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Researchers Say the Tech Worker Shortage Doesn't Really Exist

BVis Re:There's a tech job shortage, not a worker short (415 comments)

That assumes that they care about losing "the best". They would rather have a bunch of mediocre workers that get the job done and accept poor treatment than have good workers who want crazy shit like market wages and to be treated like human beings. At a certain point "good" is no longer profitable, you reach the point of diminishing returns. Cheap > good again. The Walmart effect in action.

yesterday
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Researchers Say the Tech Worker Shortage Doesn't Really Exist

BVis Re:Yup, that's the case (415 comments)

Bottom line: They're cheap. They can hire 4 of them for the cost of one FTE here. That's all they care about. Dollars are easy to quantify; quality of work is more difficult, especially when you're a walking haircut in an empty suit with an MBA and remarkable myopia. Trying to get an MBA to understand the difference between "cheap" and "good" is like talking to a wall most of the time. In their mind, they are the same. They don't understand what their reports do, and refuse to listen to them when they raise a problem that might require 1) actual work on their part, or 2) (shock horror) SPENDING MONEY.

yesterday
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Researchers Say the Tech Worker Shortage Doesn't Really Exist

BVis Re:Well Duh (415 comments)

You might want to get your sarcasm detector checked :)

yesterday
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Researchers Say the Tech Worker Shortage Doesn't Really Exist

BVis Re:The Same Game (415 comments)

Because, frequently, they are better off financially on unemployment. Finding a minimum wage job that provides health coverage is pretty much impossible; if you're on assistance, you probably qualify for Medicaid. So, minimum wage + buy your own health insurance (although the ACA makes this much more feasible), or (probably) better than minimum wage and Medicaid coverage. Is it any shock what some people choose? If the minimum wage wasn't such a fucking joke, and we had a single-payer health system like all the grownup countries have, this would cease to be so big a problem.

yesterday
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Researchers Say the Tech Worker Shortage Doesn't Really Exist

BVis Re:There's a tech job shortage, not a worker short (415 comments)

I don't know why they bother; if those are exempt employees (which they are, if the employer has any brains). It's perfectly legal to require your exempt employees to work many many more hours than the 40 they're getting paid for on paper, and not compensate them for anything over 40. At least for now, if someone complains about long hours, as far as the employer is concerned, they can either 1) shut the fuck up and get back to work, or 2) be threatened with replacement by a cheaper worker. It's harder to do that in technical roles, but not impossible. The effort is probably worth it if you make an example out of someone; the others will be less likely to complain if they see someone frogmarched to the door for speaking up.

yesterday
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Researchers Say the Tech Worker Shortage Doesn't Really Exist

BVis Re:Duh (415 comments)

So, it's ok to treat them like slaves, because they have a lower COL? Sounds a bit like socialism, "From each according to their ability, to each according to their need."

yesterday
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Researchers Say the Tech Worker Shortage Doesn't Really Exist

BVis Re:Duh (415 comments)

$40k a YEAR, you mean.

yesterday
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Researchers Say the Tech Worker Shortage Doesn't Really Exist

BVis Re:Well Duh (415 comments)

Just rare enough to be worth a premium, and to have the audacity to demand things like good benefits and a work-life balance.

Why do they hate America?

yesterday
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Court Shuts Down Alleged $120M Tech Support Scam

BVis Re:"This is windows support calling... (129 comments)

You ever want to really confuse them? Tell them your keyboard doesn't have a Windows key, like my old IBM model M. They'll spend all kinds of time walking you through trying to find it..

"Please to be looking at the left side of your keyboard, do you see the button C T R L?"
"Yes, I see it."
"The Windows key is being right next to that one"
"No, there's no key right next to it, there is one that says A L T a little further over"
"No, there has to be a key between that has the Windows logo"
"I'm telling you, there isn't. Why don't you tell me what you're trying to do and I'll find a different way"
"You are lying! You have a Windows key there, you have to"
"Nope, old keyboard. What are you trying to do?"
Then you listen to them flip through the script and again insist you must have a Windows key if it's a Windows computer.

It's great fun. I've wasted 90 minutes of their time this way. Another thing I like to do is, when they say there's a problem with my Windows computer, I ask them "Which one? I have several", which is true. I ask them for the machine name, the IP, everything they should know if they're getting a trouble report, right?

The goal is to get them to hang up on YOU.

about a week ago
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Do Good Programmers Need Agents?

BVis Re:It's not a zero sum game (215 comments)

If you are really good, you will be paid what you are worth. Whatever those "agent" skims from you will not eat into your worth

That seems to imply that if you're merely "good" or "competent" you won't be paid what you're worth (as in, less than the rock stars, but market rates). Not everyone is a rock star, and they need to eat too. They can still bring value to your organization greater than what you pay them.

about a week ago
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Do Good Programmers Need Agents?

BVis Re:Here's the deal (215 comments)

Just as an aside I don't recruit in the IT space. I recruit for civil engineers. I did have a brief stint in the early 2000s in IT recruitment but I left that sector as fast as I could as it is extremely difficult to determine if someone can do what they say they can and the general attitude from "candidates" is extremely hostile to recruiters.

There's good reason for that. In my experience 99% of all recruiters that work in the IT space are useless idiot C students who don't know, for example, the difference between Java and Javascript. They could be selling cars with the same tactics. Some recruiters will send your (sometimes doctored without your knowledge or consent) resume to a client company without contacting you first; this becomes awkward when you independently apply for that position but you get tossed for not being able to keep track of where you've applied. Then there are the boiler-room operations who will lie to you about a position being open (as in they filled it last week) just to get you in to their offices and consequently into their databases, so they can brag about how many people with a given skill set they have when they sell their services.

And, more frequently than you would expect, the recruiter will lie to you about the compensation package to get you to take the job (so they can get paid). I have first-hand knowledge of this one. Cost me the equivalent of $20,000 in total compensation (salary + 401k contributions) a year. (Granted, I bear some responsibility for that one, as I didn't insist on the job offer being put in writing before I showed up the first day. I didn't want to not go in on my first day because the recruiter couldn't get their shit together, and I was out of work at the time.)

I even saw where some recruiters will operate under a pseudonym for a time, until their sleazeball tactics catch up with them, and then they'll mysteriously "have left the company", to be replaced by someone who sounds just like them.

These are recruiters that give the whole industry a bad name. Many IT workers also resent the fact that you're an impediment between themselves and the hiring manager, and recruiters may or may not be able to accurately convey the details of your skill set, because they have no actual knowledge of what any of it means. They just shotgun out emails to everyone that matches a keyword search. This is why two or three times a day I get an email pimping out some awesome 3 month contract in a city 1500 miles away doing something that isn't actually in my skill set.

It's unfortunate, but most recruiters in the IT space are either liars or idiots, sometimes both.

about a week ago
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Report: Federal Workers, Contractors Behind Half of Government Cyber Breaches

BVis Re:The solution (61 comments)

Always one, isn't there.

about two weeks ago
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Marijuana Legalized In Oregon, Alaska, and Washington DC

BVis Re:But DC is different,no? (588 comments)

Refuse to work for anyone who asks you to take a drug test.

I already do. Most employers in my field have figured out that there's no reason to test if there aren't signs of a problem.

Heck, start a competing company that hires all the excellent potheads they refuse.

Not everyone that smokes pot is a "pothead". That's like saying everyone who likes a beer or two is an alcoholic.

about three weeks ago
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Marijuana Legalized In Oregon, Alaska, and Washington DC

BVis Re:But DC is different,no? (588 comments)

If you want to work for XYZ Corporation, then XYZ Corporation has a right to make sure you aren't stoned when you come to work.

I agree. The pee test doesn't tell you that, and being around people smoking (but not smoking yourself) is enough to spike a positive.

The question I have, is do you want the job more than you want to smoke pot, or not.

You've missed my point. The issue is not whether or not I would pass the screen. The issue is that it's invasive, humiliating, and unnecessary. The issue is that it's one more way for your employer to control your life. The issue is that a joint on the weekends isn't going to make you a dangerous/bad worker. The issue is that it's not a crime in a lot of states. The issue is that it's none of their fucking business if it doesn't impact your ability to do your job, and it doesn't. We don't keep people from working if they drink a beer (or 17) on the weekends, and having an alcoholic on your payroll is worse than having someone who's used pot an indeterminant number of times in the last 30 days. But we don't test for alcohol.

But, keep buying into the Reefer Madness hysteria if you want. History will make a fool of you.

about three weeks ago
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Marijuana Legalized In Oregon, Alaska, and Washington DC

BVis Re:But DC is different,no? (588 comments)

Then they're lucky. Most places it's "These are the terms of the job, if you don't like them, fuck off."

about three weeks ago
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Marijuana Legalized In Oregon, Alaska, and Washington DC

BVis Re:But DC is different,no? (588 comments)

What they're really doing when you get forced to take a pre-employment piss test is asserting their power over you, even before they start paying you. You're a criminal/drug addict until you provide a bodily fluid to "prove" otherwise (as urine tests have varying degrees of accuracy). With marijuana especially, they're asserting control over your body (as you could smoke on the first of the month and spike a positive for pot at the end of the month) even during the hours you're not working for them (although, if you're an "exempt" employee, there are no hours that are truly yours; being an "exempt" employee means that you trade having to punch a clock for a fixed salary, no overtime, and the possibility of being required to work 120 hours a week, all legal).

It's time we stood up to our corporate masters and told them "It's none of your fucking business what's in my urine."

about three weeks ago
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The Great IT Hiring He-Said / She-Said

BVis Re:There's a clue shortage (574 comments)

Our biggest problem is willingness to relocate - candidates who are already on the West Coast are so hammered by recruiters that it's hard to find anyone actually looking, but there are plenty of qualified engineers elsewhere.

Then hire remote developers. You'll open up your talent pool from your immediate area to the entire world (or USA if that's your choice). If HR or Accounting balks, remind them that someone who would require $120k/year living and working in the Valley can live in similar style for $60k in some flyover state. Once they see the dollar signs, well, let's be fair, they don't understand or care about anything else with regards to the open position. If they can pay 50% less, then having the developer physically in an office becomes much less important.

Most of your resistance will probably come from middle managers who are convinced that unless they're helicopter managers then the workers won't get anything done. Micromanagement uber alles.

about three weeks ago
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Ken Ham's Ark Torpedoed With Charges of Religious Discrimination

BVis Re:I am SHOCKED, just SHOCKED... (451 comments)

A set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.

1) A scientific mindset is not a set of beliefs. Scientists do not worship what they cannot understand; they only seek to understand it.
2) Scientists do not consider the cause or purpose of the universe, only its nature. Cause or purpose implies an intelligent creator. We do not have any objective evidence that one exists. The Bible is not objective evidence, only philosophy, narrative, and metaphor. Even if it were, the current versions of the work have been translated and interpreted so many times by so many people with so many different agendas to push that the original meaning has been lost for thousands of years.
3) There is no objective evidence that a superhuman agency or agencies created the universe. There is conjecture and hypothesis. The problem is that the zealots insist that you prove a negative when you express an opinion on the subject. As we all know, proving a negative is impossible. Thinking that something is possible doesn't mean you believe it to actually be the case. We do not know what was happening before the Big Bang happened, as current technology does not exist to look beyond the singularity. Nothing can be proven or disproven about the origin of the Big Bang at the moment, and that is not a concession of a weak argument; the three most important words in science are "I don't know".
4) Exactly what devotional and ritual observances do scientists engage in? The closest I can come up with is getting your morning coffee.
5) Scientifically based solutions and practices are not the same as a moral code. Morals are arbitrary rules of conduct that a particular slice of humanity has decided are worth upholding, and as such, cannot by definition be associated with science. Nothing in science says you can't have sex before marriage, for example, or stone the gays to death, or beat your wife, or kill your slaves..

I'm positive you don't know what you're talking about.

What the deniers dispute is humans having a majoritive effect on climate change. The science on that is not settled.

It's settled. Getting 97% of scientists to agree on something is virtually impossible if there is no objective evidence. CO2 in the atmosphere makes temperatures rise. We're dumping CO2 into the atmosphere by the billions of tons. Therefore, more heat from the sun is trapped in the atmosphere, making global temperature rise. Honestly, it's not a difficult concept, and if you need an example of a greenhouse effect gone mad, take a look at Venus. It's like 863 degrees F / 462 degrees C on the surface, in large part to the atmosphere being 96% CO2. The origins of the high levels of CO2 on Venus are different from those on Earth, but they share a similar problem in that there is insufficient biomass to recapture the carbon in the atmosphere.

especially when new papers are being published trying to explain a hiatus in the warming trend and the significance of the oceans in the atmospheric temperature.

Please link to some of those papers; if they're not in reputable peer-reviewed publications, though, don't bother.

If the science on that was settled there would be no use for continued research.

You are failing to grasp the nature of scientific endeavor. We will never know everything about a particular topic; there is always more knowledge to be obtained. If 97% (or even a significant majority) of the new research contradicts the human-caused theory of global warming, then a conclusion can be drawn.

But I'm wasting my breath. If human-caused climate change deniers are confronted with objective evidence that contradicts their hypotheses, they simply stick their fingers in their ears and say "LA LA LA I CAN'T HEAR YOU". The evidence is overwhelming; the science is settled (in as much as anything in science can be settled; the strength of science is in its flexibility and the tacit admission that any theory can be rejected based on new evidence, if the evidence is compelling enough).

Nothing you say in this reply cannot be contradicted with objective facts.

about a month ago

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