Also checkout First Lego League.http://www.firstlegoleague.org/
It's a great program. This is my Son's third year and our second year coaching his team.
The season is in full swing right now so you could probably go observe (possibly join) a local team. And find out when their competition is and go watch.
Here's a video of what they could create.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJSeMeAGmXE
The FLL program consists of core values, a project and the robot game. Robot game is the most fun but they have a good time coming up with a project idea and learning about core values (work as a team, do the work, etc).
If you want to start your own team you can get donations/sponsorship from companies to pay for your startup costs. 2 or 3 robot kits, some extra parts, T-shirts, the FLL kit (mat and mission pieces), supplies to build the board, FLL fees, etc.
If you want to give twit credit, you can go through the link here: https://twit.tv/sponsors
Sounds like exactly what you're looking for!
There's no reason to overcomplicate things, and it'll give you fine control over how things work and what you expect it to do. Layers and whatnot are pretty simple to implement a rough cut of, so why make things complicated?
The Step 5 checklist should include setting a random hardware address for the wireless card or ethernet port. Maybe you can obtain MAC addresses using nmap in one coffee shop, then use them in another shop.
Step 7, get a USB wireless that lets you put a directional antenna with high gain on it, so you can actually be some distance away from the coffee shop, library, etc while you use it.
Also, I guess you'd have to make sure you used a VPN that didn't keep logs...
If you're okay with disabling http (and all plaintext protocols really) then you're better off just using tor instead of a VPN. Keeps the trail of ip connections more distributed. If not you want to make sure you disable them during the process of buying that trusted VPN/S.
I spend a lot of time in libraries on public computers or on public Wi-Fi. Their policies often state up front that there is no expectation of privacy, that staff can check up on your activities if they have reason to do so. I have not paid much attention to policies at, say, Starbucks, but I wouldn't be surprised if they have similar policies. Furthermore, my understanding is that Wi-Fi has pretty big security holes compared to a landline. Plus, if you are a regular, people will recognize you.
I gave up driving years ago and I walk everywhere. This is bizarre and noteworthy behavior in the U.S. People stop me and talk to me and say "I see you walking All The Time..." The degree to which people in cars notice me, recognize me and feel not only free but compelled to speak to me is downright creepy.
So I will suggest that if you spend time very regularly in cafe's using their Wi-Fi, etc. people will not only recognize you, they will feel friendly and curious and like they have some goddamn right to grill you about your life and why you are there all the time and so on and so forth.
I also agree with AnimalMuppet that the lengths to which you are willing to go in order to be "completely anonymous" raise enough red flags that someone, at some point, will take an interest in tracking your ass down and that "someone" may very well be a government agency. So while I get annoyed at how humans are wired and how they conclude they have some goddamn right to grill me merely because they fucking recognize me when I have no clue whatsoever who they are, beyond being annoyed as hell at the whole thing, I don't really need to worry too much because walking everywhere isn't actually a crime, no matter how bizarre and eyebrow-raising it is. But I cannot imagine any reason to go to the lengths you want to go that don't involve serious crimes and most other people will be far more critical of your motives than I am. I am pretty live-and-let-live. On average, other people are much more judgey, butt-in-sky and controlling than I am. So you can bet dollars to donuts that most people will assume you are up to something incredibly evil and that suspicion will fuel their interest in grilling you, tracking you down, etc.
> and not in sight of any cameras.
Almost impossible, unless you're buying from a fence. Laptops are high-value items; almost every place that sells them has cameras on the area where they are sold.
> Is this sufficient operational security to remain totally anonymous against every reasonable threat save for an extremely motivated nation state?
You go to those extremes, and you're likely to motivate a nation state...
Which is to say, they aren't the first $0 brokerage and they won't be the last $0 brokerage. But I don't expect them to be around long term and I double don't expect them to provide $0 trades long term.
I was excited to try Robinhood until I realized that bad execution on the app side (my side) and on getting order fills (their side) would eat up all if nor more of the benefits. Plus frankly if they were poor at getting you to trade to generate exchange rebates, I have to wonder what else they were doing/planning with your money.
In other words - Robinhood's competitors make you pay a fee for access to better prices. That seems like a reasonable value proposition to me.
There are many various HN statistics on different blogs out there, I personally liked this one 3y old http://royal.pingdom.com/2012/08/21/report-social-network-de...
I think it's fun to play with, but not ready for hard-core study yet.
Also, I'm rather curious about the math behind the business. (Note: I am a programmer. I could best be described as having a low and/or dangerous level of knowledge about investing).
If assure.li has 7 customers buy insurance for their $100k investment at 15% (so +$15k insurance premium), they are making $105k. If one of those companies "fails", assure.li now pays out $100k and now are left with $5k. If two customers fail, assure.li is now down $95k.
It's pretty widely cited that nine out of ten startups fail. assure.li seems to be betting that 90% succeed: even splitting the difference and saying 50% succeed, it seems to me this company will run out of money very quickly. An insurance company with no ability to pay claims is not a very useful insurance company.
Or am I completely missing something here?
On a personal note, DDG has been my daily driver for about 2 years now. I love the bang shortcuts (!man and !cpp mostly).
The first few months or so, I ended up following almost every search query with a "!g query", but search results have really, really improved. Now I only have to use Google for local topics and/or very recent events.
And will Dax play a bigger role in the future, in branding to give more personality? It wasn't easy finding the name of the duck I see daily. (https://duckduckgo.com/?q=name+of+the+duckduckgo+duck)
Congrats for your search engine. I admire the work you did. The only reason I don't use DDG is that I'm Greek and the results for Greek keywords are many orders of magnitude off-mark compared to Google. Why is that? Any hope to improve results in the future?
In terms of mobile any plans for the future you can reveal? How do you feel about Siri, Google Now and Cortana is it something you think DDG can do or can be used as a backend/source ?
How do you keep the DuckDuckGo afloat ?
When you were first working on DDG who did you show it to before you "launched" on here? What kind of early feedback did you get?
Google got this one wrong (though I suspect that google does it on purpose).
Just wanted to say thanks for DDG, it's been my default search engine for going on a year now and absolutely love it. I'm also a developer(DDG is also the reason I started to dabble with Perl) from PA (about 10 minutes from DDG) and have to say it's very exciting to see something like DuckDuckGo created in my hometown area. Thanks again for the great work!
How do you evaluate the general search quality?
Do you have any focus on expanding crawling in general? And localized content in particular?
Where did the name for DuckDuckGo come from?
Do you have some plans to open source the search engine of DuckDuckGo one day and let people contribute?
Also, I would do what's below. I would reach out specially to the company and see if they can send out ~500 resumes / week instead of 100 for 5x the $. Or just outsource this to ODesk instead.
When I entered the industry, jQuery was hugely popular on these sites. Now, it's all about Node and Angular. And it's only been 5 years for me.
Kern Type  is an interesting game to play which allows you to compare your kerning against that of a typographer. It's a fun way to burn a few minutes and learn a bit about kerning.
I seem to remember that Knuth's Metafont  has a DSL for specifying kerning. I don't know if it produces optimal results (whatever that means) but it might be a place to start.
The lab is a lot of fun.
He (or Matasano?) also has an article somewhere outlining roughly what steps you need to take from programmer -> security expert, but it wasn't easily googleable.
Couple of diamonds in the rough though
I've had (way) more success in the 'who wants to be hired' thread.
OTOH, in NYC and DC, there are more women with college degrees than men; this equates to an easier time for that same guy.
Same thing applies if your a woman, gay, etc. - find whichever area favors your target market. You can have a good guess of your boss, work environment, etc. based on the interviews, but until you've worked there, a lot of it is a gamble. OTOH, finding a detailed study of demographics is a Google search away. There is an interesting chart here:
Have you gone to to each company and city in person?
If so which one really speaks to your heart?
Which company has people that you'd like to meet who you might learn from?
Which city would you want to look for the job after this one if this company falls apart overnight?
Forget logic young Jedi Tomy and use the Force!
By the way it sounds like you're young, so realize that you can do something in life, realize that it's a mistake and then move on. Once you're married with kids and/or have elderly parents your choices become narrowed down a bit...
I help people think through these kinds of situations all the time with my work. If you're interested I'll give you a HN special of a free phone call so we can figure this out together. I'm not going to sell you on anything, so don't worry about that. If you're interested email samuel at thelittleyes.com
You can learn more about what I do here: http://www.thelittleyes.com
But, it should be noted: If you have two similar offers, you're in a good position to make a counter-offer to either one and get more money out of the deal. If Ohio is willing to raise the salary to dwarf the other offer, maybe it's worth going with them. If you're considering telling them "thanks, but no thanks", then you might as well send a counter-offer instead. You really have nothing to lose.
Social currency wins. The friends and contacts you make will create higher visibility and more opportunities as your career progresses.
What's your five year goal? Are you looking to start a family? Looking to get experience? Looking to just have a nice life?
It did help me in two ways :1. The other person realized that I'm another human being just like him and not some "ideal code cranking robot" that he expected me to be ! He even apologized at some point for any offense he would have caused, explained his reasons and assured me that it was not personal.2. I realized that he was under similar stress for meeting his own challenges / expectations laid out to him by his superiors. So, helped me feel better about myself , that the situation was caused mostly due to his inability to communicate rather than any fault from my end !
Similarly, your manager's boss is much more likely to side with your manager than with you. And complaining to your own manager may backfire if he values toxic-guy more than you (which seems to be the case).
So I'd suggest that if it really bothers you, start looking for a new job. Otherwise, ignore it. If your manager is already talking to him about his behavior, he might eventually improve his attitude.
For more on HR's role in a company, you might want to read this book (which I read after it was recommended a while back by someone else on HN):
Corporate Confidential: 50 Secrets Your Company Doesn't Want You to Know---and What to Do About Them
By Cynthia Shapiro
HR is not there for you. HR is there for the company. Expect the worst if you go to HR and ask for any help. Doing this will immediately politicize the situation, making you the "bad guy" and you'll be on the defensive trying to save your job so fast your head will be spinning.
This has been true at every company I have worked at. HR might be a fine ombudsman at your company, but this would be an exception that I have never seen.
Also, be careful when stamping the "toxic" label. I'm not saying you're wrong in your judgement, but maybe you just don't know what's happening with his personal life. I have a fellow colleague which I always considered at least "cranky" since I joined my current company (half a year ago). Last week we traveled to work abroad and had some free time to talk over beers - he confided me that his mother was and still is very sick. Tough stuff, which reminded me clearly how frivolous we all can be when making judgements.
By all means do 5 while you execute on 4, but you're in no position to change the culture of the firm. Go and find a better one. (Context: I've done exactly this.)
If you call hiss bullshit he'll probably go into denial (sooner or later). He can also become depressive, or even more aggressive. Those are defense mechanisms. They are triggered in confrontational situations, the "fight or flight" instinct. Men usually fight, women usually flight. Best option is for him to actually feel good about himself, as people "at the top" do not belittle the little people, as it would mean they feel threatened (and, as such, are afraid, meaning they're not as strong as the other).
Best way imho is to be friendly to him, and when he belittles someone, instead of confronting him, you approach tangentially, making him feel he would be even "more superior" if he helped. This way he will be validated by his experience and by his understanding.
For example, "man, you don't need to go that far. I mean, you've [been doing this for a long time]/[studied a lot]/[put a lot of effort], you must have made some mistakes too. And you're [one of the best]/[probably the best]/[an awesome] developer. If you could give us some tips sometimes, II bet we'd become an even greater team. :D"
And obviously, whenever you can, praise stuff his done well and ask for opinions. Can be on conceptual stuff or whatever, just help him feel "validated" for his good points and he will naturally shift to a less confrontative behavior, plus he will focus on the stuff that got people to like him.
He should do therapy btw, but suggesting this will probably make things worse. If nobody can make this work, all the good devs will end up leaving, and the company will be left with people that have no other options... Not a good place to work at, unfortunately.
It's a seller's market for people with your skills right now. There's no guarantee that you'll find a new environment that doesn't have one of these cancer-in-the-locker-room culture killers, but they're not quite as common as you're fearing.
It's not just this one employee that's the problem, it's that the bad apple, the manager, and the manager's manager are all knitted together into a situation that you can't break, which is making you "miserable". You may not like the idea of leaving. But, given the information you've provided, it is your best option. (Or, maybe your least-worst option.)
And it would be pretty bad if said report was leaked to other employees. People might put up with this stuff one by one, but hearing the insults about themselves suddenly changes things. Though again, this might be a horrible idea.
That being said, obviously your manager doesn't share this ethos. In the future, this is something you might want to filter for.
If I were you, I would make preparations for the worst and escalate. You don't want to leave, but you need to be willing to and prepared to do so. If you do escalate though, go to your manager. He's clearly aware of it, and ultimately its politically a mistake to go to either HR or your manager's manager, since it'll hurt your relations with your direct manager.
Doing nothing isn't an option in the long term if nothing changes. There's no real point in considering it.
So you can leave (because you don't really want to work in an organization that needs that kind of intervention).
Or you can speak to the co-worker, and try to come up with strategies for fixing shit. It doesn't sound like he's just angry (otherwise management wouldn't have his back), it sounds like he's angry at actual problem. Try to get him focused on the problems that can be fixed (see the Joel test?), not ones that can't (people issues).
Try to get him to focus on the process, not the people.
Or just leave. It's possible he's just an asshole.
Question what this person is saying. Stand up for your coworkers if you think they've done good work and the comments are unreasonable. If your coworker is wrong then he won't able to defend his position, and he'll look ridiculous. If he's right that the work is poor then he'll look stupid for complaining when the developer in question isn't there.
Just make sure there are plenty of other people around, particularly your boss.
At my current workplace, this kind of "brilliant ahole" is shown the door asap but most workplace cultures encourage (passively or actively) this behavior.
How I solved it:
1. Confrontation.2. Talking to managers and tell them I would leave.3. Giving him the attention and greet him when he wanted to do something good.4. Hear his opinion.5. Remind him my role when power argument arise.6. Indifference and segregation also worked well. The company started to avoid him.
If none of these calm him, then I would simply leave. Theres no need to gift life and sanity for a jerk.
Have you thought about talking to your coworker directly? I know this may sound rough right now and I don't suggest being confrontational. Maybe just ask him out to lunch with you. Build a relationship. It's hard to be mean to a friend... You could become his friend. I had a similar situation recently with a coworker. At a company lunch I noticed this particular coworker was not invited to sit with anyone. I invited him over. We chatted about non-work things. Our relationship did improve. He's still overbearing and mean, but less so. Our relationship has improved.
Also, are his evaluations actually incorrect? Sometimes people are mean and honest at the same time. Are the people he is speaking badly about actually completing work poorly? Is he having to pick up their slack? Does he have to work late or harder because of them? He is purely venting his honest frustration?
Ive worked in high pressure environments before and a little bit of venting is incredibly tame.
From the sounds of it whenever there is a crises he is the one expected to take care of it.
The easiest way to fix it is to take on a chunk of the responsibility yourself. At the very least it will give you a better understanding of the pressure he is under.
If I have to work through the weekend fixing critical problems caused by careless coworkers then I'll probably have a whinge. If you make me miss out on spending time with my wife and kids.... Of course I'll be a bit frustrated with you.
If, for example, your coworker begins to belittle someone else once they leave the room, you could say something like: "I don't think that null-reference exception makes them an idiot, but that's why we have code review," or "...perhaps we should have code review," or "...perhaps you could show them how you have handled a similar problem in your code, so we could learn from it."
When you interact with your coworker, use professionalism as a tool: keep the topic relevant to business and remain as unemotional as possible. If you start to become emotional or if your coworker becomes emotional slow down what you are saying to give yourself time. You can also repeat what he or she is saying, in order to confirm or mirror it.
If you keep it professional no one is going to blame you. Obviously you can get away with much worse, but you need to indicate to this person that it's not ok to talk that way around you. If you're feeling that way and your manager is feeling that way, then other people probably are. If you act professionally, you will give your coworker a dignified way of changing their behavior. Everyone, especially management, will want to avoid drama; but that doesn't mean you should let this person do whatever he or she wants. Right now you're enabling that behavior.
Finally, you should think very carefully about leaving your job because of one other person. That is a major life decision you are making, all because of one jackass. What are you going to do at the next job if you don't like someone? I would try to at least exert some influence yourself before changing your entire work life.
To make life easy for you, I'll lay out your options:
- Go to your manager with a plan for improving the co-worker's behaviour. Any other conversation about it will be pointless because the manager has shown that they are unable to fix the problem without help.
- Go to your co-worker and find a way to convince them to change their behaviour. Remember that the manager has already tried and failed at this. You will have to try an approach other than saying "I would really like you to change your behaviour".
- Engineer the termination of employment of the co-worker by means fair or foul. (Note that going above your direct manager or to HR is essentially an attempt in this direction).
- Find a way to be happy in your work, despite your co-worker's behaviour.
- Engineer your own termination of employment.
I think only one of these approaches is easy and none are without risk. If you are willing and able to help your co-worker, this is likely to have the best possible outcome. The chances for success, though, are vanishingly small.
Improving the quality of the team by engineering other people's termination is something that is not so difficult if you know how to do it, but it rather paints a big arrow at your head with the caption "I am evil". Whether you want to go down this route is entirely up to you. It often makes your team happy at the expense of the person you are targeting.
Finding a way to be happy despite the poor behaviour of your colleagues is a very nice outcome for yourself, personally, but it doesn't do much to help others who share your situation. Still, if you wait long enough, the co-worker in questions may gather enough rope to hang themselves.
Finally, you can leave. Knowing when you have had enough is a wonderful wisdom to have. There are risks, as you have said and nobody can evaluate them for you.
It's not a good situation to be in. It's not entirely uncommon, though, given the short period of time people tend to stay in groups in this field, you are likely to encounter the situation again sometime in the future. Building your own skills so that you can help people who suffer from being assholes is something that can be quite valuable (and even marketable). Alas, I have never learned the knack myself.
On the other end of options, you could grit your teeth and tolerate this further if you don't feel like it's a battle you want to fight.
It's about what you feel is best for you/what you are willing to tolerate. I personally would prepare to leave, as taking verbal abuse often with co-workers is not the type of work environment I want to be in, but that is me.
Remember, he is not your partner or your friend, he is just there. You do not have to let him under your skin. Turn down the gain on your butthead antenna. Visualize a force field around you off which his assininity just bounces. That is how most people (including my best friends) deal with me: they just do not listen to me.
This is an incredible growth opportunity for you. Seize it! You will tolerate us idiots more effectively for the rest of your life.
I say that because I don't know your organisational structure and culture. I've done all you've written above, and sometimes it went well, other times not so well. 5 in particular.
Something I recommend for everyone to do is find someone to be a mentor. I have a couple, one a former boss I stay in contact with, the other someone that just took a liking to me. I'm sure I'd have more had I been aware of the power of simply making an effort to stay in contact. For you it could be someone that goes to the same gym, restaurant, or any common connection to bond over. Cultivate that relationship, but don't make it seem like sucking up, because it shouldn't be. No mentor likes sucking up, but they all like being able to share some wisdom and like seeing the results.
First, recognize that not everyone thinks the same, or has the same style. Consider that just like his attitude upsets you, your (or your coworkers) attitudes may be upsetting him. This is key to coming up with a solution that works for everyone.
Second, understand that this is probably more venting than anything. The guy is getting frustrated and knows he can't (and shouldn't) take it out on people he sees as having messed up. This doesn't make it right, but consider that the guy is trying not to be toxic.
Third, the guy needs regular feedback about this. --You mention that when your manager talks to him, things improve for a time. This ties into my second point, that the guy is actually trying. You may or may not be in a position where he'll listen to you. I'd recommend trying to talk to him about this directly. When you do this, don't beat around the bush. --Tell him that you know he's good at what he does, but that the constant complaining about coworkers makes it hard for you and others to work with him. I really recommend that you do this. Or if not you, the coworker who he seems to have the most respect for - it'll often mean more coming from a coworker than a manager.
Fourth, ask your manager to follow up regularly. --He needs to help keep reinforcing the attitude change so that the guy doesn't fall back into old habits.
Finally, consider offering the guy a chance to vent over lunch once a week or so away from the office. --This helps give him a chance to get things off his chest, but to do it somewhere that it doesn't hurt others. And it might give you a chance to give him some insights of your own about the people he complains about.
This guy may never be your ideal coworker, but you can probably help find the middle ground that makes things better for everyone.
I was recently in a similar situation where anyone disagreeing with the "golden boy" was chided by him. He's just another bully, generally when you stand up they leave you alone.
I had a word with my bosses boss and my boss at the same time, said basically I have thick skin, but at the end of the day his behaviour is pissing me off, something needs to be done because if a Jr was being "coached" they would likely freak out due to the condescending manner.
If it is a big corp ask to be transferred to another position for instance. There is nothing you can do about assholes, other than avoid them, especially if they are fully supported by the hierarchy.
By doing so other employees will then become to know what you already know, and some solution is more likely to arise.
In any case, before this thing starts impacting your mood outside of work, definitely leave the company.(i have been in the exact same situation and regret not leaving that company much earlier.)
Go talk to him, tell him how he makes you feel (not "you do this, you do that", but "I feel like shit when you say X"). And ask him to be kind/patient to less experienced devs.
Make him feel important by requesting his mentorship instead of acid complaints.
Tell him he can help empower others instead of belittling them.
Talking to a manager will only make things worse.
I've only changed when I pushed for a promotion and another manager blocked it based on my behavior. When I asked people who I knew could have influenced my promotion to not happen, she just said "I blocked it because despite being by far the strongest technically, your behavior negates most, if not all, the value you can add to the team." The next week, she was going to my manager telling him he _has_ to promote me.
She's probably one of the person who had the best impact on my career so far (I was 31, so my career was closer to the beginning than to its end.
Another person that was extremely helpful in the same period of time was a coworker who joined as a tech lead 2 years before my promotion got rejected. His title was above mine even though I was technically stronger than him. He had no problem acknowledging it but also that his people skills were putting mine to shame. We had the most honest discussions about both skill-sets and while we were brutal with each other more often than not we became very good friend. I'm a bit frustrated by the fact that I don't think he got as much out of our relationship than I did, but I think it was more coming from his own shame than from my behavior.
A third was a person out of work that had been classified as "gifted" as a kid. He used to introduce me as a "genius" to people around me. I hated that but it got me thinking.
Anyway, coming from the other side, there were a couple of things driving my judgement :
- I thought I was normal and that anyone not performing to my level was just stupid. And that was making me angry towards others. The third person made me realize that maybe I wasn't normal (sorry if that sounds very pretentious), which means others are not stupid. They're actually quite smart, just not the same way I am. And my responsibility is to help them gain the insight I have, granted they want to.
- I didn't feel recognized enough. The 1st person made it brutally obvious that people saw what I could do and the only reason why they couldn't let me know what they saw was because I didn't let them. I was trying to prove myself all the time through the wrong behaviors, which just became an infinite loop of mutual deception.
- I felt lonely and frustrated. The 2nd person made me aware of my own shortcomings and also offered me both a mentor and a mentee with which I could share insight, transfer knowledge and ask questions, expecting nothing but the cold harsh truth.
If this colleague is the only thing that would drive your change of job, I would take that as a last resort option. You should not have to leave a job you are happy/content about because of a single person, so I'll take 4 out of the equation.
As said by other comments, going to HR is a waste of time. Nothing to gain there IMO. It's a human relationship issue that won't be solved by someone you've never seen around and that basically considers all of you as a liability. (Not all of HR is like that, but that's a big part of their job)
I think going to your manager is not a bad idea. if you come to him with a "I feel like" rather than a "it's his fault" approach, it should at least get him thinking. "I feel like XX is unapproachable/angry at others/aggressive all the time and I'm not sure howto approach him and make him an ally and learn from him". It's his job to advise you, to ask around and to advise this person if the feeling you have is shared by your other colleagues. If he breaks confidentiality and that backfires on you, I'd suggest changing managers. You cannot trust him with your career.
Go above your manager only if you are closer to your n+2 than to your manager. There's only so much he will be able to do without engaging your manager in the loop.
Try "confronting" him. Not so much in an aggressive way, but by using your soft skills. Praise him a bit for the things he really is better at you than you are. Learn from him. Don't hesitate to ask him for his opinion/advice/how he got there. And if you can build a connection, tell him about his own shortcomings in the areas where you are better than him. If there's no such area, use him to learn where he's better at than you are. You might be able to learn what he seems to know without having to put all the effort he put in it rather than his social skills. He will probably sound like an insufferable jerk from time to time, but what you'll get out of him might be worth thousand times the 30 minutes of jerkiness and self satisfaction you had to suffer through.
Good luck. I still feel bad about my past behavior but I've grown so much since then that I can only be thankful to all the people who had to suffered through this coming from me.
Turned out the offending co-worker just favored bluntness over politeness and was more than happy to discover I was able to discuss with him over concepts and not over how those concepts he expressed.
The two of us never had a problem since.
A lot of the programmers rushed their code so it was sloppy and crashed the system and take down the database. I had to fix those programs and also work on my own programs. I got assigned Legacy Software Support and anything that broke became Legacy Software and assigned to me. I had over 134 projects to work on and had tight deadlines.
I ended up stressed out and on short-term disability, and when I returned to work and had a panic attack I was fired for not snapping out of it. I ended up on disability.
My best advice for you is to learn how to manage stress, no matter where you work there will always be a toxic element to it. The better a programmer the bigger the ego they have in some cases. Sure it is hard to get along with a jerk that management likes and is fire-proof. But if you can change your reactions and manage your stress better you can deal with it better. Don't make the mistake I did and let it get to you to the point that you make yourself sick.
The first step should be a private conversation using the "when you do X I feel Y" template. They may not realise the effect they are having.
That doesn't always mean that I leave -- only that by the time I'm asking the questions you're asking, it's always been too late. It was time to go a while back and I just didn't want to admit it.
Good luck! I doubt there's some magic sauce or fairy sprinkle dust that will turn a jackass into a flower, but perhaps your experience will be different from mine.
- Does your team lack the ability to healthily self-critique, with the goal of improvement?
- Are your coworker's criticisms usually right?
- Do they dominate discussions so others can't get a word in edgewise, or are they an active listener?
- What do other coworkers do/think about your coworker?
If you can get a healthy process in place to self-critique, with action points... and where everyone has the ability to speak (with a facilitator who tries to understand why some people aren't speaking), that's a possible solution. That provides a constructive vent for your coworker's critiques.
This book is the best I know at discussing team dysfunction: http://model-view-culture.myshopify.com/products/your-startu...
Thankfully the internet is full of resources on how to get started without asking Hacker News every few months. Many people are self taught and have done it without asking for help, usually they just learn to figure out the answers for themselves.
Lastly, if you really are serious, you might just want to look into coding bootcamps that have sprung up all over the place. And please don't give me that crap about not having money, many bootcamps provide financial assistance and if anything, you can take out a loan, which if this is what you really want to do, will be well worth it when you succeed.
Also, to echo @hitsurume the coding bootcamps do have easy ways to pay, most have flexible payment plans. @saluki has a great point as well to start with HTML and CSS. I agree.
Other than that, what works for me is practice, practice, practice. I practice in the programming language and actually writing out code with pencil and paper.
Since the book was so famous and deemed important, the Farao tried to read the book. But it was a difficult book. He had to go back and forth more than twice. He was struggling to understand the first chapters. Eveything was so complicaed and soon he got bored to death. So being a Farao (a God among humans) summoned Euclid and asked if there was a shorter path to learning geometry than reading the book. Euclid turned to the royalty and replied: "There is no royal road to geometry."
So, that's the problem: There's no royal road to programming. You have to put the in the hours and patience. If you're really going to do this, stop pressing your self to learn fast. Just choose a language, buy an introductory book and jump in.
Then do it.
Of course, you don't know how to do it. That's the point. Your project goal will guide you to learn the things you need to know in order to accomplish it.
When you succeed, pat yourself on the back, then pick a new, harder goal and repeat.
Yes, it will take time. You are learning a new language and a whole new way of thinking. Don't think it will be easy. Don't expect to be able to get a job programming after a month's practice. (Peter Norvig wrote a great article on that: http://norvig.com/21-days.html.) But keep at it. Practise, read, practise, read more. Start reading open source code. Increase the complexity of your projects - make sure every project contains something new, but avoid projects that are way too advanced. Eventually you'll get capable enough that somebody might even consider hiring you.
Be committed to making it work, but most importantly: don't forget to have fun along the way :-)
Run MAMP or WAMP locally with Sublime Text . . . learn basic html/css
This book is great for getting your feet wet.http://headfirstlabs.com/books/hfhtml/
Once you make it through that one move on to PHP/MySQLhttp://www.headfirstlabs.com/books/hfphp/
Once you have those two completed you'll be ready to create a simple app, maybe a to do list or tracking something you collect.
After a few simple applications, even doing the login/authentication you'll be ready to move to a framework.
I'd recommend Laravel or Rails (laracasts.com/railscasts.com) are great resources. But don't skip laying the framework with the books above.
TeamTreehouse.com is a great resource too, but I think the books are better to get you started.
Another approach is via printed books. I am a big fan of O'Rielly's Head First series. In particular, Head First Java not because Java is the wind beneath my wings but because Kathy Sierra is an excellent author and the series is based to some extent on her work.
Build a text adventure game. It shouldn't take more than a few days and you can actually say you finished the project.
Also try to find a local support group and/or a mentor.
That was enough (barely) for me to get a job as an entry-level developer. I'm kind of doing it backwards, but I've also gone back to Uni part-time to get my degree in CS. I've now finished courses in C, Java and some semi-advanced mathematics.
After almost a year and a half as a developer, I know 10x as much as I did last year, and I still don't know squat :) I think that's a big part of the reason I love it.
It might be worthwhile to get checked out for a possible learning disability. If you have one, once it is identified, you can look for resources on how best to accommodate it. Specific disabilities respond well to specific approaches.
You can also look into learning styles. Your mind can just work differently from the norm without it being a disability per se, but it will impact how you best take in information.
You might try going to Hacker Events or networking or looking for a tutor. Sometimes, someone can explain something in person more effectively than any book. Or you might try going to the library and trying different books to see if different approaches work better for you, etc.
Try things you haven't tried yet, things that are different in some way from what you have been trying.
Psychologically, the side of your dominant hand is where you prefer to keep things you see as dangerous or more difficult to control. This is why a male and female couple usually walk with the male at the right. The male's job is to protect the couple from outside intruders, for which the male needs his good hand free and facing the outside world. The male's left hand is on the more trustworthy, less dangerous side -- by his female partner.
Neurologically, the left visual field (left of the visual fixation point) is processed directly by the right cerebral hemisphere, and vice versa. In normal mammals, the two hemispheres share data efficiently. For some individuals (particularly "split-brain patients"), this sharing may be more or less interrupted, in which case it would be better to keep the logical information in the right visual field so that the left cerebral hemisphere can process the data effectively. After all, the left cerebral hemisphere is made to process serialised data, such as source code.
My advice: keep working with the IDE on the right so long as it makes you happy.
personally, i used to have a pretty nice setup with one screen and a tiling window manager. with one screen you don't have to move your head at all, just use the keyboard to flicker between desktops. perhaps this works better with plain terminals / terminal editors, where you don't lose any screen real estate (in comparison, using e.g. visual studio is pretty nice, but on a small monitor it is sort of like looking at a text file through a porthole)
My usual setup is:
Browser on right. Mail and IM in a different desktop also on the right.
Sublime, iTerm, SourceTree and other dev tools on the left.
So I rigged the downstairs call-box to call a Twilio number instead of ringing the office line. The Twilio bot would then prompt the user to enter a passcode, and would then buzz them into the building if the passcode they entered was correct.
This allowed us to give guests temporary passcodes to get into the building, and allowed us to track who was coming and going (because we gave every employee a unique code to use as well). Worked pretty well, and total setup time was just a couple hours.
We had a large client asking whether they could load up a Periscope broadcast of a launch party in NYC (where all the big names were) and stream it to their press event London.
My first act was just catching the stream - all JS were naturally minified, though some M3U8 files (a playlist of video URIs) were coming through and fortunately from an insecure HTTP source. This lead to warnings of mixed security in Chrome's console; we could essentially isolate the link and load it in VLC!
Because this had to be actionable by a non-programmer during the event, I hacked in some temporary functionality into the Announcement feature of Eventbeat to listen for an announcement title "Periscope", and the message was expected to be the hash of the M3U8 video stream that I trained them to grab from the console.
Turns out that on the night it worked really well, fortunately, though they ended up only using it for ~10 minutes.
Fun little hack to get going though, not sure if they're serving the video over SSL now.
... and the card with the 8-bit register remembered all 16 bits!
Turns out that the unused 8 bits were still being driven onto the data bus, and setting a voltage there. Then, when I did the read (microseconds or nanoseconds later), the data bus still had the same voltage, and that voltage got sent to the CPU.
So I wrote a 16-bit pattern to that register, wrote a different 16-bit pattern to a different register, and then read back the first register. Then I could reliably tell whether the board was version 1 or version 2.
Just a very simple thing, but it amuses me still, nearly 20 years later. (Though maybe the problem amuses me more than the solution...)
OpenCV should be able to do all these things.
Effectively what you have here is a bitmap in a PDF which happens to contain a scan of text. So in order to even begin to extract it, you'll have to extract the bitmap, then OCR it, but while you OCR it you'll have to try to keep the location of the different blocks somehow...
You'd need to look at several of these to see how consistent they are. If they're laid on a flatbed scanner manually, they won't be very consistent. However if they're scanned via a feeder then it should be extremely similar each time, and you could hard code in the coordinates of the data you want (which is extremely fragile, but is the least amount of work).
Then you just OCR the names only, while looking in other boxes for any content at all.
I'd suggest you set up a job on Mechanical Turk or similar, and pay a small amount per page to have them re-entered in a format you can more easily read.
Looks like there's a lot of manual work there, unfortunately.
Most of the gov.uk info is the same, scans, pdfs, poorly formatted word and excel spreadsheets. :(
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- A 'do you need to reply all' pop-up when people do a short thanks message. Kinda like the check for attachments.
- A 'drop me from this thread' button so the next reply-all person see a note that these people have been removed. Then they can add them back if needed.
- More personal statistics on email to chart how many you are getting and time spent etc. Seeing this might encourage people to be more efficient.
- Improve threading of emails to more like SMS. Outlook and Gmail ate both horrible on this. Opera M2 used to have quite good threading so perhaps the new Vivaldi team will improve this when they re-make the mail client.