Friday, November 4, 2011

A New HR Program for Employees Career Goals

A "friend" of mine works for a company that recently published a new program designed for the "employees" to lay out there "goals" for a career. The employees were asked to fill in their career job goals with dates and expectations to help them achieve these career goals (i.e. different jobs within the complany.) I think this was all in response to employee complaints of being stagnant in their careers. (Like HR cares, huh?)

This was his email reply back to his team.

I like how he describes the double-bind of "If your career doesn't advance, it's your own damn fault" from HR. I like how he back-peddles at the end too.


I must say … that to honesty come up with and fill out “start dates” and “due dates” with hope while weighting the progress on specific career choices is something more in the realm of angst-delivered assignments given from our old high school counselors.

In reality, I believe the greatly logical Spock himself couldn’t fill this out with any self-scrutinized integrity. J

Don’t get me wrong. I mean it looks good in theory.
And obviously HR spent lots of money on this goal-tracking program—for their “human resources”.
So if it fails…. I know it will be my own fault.

I’ve seen these kinds of formulaic solutions to complex issues though many times and have doubts if reality-checks are thoroughly applied.
I’ve yet to see careers actually develop this way.
Then again , maybe that’s not the true purpose of such a program.
Maybe it is to only give the illusion that a mechanism is now in place and only losers will not be able to make it work for them.
If your career doesn’t develop, then you obviously didn’t fill out the forms right.

Maybe I’m completely wrong.
Oh, I hope so. A mechanical process to develop my human career! How wonderful!

Here’s to fun and light-hearted enjoyment with my fellow workers!
(Come to think of it….. that’s all I ever really wanted in a job I think anyway!)

(Please, don’t take me too serious, otherwise HR will get mad at me. And you know how bad that can be for a career.)

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Classical Programmers are both Scientists and Artists



There is a difference between a senior level programmer that takes pride in his work and whoever the junior hack is that gets away with writing this kind of spaghetti code. Unfortunately the spaghetti coder continually gets away with it, probably getting recognition for “getting it done”, and the “bloat-ware” left in the wake gets ingrained in the systems—awaiting to be undone, reinterpreted, and corrected—taking 2-3x or more the time and the money. All the while the bloat code sits there running however well it runs most likely frustrating customers and anyone who looks at it in vain hopes of trouble-shooting or updating.


The first breed are classically trained and know how computers like to think. They relish slicing to the bone the most direct and most elegant route for bits to travel. They are artists and scientists.


The second breed are those that pass themselves as “programmers” and have learned to cut n’ paste, experiment, and piece code together till somehow it seems to work and they get their paycheck never looking back.


Much to the pride of this team, Ian Laird is one of the few masters from this first breed.


To me, he exemplifies the standard of this ideal for the whole industry.


(End of toast…. You may shed a tear, applaud and bring out the statuette.) J


Seriously though,



Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Gas them Protesters.... and Watch the Birds

Man... Twitter really is the new news media. And they're gassing the "Occupiers" in Oakland now. Nice. Let's see if FOX covers it tonight on the news.

And on the brighter side of life, nature is still rolling on. Here's photo I took of a Painted Bunting in my bird bath.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

accelerating returns of the accelerating returns

I’ve seen this video.. it is somewhat interesting and at least gets across the sense of what “exponential” actually feels like and mean….. this kind of thing and the fodder around it should be standard High School viewing if not 8th grade.


Which brings up the philosophical question of “what does an education really mean in this day of ‘Google-everything’ instant knowledge”?


I mean, what are we teaching kids in school knowledge wise that they aren’t capable of teaching themselves with a few clicks and searches. What actually IS knowledge in an environment like this? I mean with a smart-phone in my hands there isn’t anything it seems that is impressive when spoken at a party. How does this evolve? How does one find worth in knowledge when for a few pennies and the bandwidth anything is Insta-knowable (made the word up here)…. J


Or has all knowledge now just become the post-modern everything is equal and therefore of no value matter of opinion. Consider the Keynesian vs. Laffer (Curve) (or use Austrian Economics if you will) “knowledge” controversies debated at the highest academic ranks but watered down to snippets of clichés between the left and right American politics each using the “knowledge” to make substantial policy decision affecting millions of people in very real ways. Where is the “knowledge?” Can I Google, “What economic theory comes closest to economic reality?” Where is the freaking science ???!!!???


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Famous And I Didn't Know It

I'm not sure why, but at one point while visiting a temple in China I was approached by a young native girl and was asked if they could take a picture of themselves with me. Before I knew it they all were surrounding me like I was a movie star and saying things in broken English like "You so cool! You cool guy!" and giggling with delight.

Of course I played it up and delighted them with my generous and lavish charm. One girl wanted my phone number. It's amazing how some people just know a famous person when they see one.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Visiting a Snake Temple in Penang, Malaysia

Having lunch in Penang, Malaysia, and quickly walking next door to the Snake Temple. We bow at the altars of incense before we go in, then look around and see loose, live, Wagner's Vipers hanging around the temple. They are highly venomous with very long fangs but believed to not strike within the temple due to the incense that subdues them. I don't trust this theory and keep a leary distance.

We look around, see a monk meander by, then walk next door to the snake farm and visit some of his critters which includes a 22 foot Reticulated Python found locally, and several other snakes including a couple of King Cobras (in pictures with Mitch bending down, and one coming out of a box). Mitch gets to pull out a large Burmese to show his fellow employees who are standing far, far behind me.


Saturday, March 26, 2011

Cultural National Values - Subtle Assumptions that Hinder Communications

So I took this Global type of test for people traveling the globe and trying to get along with other cultures.

Turns out I'm way riskier and an more of an egalitarian than I thought. I also less independent and relationship building than I thought. Sounds like a recipe for a social rabble rouser heading towards disaster if you ask me.

Now what's even more interesting is that Americans in general are even more to the extreme "Left" on this cultural awareness values test than I am.

So I guess I'm not as "direct", "task-orientated" and "independent" as the American norm even though I sure always feel that's how people percieve me.

The bad news is that I am heading to China to deal with people on the complete opposite end of this sprectrum. People in Slovakia, Czech Republic and Panama--others that I deal with including family--fall somewhere in the middle interestingly enough.

And in case you are not sure what egalitarian is in this context here is how the test describes it.

Friday, January 21, 2011

American Kitchen is back online!

After lots of people got after me for having American Kitchen offline for so long, I resurrected the old post and brought it back to life. My former host lost all my pictures but I was able to save my text thanks to, a terrific long time stable blogging tool. So I hope my old and new readers once again will enjoy America Kitchen - the Revisited edition. Let me know.

I've been reading Critical Thinking by Richard W. Paul and it truly is an excellent book. Actually I got it free also on some special download but don't see if available like that any more. You might search around and find it still. If I find it I'll post up the link.

I've been looking at my thought processes and reasoning itself in a whole new light. I'm almost inclined to finally disagree with Blaise Pascal  (from his pro Christianity classic book Pensees), my long time anti-reasoning classical advocate of faith in faith, and distrust in reason.

You can download Pascal's Pensées free to your Kindle here.

Also, if you don't have a Kindle, at Amazon you can get a free desktop application that does the same thing. That free download is here. I got this first and started downloading free books and reading them before I got Kindle. I'm reading all the great classics from Charles Dickens, Tolstoy, and Sinclair Lewis to new guys like Ambrose Bierce that wrote the enticing classic American book--The Devil's Dictionary. Which by the way you can also download free here.

Other latest news, in case you didn't notice, my is also up and running again.

I've also started a little publishing house company called Bee House Publishing or Bee Publishing for short. Of course my first book published in digital download is Whiteboy Blues, my own autobiography written in 2002. I advise getting the Kindle copy instead of the only other used copy I've found available for $49.50 I hope to expand this sometime if I live longer and do anything else interesting this second half of life.

In the near future I'm planning on publishing an autobiography from a friend who lived as a child in Cambodia through those horrible war torn years. Some of her stories are amazing. She's working on it now.

I'll be back to my old wiley ways of blogging shenanigans again I guess. And yes, I've fallen prey this time around to the god of Capitalism and am trying the Google AdSense advertisers as well as Amazon. We'll see how that works. No promises. My last 10 years of blogging I kept American Kitchen completely free from all advertising on the old anti-commercial sentiments common to us early Web-Heads in the 90s.

It's interesting how this web advertising works. If any of you bloggers are curious I'll post up some feedback on how it's working for me also.

And dang, I'm back to trying remember all my HTML again. Some things never change.

The Second Coming of Other

I was dead to Cyber-Space. I have returned. I am back alive in this universe. I was in another universe for awhile. Now I am back. I am not the Messiah. I am not the Anit-Christ. I am the Other.


And that's damn fine with me for now.