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Ask Slashdot: Joining a Startup As an Older Programmer?

richman555 my opinion (274 comments)

I am 42 and have been working in the web/internet/ecommerce realm and have done a little bit of everything over the last 19 years (I think). I look back at the earlier years and my first several jobs often required 50-60 hr weeks and 24/7 support. I'd say a start up is fine, as long as you get in with a higher position with some 'real' opportunities for personal gain. I look back at my 20's or early 30's and I really worked hard long hours... and I would really love to have them back. The employer always dangling the carrot... and every project is THE MOST epic and important project ever... My advice is to do what is most important to you and do not undersell your own experience. By this point, I would believe you have been through literally hundreds of projects and have given so much time to your employer. Perhaps the startup is looking to leverage your experience... allow you to lead and flourish and that may be worth it. If they are just looking to fill hours of 'resource' for project work, it may not be for you.

about 5 months ago

Indian Hustle: How Fraudsters Prey On Would-be US Tech Workers

richman555 worth the risk? (124 comments)

Poor Indian technical workers... yet there are many Americans without jobs. Taking a risk coming to the US for a job? I guess they don't realize they will work in US I.T. sweatshops.

about 7 months ago

The Decline of '20% Time' at Google

richman555 Companies are cheap (198 comments)

Companies don't like that they have to pay for some form of R&D. This is essentially what 20% time is except it is open to all employees. So it is possible to make improvements in all facets of the company, not just certain strategic areas. Of course, someday this will backfire, when innovation, learning, and growth comes to a halt.

about a year ago

Who Will Teach U.S. Kids To Code? Rupert Murdoch

richman555 Re:Hey kids! Learn to train your H1B replacement! (138 comments)

I completely agree with this. I would also go on to say I wouldn't recommend my kids getting into coding or development. There are a lot better careers in the world.

about a year ago

Who Will Teach U.S. Kids To Code? Rupert Murdoch

richman555 Re:The reality is more like this.... (138 comments)

I forgot to add my point.. but based on what I said, companies really don't care who codes this software. They will find anyone to do it for a low cost.

about a year ago

Who Will Teach U.S. Kids To Code? Rupert Murdoch

richman555 The reality is more like this.... (138 comments)

The first thing that needs to be done is not have all American students (who are there because the have some interest) quit these courses after the first several semesters. The second thing is to stop excessive outsourcing of development jobs. This has nothing to do with skill and training, its more about saving money. The third thing is that these businesses don't feel your computer science degrees are all that important anyway. You are putting to much importance on technical things when these companies believe their business models and management are the keys to success (not technology). When it comes to technology... the feel they can get anyone to do this work.

about a year ago

Snowden: NSA Spying On EU Diplomats and Administrators

richman555 Likely always has been happening (417 comments)

I believe the US has been spying like this for years. Tapping our phone conversations, planting bugs, and even sitting outside our house. Its just that technology has caught up so that alot of this information is digital and can be aggregated over time and searchable. Honestly, if you can't trust your government who can you trust. You hope that they use this information wisely. Also other countries would love all of this information as its a new age of espionage.

about a year ago

H-1B Cap Reached Today; Didn't Get In? Too Bad

richman555 Re:Fundamentaly flawed (512 comments)

I know my company has laid off workers in order to offshore their jobs. This round of layoffs was 200+. They will leave a skeleton crew around to 'manage' the projects offshore. It has no basis on skill or demand or even creating a better product. It is purely for cheap labor.

about a year and a half ago

Layoffs Hit Washington Post Mobile Team

richman555 Happening here too (108 comments)

I have just experienced this at my current company. They are just cutting many experienced development positions and then outsourcing those jobs to India. This is for a large thriving ecommerce company.

about a year and a half ago

Steve Jobs Movie Clip Historically Inaccurate, Says Woz

richman555 lofty ideas (330 comments)

Yeah, I am sure that none of these lofty realizations were seen until much much later. At the time I don't think they even knew what they did.

about a year and a half ago

Google Is Planning To Penalize Overly Optimized Sites

richman555 Re:SEO is bullshit (299 comments)

I completely agree. I have been working in ecommerce for 15 years and SEO is largely made up. These so called SEO experts will have you rewrite your website which normally is a tremendous cost for those who own them.

more than 2 years ago

Sony Won't Invest As Heavily In PlayStation 4

richman555 closing the gap (353 comments)

I think all 3 consoles will be closer in terms of power. The last one to be released will be most powerful but not by much. I think Nintendo's strategy with the 'project cafe' system is to close this gap. Also if you have to sell any product at a loss, its just plain risky.

more than 3 years ago

Microsoft & Intel Get a Pass On Higher H-1B Fees

richman555 The new sweatshops in the US (209 comments)

This is a tragic industry trend. I work at a company where about 75% of all developers are HB1 visa holders. These companies are looking for 'instant' workforces that they can bring along and dismantle when a project ends. They also like to work these people like crazy, as they will only be around for a few years. They can work hard for a few years and go back to their country with more money maybe to buy a house or get married. As for HB1 visa holders being cheaper, perhaps a little bit when it comes to health care, etc. I think employers like that they can demand even more out of these folks.

more than 4 years ago

Can Drones Really Get National Airspace Access?

richman555 Half Life 2 becoming reality (107 comments)

Soon there will be smaller type drones, like those flying around in Half Life 2 that snap pictures and reveal your location.

more than 4 years ago

Java's Backup Plan If Oracle Fumbles

richman555 The next Cobol? (276 comments)

Java, while widely used is on the down slide. There really hasn't been any new revolutionary additions to the language in about 7 years. In another 10 years, it will become like COBOL is to IBM.

more than 4 years ago

Microsoft Busting Its Own Browser+OS Myth

richman555 Re:Try using an OS Without a browser... (204 comments)

Your browser (normally Netscape) was normally given to you from your ISP. You needed to sign up for internet access and then they would send it to you (on floppy I think) Once online, you could use this browser to upgrade if there was a newer one available.

more than 4 years ago

Microsoft Busting Its Own Browser+OS Myth

richman555 MS was anti web browser (204 comments)

Microsoft illegally leveraged their monopoly at the time. Including a competitive browser for "Free" with Windows was the downfall for Netscape. The browser did have a cost but it was blended in with the cost of Windows which almost everyone run. Netscape could no longer sell their browser and the rest is history. The browser was never a part of the operating system and really never needed to be. It just was Microsofts way of protecting its monopoly. I think what most people miss is that Microsoft never wanted web browser technology to exist! They only produced IE in order to kill off Netscape. They had that idea that only specific windows desktop applications would provide some access to the internet in a very controlled way, not like browsing or surfing the web for whatever content you would like. Development for IE almost came to complete halt if it wasnt for open source browsers coming of age.

more than 4 years ago

Microsoft Kills the Kin

richman555 Kin or Kinect (351 comments)

The name Kin is really not much more different than Kinect, I think the same people came up with these names.

more than 4 years ago

Getting Paid Fairly When Job Responsibilities Spiral?

richman555 roles and responsibilities not aligned (495 comments)

I used to work at a company that used to tell me that 'they aren't about roles or titles'. You would have a title so generic and understated that honestly no one could figure out what you do. I was able to leave this job for a 25% salary increase because my responsibilities never matched my title. Companies use this as a ploy so that they do not have to pay you in many cases what you are worth.

more than 4 years ago


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