds. But your nose hairs freeze as soon as you step out the door.

    http://www.ktva.com/story/37424746/screams-and-crying-among-passengers-after-amtrak-train-crash

    Articles like, that are so obviously feeding sensationalism with suffering, make me angry. And angrier still that people continue to lap it up. The title, the lack of any real facts, the word padding with minutiae detailing the horror.

    How did we get to this point?

    As a population we have been ‘groomed’ over decades. I hate how stupid we have become as a nation. Get out the tin foil hat, Henry. Generations of welfare, corrupt politicians, public education that inculcates socialism and worse. And vampiric garbage like this “news” article. Gargh.

    How do you turn back a nation where the population that thrives on this crap is so tightly in control.

    An interesting observation – as far as a brief search could tell me, this article was crafted specifically for the FaceBook crowd (it showed up as a share in my FB feed [hanging head in shame – I FB to stay in touch with family, I swear I don’t look at cat pictures]). The original url had a FaceBook tag on it and googling finds the same article without the sensationalist titles.

    Muck rakers all of them.

    It’s a discouraging world we are living in.

  10. Chad says:

    How do you deal with labor shortages in memory care units at nursing homes? Drug all of the patients into a stupor: https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/05/health/nursing-homes-dementia-antipsychotic-drugs/index.html

    Males are beginning to refuse to have closed door meetings with females in the current #MeToo climate. They’re insisting on having chaperones in the room with them to prevent later allegations. Likewise, male businessmen are being discouraged from taking business trips with female coworkers.
    http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018/02/04/male-backlash-against-metoo-is-brewing.html

  11. lynn says:

    Likewise, male businessmen are being discouraged from taking business trips with female coworkers.

    I take business trips occasionally with my female office manager. We are going on one in April to Austin, TX. Of course, I am married to her.

  12. lynn says:

    Wow, Best Buy is going to stop selling music CDs. The world is really changing.
    https://www.pcmag.com/news/359006/report-best-buy-will-stop-selling-music-cds-july-1

  13. nick flandrey says:

    What does Best Buy sell?

    n

    (been a decade since I was inside one, at least.)

  14. lynn says:

    “Apple prepares macOS for discontinuation of 32-bit app support”
    http://www.osnews.com/story/30186/Apple_prepares_macOS_for_discontinuation_of_32-bit_app_support

    I find this disconcerting. Porting our software to x64 will not be trivial. And since Microsoft seems to be looking to Apple for leadership nowadays, the following article has more credibility with me.

    “Microsoft reportedly planning another doomed attempt at jettisoning Win32 apps in 2019”
    https://mspoweruser.com/microsoft-reportedly-planning-another-doomed-attempt-jettisoning-win32-apps-2019/

  15. lynn says:

    As a population we have been ‘groomed’ over decades. I hate how stupid we have become as a nation. Get out the tin foil hat, Henry. Generations of welfare, corrupt politicians, public education that inculcates socialism and worse. And vampiric garbage like this “news” article. Gargh.

    It seems more and more each day that way more than half of the population is below the bell curve.

    And of course, there is this:
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/think-california-politics-is-on-the-far-left-fringe-just-wait-for-the-next-elections/2018/02/04/80e679c2-05e5-11e8-8777-2a059f168dd2_story.html

    Hat tip to:
    http://drudgereport.com/

  16. Greg Norton says:

    Wow, Best Buy is going to stop selling music CDs. The world is really changing.

    I ordered most of my recent CDs directly from the artists’ web sites. The lone exception, ordered from Amazon, arrived *bent*.

    I prefer physical media, and I don’t want to mess around with vinyl. Child of the 80s. The first time I heard an all digital album, recording, mastering, and playback, “Dream of the Blue Turtles”, was akin to a religious experience.

  17. SteveF says:

    Males are beginning to refuse to have closed door meetings with females in the current #MeToo climate. They’re insisting on having chaperones in the room with them to prevent later allegations. Likewise, male businessmen are being discouraged from taking business trips with female coworkers.

    You left out the best part: this recent change is, of course, a reversion to the unacceptable old days when women in the workforce were second-class citizens. And it’s all men’s fault.

  18. nick flandrey says:

    I like physical media too, but then I put it on spinning rust for easy access. Once Netflix started having stuff expire and disappear, and after google killed a whole service, stealing back (by rendering useless) all the protected media D/L’d, I decided that “if you can’t put your hands on it you don’t own it.”

    I’ve been buying dvds and blurays, several a week, most weeks. If I see something interesting at a sale or in a thrift for $2, I buy it. Can’t watch netflix if the net is down. Can’t watch netflix in the car. I’m rebuilding my library from my formative years.

    WRT CD’s, I buy almost all new to me music on cd, used. I don’t D/L or steal music. I’m expanding my library.

    I do rip to disc. I listen to WAY more music when it’s easily accessible.

    n

  19. Greg Norton says:

    I find this disconcerting. Porting our software to x64 will not be trivial. And since Microsoft seems to be looking to Apple for leadership nowadays, the following article has more credibility with me.

    Take it with a grain of salt. Among the examples cited, even Microsoft’s developers refused to buy into WinRT.

    I took the UW C++ online certificate program in 2012, and most of the other students were Microsoft employees told to get up to speed on the language. “RT with C++ is the future”. By the time the second class started, around May 2012, the writing was on the wall for WinRT, and the Redmond group stopped taking the program seriously.

  20. Jenny says:

    @Greg
    We play vinyl a couple times a month. Picked up this Crosley at a pawn shop and have a music area in the living room with our records easily accessed below, cd book case beside, audio jack ready to plug in an iPod, and ‘antenna’ wire strung up so radio functions.
    http://www.crosleyradio.com/turntables/product-details?productkey=CR42C&model=CR42C-PA

    We’ve got an actual brick n mortar record store with a lot of cool stuff.
    https://www.adn.com/business/article/obsession-records-shop-labor-love-buisness-owners/2015/01/19/

    I like the convenience of digital but the scratchy of vinyl plugs in at a Pavlovian level. Love it.

  21. lynn says:

    I’ve been buying dvds and blurays, several a week, most weeks. If I see something interesting at a sale or in a thrift for $2, I buy it. Can’t watch netflix if the net is down. Can’t watch netflix in the car. I’m rebuilding my library from my formative years.

    I don’t even have a DVD or Blueray player on the game room tv. I bought a new Blueray player for the wife for Christmas to put on the tv in the den. I’ll be moving the old Blueray player to the game room. Any day now.

  22. lynn says:

    I find this disconcerting. Porting our software to x64 will not be trivial. And since Microsoft seems to be looking to Apple for leadership nowadays, the following article has more credibility with me.

    Take it with a grain of salt. Among the examples cited, even Microsoft’s developers refused to buy into WinRT.

    I took the UW C++ online certificate program in 2012, and most of the other students were Microsoft employees told to get up to speed on the language. “RT with C++ is the future”.

    UW = University of Washington ?

    Microsoft might could get away with banning Win32 by labeling it a security risk.

  23. DadCooks says:

    Take a look at Drudge:
    http://www.drudgereport.com/

    Is this the beginning of the end?

    Most crypto-currencies have dropped 70% too.

    It’s all funny money.

  24. Greg Norton says:

    UW = University of Washington ?

    Yes. The C++ certificate is worth the time for anyone who knows C and wants to get up to speed on C++.

    Microsoft might could get away with banning Win32 by labeling it a security risk.

    They’ve told us differently for 20 years. “Programming Windows” is simply “Petzold”, a sacred text right up there with CLRS, Stroustrup, or Stevens.

  25. Greg Norton says:

    We play vinyl a couple times a month. Picked up this Crosley at a pawn shop and have a music area in the living room with our records easily accessed below, cd book case beside, audio jack ready to plug in an iPod, and ‘antenna’ wire strung up so radio functions.

    Most of my music listening is done in the car. Compressed music sounds odd to me so I still use CDs.

    If I’m in the office, I stream Radio Caroline’s Ogg feed via VLC.

    CDs hit when I was a junior in high school. Most of my vinyl to that point consisted of comedy albums from Carlin and … like most of my generation … 70s era Cosby.

  26. CowboySlim says:

    I was told 45 years ago not to shut the door when in a conference room with only one female employee.

    CowboySlim who was ahead of the game.

  27. nick flandrey says:

    The hypocrisy of it stings too, with about half of single workers involved in a workplace romance. So it’s only harassment if they don’t like it. If they do, it’s dating.

    I am SOOOOO glad to be happily married and not have to deal with the minefield.

    n

  28. lynn says:

    Yes. The C++ certificate is worth the time for anyone who knows C and wants to get up to speed on C++.

    My 15 year old son taught me C++ back in 1998. I wrote a tool to convert our Win16 Smalltalk to Win32 C++ and we converted our entire user interface to C++. Was a blessing ! Especially since the x64 version of Windows killed off Win16 apps.

  29. Greg Norton says:

    If I’m in the office, I stream Radio Caroline’s Ogg feed via VLC.

    My bad — Radio Caroline’s VLC feed is MPEG AAC at 44.1 kHZ sampling.

    Compressed, but not too odd sounding unless it is a song I know well from repeated listening via CD.

  30. lynn says:

    Is this the beginning of the end?

    Most crypto-currencies have dropped 70% too.

    It’s all funny money.

    Nope. But if the stock market dropped 50%, I would be very concerned.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wall_Street_Crash_of_1929

  31. Greg Norton says:

    My 15 year old son taught me C++ back in 1998. I wrote a tool to convert our Win16 Smalltalk to Win32 C++ and we converted our entire user interface to C++. Was a blessing ! Especially since the x64 version of Windows killed off Win16 apps.

    C++03 is really the big inflection point of the language, with STL being adopted as the Standard Library and bringing with it a standardized string class. Subsequent revisions have been syntactic sugar for the most part, but Closures (C++11) were huge IMHO.

  32. JimL says:

    Several years ago I looked at my CD collection and my storage space and decided to re-rip all of my CDs to lossless MP3. To my ear, they’re just fine. But I’m not an aficionado, so I don’t claim it’s “best”. It’s certainly good enough for the listening I do. I still have a case of cassettes, but nothing to play them on.

    I find myself listening to streaming services of all genres anymore. I’m not as interested in spending time & money on collecting the media. If I see one at a swap meet or flea market, I’ll pick it up & rip it. But that’s all.

  33. Dave says:

    With regard to all the sensationalism about the Amtrak collision, I think the sensationalism is wrong because we need to be asking some hard questions that require some serious thought. Sensationalism leads to anger which leads to rash actions. The old act in haste and repent at your leisure thing.

    There have been three Amtrak incidents in the last couple of months, and two in the last week or so. Vehicle collisions are not the train’s fault. They may be at least partially the fault of non working crossing indicators. But the crash in Washington state and the South Carolina Crash both mean Amtrak management needs to be asking some serious questions. The South Carolina collision is the fault of the host railroad and/or Amtrak.

  34. JimL says:

    Naw. They have to DO SOMETHING! NOW! How will the pee-pull know that they’re doing their jobs if they don’t DO SOMETHING! NOW!?

    /s

  35. lynn says:

    I still have a case of cassettes, but nothing to play them on.

    You sound like as much a hoarder as I am. Here is your cassette player, I have bought several of these and placed them around the house, pool, and garage for my convenience. The wife uses one for her audiobooks when not listening in the car.
    https://www.amazon.com/Sony-Stereo-Cassette-Boombox-CFDS70BLK/dp/B01DUF3UVC/

  36. ech says:

    As I asked others at our little party, “What do you think FEMA pays for that water?”

    Nothing. Budweiser does it for free.

    I suspect the singing was lip synced.

    Nope, they wouldn’t have had the crappy sound if if was lip synced. Either the mix was off, of Timberlake’s mic was having problems.

  37. MrAtoz says:

    Sentenced to two days in Kalifornia on a gig with MrsAtoz.

  38. Ray Thompson says:

    Did a stupid thing. Was using a utility knife to cut the tabs off a plastic chair mat. Mentally commented to myself that I should be cutting away from my body. Then it happened. Knife slipped and slashed my finger. Lot of blood. Went to the doctor and was able to get seen. Couple of stitches and a very sore finger.

    Doctor said he would have to stick me four times to get the finger numb. Or he could just do the stitches. So I opted to just have the stitches with no numbing involved.

    Eat your heart out Tim The Toolman. For stitches like a man and using a knife like an idiot. Finger is quite sore. Also got a tetanus shot.

  39. CowboySlim says:

    “The South Carolina collision is the fault of the host railroad and/or Amtrak.”

    Well, it is primarily the fault of the NTSB, the federal government that will not force Amtrak or the railroads to implement Automatic Emergency Braking which is now on some cars. It is that simple. Why they even have “engineers”, actually incompetent drivers, is so 1930s.

    Several years ago, there was a little smoke coming from the new LiOH batteries installed on a B787 and the FAA shut the flights down until the issue was resolved. OTOH, Amtrak, let them keep killing people.

  40. CowboySlim says:

    “Sentenced to two days in Kalifornia on a gig with MrsAtoz.”

    Where? SoCal? Coast? Happy hour and PBRs on me!

  41. Miles_Teg says:

    Nick wrote:

    “Once Netflix started having stuff expire and disappear, and after google killed a whole service, stealing back (by rendering useless) all the protected media D/L’d…”

    How did they do that? Once you’ve downloaded it what can they do?

  42. SteveF says:

    CowboySlim who was ahead of the game.

    Nah, they just figured you were more likely to be an inappropriate dude.

    So it’s only harassment if they don’t like it. If they do, it’s dating.

    Bingo. “Nice dress” from Mr Handsome to a young woman gets a “Thank you”. “Nice dress” from the overweight paper pusher gets an HR complaint. It’s been that way at least since I entered the (non-military) workforce.

    I am SOOOOO glad to be happily married and not have to deal with the minefield.

    Hahahahahahahaha! Marital status is no protection. The only reason you don’t have to deal with the minefield is you’re not in the corporate workforce.

    re C++, I was teaching seminars on (at the time) new and advanced features almost twenty years ago. I wrote an article for Dr Dobbs (I think; it was one of the CMP magazines) with C++ interview questions.* I made suggestions to the language committee. And yet I was viewed as unqualified for a couple C++ jobs because I hadn’t gotten a certificate to attest to my skill.

    * Hilariously, I was handed that list of questions on a job interview a year or so later. They didn’t believe me when I said I’d written it, because they’d just retyped the questions without attribution. And I failed their little test, because they’d introduced typos in both the questions and the answers, and didn’t know enough to understand my explanations of what the problem was. I was not disappointed to not get that job.

  43. nick flandrey says:

    The google stuff was encrypted and checked against a key. when google took the key servers offline, all your files are belong to me…. worthless, unencryptable bits.

    Netflix has contractual limits on what they offer, for how long, and when. So all the world’s art really ISN”T out there just waiting for you to D/L, LOTS of stuff goes “out of print” in a D/L format.

    RBT used to comment A LOT about netflix and grabbing a series before it went away, and how many discs he got for his unlimited subscription.

    No way I get my money’s worth. The kids mostly watch just a couple of shows, and the wife and I usually read instead of watching a movie. Still pay for it, because it’s a easy way to keep the kids in a relatively walled garden and the stuff they want is only a couple clicks away.

    n

  44. nick flandrey says:

    BTW, the crash in crypto might not be the trigger, but some of the more esoteric stuff is collapsing too.

    zerohedge.com VIX (some way to gamble on market volitility, I think) crashed 90% today. Lotta scared cats tomorrow, looking for a reason for the whole thing to come crashing down, and nervous as heII.

    This could be it…

    n

  45. lynn says:

    I am screaming mad tonight. I just figured out that I have been screwed by a software engineer on a project that she worked for us 30 years ago. I just figured out that she faked some features and no one caught it until I spent an hour on the phone today with a 30 seat prospect with a Fortune 50 company. The customer data is being read in but the data is ignored for downstream calculations. Arrrgh !

    Customers have been telling me this for years that this feature did not work but I was too stupid to understand what their problem was. Well, now I understand and man, did we ever get screwed ! She totally faked her project results. I was not working there at the time but I worked with her later and had quite a bit of respect for her abilities. Now I have no respect whatsoever.

    I’ve been promising this feature to the Fortune 50 prospect in negotiations that have been going on for three months now. They are trying to automate some engineering process work and managed to find us. We have great automation tools with full communication to MS Excel in our software. You can put the data in but you will never get it out. And this is the data needed to make the refinery emissions calculations.

    Sigh. I am estimating six man months to get this fixed. And that is for me. Twelve months for anyone else. I wonder if the prospect can wait for us ???

  46. lynn says:

    zerohedge.com VIX (some way to gamble on market volitility, I think) crashed 90% today. Lotta scared cats tomorrow, looking for a reason for the whole thing to come crashing down, and nervous as heII.

    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-02-05/vol-market-finally-broke-quant-explains-what-happened-today-and-what-coming

    Hey, I read a book along these lines a while back. It was a conspiracy between China and Japan to zero the Dollar by shorting USA tbills. Hey, I am the number one reviewer on the book !
    https://www.amazon.com/Buck-Out-Ken-Benton/dp/1514666979/

  47. brad says:

    “Males are beginning to refuse to have closed door meetings with females in the current #MeToo climate.”

    Whaddya mean, “beginning to”? Things aren’t nearly as nuts in Switzerland as in the US, nonetheless, I’ve avoided having one-on-one meetings behind closed doors with female students for many years now. Generally, it is something that one can avoid without being obvious about it.

    So: If I’m aware of the issue here, where things are not nuts, and this long before the @metoo idiocy, I cannot imagine how paranoid guys must be in the US nowadays. The damage to women’s careers won’t be visible for a while, but the extremism must be having a huge effect.

    Freakos like Weinstein deserve Mondays. But treating unsubstantiated accusations from decades past as anything but laughable is not the way forward.

    “So it’s only harassment if they don’t like it. If they do, it’s dating.”

    I trust everyone has seen the SNL instruction video?

    @Ray: Can I laugh at you? Also at me? I did exactly the same damned thing a couple of years ago. Box cutter, cutting something difficult. Thinking: “really ought to cut in the other direction”. Slip, slash.

  48. Miles_Teg says:

    Lynn, may I ask if this woman’s code was *reviewed* and third party tested before being accepted?

  49. Miles_Teg says:

    To some extent I think male-female relations at work had to change. In the early Eighties I worked with a very attractive but flat chested woman who was dating a cow-orker. She always wore translucent white blouses to work. One day it seemed to me that her chest was substantially larger than before. I accused her of wearing a padded bra. She denied it, I said yes you are… After this went back and forth for a while she offered to prove that her bra was normal, at which point I let the topic drop. Of course, I’d get sacked for that today. We also had nude pinups displayed in the office, again that would bring down feminist wrath today.

    A British couple I knew met at work and married two years later, as did my parents in the late Forties. Office romances are okay, but be careful.

  50. Greg Norton says:

    re C++, I was teaching seminars on (at the time) new and advanced features almost twenty years ago. I wrote an article for Dr Dobbs (I think; it was one of the CMP magazines) with C++ interview questions.* I made suggestions to the language committee. And yet I was viewed as unqualified for a couple C++ jobs because I hadn’t gotten a certificate to attest to my skill.

    I actually did the certificate program for the knowledge. Having the credential didn’t get me anywhere in the job market.

    At the time, I needed to come up to speed quickly on modern C++ to tackle a potential thesis topic using GNU Radio.

  51. Greg Norton says:

    I am screaming mad tonight. I just figured out that I have been screwed by a software engineer on a project that she worked for us 30 years ago. I just figured out that she faked some features and no one caught it until I spent an hour on the phone today with a 30 seat prospect with a Fortune 50 company. The customer data is being read in but the data is ignored for downstream calculations. Arrrgh !

    A few years ago, I received a call from Canon Microelectronics here in Austin. They were in search of Tcl expertise, one of my niche specialties.

    When it turned out they called because they figured I was desperate and would get on a plane to Japan several times a year for < $[crap money], I decided to have some fun and got really snarky. I had nothing to lose.

    "What blew up in your face?"

    "Huh? What?"

    "Be honest. I'm not flying to Japan 3-4 times a year for $[crap money] without a little more understanding of what I'm getting into. I have kids in elementary and middle school. My wife makes sure we eat and have a decent roof over our heads. I just got accepted to grad school with a teaching gig. So, what happened? H1B? Quota hire? Black? Attractive female?"

    "I don't want to go into …"

    "Look, you wouldn't be on the phone with me unless something blowed up real good. No one under 40 is going to come close to knowing Tcl adequately, and an Indian will lie to you just to get the sponsorship. I'm in classes with spoiled rich kids from Hyderabad who do nothing but cheat."

    "Well … okay. We had a woman who interviewed well, but it turned out that she took the work home to her husband at night. The bosses decided that it wouldn't work now that we were acquired by Canon and moving the factory back to Japan. The code needs serious effort to integrate with the parent company’s systems."

    … [20 minutes more of that kind of exchange. If anything, it was entertaining to listen to the groveling. The call beat playing “Civ III” until the kids got home from school.]

    At least he was honest. Believe it or not, his boss, a *female* called me several times after that over a six month period, applying the hard sell, but they never budged on $[crap money]. I guess they finally found someone since the calls stopped.

  52. Greg Norton says:

    I’ve been promising this feature to the Fortune 50 prospect in negotiations that have been going on for three months now. They are trying to automate some engineering process work and managed to find us. We have great automation tools with full communication to MS Excel in our software. You can put the data in but you will never get it out. And this is the data needed to make the refinery emissions calculations.

    The talent’s still out there to do all kinds of crazy things, but you know the drill — fast, good, cheap: pick two.

    Unless the trends change in a major way, in this country, in another 10 years, the talent will either be dead or occupying a bar stool at a FL beach bar. God help us when “Year 2038” hits. I’ll be 70.

  53. nick flandrey says:

    Don’t worry, the AI killer robots will take care of you before you get sent to “Carousel” for renewal.

    You’re descendants will get a nice soylent green cracker.

    Seriously though, what will replace programming and aviation? Both fields are greying (where it counts), both have enormous ‘institutional learning’ that will be lost, and both are losing the guys who learned all the hard lessons on the non-obvious stuff.

    Looking back, you can say this about it all, steam power, coal burning, discrete electronics, whaling, roughnecking, etc… so what comes next that obviates the need for the stored body of knowledge?

    n

  54. Nick Flandrey says:

    @miles_teg——- WTH were you thinkin’?????

    “I accused her of wearing a padded bra. She denied it, I said yes you are… After this went back and forth for a while ”

    NOT A CRIME to wear a padded bra! Not smart to mention it! And really, you have to know when to gracefully retire from the field of engagement when faced with an unwinnable battle……. when you find yourself in a hole, first stop digging!

    nick

  55. Ray Thompson says:

    @Brad: Can I laugh at you? Also at me?No, you cannot laugh at me or yourself. You can laugh with me in a joint guffaw at stupidity and knowing better. Getting stitches without any deadening of the area was, ahem, interesting.

    @Lynn: I just figured out that she faked some features When I was in the USAF, circa 1973-74 for this instance, the entire personnel system was being replaced, base level, command level and HQ level. I was working on the Base Level Military Personnel System (BLMPS) with a blimp for a logo. The system had to go live on April 1, 1974. We had most of our stuff done, stuff that was not done dealt with month end reporting to command and HQ.

    Anyway someone at HQ decided to show how brilliant they were in getting the reports aggregated that came from command level. Problem is they did not have any data flowing. So they faked the reports making them look like they were complete. Someone got a promotion and a few civilians got bumped a GS level. Problem was they forgot they had faked the reports.

    When the base level stuff was working on month end the data was flowed to command level and then flowed to HQ level. Odd thing was the numbers did not change at HQ for about three months before someone got suspicious. The initial blame was the base level system and we spent a couple of days scrambling to find the issue. Found out the data was correct. The command level did the same thing. Finally about a week later it was determined that the people at HQ had faked the information. Rather than punishing the people, demoting them, whatever, the people were simply reassigned. I guess the person that promoted all of them did not want to admit they made a mistake.

    More than once in my career in the USAF I have seen faked some data or report to give me the people in my group a couple more days to get the code working. Basically to get past a deadline that some clueless colonel imposed but the data or report was not needed until some magical date boundary, weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly. But we always made those deadlines.

    @Greg: they figured I was desperate and would get on a plane to Japan several times a year for < $[crap money] I went on a job interview once with a company. Answered all the questions correctly, punched all the correct buttons, etc. The company made me an offer on the spot. It was a pitiful offer even though I was currently not working and needed a job. I told them I would not take the job for that amount of money and they would have problems finding anyone at that amount of money. They laughed and told me to get out.

    A couple of months later I got called by the same company telling the job was still available if I wanted the job. The money offer was substantially better and was a number I would have accepted. I told them no, I had found another job, same amount of money, closer to my home and thus declined the offer.

    A month later they call again and offered the same job with more money than what I was currently making. I again told them no as you had your chance and I don’t give sloppy seconds. I liked where I was working, the commute was good, I saw no reason to change that position. Never heard back so I guess they found someone.

    As it turned out it was a good decision. The job was with a furniture manufacturer, fairly big operation and one of the major furniture companies. About one year later the plant was closed and all the people working at the plant lost their jobs. I would have been on of those back on the streets or optioned to relocate.

    the talent will either be dead or occupying a bar stool at a FL beach bar

    There is still a lot of COBOL code in production that needs maintenance. COBOL programmers, or those who spent a lot of time in COBOL, are dying off and will soon be no more. I have gotten more than one call to come work on some COBOL code but I would have to relocate to major city in a part of the country I have no desire to live. I tell them no and no amount of money will change my mind.

  56. Greg Norton says:

    A couple of months later I got called by the same company telling the job was still available if I wanted the job. The money offer was substantially better and was a number I would have accepted. I told them no, I had found another job, same amount of money, closer to my home and thus declined the offer.

    Canon never improved the dollar figure offered over six months of calls. They repeatedly cited my professional employment gap in the Northwest as justification for not improving the money on the table.

  57. SteveF says:

    They repeatedly cited my professional employment gap

    I freelance and have a lot of “gaps” between my full-time contracts, from a few weeks to most of a year. “Very suspicious,” say many employers. “Bite me,” say I.

  58. Greg Norton says:

    Don’t worry, the AI killer robots will take care of you before you get sent to “Carousel” for renewal.

    You’re descendants will get a nice soylent green cracker.

    The rule of thumb I developed about the West Coast is that if you understand the “Logan’s Run” reference, you are considered too old work in tech there.

    I not only understand the reference, I know the principals of the cast of both the movie and TV show. RIP Heather Menzes.

  59. brad says:

    IT employment is just weird. You can’t find qualified people, if you want them. Yet qualified people have trouble being recognized.

    On the other side: why do companies hire unqualified people? That’s something I really don’t get. Ok, maybe you make a mistake, but then you fire the person and start over. It’s no fun admitting you screwed up, but it’s a lot better than living with your mistake forever.

    Just as an example, there’s a guy sitting in the same open-plan office where I have my desk. He was hired about a year ago. Every time I see him in the office (thankfully, I am only at my desk about once a month), he is getting tutored by someone on something so basic that it hurts. Most recently, I had to help him figure out how to clone a public repository – a GIT repository, when GIT is the system we all use for all of our projects – and the guy has been here a year?!?! As near as I can tell, the guy is a net loss, a net drain on personnel resources.

  60. JLP says:

    before you get sent to “Carousel” for renewal

    Loved that movie when it came out. It was sci-fi, had naked ladies, an interesting story, and it also had naked ladies. All important things to a very young man in the 1970s. Jenny Agutter was probably my first movie star crush.

  61. Greg Norton says:

    Looking back, you can say this about it all, steam power, coal burning, discrete electronics, whaling, roughnecking, etc… so what comes next that obviates the need for the stored body of knowledge?

    Open source is the big change in software over the past 30 years IMHO, but that effort was simply about wresting control of the existing OS and developer tool tech out of the hands of IBM, Microsoft, AT&T, etc., and not a lot of truly “new” approaches to software development appeared other than the management theories.

    Unfortunately, lowering the cost facilitated training H1Bs and outsourcing, and entry level jobs in the US are either non-existent or heavily padded so the newbies don’t learn hard lessons.

  62. Miles_Teg says:

    Nick, things were different way back then. I was immature, We were all much younger and believed in having fun.

  63. Greg Norton says:

    On the other side: why do companies hire unqualified people? That’s something I really don’t get. Ok, maybe you make a mistake, but then you fire the person and start over. It’s no fun admitting you screwed up, but it’s a lot better than living with your mistake forever.

    Unless they are hired to fill a specific quota, unqualified people fill the hole and keep the budget in place for someone better down the road. They’re also “low hanging fruit” in a layoff situation.

    Most recently, I had to help him figure out how to clone a public repository – a GIT repository, when GIT is the system we all use for all of our projects – and the guy has been here a year?!?!

    Git is dangerous in the hands of newbies, especially if poorly administered. I trashed the repository of the company I worked for in Seattle learning how to branch/rebase properly.

  64. lynn says:

    Lynn, may I ask if this woman’s code was *reviewed* and third party tested before being accepted?

    Nope and nope. The project was a freaking disaster. The writer of the original code was an autistic mainland Chinese Chemical Engineering PhD. He lived with my family for a year after he got his PhD in 1972, yours truly got the couch. He was one of my partner’s grad students at OU. Incredibly smart. Wrote incredibly dense Fortran. No comments. In fact, my first programming job at age 15 was to take a piece of computer paper that he had scribbled a subroutine on the back of, keypunch it, and bring him the compiled card deck. Half of the refineries built in the 1970s and 1980s worldwide used our software to design their crude towers.

    So in the middle 1980s, management decided to integrate this software into the mainline software. A young Chinese engineer programmer was hired to do the integration work. Female. Nobody realized that autistic men do not do well with tough women. Sun Fu could not talk to her. Shoot, he could barely talk to me and he liked me. So she would try to get data structure information out of him and he would run away and hide (I was working for TXU at the time and got this second hand). So after a year, she declared the project to be done and nobody argued with her about it. Of course, she spent the next year fixing bugs that the customers found.

  65. lynn says:

    Git is dangerous in the hands of newbies, especially if poorly administered. I trashed the repository of the company I worked for in Seattle learning how to branch/rebase properly.

    There is one reason that I do not branch our code repository. I just mainline everything. There are only four of us programmers so it is not a big problem.

    Of course, right now on my office pc, I am maintaining two sandboxes, c:\dii (the future version 16.00) and c:\dii_15. I always develop in c:\dii and port back to c:\dii_15 as needful. Each sandbox is around 20 GB in size.

  66. lynn says:

    “I accused her of wearing a padded bra. She denied it, I said yes you are… After this went back and forth for a while ”

    Dude, the Australian woman that I used to know would have killed you for that. Literally. Fierce does not even begin to describe her.

  67. lynn says:

    Anyway someone at HQ decided to show how brilliant they were in getting the reports aggregated that came from command level. Problem is they did not have any data flowing. So they faked the reports making them look like they were complete. Someone got a promotion and a few civilians got bumped a GS level. Problem was they forgot they had faked the reports.

    My situation exactly. So I am going to fake it until we can make it. I woke up with a workaround in my mind.

  68. lynn says:

    Unless the trends change in a major way, in this country, in another 10 years, the talent will either be dead or occupying a bar stool at a FL beach bar. God help us when “Year 2038” hits. I’ll be 70.

    Nah, if the app has been recompiled with a modern compiler in the last 20 years, the 2038 problem has been moved to 2106 by converting from a signed 32 bit integer to a 32 bit unsigned integer. In fact, the fix might cause the app to fail compilation.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Year_2038_problem

  69. Greg Norton says:

    There is one reason that I do not branch our code repository. I just mainline everything. There are only four of us programmers so it is not a big problem.

    If you just mainline everything, Subversion is a better choice than Git. In a commercial environment, it also allows for finer grained access controls. The tradeoff is that you really need an administrator on staff who has been through the O’Reilly Subversion book cover-to-cover at least once.

    I see the upsides and downsides of both and choose accordingly for the situation. Git is designed and maintained for the work flow of *one* very important programmer on *one* very important project. The best way I know to describe the methodology is a hierarchy of benevolent dictators.

  70. SteveF says:

    Git is designed and maintained for the work flow of *one* very important programmer

    Agreed. ref the Linux kernel team, which is anything but a democracy.

    The approach works well enough so long as the “very important programmer” is as good as billed, and never dies or leaves the project, and can be trusted to hold the best interests of the company/team/project above all else. This is seldom the case.

    git does have some nice features, but it’s too easy to completely bodge the tree. Overall, I prefer Subversion.

  71. Greg Norton says:

    Agreed. ref the Linux kernel team, which is anything but a democracy.

    That’s good and bad IMHO. Intel’s facility in Oregon and OSU have tried to force affirmative action hires into key positions working on the Linux kernel, but they never last long.

  72. lynn says:

    If you just mainline everything, Subversion is a better choice than Git. In a commercial environment, it also allows for finer grained access controls. The tradeoff is that you really need an administrator on staff who has been through the O’Reilly Subversion book cover-to-cover at least once.

    I’ve tried to read that book. It is a real snoozer.

    We use an old version of PVCS which is a repackaged version of RCS.

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