Fog Creek Software
Discussion Board




Poll w moral:  Who wears "Old Navy" brand clothes?

Hint:  This poll is related to one of the recent heated debates we have had on this board.

Please chime in with a YES or NO.
I will post my point in a week or so.

Feel free to guess my point.

Bella
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

ugh. spare us the drama.

Joe S.
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

Cowboy Neal!

/dotter
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

one of the best programmers i've ever met shops at old navy. Hes 21.  (and a citizen :-)

Vincent Marquez
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

I don't like to pay to advertise for others.  I DON'T like car dealership stickers on MY car either.  For people to wantonly do so is dumb. IMO.

Greg Kellerman
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

you know, they DO make shirts and pants that don't have their logo plastered all over it...

Vincent Marquez
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

They must be in malls. That's why I've never seen 'em.

"asset"
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

What are "Old Navy" brand clothes?

Ignorant foreigner
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

Me is wearin' dem all de time. Respeck!

Ali G
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

I own some Old Navy clothes, but none that actually bear the Old Navy logo on them. In fact, I am wearing an Old Navy t-shirt right now.

Zwarm Monkey
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

Is the moral that Bella has way too much time on his/her hands?

Winston Kodogo
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

Bella, why do you post to this message board?
Is it so you can see your name on the internet?

Well...
Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella

Now will you go away for a month or two?

xyzzy
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

This poll relates to the USA software offshore outsourcing debates.  Please spare me all your commentary, and just answer the poll.   

Bella
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

I'm not sure I understand the question, Bella.

When you say, "who wears Old Navy clothes," and you ask us to respond with a YES or NO, what exactly are we saying YES or NO to?

-- If we have never shopped at Old Navy, but were given some articles of clothing from Old Navy as gifts, it can be said that we "wear Old Navy clothes."  So, can those people who have never shopped at Old Navy, but nonetheless wear Old Navy clothes, say YES?

-- But for some reason I suspect you're asking not whether people WEAR Old Navy clothes, but whether we SHOP at Old Navy.  But what counts as "shopping at Old Navy" is less than clear, to my mind.

-- If you are in fact asking whether we SHOP at Old Navy, are you asking whether we REGULARLY shop at Old Navy, or would it count if I happen to have been to Old Navy, say, two times in the last three years, and have bought, a total of five items there?

-- Or do you mean something even stronger, like "Who is a FAN of Old Navy, and loves their clothes"?

Please be clearer!

programmer
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

Hactually, me is not wearin' dem any more cos Me Julie said them make me look like a batty boy.

Ali G
Wednesday, July 17, 2002

Does your point relate to the skill of programmers in relation to their taste in fashion? 

Vincent Marquez
Thursday, July 18, 2002

The reason that nobody is answering you seriously is that nobody feels like being suckered into such an obviously trick question. The last thing anyone wants is to have you run up, point to their face and rail on them to prove some point. 

People smell a rat and are staying away or coming with shotguns.

Annoyed
Thursday, July 18, 2002

I assume that your point is that Americans buy Old Navy because of value.  They get value because they are reasonably fashionable and well made (not great, but good enough), yet at a lower than market average cost - at least compared to their parent company's other brands (Gap, Banana Republic, et al.).

And, of course, the cost is low because they are made offshore, undoubtedly by workers paid very low wages with awful working conditions.  Therefore, I would surmise that your point is that ultimately, Americans will choose the most economic option regardless of the negative impact to American workers and the exploitation of foreign workers.

So, as it went for American textile workers, so it will go for American programmers.

If so, point taken.  But if this is another H-1B argument, then the point is old, moldy, and most of all, moot.  It's a bad analogy for too many reasons for me to bother with.

Nick Hebb
Thursday, July 18, 2002

Oh well ...
Today I'll be wearing :

http://www.oldnavy.com/asp/Product.asp?wdid=200830&wpid=160589

and

http://www.oldnavy.com/asp/product.asp?:=l&wdid=200530&wpid=148192

I will be surprised if you manage to surprise us with a non-lame elaboration on this subject.

Just me (Sir to you)
Thursday, July 18, 2002


I may be flamed for this (and everyone else may be smarter to stay away) ... but ...

  I drive an American Car.  So does my wife.  (We still don't know what do to about Chrysler, so for the time being we are staying away. :-)

  I try to buy American Tools.  I try to buy clothes that were made in America.  The trade deficit scares me.

  My wife has a BA in Philosophy.  The idea is that an idea can only be good if, if everyone did it, it would be good.  (That leads to certain conclusions about drunkeness, adultery, etc that just happen to be in line with classic morality.  Go figure.) 

  But, honestly, I don't know.  The economic argument about normalization and providing employment makes me wonder.  (IE:  If I bought clothes at old navy, I could employ 5 man-months of people in Asia; if I buy American, the $3.00 profit to the textile maker pays 1 person for 1/2 hour.)

  So, I guess what I'm saying is that I actually have an open mind.  Hmm.  If everyone had an open mind, then we could actually listen to each other and make rational judgements. hmm.  And that would be ... Good?

regards,

Matt H.
Thursday, July 18, 2002

I would just like to say that I don't think any american would like to take work away from people outside the US. But we are not exactly in a Bull market right now.

That being said I would hope that this topic dies the death it deserves. Bella is the type of person who wins an argument through attrition. Everyone will concede to his point just to move on.

Ian Stallings
Thursday, July 18, 2002

Man, it's like dealing with impatient 2nd graders in here.  Ok, here goes.....

OLD NAVY clothes (at least some) are MADE IN INDIA.

Why do Americans love them? 
Old Navy clothes are a bargain. 

I wanted to see if any people against H1's & offshoring wear Old Navy.  That would be comedy.

Bella
Thursday, July 18, 2002

Well... I really don't buy clothes strictly by brand.  It first has to fit and then be cheap.

Comedy is always funny... except when it happens to me, of course.  That's when there ought to be a law against it. (laughing)

Joe AA.
Thursday, July 18, 2002

Hey Bella, if you don't understand the difference between skilled and unskilled labor, I feel sorry for you.  Unfortunately, I don't really want to give you any more of the human attention you seem starved of.

a person
Thursday, July 18, 2002

Economics don't care whether the labor is skilled or unskilled. The work will go to where the labor is the lowest cost.

Imagine when doctors can do most of their work over the net, the HMOs can outsource all that diagnostic and surgical labor.

and legal advice labor
and archtectural design labor
and engineering labor
and financial analysis labor
and political labor?

"asset"
Thursday, July 18, 2002

Old Navy. Fuck Old Navy. I don't patronize bad advertising.

I will never eat menthos. I will never buy a car from "Crazy" anyone. I will never go to a monster truck rally unless they say "We'll sell you the whole seat, but you'll only need the edge!". And most of all, I will never, ever, ever shop at Old Navy.

Fuck Old Navy. And Menthos. And...
Thursday, July 18, 2002

"Economics don't care whether the labor is skilled or unskilled. The work will go to where the labor is the lowest cost."

Thats a horribly general statement.  Do you think that tailored Hugo Boss suites are done by thousands of indian kids? Nope, they're done by little old italain guys who get paid a crapload in the mall across the street.  Some people don't care about their close, and some people are willing to pay thousands of dollars for an outfit.  The same goes for software. If some marketing start up needs a quick web page, some DB apps, etc. and they come to me i'll tell them to go find someone else, becasue they'd be wasting their money and my skills.
      I feel there will always be a need for very high end, well written software, maybe not everyone needs a brilliant, 100k a year coder, but some companies will. 

vincent marquez
Thursday, July 18, 2002

From the comments on this forum, it's not THOSE people who are complaining.

"asset"
Thursday, July 18, 2002

Yes.

pb
Thursday, July 18, 2002

Amazing how not one person followed what are fairly simple instructions. Must be a bunch of techies.

pb
Thursday, July 18, 2002

Hey Bella, if you don't understand the difference between skilled and unskilled labor, I feel sorry for you.


Don't feel sorry for me.  I have other plans than to stay in IT and whine, fight, and split hairs regarding basic economics and reality.  Yourdon officially put the writing on the wall a decade ago, if you bothered to open your eyes.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/013191958X/qid=1027046559/sr=8-1/ref=sr_8_1/103-8166626-6103000

Bella
Thursday, July 18, 2002

Bella, I've always liked your posts, and you seem like your a nice, if not overly sarcastic person.  But, if you have such a hard time doing well in the programming field, what makes you think you'll be great at something else?  I hate to tell you, but in any job you'll go to, there will be tons of "under-paid" (in their opinion) workers, and a small amount of highly paid, successful people.

Vincent Marquez
Thursday, July 18, 2002

Just because someone wrote a book, that doesn't necessarily mean there's writing on the wall:
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1877858676/qid=1027055335/sr=2-2/ref=sr_2_2/002-1630185-0619248

Jeff MacDonald
Friday, July 19, 2002

Haven't read this Yourdon book. Hope its predictions were more on target than
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0130952842/qid=1027068062/sr=1-11/ref=sr_1_11/103-1194569-9110227

Just me (Sir to you)
Friday, July 19, 2002

The IEEE has formally called on Congress to review the dangerous situation in engineering employment. It points out that the crisis may be more than a short term or cyclical downturn, and that it may harm America.

"IEEE-USA is asking Congress to investigate the impacts of increased hiring of non-U.S. guest workers, the greater use of temporary workers and the outsourcing of engineering work overseas as causes of the unemployment problem, in addition to the economic downturn," the press release says.

http://www.ieeeusa.org/releases/2002/071202pr.html

By the way, you're allowed to have views on this issue even if it doesn't affect you personally. Let's look after our colleagues, people, especially when the problems are being deliberately created by greedy morons.

Hugh Wells
Friday, July 19, 2002

"Let's look after our colleagues, people, especially when the problems are being deliberately created by greedy morons. "

No offence Hugo, but you mean your "American" collegues, right? Or did you include the Bangalore branch teams also?
As for "greedy morons", do you mean companies that try to maximize shareholder value by reducing operational expences through outsourcing and right-sizing? What is the better option for the company in a free market? Should they suddenly all become welfare intitutions for the poor disadvanteged american programmer?

Just me (Sir to you)
Friday, July 19, 2002

You have a valid point: are we going to look after all the world, which would be good, or our own part of it. Personally, I would be all in favor of looking after all of the world right now, but if we're going to do that, everyone should contribute.

At the moment, the situation is that programming and engineering are being globalised while most other professions are not. Why is this? It is so that senior management can be richer. Nothing more.

So my call is that engineers and programmers should not be disadvanted compared with their fellow citizens in the economy. Let us not forget that this is not an abstract game. Good people in mid-career suddenly find themselves without a job. Without money to buy things for their children. This is a terrible situation we should care about.

As to shareholder value, all that is a negotiated thing. Shareholders benefit from operations in the economy. All participants in that economy are entitled to negotiate their role in that economy. Why is something that's good for shareholders better than something that's good for workers? Answer: it's not.

Hugh Wells
Friday, July 19, 2002

> Feel free to guess my point.

You're "talking to Americans".

Christopher Wells
Friday, July 19, 2002

> Yes.  Amazing how not one person followed what are fairly simple instructions. Must be a bunch of techies.  - pb

No - most people in the world buy nothing in the U.S. except food, lodging, and gas - no-one outside the U.S. has ever heard of "Old Navy".

Christopher Wells
Friday, July 19, 2002

> Bella, I've always liked your posts, and you seem like your a nice, if not overly sarcastic person. But, if you have such a hard time doing well in the programming field, what makes you think you'll be great at something else? I hate to tell you, but in any job you'll go to, there will be tons of "under-paid" (in their opinion) workers, and a small amount of highly paid, successful people.


Vin,
"Hard time doing well programming??"  Actually, it's the opposite.  If you've read my posts, I am leaving tech b/c of quality of life issues.  If anything, I have had TOO MUCH contract work, and have made myself TOO valuable to my clients.  I am tired of doing nothing but work work work, and now want a more balanced life.  Money is of no concern to me anymore. 

=========


Ed the Millwright: "It sounds like you're saying that as a consultant you are able to bill for about 60 hours a week? Are you then able to bill for every working hour?

I personally don't work 60 hours a week anymore. The money is not that important to me anymore. But yes, I do I know some consultants who have been capped at a per diem rate. Previously, they would bill 80 hours if that's what they worked. $30k a month was commonplace....I know handfuls of people in their 20's whose houses are paid off as a direct result of the consulting BONANZA. Sounds like you missed the boat entirely. Be glad you have a nice safe dayjob, b/c it sounds like you have absolutley no business instinct.

Bella
Thursday, July 04, 2002

I must admit, I am quite taken aback when I see programmers who a) claim to be talented and b) complain about pay rates. I dont know what planet some of these people have been on, but we've just experienced as big a boom as ANY profession ever has. Yes, the market has slowed, but how on earth were these people not making money hand over fist for the past 5 years, IF that was their goal? Any decent programmer with a couple years experience had contract offers being thrown at him daily. There was 10x more money to be made than hours in the day. And if you subcontracted work and took a reasonable cut, like the body shops do, you could have cleared 7 figures the last few years, IF that's your style.

Bella
Friday, June 28, 2002
==========

Bella
Friday, July 19, 2002

>

That was a 100% content-free post: nothing but quotes. Get some sleep.

Christopher Wells
Friday, July 19, 2002

I do not wear Old Navy clothes but not for any particular reason.
I have seen Old Navy ads and thought they were targetting the clothes for teens and below.

I prefer to shop at Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack.
There I buy Italian and American shoes which last me 10 years and cost about $60-80/pair.
They are a better value than Malaysian and Chinese made sneakers that cost $150 and last less than 1 year before the soles fall out.

My shirts all seem to be made in the middle-east - Bahrain, United Arab Emirates. Very nicely made with doubl-stitching and thick cotton and fit well.

I have tried on Indian made shirts in the past but they tend to be cut too small and do not have the longer shirttails I favor. But they are usually made OK.

Regarding Indian software, I do not have a single piece of Indian built software on my computer. All of it is made in the US, Canada, Germany and a couple shareware programs from Italy. I have never in my life seen a single piece of software made in India and so I could not possibly tell whether its any good or not. However, because I have never seen it, I am skeptical when I hear that H1B visitors have 'more experience' in the latest technologies, which is the story given by companies importing them.

Ed the Millwright
Friday, July 19, 2002

Ed:

How do you know? If an American or Canadian company outsources their development, they don't often proudly announce "portions of this product are made in India!"

So maybe you have nothing but Indian software on your computer.

Fuck Old Navy. And Menthos. And...
Friday, July 19, 2002

A new poll:  Was this the stupidest topic ever?

Mr. Obvious
Friday, July 19, 2002

Actually, I was talking to people in all the Western economies. Organised campaigns alleging "skills shortages" and resulting flooding of the market with cheaper guest workers have been occurring in all the Western economies. These have generally been run by the local equivalents of the ITAA, with identifiable similarities in campaign tactics.

Hugh Wells
Friday, July 19, 2002

Ed the Millwright,
You may be the biggest IDIOT in this forum.  You have never run software written in India?    Have you ever heard of Microsoft Windows?

Here ya go, a cluetrain just for you:
http://www.microsoft.com/india/indiadev/

http://www.google.com/search?sourceid=navclient&q=microsoft+windows+india+developed

Bella
Friday, July 19, 2002

Perhaps you missed my post on the "Mac fanatic" thread?

Ho hum.

So Bella you still using that piece-a-feces unstable operating system? I guess you can't afford a real man's operating system or perhaps unix is just too hard for you to understand?

Ed the Millwright
Friday, July 19, 2002

Ed,
>All of it is made in the US, Canada, Germany and a couple >shareware programs from Italy.

Not Finland eh? ... but then again that OS is not UNIX ;-)

Patrik
Friday, July 19, 2002

Is some from Finland?
It's possible. Finns tend to be pretty smart people, like the Dutch.

Ed
Friday, July 19, 2002

Oh I just realized you meant Linux.
No I haven't had the chance to try out Linux but I've heard great things about it.

Ed
Friday, July 19, 2002

Ed,

http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/mar2002/nf2002036_9682.htm

(quote)
Now, Apple has quietly made its next move. It has signed up a number of software developers in India to write business applications for OS X and port over (that's geek talk for "convert") existing Unix or Windows programs. Apple has kept quiet about this plan. News of the deal broke in the Financial Express, one of India's leading English-language business dailies. B Mahendran, Apple's country manager for India, told the paper that the company plans "to break into the serious business applications segment."
(unquote)

So if not now, perhaps soon.

Fuck Old Navy. And Menthos. And...
Friday, July 19, 2002

Thanks!

That's good news -- I look forward to finally being able to see some Indian software in action.

Ed
Friday, July 19, 2002

So, Apple will spent years replicating existing app functionality of today's OS's.  What a great reason to convert!  These tech firms are run by monkeys.  Reminds me of the Corel/Java/Office suite DEBACLE. 

Just think, in 3 years, Mac will do just what Win/Linux do today!  (I dont even mean to put Linux in the same sentence as Win.  Linux on the *desktop* was always an overhyped unrealistic joke.  I'm glad all that rubish hype dies off with the stock price of RHAT)      Actually, that same Mac/Win game of catch-up, applies to Linux/Win in the desktop 3 years ago.  We all saw how that worked out.  Same will happen for this Mac porting project.  Can it now, save yourself the $12,000 in coding fees.

Bella
Friday, July 19, 2002

Bella,

I'll be looking fgorward to when you can afford your first own computer.

Ed
Saturday, July 20, 2002

Douchebag, you want to compare bank accounts?  I put away more money in the last 10 years than you will in your entire life. 

Bella
Saturday, July 20, 2002

We're not talking about Monopoly Money little boy.
Come and play when you're a real man and you don't have to use your mommy's computer.

Ed
Saturday, July 20, 2002

My monitor's bigger than both your monitors!!!

Sammy
Saturday, July 20, 2002

It's not the size of the monitor but what you do with it.

I've got the AppleCinemaDisplay 23".

You working with that 24" monster Sammy? Those things are great!

Ed
Saturday, July 20, 2002

Bella Proves  a lot of my views about H1B's yes old navy makes clothes in Sweatshops in India, but are we going to argue that they should bring the sweat shops here too?

There is a way to fight this, by the way!

Daniel Shchyokin
Sunday, July 21, 2002

Not sure what that last post meant, but to clear any confusion, I am not an H1.  However, I support the idea that corporations are allowed to act in their best interests and cut costs where they can.  Anyone who doesn't think so is a flat out hyporcite only looking out for himself.  People like that never get far anyways. 

Ed, again, you want to talk money, then post your email.  I My liquid net worth will DWARF yours.  You picked the wrong topic to fight me on, pauper.

Bella
Sunday, July 21, 2002

This is quite interesting. I've never seen people duel it out based on net worth before.

Hugh Wells
Sunday, July 21, 2002

Bella,

The issue of money is absurd. When have I attempted to bring that up?
It is clear that there is no way to 'prove' cash in the bank without opening myself up to your script kiddie attacks against my banks. I doubt you'd get through but you can never be too careful here. Your motivations here are obvious and transparent.

Just as an aside, I would not be surprised if your mommy did have more cash in her bank accounts than I do. What do money market accounts pay these days? Or perhaps she has it in CDs or interest checking? The fact is that anyone who talks about how much cash they have in their bank account is either not very wealthy or has no clue regarding finance management. This much is also obvious to all who have the misfortune to read your puerile diatribes.

Even if we did want to compare wallet size (ho hum), any money your mommy has is not relevant here. The issue is how old you are and whether or not you are actually a developer or just play one on the internet. I think the answer to both of these questions is obvious for all to see.

As far as email addresses, I think there are far more people here interested in seeing yours than mine and I have better things to do than sort through megabytes of spam sent by you and your little friends.

I will say this though, as a small child your actions are understandable. If you are indeed an adult then that is very sad and I feel quite sorry for you.

Ed
Sunday, July 21, 2002

Bella, could you explain why companies are the only entities allowed to be rational, looking out for their best interests?

For the record, I'm for outsoucing but find H1B as implemented terrible.

ringo
Sunday, July 21, 2002

I don't think Bella is limiting rational self interest to companies.  I think he is talking about the irrational self interest that expect companies to "provide a life" to their employees (high pay, no stress, no expectations, < 40 hours/week, private office, etc, etc, etc).

Joe AA.
Sunday, July 21, 2002

Ed,

You're kidding, right?  Not only are you dumb, you're senile as well.  When you did attempt to bring up the issue of money, you ask?  How about your use of the word "afford" and "money" in your posts below?

"I'll be looking fgorward to when you can afford your first own computer. "
"We're not talking about Monopoly Money little boy."

Bella
Sunday, July 21, 2002

Bella, could you explain why companies are the only entities allowed to be rational, looking out for their best interests?

Thanks for clarifying A.A.  My only point is this thread was to expose people who don't see that cost cutting is an integral part of business.  I'd like to see my detractors this thread start their own company, and start to pay people with THEIR OWN MONEY, and see if they don't start paying attention to salaries, and consider doing some comparison shopping. 

To close this thread, I do buy Old Navy.  The clothes are a bargin, and suit my needs.  As far as quality, I don't need to wear Brooks Brothers when going to the gym.  Make decisions based on your needs.  One last lesson to the economically illiterate who don't understand when cheaper labor has its place.  Though it's technically superior, you don't buy a Ferarri to drive to church.  And one a few have stated, programming today is easier than ever.  The levels of abstraction have made lots of corporate programming child's play.  Don't hire a PhD to do a job that an intern can do.

Bella
Sunday, July 21, 2002

New poll:  Anybody else get kind of freaked out when Bella talks to himself via the 'Joe AA' handle?

Required
Sunday, July 21, 2002

At first I thought Bella might be somewhat serious, but now I realize "it" is a troll!

Daniel Shchyokin
Sunday, July 21, 2002

Allright bella, you made your point now crawl back under your bridge

Daniel Shchyokin
Sunday, July 21, 2002

I'm starting to like being called Bella... at least he ain't one of you whiners.

Joe AA.
Monday, July 22, 2002

Hey look bella's other personality is a troll too

Daniel Shchyokin
Tuesday, July 23, 2002

If any of you would like to DEBATE ANY POINT I've made, PLEASE DO SO NOW.    Justify your troll comments or just shut up.

Bella
Tuesday, July 23, 2002

Why are there some notions of Bella being a kid? I sense at least 10 years of real-world experience in his postings. He may be offensive, but no more than your employer who will throw you out without any notice.

It's a cruel world out there, you know...

Azazello
Tuesday, July 23, 2002

I think Bella's OK too. I've worked with guys that I think would be much like Mr B. They're great guys to have on the team.

Hugh Wells
Wednesday, July 24, 2002

Grad you think so ya old senile douchbag.

heh
Wednesday, July 24, 2002

I call you a troll, bella, because you state your philosophy ad-naseum hoping to piss people off, and have nothing to discuss, you refuse to have a conversation and simply reword the same tired mantra over and over...

That, and if your hair is rumpled, and we spin  you around, it comes out neat again!

Daniel Shchyokin
Wednesday, July 24, 2002

> Grad you think so ya old senile douchbag.

Yep. My comment was a bit patronising, inadvertently so. Good response.

Hugh Wells
Wednesday, July 24, 2002

Daniel,
I refuse to have a conversation?  Is simply posting "troll!" a conversation?  Again, (and again), if you have ANY POINT TO DISCUSS OR REFUTE, do so now.  Otherwise, get back to your damn cubicle.

Bella
Wednesday, July 24, 2002

Simply giving you a taste of your medecine, if you don't like it, well, as I am sure you like to point out, we live in a free society.

Daniel Shchyokin
Thursday, July 25, 2002

By the way, you forgot to respond as Joe AA.

Daniel Shchyokin
Thursday, July 25, 2002

The problem I have with Bella's and Joe AA's posts is they often paint programmers as overly spoiled people.  This is in reaction to that one guy who spammed this board under a 100 different names against non-US workers. 

The funny thing is, we're in a demographic famous for working insane death-march hours.  I think many of us care to write quality software, and if we're too whiny because we want quiet offices, well that's part of what it takes to write quality software.  Managers should ignore this at their own risk.  If we're incompetent, get rid of us.  But otherwise, listen close.

anon
Thursday, July 25, 2002

Anon,

From a Euro perspective, I have to put in some nuances to the "programmers are spoilt/exploited" polarazation debate.

You are right in stating that if you look at it from the point of view of working conditions, there are a few factors that make working as a coder a not so interesting job.
Some code jockeys do indeed spend 60+ hour work weeks on an office chair, in  a bull-pit, staring into a CRT at close range. These are not ideal circumstances (then again, you're not out in the cold or burning sun, down the mine, up a chimney, in the sewers, on the dump ...)
Nuances:
- Many could spend less time at the office getting the same results leaving out the chat-rooms, web surfing, discussion boards, personal e-mailing etc. (I know in some circumstances "being there" is an implicit requirement).
- Most of the programmers take home an above median income for people of their country/edu-level/experience/age.
- (Euro context) The most recent crop to enter the profession (last 3 years) included a serious amount of below average talent, expecting a lifestyle of mega-bucks for free. These can indeed be refered to as spoiled brats without any qualification.

I also beleicve that many references to "spoilt" were made in a more global context, were one can find people making a good living doing the exact same job for 20 times less pay. In this respect the whole of our society is "spoiled", not just the programmers.

Just me (Sir to you)
Thursday, July 25, 2002

Sorry,

Forgot to run the previous post through a spelling checker (Weak excuse: English is not my first language)

Just me (Sir to you)
Thursday, July 25, 2002

Daniel Shchyokin... sorry for your disappointment that I didn't respond as per your criteria.  I happened to be out of town for a job interview.

"they often paint programmers as overly spoiled people."

I am a programmer myself, the term used in it's correct context, not just to mean "coder".  I don't know about Bella.

"spoiled" is probably an incorrect term... it seems to imply there was a period of "ripeness" at some point in time.

I direct some of my remarks to the whiners, and that is true.  They know who they are. 

I don't believe the whiners to be part of any particular job classification... and I don't see where one job classification has more whiners than any other.  Approximately 80 percent of any group these days are whiners, expected to be carried by the remainder. 

I don't believe in "entitlements" in any way, shape or form.  The crying for most of the entitlements, are nothing more than a plea for some physical symbol of automatic "status". 

Status doesn't get the work done.

Joe AA.
Friday, July 26, 2002

It isn't personal (and I mean that seriously, I'm just extremely unhappy at work), but attitudes like that piss me off.  I don't even get a cubicle, and there are phones on each fucking desk, like I should consider that great communication.  I do damn good work, measured by what my CTO and teammates tell me, and easily survived 85% developer layoffs. 

The way I do it is not come to work sometimes.  I find ways to work in the silence of my home.  People like you think that private offices are an extravagance, so I made my own.  I don't write bugs, I'm told I'm the go-to guy for the complex tasks, and yet my judgement is second-guessed at each fucking step.  It's like I'm so important that they're really pushy about emphasizing my importance.

And to top it all off, there are self-satisified A+ students of the school of the hard knocks, who think the little things workers want are whines.  And the funny thing is, these people take particular joy in whining about whiners.  They do it so often.

Whiny workers is a management problem.  You know why?  Because if they whine and are unproductive, you get rid of them.  That way you separate good communication from whiny communication.  Otherwise you get people who are tempted each day to do the bare minimum, tell the customers they're whining, and collect a nice paycheck.  Because that's so much easier than doing real work, and it even reduces the whining.

anon
Saturday, July 27, 2002

see my reminders work!!!

>I don't believe the whiners to be part of any particular job >classification... and I don't see where one job >classification has more whiners than any other. >Approximately 80 percent of any group these days are >whiners, expected to be carried by the remainder.

>I don't believe in "entitlements" in any way, shape or >form. The crying for most of the entitlements, are nothing >more than a plea for some physical symbol of >automatic "status...

see what I mean, even when I make fun of you about it you can't change your tune!!

we know how you feel bella/joe aa, get over yourself!!!!
and quit whining about whiners, most people whine about some things, and carry the team in others.

Daniel Shchyokin
Saturday, July 27, 2002

"I'm told I'm the go-to guy for the complex tasks, and yet my judgement is second-guessed at each fucking step."

If you truly are a "go-to guy", you wouldn't be second guessed.  I believe you overestimate your skills, importance and value to the firm.  Just b/c they didn't  lay you off, it doesn't mean you are some kind of demi-god.  It could just mean you support a more critical piece of business than your laid off counterparts. 

PS: Daniel, please stop accusing EVERY PERSON of being Bella.  It's starting to get real annoying, and you are diluting my aura.

Bella
Sunday, July 28, 2002

not acusing every person of being bella, lose the paranoia

Daniel Shchyokin
Sunday, July 28, 2002

He's correct Bella... only the ones that are mavericks to the herd mentality are classified the same.  Seems contradictory to me, but widgets will be widgets ya know!!  I ain't been able to figure them out.

Joe AA.
Sunday, July 28, 2002

"If you truly are a "go-to guy", you wouldn't be second guessed. I believe you overestimate your skills, importance and value to the firm."

That's what I would think, but I'm told directly otherwise by the CTO and manager.  I usually underestimate my importance.  I even once tried to resign because my productivity was in the crapper. 

I think one main thing is that I know a lot of bsd-licensed libraries, and algorithms aren't a foreign subject.  Now I certainly am taking care of important systems that make me difficult to fire, but that's because I wrote them...  job security is not always calculated.

Anyway, I was ranting, not attacking.  I saved it till this topic was down the page. ;-)  And frankly, you can hit me with ad-hominem attacks all you want to flip the bozo bit on me instead of attacking my actual point.  Ain't no thang.

anon
Sunday, July 28, 2002

anon... know you do good work based on your definition, not the opinions of others.

At one company there was this female programmer.  In short time she was promoted through the ranks to a senior level.  She never could program decently, and the apparent explanation for the promotions was that she was really a high level person. 

She was given one assignment... and after 6 months of constant meetings produced sort of a functional spec.  Management raved about her and threw a work time celebration for her.

When a development project started shortly thereafter, the first thing to hit the trash was her functional spec.  It was useless, equally as useless as everything else she had produced in her programming career - everyone on the project knew it and just accepted it as a cost of doing business.

You see... she was the wife of one of the user managers. 

The truly sad part is that she believes she is extremely talented based on her management's praise.

Not that you fit into this category, but many times and for reasons other than actual or particular accomplishments, people are praised for being something they aren't.  If your only measure of your worth is feedback from others, then you will never know if you are merely being tricked for some other purpose.

Joe AA.
Sunday, July 28, 2002

Joe AA,
Comon, SIX MONTHS of functional specs were tossed out?  There HAD to be SOME valuable information in there!!  It can't possibly be more productive to reinterview all the business users and define the entire functional spec AGAIN w/o using the original specs are a baseline, at least. 
How bad can a functional spec be?  It just tells what the system should be able to do.  It may not be realistic, but it's hard to truly waste 6 months and have nothing concrete and usable from that effort.  No?

Bella
Sunday, July 28, 2002

Come on Bella... Of all people I thought you would understand that politics is both illogical and without substance.

The six months for functional spec creation was also a kicker... the project was a relatively minor data correction and formatting effort on addresses.  How complex can you make addresses?  You would be amazed.

And some people wonder why I don't care for fiction... I have more than enough real life stuff I can't (or don't want to) believe ;)

Joe AA.
Monday, July 29, 2002

"And some people wonder why I don't care for fiction... I have more than enough real life stuff I can't (or don't want to) believe"

the whole idea of fiction of course is to provide an escape from the real life stuff you can't (or don't want to) believe. You sound like you could use some Joe. :p

Just me (Sir to you)
Monday, July 29, 2002

... everyone on the project knew it and just accepted it as a cost of doing business ...
... You see... she was the wife of one of the user managers ...

Sounds like you male developers could not get the project good enough for your users to accept it without incurring the fringe costs, or maybe you just didn't have the balls to find out ;-).

Just me (Sir to you)
Monday, July 29, 2002

Just me... unlike yourself, I have no need to seek an escape from "real life".

I'm not sure what you mean by your male developer comment.  Personally, I wasn't directly involved with the project, and the implementation project manager was also another female.

I hope it wasn't a sexist attempt to imply that "real project managers" can't be female.  I have known some pretty good ones.

Joe AA.
Tuesday, July 30, 2002

I am wearing an old navy shirt right now. It's red.

Yo Momma
Saturday, October 18, 2003

*  Recent Topics

*  Fog Creek Home