Mon. April 9, 2018 – the future of work?

55F and drizzle today, grey and dreary.

Some discussion late yesterday about the future, education, and work.

My wife still thinks college is a good idea, and we’re funding appropriately to allow both kids to go if they want to. I am pretty sure it’s a waste of time and money outside of a few narrow fields, mainly STEM and the Arts. (Not gonna use the trendy “STEAM” moniker, as what is left?) Further, it’s a lefty PC hellhole on most campuses, where political indoctrination dominates every aspect of life.

The one thing I do like about going away to college is the break with your old life, and starting an independent life on your own. However, I think that it no longer works that way for the majority of students.

Several folks here have expressed the idea that they wouldn’t encourage a young person to enter their field (computer programming, management, support). My engineering trade mags say that most engineers WOULD encourage someone to enter, but that field takes a mindset (and mind) that most people don’t have. Many pundits suggest training in work that requires physical presence at a specific place (the traditional trades) as a way to future proof yourself. Others suggest caring fields (which pay like cr@p, and you have to deal with literal cr@p) but again, to do well in those fields requires a particular mindset.

I’ve subscribed to a “portfolio” approach since I first heard about it, mainly that work should be like an investment portfolio. Some high demand (risk) but high reward, some high satisfaction, but low reward (volunteer work). The key idea is that you move between different types of work in your portfolio at different points in your life. thus, I’ve had work that paid very well but required constant travel. I’ve had work that paid poorly but was very satisfying. I’ve moved thru each without a lot of angst mainly because I see them as different types of work in my ‘portfolio’ and recognize that none of them are permanent.

So, what does the hive mind think? Keeping in mind that the pendulum swings, the wheel turns, etc, and in 10 years the college situation might be different (neo-Victorian?) Also remember there are smaller colleges now that are not so lefty, although they tend to be religious.

Where will the work be and where will it not be? What will be required to get that work?

nick

56 thoughts on “Mon. April 9, 2018 – the future of work?”

  1. And after tossing that out, I’m driving all day. Austin here I come……

    n

  2. For some college is an excellent idea and entering into the technical fields such as engineering, computer science, medical, etc. For others it is a waste of time to attend any college at all.

    I worked on the University of TN campus though not affiliated with the university. The organization I worked for was an engineering honor society that is supposed to only allow the best and brightest into the organization. Many were extremely smart, but there were others that you wondered how they even got dressed.

    Case in point (multiple times). At the annual convention the rooms, lunch and dinner are already paid for and arranged. Breakfast is on the attendees (college students, generally seniors) own arrangement with reimbursement at a limited amount. The attendees are sent packets detailing all of this. Transportation from/to the airport is also arranged with specific instructions.

    But we would have students arrive with no money, take a private taxi to the convention hotel which was not allowed and not reimbursed, have no money (or credit card for breakfast), and generally unable to function without assistance.

    Attendees who would bitch in the business meeting about $5.00 increase in one-time membership fee but would spend the night consuming $50.00 in beer. Attendees would get one hour of sleep the night before a critical business meeting, not show up, and complain they had no input on the decisions made.

    Attendees who’s primary concern upon arrival was WiFi and where to plug in their cell phone to charge. Attendees at meetings spending their time on their cell phone watching videos, playing games, or checking their FB page. Basically non-functioning adults who would soon be entering the work force.

    The organization always had a recruiting fair the morning before the convention started. Top notch companies looking for good people were in attendance. Attendees were told to submit their resumes with very specific instructions before the convention and the resumes would be placed on a DVD for all the companies. Many attendees could not follow simple instructions in submitting the resumes.

    I talked with many of the recruiters and the theme was about the same. The quality of people coming out of college was miserable. The hope was that by attending a convention that was supposed to contain the best and brightest engineers that some quality could be found. But for the most part the general graduating population was a bunch of poorly educated, little common sense, “the world owes me ’cause I gradeeated callege” spoiled liberal brats who cannot differentiate between “there, their, and they’re”.

  3. There will always be a need for carpenters, plumbers, electricians, welders, and truck drivers. And no I do not buy that line that soon all trucks will be autonomous-self-driving.

    Yes, a broad portfolio is the way to go, but the kids today want it all now. There is no desire or drive to work down in the trenches and earn your stripes. No wonder today’s youth is so dissatisfied, they have not experienced the satisfaction of working their way up the ladder. They want a high-speed elevator to the penthouse.

    The Kids’ got back safely from their Seattle trip, the did get a bad case of Seattle-Sun-Tan, better known as rust and mildew. It rained the whole time and it was snowing on Snoqualmie Pass (people totally ignored the electronic 45 mph speed limit signs) as they came home. They ended up spending most of their time at the Seattle Aquarium. The octopus was being really active and my Daughter took a lot of video of her. My Daughter wonders if the octopus has a name? Any of you folks who are ex/present Seattle-ites know? Of course my Daughter spent a good deal of time with her favorite, the Puffins.

  4. Where will the work be and where will it not be? What will be required to get that work?

    After traveling coast to coast for a year, I’m convinced Community Colleges (trades) are making a come back. We visited a CC in Victorville, CA and were very impressed. AA in EMT areas, nursing, aircraft A/P, auto, etc. Very high job placement since the CC reaches out to industry and also hires a lot of industry folks who are tired of it.

  5. The octopus was being really active

    I visited an aquarium located at Newport Oregon. The people let me handle a large octopus. It was amazing. I put my hand in the tank and the animal came to my arm and started exploring with it’s tentacle. I could feel the mild suction. I got the impression the animal was quite curious. I was also quite surprised at how soft the animal felt. I never once felt threatened nor do I think the animal felt threatened. Amazing experience.

    We visited a CC in Victorville, CA and were very impressed

    Victor Valley Community College was around when I lived in Victorville in 1961-1962. Was fairly well regarded then. In my local area Roane State Community College is also getting good reviews. You can now attend as an adult for free (well state paid) to learn new skills. I have thought about taking an electrician class. Several of the kids in school are going to attend the community college to learn a trades skill while spending part of that education time working with journeyman in their chosen skill. A better alternative than college in my uneducated opinion.

  6. They ended up spending most of their time at the Seattle Aquarium.

    The Seattle Pinball Museum is still nearby in the International District. They do a lot with a very small space, and it is worth the walk.

    What was playing at Cinerama?

    I used to work in the Bank of America building so I know a bit about the south end of downtown. Seattle is fun to visit, but working there is “Logan’s Run”.

  7. I also want to attend a local CC to take electronics courses. Especially hands on labs.

  8. My wife still thinks college is a good idea, and we’re funding appropriately to allow both kids to go if they want to. I am pretty sure it’s a waste of time and money outside of a few narrow fields, mainly STEM and the Arts. (Not gonna use the trendy “STEAM” moniker, as what is left?) Further, it’s a lefty PC hellhole on most campuses, where political indoctrination dominates every aspect of life.

    After finishing my Masters, I passed on continuing for the PhD. Beyond being burned out on the politics of academia, a Computer Science degree is such a lucrative piece of paper anymore that, if attending a rigorous program, the students find it difficult to resist the temptation to cheat.

  9. Thanks to Griggs vs Duke Power, aptitude testing is out, except for the military. So that four year degree is now used to screen people for certain jobs. If your kids aspire to a job that requires the degree, get it, as cheaply as possible. If they don’t know what they want, an associates degree from a community college might still be worthwhile – if they do decide on a 4 year degree later, the credits will help.

    A job requiring a physical presence, like a HVAC installer, can provide a decent income and will never be outsourced to India.

  10. I also want to attend a local CC to take electronics courses. Especially hands on labs.

    You can do that, or you can build your own electronics lab and teach yourself. With various Internet resources like YouTube, you can also learn about electronics. An actual class would have the advantages of a specific time and place and others to learn with. Although, with your travel schedule, it might be difficult to do. There is nothing saying you can’t take some electronics stuff on the road with you and learn that way.

  11. As the father of a seven year old daughter, I am watching the devolving our our education system with some dismay. The daughter is in a public school that seems to still be working well enough to educate her, but seems to not be working very well for some of her peers, particularly the male ones. I think we have the cost of her undergraduate education covered if she decides to go that way, but if she decides to be a veterinarian we haven’t covered the cost of that yet. So we still have something to work on for the next eleven years.

  12. Via theblaze:
    Teacher to quit after blasting rude parents in viral FB post: ‘Stop coddling and enabling’ kids
    excerpt:

    A Texas teacher has had it with her professional life and revealed in a viral Facebook post targeting parents for coddling their children that she plans to quit teaching.
    What are the details?

    Texas teacher Julie Marburger’s post zeroed in on “disrespectful” parents who coddle and enable their children, making them nightmares to work with as a public educator.

    As a result of her overall experience in the school system — including dealing with parents and children and a lack of funding — Marburger says that there’s “no way” for her to do the job she was hired to do, which is to teach children.

    Along the same line regarding students disrespecting teachers, I may have related this before but is worth retelling:

    The son of a Mob Boss attended my high school. One day as I was working in the Guidance Counselors’ Office Mr. Reek (USMC, Gunny), P.E. Instructor and Wrestling Coach, brought the Mob Boss’s son into the office for insubordination and called his father. Very shortly thereafter “Morrie” arrived in “full dress mob attire” with 2 very large “muscles”. When Mr. Reek explained to “Morrie” what his Son had done, “Morrie” grabbed his Son and through him against the wall and said if he ever pulled that stunt again he would let “muscle 1 and muscle 2” teach him a lesson. “Morrie” apologized to Mr. Reek and everyone in the office for the commotion and that his Son must always respect authority. He and his “boys” would be glad to help.

    “Morrie” was one of the last real old-time Chicago Mob Bosses. His territory was much of the Northern Chicago Suburbs. He ran things “old style” and provided “protection”. I met “Morrie” several more times, good stories, but I’ll save those for later.

  13. Thanks to Griggs vs Duke Power, aptitude testing is out, except for the military. So that four year degree is now used to screen people for certain jobs.

    My new company gives what is essentially an IQ test, labelled as “programmer aptitude”. It is still legal, but I’m guessing compliance with the regulations is expensive and most companies don’t bother.

  14. Teacher to quit after blasting rude parents in viral FB post: ‘Stop coddling and enabling’ kids

    Rudness can be a two way street in a school situation.

    We’re usually “hands off” with our kids, but I had to step in this morning after the band director, without any advance notice/warning, sent more candy home on Friday for our son to sell.

    I walked the box of chocolate bars into the school (of course I signed in as a visitor), placed it on the band director’s desk along with a check for our existing sales obligation, and said “I’ll assume that the extra box was an honest mistake”. Then I turned around and left.

    No rudeness, but I wanted to communicate that I was not going to tolerate more candy coming home to sell. From what I understand, when parents aren’t around, the band director is a bully.

  15. For someone starting out, I’d think about any job with a van full of tools. I’m reminded of the DeNiro fixit character in Brazil (One of my fave movies!) Marketing or salesperson for the right temperament. Franchisee if they’ve come up from the bottom. A retail micro niche with a focus on web presence. Oh! Any of the service / repair contractors I’ve known needed an office manager / bookkeeper to keep the trains running on time. Nowadays, FIRE careers have heavy lucre potential, but I question their viability in even the short term for a newby.

    Independence from institutional hierarchy, not too many government forms and an absolute minimum of $taff. Not an easy prospect.

    I’d like to hear Mr. Lynn’s thoughts.

    I am with RBT, only about 10% of the populace should go to college. The other 90% should learn a trade in high school. And, our immigration problem has destroyed the entry level jobs for our kids graduating from high school. Trump knows this.

    Speaking of high school, kids are not getting educated there. Nor in junior high and some not even in elementary. Most of the kids now in special ed (approaching 40% of students !) are there because of behavioral issues, not learning issues. The coddling must stop, society cannot afford this. In fact, if you are a behavioral issue then at some point, the school system needs to be able to drop you. We want the kids in school who are interested in learning, not the trouble makers. The trouble makers have learned that they can destroy our schools and are doing so gleefully.

  16. And continuing the “all kids go to college” thoughts, I graduated from a small college in College Station in 1982 called TAMU, Texas Agricultural and Mechanical College. The further that you get away from the A & M, the less use that you are to society. Agricultural needs learning to handle crop nurturing and field rotation, etc, etc, etc. Engineering needs are paramount to society. Chemistry is needful, biology is needful, mathematics is needful, some history is needful, some social studies is needful, etc, etc, etc. But, women studies, native american studies, hispanic studies are not needful. I am on the fence about teaching and journalism degrees being not needful at all. People do not understand that in Texas, 90% of the college cost is subsidized at the public universities and junior colleges. The taxpayers are paying for an incredible amount of nonsense now.

    BTW, if I wanted my wife to know this, I would tell her. Wait, I have ! She has a bachelors in psychiatry and a masters in social work (I paid for her masters !). She worked at juvenile probation in Harris County (Houston) and Catholic Charities for a while. You would not believe the people that these organizations serve. Just horrible, horrible people and/or situations.

  17. There will always be a need for carpenters, plumbers, electricians, welders, and truck drivers. And no I do not buy that line that soon all trucks will be autonomous-self-driving.

    Paid a carpenter $150 today for 3 hours work, fixing a very expensive entertainment unit.

    I think long haul trucks are likely to be semi-automated in a few years. The first truck in a caravan will have a driver and there will be several automated trucks following.

  18. The taxpayers are paying for an incredible amount of nonsense now.

    And Jimbo Fisher. Plus another year of Charlie Strong coaching at my alma matter in Tampa.

    Thanks TX taxpayers — Central Florida vs. South Florida was a heckuva game last season and many in Tallahassee would argue Jimbo was pushing his “sell by” date.

    (As a near native Floridian, I couldn’t resist.)

  19. College is still the right choice for many careers. Engineering and comp-sci as examples. Probably also things like accounting and business – although it needs to be a serious program, not one of the “give-away” degrees designed for people who can’t actually do anything difficult.

    Many other degrees are worthless, including (sorry, Nick) arts degrees. Theater, music, painting, creative writing – they all make great hobbies but lousy professions for most people. Yet too many entitled artists seem to thing that the world owes them a living. It doesn’t, and they should pursue their art as a hobby or a sideline.

    I don’t get the people who say that you shouldn’t go into programming anymore. The thing is: there are piles of mediocre and lousy programmers out there. Sure, they shouldn’t be in programming. But if you are actually good at it, there is far more demand than supply. As with any sort of STEM field, though, your brain really has to “tick” that way. If it doesn’t, there’s no point; you should do something else with your life.

    That said, there is no reason at all to look down on the trades. A good electrician, or plumber, or carpenter is worth a lot. I don’t know how many plumbers we went through, before we finally found one who can deal with our 80-year-old house and its quirks. Same for electricians – finding a good one who is detail-oriented and doesn’t cut corners is hard. Granted, I’m fussy, because I’m originally an EE, but the quality of work of our current electrician is out of this world.

    The difficult question is: what to do with people who aren’t suited to anything, usually due to simple laziness and not-giving-a-shit. One of my wife’s employees is nearly in that category. She comes in, does some work (but not too much, she might strain something). Then, when her hours are up, she leaves – even if she’s in the middle of some task. My wife then has to run around and see what she left half-finished, what she screwed up, etc.. I’d go nuts – why doesn’t she care enough to check her own work, to finish what she starts? It’s a mentality I just absolutely cannot relate to, and one I have absolutely no patience with.

  20. My grandson, a 4+ GPA senior, will be starting this fall at Cal Poly or USC to study Civil Engineering.
    https://www.calpoly.edu/
    https://about.usc.edu/
    For those such as he, it is the perfect thing to do.

    His sister, doing well as a sophomore at the same high school, is also looking forward to college.
    http://nhhs.nmusd.us/
    She is looking toward nursing at this time. Her grandmother, my wife, earned a BS in Nursing at Northwestern University. How can I not support her goals?

  21. The taxpayers are paying for an incredible amount of nonsense now.

    And Jimbo Fisher. Plus another year of Charlie Strong coaching at my alma matter in Tampa.

    Actually, the former students at TAMU and UT are paying most of those salaries through targeted “gifts” to the football programs. I’m not saying that it is right, I’m just saying that is how it is done. The new football stadium at TAMU, 105,000+ seats, was totally paid for by “gifts”.

  22. She is looking toward nursing at this time. Her grandmother, my wife, earned a BS in Nursing at Northwestern University. How can I not support her goals?

    I forgot nursing and accounting. Both worthwhile college programs that should be started in high school. One of my first cousins is a NICU RN.

  23. I think far too many people have gotten into the rut that learning is for school. I think learning is for life. School is a place you should be able to go to learn, but you don’t have to go to school to learn. Colleges seem to be transforming into a place you go to get stupid, not a place you go to get smarter. Community colleges and conservative religious colleges seem to be the only exceptions to this trend.

  24. A fun story about how you start not being how you finish, and about learning being a lifelong experience. The lady who was the Medical Director of the Washington DC Ambulance Service resigned because the quality of service was abysmal, and nobody cared about her efforts to improve things. Someone criticized her for being out of touch with the real world. I thought that was funny because before she went to medical school to study emergency medicine, she worked first as an EMT, then as a Paramedic in New Orleans. I think she knows a thing or two about emergency medicine and how it should work in the field.

  25. I think learning is for life. School is a place you should be able to go to learn, but you don’t have to go to school to learn.

    +1000

  26. … but you don’t have to go to school to learn.

    What is the alternative to learning the laws of motion and thermodynamics? Watching the ladies talking of morning TV shows?

  27. The lady who was the Medical Director of the Washington DC Ambulance Service resigned because the quality of service was abysmal, and nobody cared about her efforts to improve things.

    Jullette M. Saussy

    “Saussy performed her internship and residency at Charity Hospital (New Orleans).”

    Yep, if she worked at “Big Charity” prior to Katrina she definitely knew a thing or two because she’d seen a thing or two. The ED there was the place to go if you’d been stabbed or shot, ’cause they had so much experience!

  28. _The Last Star: The Final Book of The 5th Wave_ by Rick Yancey
    https://www.amazon.com/Last-Star-Final-Book-Wave/dp/0142425877/

    Book number three of a three book young adult alien invasion series. I read the well formatted and printed trade paperback. I doubt that there will be more books in the series.

    This series is just about the most depressing SF book that I have ever read. About 99.8% of the human race is dead and the last 0.2% are not doing very well. The amount of violence is the book is simply breathtaking.

    We spotted the Alien spaceship when it starting braking at Mars orbit. Ten days later, it went into orbit around the Earth. It was the size of Manhattan and circled at 250 miles up. All attempts at communication failed. Then the waves started.

    The first wave: an EMP blast worldwide destroyed all electronics and electrical system. A million people were killed in planes and such.

    The second wave: the others dropped a rock a mile wide into the ocean. The resulting tsunamis killed half of the world’s population who lived within 60 miles of a coastline.

    The third wave: the others infected birds with a highly contagious disease with a 97% fatality rate for humans.

    The fourth wave: the others implanted nanomachine AI systems into many humans who started killing unimplanted humans. Trust no one !

    The fifth wave: …

    My rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    Amazon rating: 3.9 out of 5 stars (1,089 reviews)

  29. Teacher to quit after blasting rude parents in viral FB post: ‘Stop coddling and enabling’ kids

    We know that young woman well, helped raise her and her brother for a couple of years back in the 80’s. We had dinner with her and her family last year as they were driving through our area. Have been following her work to get her teaching certification, her excitement at getting a teaching position, and the challenges she has had to face. We were as shocked as she was when her post of frustration went suddenly viral and she became a national name. I can attest that she is a dedicated woman who wants to help and make a difference. I was shocked when I learned how she was being treated by not only her class but the parents and the administration gave her NO support. This episode is not the first but the one that finally broke her resolve.
    My wife retired from teaching, college level English, when we returned to the US. After looking at how US Universities had changed since we went abroad in the mid 90’s she simply refused to be a part of what is laughingly called the Education system.

  30. RE: I think long haul trucks are likely to be semi-automated in a few years.

    My son worked for a long haul maintenance facility for a few years. He predicts that long haul will be automated between depot locations outside major population centers with the last few miles being manual drive. It’s really simple to automate the 95% of the trip from depot to depot and not have to worry about enforcing sleep and rest periods. He was so convincing that I looked into buying a couple of promising depot sites.

  31. Teacher to quit after blasting rude parents in viral FB post: ‘Stop coddling and enabling’ kids

    Back in the day, three of my fellow programmers were former teachers. They left the “education” field because they could no longer stand the physical abuse. One, a rather small woman, was punched in the stomach by a third-grader.

  32. but the kids today want it all now

    That’s kinda been true forever. I recall feeling quite smug when I returned to community college decades ago, after a few years on an assembly line. The straight from high school students seemed impossibly yearning for entitlements that were not going to drop from the sky. The academic work was such a vacation from shift standing that I had to laugh at the moaning and groaning of my colleagues.

    I blame television for entertainment that divorced interpersonal issues of the high powered with the mundane business of day to day living. Not that mundane reality is entertaining. It engendered an expectation that the mundane would
    ever be a reality.

    Functionally, college and half of high school is daycare for the vast majority, to keep youngsters out of the workforce. That is an amazing luxury of a wealthy society we are not going to be able to afford soon enough.

  33. Back in the day, three of my fellow programmers were former teachers. They left the “education” field because they could no longer stand the physical abuse. One, a rather small woman, was punched in the stomach by a third-grader.

    The local school districts have split their student populations into the conforming and the non-conforming by usage of so-called disciplinary alternative schools.
    https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED509896.pdf

    “There are more students in DAEPs, and one out of three students has been referred to a DAEP multiple times. There were 105,530 students in Texas DAEPs in 2006, up from 70,958 in 1996 – almost a 50 percent increase. One in three are referred more than once in a year”

    If you ask me, more students need to be sent to the disciplinary alternate schools. All it takes is one problem student to disrupt an entire class. And, it gives the parent(s) a reality check. If the parent(s) care at all, they will move heaven and earth to get their kids into a private school or home school them. Either is a vast improvement over today’s public school system.

  34. BTW, when the federal government goes bankrupt in the next 5 to 15 years, all of the college and school money will disappear immediately. When the current income of the federal government does not even fund social security, defense, and medicare, the priorities will become obvious immediately.

  35. The local school districts have split their student populations into the conforming and the non-conforming by usage of so-called disciplinary alternative schools.

    Another school teacher related to me that she spent September and October each year documenting the misbehavior of the troublemakers in her class so they could be shipped off to Louisiana’s version of “alternate education.” It wasn’t until November of each year that she could begin teaching in earnest.

  36. @RickH: Really liking the HTML buttons at the top of the reply box. Great time-savers!

  37. @H. Combs said:

    He predicts that long haul will be automated between depot locations outside major population centers with the last few miles being manual drive.

    We’ve had that for hundreds of years, it’s called the railroad. Too bad so much of the infrastructure has been removed.

    However there is some revitilization in some areas. Here in the Pacific Northwest where a few years ago the enviro-weenies made them rip up many miles of rail, particularly second sets of rail, well now BNSF and Union Pacfic are doubling up a lot of lines and restoring ones they had to tear out completely.

  38. “disciplinary alternative schools”

    When I was in school there was no such thing. There were teachers like Mrs. Lyle. Pushing 6 feet tall and really big…. she would sit on her chair and pull or push her desk. When you annoyed her enough that it was time to meet the Board of Education, you /were/ going across the hall and hitting the lockers… every hit. That was 6th grade.

    In 8th grade I had a math teacher that would make guys cry. I never had the “joy”.

    Ok, this was in Mobile. Late 60’s… and Integration was still new. It wasn’t the colored kids causing trouble.

  39. BTW, when the federal government goes bankrupt in the next 5 to 15 years, all of the college and school money will disappear immediately. When the current income of the federal government does not even fund social security, defense, and medicare, the priorities will become obvious immediately.

    As long as the Feds have any sort of income stream, debt service will come first. Army paychecks would probably come next on the priority list since “provide for the common defense” is in the Constitution. As currently interpreted by the courts, Social Security payouts are not guaranteed, and Medicare is already fairly pointless without a supplement.

    The fun will begin the moment the EBT network goes down.

  40. As long as the Feds have any sort of income stream, debt service will come first. Army paychecks would probably come next on the priority list since “provide for the common defense” is in the Constitution. As currently interpreted by the courts, Social Security payouts are not guaranteed, and Medicare is already fairly pointless without a supplement.

    Nope, the cause of the federal government bankruptcy will be the debt as the debt holders sell their bonds in firesales. The debt will be repudiated immediately. And yes, the military will be paid, especially as foreign debt holders send armies to recover their monies and/or goods.
    https://www.amazon.com/Buck-Out-Ken-Benton/dp/1514666979/

  41. The fun will begin the moment the EBT network goes down.

    Yup. And it won’t only be the EBT network. It will also be the credit card networks. I am not sure about the ATM and Debit networks as those are directly coupled to their sponsoring banks.

  42. I am not sure about the ATM and Debit networks as those are directly coupled to their sponsoring banks.

    Perhaps not so much anymore. Many go through networks that are owned by several banks with transactions flowing to the on-us banks. The multiple shared ATM networks generally this is the best solution. When I worked for National Bancshares Corporation they owned their own ATM’s doing their own servicing. They were looking at outsourcing the ATM’s to some company along with the servicing as a way to cut costs. The cost of the ATM would be shared by multiple organizations. Being a member of PULSE made this possible. The transactions are approved (or denied) by the financial institution but the actual transaction originates with ATM provider. Not 100% certain this trend continued but it seemed to be heading in that direction. But that was years ago so what do I know?

  43. “including (sorry, Nick) arts degrees. Theater, music, painting, creative writing – they all make great hobbies but lousy professions for most people.”

    If you want to work in the arts, you MUST attend university. That’s what I meant. The uni is the gatekeeper to paid work in the fields. The exception is technical theatre (production of the physical aspects). Although you will meet the people you need to meet, and learn the skills to do the jobs, it IS possible to start in local theatre (or small budget film) and work your way up, or to join a union and learn thru the apprenticeship process. The entertainment industry is HUGE and generates a disproportionate percentage of our export dollars and cultural exports as well. Since it is basically created from thin air, the returns are astronomical. (GDP calculation doesn’t accurately capture the dollars for technical reasons.)

    n

    (since my first two careers were directly in entertainment, and the third leveraged the first two, I think I got my money’s worth. Most of the technical people I know from then are working in related fields.)

  44. The debt will be repudiated immediately. And yes, the military will be paid, especially as foreign debt holders send armies to recover their monies and/or goods.

    The Chinese don’t want the gadgets back since proper disposal would be expensive.

    Back when the previous Internet bubble popped, I remember bankrupt companies in Sunnyvale selling surplus Aeron chairs for $300 while their Cisco routers sat unsold in racks, baking in the sun in parking lots of surplus vendors up and down 101.

    Speaking of which … end of an era, indeed. This marks the culmination of a huge culture shift in the Valley which has been in the works since Internet 2.0 started, book-ended by the closing of Computer Literacy in 2001 and, now, Weird Stuff.

    https://www.mercurynews.com/2018/04/08/sjm-l-weirdstuff-0408/amp/

    The Valley’s history of the last 20 years in a nutshell: Barnes&Noble.com killed Computer Literacy. A FANG company (Google) bumped off Weird Stuff, and another one (Amazon) will finish off Barnes & Noble this year.

  45. The debt will be repudiated immediately. And yes, the military will be paid, especially as foreign debt holders send armies to recover their monies and/or goods.

    The Chinese don’t want the gadgets back since proper disposal would be expensive.

    Yup, and they won’t want our worthless cash either. They will want real estate ! I propose that we give them California !

    Sorry Slim.

  46. I propose that we give them California !

    The Chinese are probably smart enough to not take that liberal money pit.

  47. Au contraire, the chinese are buying cali as fast as the round eyes will sell it to them….

    and Chicongo (locally known as ‘glass city’ due to all the sold but unoccupied residential towers

    and Vancouver and Toronto for that matter.

    n

  48. I just want to watch Jerry Brown tell the new Chinese governor of California that he cannot put an aluminum smelter in the Sierra Madres and use the cheap hydro power.

  49. Au contraire, the chinese are buying cali as fast as the round eyes will sell it to them….

    Raycisss!

  50. Au contraire, the chinese are buying cali as fast as the round eyes will sell it to them….

    and Chicongo (locally known as ‘glass city’ due to all the sold but unoccupied residential towers

    and Vancouver and Toronto for that matter.

    That is the future Chinese ex-patriots buying those for a place to run to when China crashes …

  51. Hit the State Surplus store in Austin for an auction pickup. Always look thru the stuff when I’m there. Got a couple of nice pocket knives, crkt, for just a couple bucks. Also picked up 2 of the “tactical pens” by S&W for a fiver each. These actually have working pens inside and a tablet stylus cover that works great. They are fairly smooth and thinner than most. IDK how people think they can get a tac pen past TSA, they look like exactly what they are. Also picked up a couple of really nice wire stripper pliers at $5 each. Either retails for $25-30. One was brand new.

    Then I hit up the Goodwill OUTLET store. search on youtube for some example videos. the videos don’t capture the smell of desperation, mold, and p!ss though. Nor do they capture the NOISE of hundreds of savages tearing thru the piles of debris like seagulls tearing at a corpse. The goodwill outlet gets whatever doesn’t sell at local goodwill stores, or is to nasty or broken. They sell everything by the pound.

    This was my first and probably last visit, although I did buy some stuff. I got a ubiquiti nanobridge M5 for about $5 complete with reflector dish and a 4 foot mounting pole. I got some plumbing parts, chrome over brass, and 3 sets of HEAVY commercial deadbolt locks, with keys. I guess no one wanted the heavy stuff ‘cuz it costs more…. They are really nice locksets, and I think I can key them to match the new door knob I put on my back door, but if not, I’ll find a good use for them. Really nasty place, but if I can make money there, it’s worth the occasional visit.

    The auction items I was in Austin to pick up were nice. I’ll go through them tomorrow but they look good. It’s a lot of driving to go to Austin and back but an easy drive, and I don’t have to leave at the butt crack of dawn to get back before dinner.

    now off to get ready for bed. Driving wipes me out, no matter how easy the drive or how good the road.

    n

  52. Brad wrote:

    “I don’t get the people who say that you shouldn’t go into programming anymore. ”

    Programming hasn’t changed. The work environment has.

    I was trained as a programmer in the late 70s, and loved it for 10 years. Then managerialism took over and things got worse. By 2013 I’d had enough. I was writing about five lines of Cobol (the computer language of Hell) a *month*, the rest was administrative crap, and being asked “where are you going Greg?”

    I met up with some old friends from uni a few months ago. The lawyers said “don’t do law”, the accountants said the same of accounting and I said the same of CS.

    My sister has been in the state education system since 1971 and will retire there. Two of her kids and their spouses are all at good private schools in Asia (Singapore and Seoul) and would be wasted in the state system. I am certainly glad I dodged that bullet.

  53. I don’t get the people who say that you shouldn’t go into programming anymore.

    Oh, I dunno. Could it be …

    … the 70-80 hour workweeks, and being on call 24/7?

    … that every project has a deadline of yesterday?

    … being yanked off an almost-completed project to work on today’s “emergency”, while still being required to finish the original project on time?

    …. suffering through all of the above so your incompetent idiot of a manager, who’d be happy to sell you down the river if it would somehow benefit him, can look good to his boss?

Comments are closed.