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Posts Tagged ‘Corporate America’

I guess I complain about meetings a lot.

This morning, NPR’s Yuki Noguchi ran a piece on the overuse and misuse of meetings in Corporate America, and several of my friends immediately forwarded the link to me.

Yeah. I complain about meetings. A lot.

But then, I have a lot of meetings about which to complain. (more…)

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If you want to drive me completely bugfrak crazy, here’s what you do:

  1. Set me the task of fixing a system I know nothing about.
  2. Give me just enough time to analyze the system and get to the point where I juuuust barely understand it.
  3. Let me find the flaw in the system, and get an inkling of a solution.
  4. Take me off that task and set me on another.
  5. Repeat.

Do this enough times and I abso-effing-guarantee you I will go completely postal and do something rash. Like…I don’t know…make hum-bao from scratch. Or apply for a transfer to another group. (Trust me. In my case, that’s rash.)

I mean, seriously now, how hard is it to plan resources three weeks in advance?? (more…)

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A recent episode of “The Good Wife” made me laugh out loud. (In case you didn’t know, “The Good Wife” is not a comedy.)

In the episode, the management at a (rather ill-defined) software development firm referred to their staff as “artists.” Yes, that’s right; we were supposed to believe that this firm not only believed that the job I do–variously titled Programmer, Developer, Coder–is highly creative in nature, but that this firm also chose to encourage that by building an atmosphere that was conducive to the artistic temperament.

It’s not that software development isn’t creative. It is.

I spend my day solving problems. As a software developer, you bring me a problem and I create a solution for it. That’s it in a nutshell. I create a solution. Oh, sure, there’s a bunch of other bushwa in there, like translating your problem from Business-talk into Tech-speak, like translating it from Tech-speak into something a machine will understand, like trying to break the solution through testing, but the kernel of this job is highly creative in nature.

What I found laughable is the idea that corporate management would recognize this. Anywhere. (more…)

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Two interesting articles out of the UK’s Guardian newspaper crossed my desk this morning. One was about bones, and one was about money.

First, a team of archaeologists and historians in Britain have uncovered the bones of Richard III. For real. The bones tell an amazing and horrifying story of the last moments of the last Plantagenet king, and the last British king to die in battle. And, for those who have been wondering just how much Shakespeare’s anti-Plantagenet propaganda was fiction regarding the king’s twisted form, we can now genuinely say that physically, at least, his depiction was accurate.

The team, working in a car park in Leicester, lifted the horribly severed skull, the arm and leg bones, and then the severely curved spine. The bones tell us something of his life, of his death, and of his treatment after death. Much of it was not pretty.

The second article I found of interest was an interview with Robert Reich and Jacob Kornbluth about the documentary that swept the Sundance Festival and will soon be in wide distribution. Inequality for All is being called the economy’s equivalent of An Inconvenient Truth.

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Obey the Kitty!In other news, I’m getting a divorce.

Yes, after 20+ years with the same company, I’m finally so weary of the booshwah that I’m going to risk a re-entry to the job market. It’s not often you find someone who’s been with the same company for 20+ years, nowadays, but it happens. To be frank, it’s the way I’ve always thought it should be.

Growing up, I watched my father work long and steady hours for only two companies. He was a lithographer, and there weren’t too many shops back then, even in San Francisco, but there were enough that he could have switched jobs every few years. But he didn’t. Few people did. Longevity was the norm, back then. You found a place you liked; you stayed there, and your tenure was respected. (more…)

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Obey the Kitty!Contrary to my plans, I didn’t do any re-edits this weekend. The monkey-boy day-job got in the way. Executive Management decided to push up a deadline, so, for the second weekend in a row, I had to work (no overtime, no compensation). I noticed that Executive Management was not online, working with us…but I digress.

But I got a “thank you” from my immediate lead. He tossed me a quarter. That’s right. $0.25. That was my thank-you for nineteen straight days of work.

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Obey the Kitty!Now hear this!

In the past, people have asked me: Do you get to pick your own title for your books?

  • Short answer: Yes.
  • Longer answer: Yes, but the publisher can override my choice.

Such was the case for two of my books, and I now have the chance to fix at least one of them.

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