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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

edawstwin The benefits of specialization (548 comments)

I learned C++ first and just kind of learned various languages and technologies as the need arose, and now I know several languages and my projects have been widely varied. But I noticed that most of my peers who specialized were much more in demand, and therefore pretty much had their pick of jobs, made more money, and had better working conditions. The kind of specialization I'm referring to is learning something that less than ~5% of programmers know, but is still in some demand, and likely to be in demand in ten or twenty years. Or if you pick something that many programmers already know, learn the shit out of that one thing so that there aren't many others that have your level of knowledge in that one thing. In an interview, impressive knowledge of something specific is always better than just adequate knowledge of many things.

Also, learn how to be interviewed. It is a very valuable skill.

about three weeks ago
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Soccer Talent Scouting Application Teams Up With Video Game Publisher

edawstwin Re:Football Manager (39 comments)

You kind of suspect that there's some huge archive of historical data about football in the back of a project like that, to parameterise the players and teams, but it never occurred to me that they had 1300 of their own scouts performing observations.

From what I've read on their own forums, they do have an enormous number of "scouts" that give them information, but most are volunteers, so the information is sometimes suspect. I'm sure that most of the players in the top leagues around the world have fairly accurate attributes, but when you're relying on one guy in Uruguay, for example, to give you info on every third-tier team, some of it naturally going to be way off. So teams that will be using this data hopefully understand that those 1300 "scouts" are usually just fans of the game that happen to live in an area where they can contribute.

about a month ago
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Soccer Talent Scouting Application Teams Up With Video Game Publisher

edawstwin Re:Soccer's been sold out (39 comments)

So don't watch top-tier league matches. There are plenty of teams made up of "working class member[s] of society" with very affordable ticket prices everywhere.

about a month ago
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Soccer Talent Scouting Application Teams Up With Video Game Publisher

edawstwin Re:All that money... (39 comments)

And I still have to turn it off after a couple minutes because it's putting me to sleep.

Not every game has to have a high score to be exciting (I'm assuming that's why you find it boring). Look at USA-Belgium in the World Cup: 0-0 after 90 minutes and one of the most exciting games of the tournament even before extra time. American sports fans have been unintentionally brainwashed by the major sports here to want score-score-score, but as more people watch the one true sport, more people are "converting", especially when they find out no ads for 45 minutes at a time.

about a month ago
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Every Day Is Goof-Off-At-Work Day At the US Patent and Trademark Office

edawstwin Re:Public servants don't give an arm and a leg (327 comments)

I think it was the "can't imagine" part of the picture he was asking about, actually. I find it odd too. You would expect that someone with such a poor imagination could very easily be replaced by a machine these days.

What's so hard to believe about someone getting used to a certain paycheck? My income has varied greatly over the years, and each time I was making significant money, I "couldn't imagine" going back to less than significant money. It's human nature.

about a month ago
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Every Day Is Goof-Off-At-Work Day At the US Patent and Trademark Office

edawstwin Re:Public servants don't give an arm and a leg (327 comments)

I love on $39,000 a year, and you can't imagine making less than $150,000?

What's wrong with this picture?

Why do people assume that something is wrong with a situation like this? Some people make more money than you do. Be happy for them and aspire to do the same (maybe, you know... find out how they did it), or just ignore them.

about a month ago
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Every Day Is Goof-Off-At-Work Day At the US Patent and Trademark Office

edawstwin Re:Public servants don't give an arm and a leg (327 comments)

Only $148k at the top of the scale? They probably get some benefits like health care, but they must be the dregs of Masters and Doctorates. I can't imagine taking such a pay cut, and I get 7 weeks paid vacation as well as a pension and health plan.

It sounds like they get a helluva lot more than 7 weeks paid vacation every year. That's the whole point of the article.

about a month ago
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Every Day Is Goof-Off-At-Work Day At the US Patent and Trademark Office

edawstwin Re:Public servants don't give an arm and a leg (327 comments)

I've worked mostly at smaller companies and one very large one (50,000+ employees). I'll grant you that the oversight wasn't the greatest at the large company, but every department still had to produce something. I'm not saying all government workers are bad/lazy/whatever, just that there is less incentive to be productive, so "goofing off" is certainly more common in the public sector.

about a month ago
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Every Day Is Goof-Off-At-Work Day At the US Patent and Trademark Office

edawstwin Re:Public servants don't give an arm and a leg (327 comments)

Oh random government-worker hater modded up. Must be a Monday on slashdot.

It's insightful because no private sector workers ever goofed off, or spent the "work from home" days, grazing from the fridge, playing halo. And no public sector worker ever ever rushed through a piece of late work and did a half assed job.

Ever.

As phorm pointed out, when a worker in the private sector goofs off, that can have detrimental effects on a company's bottom line, and the company can take appropriate action. If a public sector worker goofs off, time is lost, but there is no bottom line for a government agency to be affected. Sure, they all have budgets, but there are not many negative consequences for having bad employees. They'll usually get a few more bucks in next year's budget regardless of performance. And the travesty here is that we're paying them to do a bad job. Public sector employees should take their jobs even more seriously than private sector employees because every tax-payer is ultimately affected by their performance.

I have no personal experience working for any government agency, but I did have a friend who got a job with the federal government after having worked in the private sector for many years. After about a month, his direct superior told him to take it easier because he was too efficient. If he stayed at the current level, many other workers would look bad in comparison, and the manager didn't want to have to explain that to his bosses. The manager absolutely could not get away with something like that at a competent profitable private company.

about a month ago
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Big Bang Actors To Earn $1M Per Episode

edawstwin Sheldon and Leonard (442 comments)

I can totally imagine Sheldon and Leonard having this exact conversation.

about a month ago
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Big Bang Actors To Earn $1M Per Episode

edawstwin Re:Over paid (442 comments)

The network is making up their pricing based on their guesses of what advertisers will pay.

Exactly. The price for a 30-second spot for a show on a major network with X ratings and Y demographics will be Z. It won't be Z-1 or Z+1. And it won't be influenced by how much the actors get paid. It won't even be influenced by how much the show costs to produce. If I made a show in my living room using my phone as a camera and just me as an actor that somehow got BBT ratings on CBS, they would charge the exact same amount as they do for BBT. It's just like any other product - cost of production has no relevance to its retail price.

about a month ago
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Big Bang Actors To Earn $1M Per Episode

edawstwin Re:It's not that much (442 comments)

Yes, and if you remember, the other lead actor was paid less well because he was rather less white

If you think PMT was less-well-paid because he wasn't white, then you don't understand anything about TV. If people tuned in to watch PMT more than Don Johnson, he would have been paid more than Don Johnson. The truth is, Don Johnson and hot girls in bikinis were about the only reasons to tune into that show. Just about any decent actor (white or not) could have played Tubbs, and we wouldn't have cared.

about a month ago
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Big Bang Actors To Earn $1M Per Episode

edawstwin Re:Over paid (442 comments)

Do you think the production company dips into their own pocket, or that the price of advertising goes up to make the difference? Consumers pay those bills. Every time you buy something, you are paying those outrages salaries.

It's not life risking, it's not overly hard, they are off a great deal of the year.

If it was actually funny they wouldn't need that laugh track to tell you when the joke is.

Compared to almost every other job on the planet, they are ridiculously over paid.

The price of advertising is already at its maximum. If the network could charge one dollar more for a 30-second spot, they would. The advertisers won't pay more just because the stars now get paid more.

I don't think you understand the concept of value. No one is arguing that what they do is "life risking", but that's not the point (and what "life risking" profession gets paid millions?). What they do is get millions of people to watch a TV show 24 times a year, and that is extremely valuable. If the network/production company (I'm not sure how the finances/responsibility is split between the two) would lose money by giving these actors that much money, then they wouldn't do the deal, so this obviously (well, maybe not to you) makes great sense for all parties involved.

And as to your "it's not overly hard" claim: Have you tried acting/making people laugh week after week for years? It is incredibly difficult, and a big reason why actors millions enjoy watching get paid so much.

about a month ago
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Big Bang Actors To Earn $1M Per Episode

edawstwin Re:Not unheard of (442 comments)

...they wanted more so they cancelled the show.

That's untrue. They only reason that there was a tenth season is that they got the $1M per ep they asked for (a ridiculous sum at the time, of course, and one I don't think they expected to get). Schwimmer and Kudrow said they wanted season nine to be the last season, but that amount of money is hard for anyone to turn down.

about a month ago
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Big Bang Actors To Earn $1M Per Episode

edawstwin Re:Over paid (442 comments)

How are they overpaid? The production company and the network make millions off of this show. The actors are (obviously) an integral part of the success of the show, and therefore the revenue, so why not pay them whatever they can negotiate?

about a month ago
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Free Copy of the Sims 2 Contains SecuROM

edawstwin Re:I know it's cliche but... (234 comments)

No, EA cares a great deal about their customers - they couldn't stay in business without them. It's just that most of EA's customers don't give a rats ass about what EA does to them.

about a month and a half ago
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Oil Man Proposes Increase In Oklahoma Oil-and-Gas Tax

edawstwin Re:Idle threats (182 comments)

Wheres my $3 billion refund?!?

Start a company that employs tens of thousands of tax-paying employees and we'll talk.

about 4 months ago

Submissions

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edawstwin edawstwin writes  |  more than 7 years ago

edawstwin (242027) writes "Turner Broadcasting System announced last October plans to launch Super Deluxe, a website "boasting original shortform videos laced with edgy humor from professional comics and ambitious amateurs alike" this month. Super Deluxe is now live as scheduled. From the website: "Super Deluxe is the premier spot on the Internet for top-quality comedy videos". The "Featured Artists" are Dave Foley and Brad Neely."

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