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Ask Slashdot: Programming / IT Jobs For Older, Retrained Workers?

GunFodder Network Operations (215 comments)

One of the entry level jobs at my company is working in our Network Operations Center. This job is part system administration, part customer service and part security guard :) Typically a NOC engineer watches monitoring systems and performs actions when things go wrong. They also execute changes on our production systems and occasionally communicate with customers about system issues. There are also routine administration tasks that need to be performed.

The hours can be challenging since the NOC is staffed 24/7. But the shifts are regular and predictable, and more desirable shifts open up after some time on the job. The best NOC engineers are resourceful and reliable, which seems achievable by retrained elderly workers. You can learn quite a bit on the job as well, since there are so many different ways that systems can fail :)

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Is Outsourcing Development a Good Idea?

GunFodder Re:Just remember (403 comments)

One of our better employees lives in Kansas City - rock on! I think you have brought up an important point - good talent is awesome, no matter where they live. Going forward it is critically important to find good talent wherever you can find it.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Re-Entering the Job Market As a Software Engineer?

GunFodder Re:You had your turn, buddy (435 comments)

This sounds like a real situation, but I don't see it here in the Bay Area. Most companies list everything they want in a perfect candidate and take the best fit they can find, due to the large demand and lack of supply of qualified software engineers here. Companies that hire based exclusively on exact experience matches will end up paying for their narrowmindedness by hiring mediocre talent instead of looking at brighter candidates that could end up contributing more if given the opportunity to learn the specialized skills they lack.

I am reminded of what I heard about hiring at a state school though. It is not unusual to tailor the requirements to either match a desired prospect or exclude undesirable coworkers who are guaranteed a preferential opportunity to apply for the job. I guess these are the games that employers play when they have to play by arbitrary rules.

more than 2 years ago
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Which OSS Clustered Filesystem Should I Use?

GunFodder Re:The Cloud, obviously. (320 comments)

Kudos for hitting virtually all of the important buzzwords! MVC is far too old for your usage, though; you should have used RESTful instead.

more than 2 years ago
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I've had a personal email account for ...

GunFodder Re:fp! (336 comments)

...Or they got an ISP email account before gmail even existed.

more than 3 years ago
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Duke Nukem Forever Goes Gold

GunFodder Re:correlation here? (277 comments)

Yes, I read there is an impending Zombie Apocalypse to prepare for...

more than 3 years ago
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Why IT Needs To Change for Gen Z

GunFodder Re:Not where I work... (443 comments)

How does your company attract and retain talent with such draconian policies?

more than 3 years ago
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The Hobbit Finally Starts Shooting

GunFodder Re:I ate a Cats Tounge (233 comments)

Ironically those are three things that were not true for Bilbo Baggins when he started his adventure. I'm not sure why I felt the need to point this out.

more than 3 years ago
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Is Going To an Elite College Worth the Cost?

GunFodder Re:Not for undergraduate (391 comments)

I had largely the same experience at UC Berkeley, but I wasn't paying tens of thousands of dollars a year in tuition. If I were going to an elite, spendy private school I would expect more in the classroom.

That said, teachers are only a part of the learning experience. I learned a lot of interesting things from the teaching assistants that helped with our large classes, and still more from random older students in our computer labs. One of the advantages of going to a ginormous research university is that there are a lot of really smart people that you can learn from outside of lectures.

more than 3 years ago
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Apple Deprecates Their JVM

GunFodder Re:Plenty of heads up. (451 comments)

Java developers aren't going to decide to switch to Objective-C to address 5% of the desktop market. Most of the Java developers I know prefer Mac hardware for its easy interoperability with Linux. If Apple kills the Mac OS JVM then we will be forced to switch to Windows. I don't see how this benefits Apple in any way.

more than 3 years ago
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RIM Doesn't Want 200 Fart Apps

GunFodder Re:All we need is Netcraft confirmation (244 comments)

I know I don't - I don't think there are a whole lot of them. After all, Objective C has no significant enterprise market and 5% of all desktops. The only software market they have a significant presence in is mobile apps, which is growing but is still pretty tiny. I don't see Objective C getting all that much traction unless Apple loosens their grip, and that doesn't seem very likely.

more than 3 years ago
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Compared to a year ago, social networks now ...

GunFodder Re:..are as superfluous as ever. (270 comments)

You should go to a supermarket with hotter, friendlier checkout girls.

about 4 years ago
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Crytek Dev On Fun vs. Realism In Game Guns

GunFodder Re:Captain obvious (324 comments)

I agree with your point, but given the popularity of RPGs that force the player to perform inventory management this task must actually be enjoyable to many gamers. It does force the player to make decisions about the relative worth of loot.

more than 4 years ago
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Porn Sites Pop Up In China

GunFodder Re:Change in policy, glitch, or... (126 comments)

They're going to lock up everyone who tries to access internet porn? I doubt there are enough prisons in China to hold every man with a computer.

more than 4 years ago
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Steve Jobs Publishes Some "Thoughts On Flash"

GunFodder Re:proprietary and apple (944 comments)

How can a company that is shaping up to gross 60 billion dollars a year and earn a 20% profit margin possibly not be at least partly evil?

more than 4 years ago
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Best Seating Arrangement For a Team of Developers?

GunFodder Re:That's not flame bait ... (520 comments)

Sadly I agree that many developers will put up with awful working conditions, but that is mostly because they are paid pretty well. I disagree that you don't need brilliant developers, but it can be difficult finding the right balance between folks that write "profound code" and folks that are willing to copy that code and finish all the required functionality. Software development is still growing rapidly, so any company that thinks their developers are willing to put up with anything to keep their jobs is going to lose out when the economy gets good and there are many jobs available.

If everyone followed your suggestion then developers would all work in the equivalent of a college computer lab - long tables with closely packed workstations and no personal space. I have never seen anyone try this, but even when companies use relatively small, open cubes it can be distracting to many developers. OTOH I have worked in a building where every developer had an office with a door that closed, and that didn't really help either since it made collaboration kind of tough. I think it is worth thinking about productivity when it comes to setting up an office. The incremental costs are not that high compared to the cost of even a single-digit change in a typical developer's productivity.

more than 4 years ago
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Simpler "Hello World" Demonstrated In C

GunFodder Re:11k Is Too Big? (582 comments)

It can be difficult to determine the size of a program when you are first starting to write it. Obviously it would be faster to hack together a trivial program like "Hello World" in a simple text editor. IDEs are more useful when you are solving non-trivial problems, like maintaining a couple hundred source files and integrating dozens of external libraries.

more than 4 years ago
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Highly-Paid Developers As ScrumMasters?

GunFodder Re:why use scrum in the first place (434 comments)

That sounds like a project manager to me - an experienced professional with leadership experience that doesn't participate in the day-to-day work of the development team. The best sprints I have participated in have been facilitated by project managers.

about 5 years ago
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12% of E-mail Users Have Responded To Spam

GunFodder Re:They got my email (268 comments)

How is a website supposed to know the difference between a visitor and a crawler? Both send HTTP requests for pages. Crawlers could use special user agent strings, but they don't have to. The only way to keep automated systems off of a website is to use a CAPTCHA, which tends to be annoying to legitimate users, and therefore used sparingly.

more than 4 years ago

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