Posts by Rich of Observationz

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  • Hard News: Nelson Street: Not too…,

    So you don't think they should incorporate a kicker?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4742 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Will the grown-ups ever…,

    Police are taking a cautious approach

    As generally the case when the perp is part of the ruling party.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4742 posts Report Reply

  • Envirologue: Choose Wisely, Grasshopper:…, in reply to Marc C,

    {Just to fact-check you, and because I could really care less about personality politics:

    The Luftwaffe fully exists and has done since 1956. It's the German word for "air force", so would have to be called something like that.

    Although the word "führer" was largely expunged from the language after WW2. They use "leiter" instead}

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4742 posts Report Reply

  • Envirologue: Choose Wisely, Grasshopper:…,

    Well, the Yugoslav wars were fairly horrible. There is however the fact that every country in former Yugoslavia is now more or less democratic. If the West hadn't attacked, at best there might be a Fiji style pseudo-democracy in the Serb-majority territory, and at worst Milosevic and co still in power.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4742 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Campbell interviewed,

    the chances of randomly assembling such a team are astronomically low

    But teams aren't randomly assembled. The company decides that it can import coders from the Philippines or someplace on a temporary work permit and pay them $20k a year - the good ones then realize they're being screwed and jump ship to proper jobs.

    I see your point on average vs worst, but there are two factors not included in McConnell's 10x that I was alluding to:
    - the bigger the team, the less efficient. If you can size a job to be done by a single developer in the required time, that's optimum. The "better" the developer, the more work they can do as a self-contained unit. Too many cooks, etc.
    - managers cost money. Less programmers (especially if they mostly self-manage) means less managers, hence more functionality per $$.

    What’s hard isn’t finding them, it’s paying for them

    In production per dollar of wages, the expensive programmers cost less. Of course, there are many reasons why management (and staff) might not want rock stars on high six figures in the company.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4742 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Meet me at Camera 2: White,

    I can’t really be bothered to engage with some people today, so have an interesting article:
    http://www.vox.com/2015/6/3/8706323/college-professor-afraid

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4742 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Campbell interviewed,

    It is a lot easier to find 10 good programmers than one good manager of programmers. Programmers are churned out from educational programmer factories

    It's a lot easier to find 10 programmers, possibly. Are you aware of the research that shows a 10x variation in productivity between programmers? (A corollary to this is that since the best programmers are generally self-managing and productivity declines with team size, two really good programmers can do the job of many more than 20 average ones, and require a lot fewer managers).

    There are a lot of mediocrities who can trot out received dogma at interview, and could churn out endless form-filling applications, provided they have a business owner to iterate through exactly where all the fields go, etc. Good programmers are harder to find, and they aren't churned out in EducationalProgrammerFactories, they require individual instantiation*

    It's also hard to find good managers, granted, but you don't need many (a lot of functional OSS projects have none). The #1 job of any software manager is to hire good people (which is hard) and the #2 job is not to piss them off too much (which is also hard).

    * Bad Java joke

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4742 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: Not Uniform,

    It’s not about gang colours

    That justification came from a teacher, that they wouldn't be able to stop the kids fighting over gang colours if they weren't made to wear a uniform.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4742 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: Not Uniform,

    Don’t see why kids need uniforms. Most European countries, they don’t. We didn’t in my sixth form, and the world didn’t fall in because a few kids went to school fully goffed, punked or metalled up.

    It’s all about indoctrinating kids into subordination for the sake of it.

    (The only reasonable argument I heard is that it suppresses gang colours. Which is a bit of a sad indictment. Also, what if all those angelic looking year 5’s were actually Crips/BP? Riccarton’s blue, right?)

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4742 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Meet me at Camera 2: White,

    Actually, I think that "privilege theory" is one of those academic ideas (like Baudrillard's concept of Simulacra and Simulation) that don't really map into the "real" world.

    It's keenest exponents are US academics. I'm sorry, but if you are a tenured academic at Berkeley, for instance, then notwithstanding your being African-American, trans-gendered and having a quiver full of "genuine" disabilities like non-coeliac gluten intolerance or whatever, you are still better off than practically all the six billion other people in the world. Even if people are reflexively nasty to you if you're dumb enough to visit (in person or online) the more unpleasant backwoods of the planet, you can still get in your Tesla, drive home to a nice apartment and spend several hours cooking yourself a nutritionally appropriate meal.

    Also, it's part of an obsession with language. Let's look at that esteemed liberal institution, the University of California at Berkeley. Use the wrong words to describe non-white people there, and you will be in serious trouble. However, for the last sixty years, tucked away on a mesa in New Mexico, UCB has run a lab developing a range of nuclear and non-nuclear means to kill said non-white people.

    Yeah.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4742 posts Report Reply

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