Re: Too soon?

1

Unless you're in the affected area, I'd say a week or so. After that, anyone who objects is a nutter.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 8:50 AM
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Maybe you should throw in "I Don't Like Mondays," too, you monster.

(No, seriously, Nati is right.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 8:53 AM
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The proper waiting period is zero days, zero hours, zero minutes. People need to chill the fuck out.


Posted by: Yawnoc | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 10:11 AM
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3 is correct. If you want to be edgy, you can write a song in the style of "I Don't Like Mondays," but playing songs unrelated to the murders doesn't seem like any kind of transgression at all.

And it doesn't make any difference whether someone requests it or not. If it's tacky, you aren't absolved because someone asked you to be tacky.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 10:21 AM
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Know any Insane Clown Posse songs?


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 10:27 AM
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Psychokiller seems, eh, awfully general. I mean there is not exactly a narrative there to resonate with the latest atrocity. Did the guy in Colorado start conversations he couldn't even finish? Est-ce qu'il a réalisé son espoir et se lancé vers la gloire? Ok!

Also: what everyone else said.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 12:31 PM
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3: Yeah. I do not see where there's a need for more than whatever is normal sensitivity about this than for any other untimely or violent death happening to people you don't know. If someone from a victim's family is going to be there, that's a different story.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 12:51 PM
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Are the songs being promoted as a themed rock block? I would hesitate. If it's just a coincidence, go right ahead. Although maybe I would hesitate to think fondly of the host, not actually hesitate to play the songs.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 1:09 PM
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8: Yeah, if it's a Batman-themed event that would make it more complicated.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 1:16 PM
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We had the klezmer band substitute the Batman theme for eight bars during our hora. Worked perfectly.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 1:18 PM
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Context is everything. Are you going to wear this while playing? (Not Safe for the Weak of Stomach)

http://www.strategic-operations.com/products/cut-suit


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 1:23 PM
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If the person who hired you gets blowback from their guests and blames you, will it be okay for your band? I'm seeing a situation where they think it's hilarious until someone complains, then they say it was your idea. If the guests complain then about your band, would that be bad for your business?

It may not matter, but that would be my worry.


Posted by: winna | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 6:37 PM
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12: The event planner couldn't blame it on the band in a way that would matter with the booking agency. They know what she's requested, because those communications went directly through them.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 6:39 PM
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Just do the version Rory and I made up a couple years ago: "Psycho kitty, qu'est-ce que c'est? Meow meow meow meow meow, meow meow meow meow meow." Because our cat is crazy.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 7:23 PM
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15

That's totes adorbz.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 7:26 PM
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My favorite example of this kind of thing is the Coup album, scheduled for release in fall 2001, with a picture of Boots Riley blowing up the World Trade Center. Whoops.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07-29-12 7:30 PM
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My least favorite example of this kind of thing is The Strokes' song "New York City Cops", scheduled for release in fall 2001, with the lyric, "New York City cops / They ain't too smart." Oh no! The heroes! (It was pulled from the album.)


Posted by: Yawnoc | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 4:54 AM
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14: Reminds me of my lullaby for a crying infant: "Psycho Baby."


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 5:14 AM
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3 is right. More than thirty thousand Americans get shot dead every year, I'm sure the survivors are hardened to it now.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 7:33 AM
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30,000 gun-related deaths and 11 Batman movies with theatrical releases.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 7:38 AM
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||

Being management is weird -- I suppose I should have realized that a big chunk of the job is people wandering into my office to talk through their problems, but I somehow wasn't expecting it. I mostly like it, but I'm having a hard time remembering that this is actually doing my job, rather than what it feels like, conspicuously wasting time chatting (as opposed to inconspicuously wasting time chatting with you people).

|>


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:15 AM
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21: Then it sounds like it suits you.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:18 AM
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Just remember to crush their spirits about one out of every ten visits so they don't walk all over you.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:24 AM
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Well, that's where the editing written work comes in. I work on being all warm and affirming interpersonally because I don't know how to edit in a warm and affirming manner.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:26 AM
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You know who's a good professional role model for such interactions? Sue White.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:28 AM
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I've not managed people in years, but started doing it again recently (after promotion). At the moment, the main problem is that giving them work to do is interfering with doing my own bloody work. Delegating is not coming easy. Especially since my main assistant isn't really technical enough for some of what I/we need to do, and needs much more detailed guidance than, say, I would. So I can't just say, 'do $foo'. I need to break $foo into 5 steps, with detailed instructions for each. This is basically what management _is_, but it's still taking more time out of my day than I'd like.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:34 AM
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I suppose I should have realized that a big chunk of the job is people wandering into my office to talk through their problems

If that happens, you're a good manager already. I've known managers where you'd rip your own head off before voluntarily interacting with them, let alone over a problem.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:48 AM
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Some of them do show up headless and spouting blood, admittedly.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:49 AM
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One of the issues that's coming up repeatedly for me in my job hunt is my lack of management experience. I've done a tiny bit when I was a docent, but that's not enough to put me in charge of a major project.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:51 AM
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28: She claims they show up that way.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:53 AM
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Who are you going to believe? Me, or some guy who doesn't even have an attached head?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:54 AM
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re: 29

Any way to manufacture some in your current job? i.e. volunteer to take on a new project, or assist in managing an existing one?


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:55 AM
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Venting on management: Have you ever seen the thing where someone puts on a blindfold and then gives another person directions on, e.g., preparing and eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, and the person following the directions does so in a willfully obtuse manner, by following the directions literally but fucking up the sandwich as badly as possible within the parameters of the directions, which the person giving the directions can't see because they are blindfolded? At the end, the direction-giver pulls off the blindfold, and instead of a nice sandwich, there is inevitably a big mess. It's supposed to be some sort of exercise on the value of clear directions, or something like that. It's stupid as advice, although watching the whole thing can be humorous, which is more than you can say for most of that shit.

Anyway: managing my secretary feels exactly like that. I feel like I have to spend an inordinate amount of time carefully drafting any instructions I'm going to give her to do anything--anything!--because if there's any potential hole in my directions through which she can squeeze a fuckup, she will. Every time.

Given that there's nothing she does that I can't do myself, the only reason I ever ask for her help is to save myself time. And given the huge upfront time involved in crafting directions that no one could possibly imagine a way to fuck up, there is very little I can ask her to do that will save me time, in the end. Especially considering that 90% of the time she will find some way to fuck it up anyway. Which is frustrating. Although of course in her case it's not willful obtuseness, but just a simple-mindedness that manifests itself in direction-following that is absurdly thoughtless and concrete.

Okay, venting done.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 8:55 AM
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re: 33

This is sort of where I am with my assistant some of the time. She's not as much of a fuck-up, and she wants to work hard [and is very good at some bits of her job]. But if a solution doesn't present itself on a plate, she just doesn't do the research or work out how to do shit for herself. Because of the jack-of-all-trades nature of my job, I find myself needing to do stuff I don't have a clue about all the time. I have some generic techie skills, but never enough to cover everything. I just get on and try to find out how to do stuff, or bodge it. Her default approach is to not do much active research for ages, and then ask me. And if I don't come up with a solution on the dot [i.e. don't have time for some creative googling] she's stalled. So I need to craft very specific, very clear instructions.

So it's much more time efficient at the moment for me just not to bothering delegating stuff to her. I do it faster, and if I give it to her, I still end up doing the time consuming bit of the work anyway. Hopefully she'll learn, but it's not the lack of knowledge that bothers me, it's the lack of drive to find shit out.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:02 AM
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I'm having a hard time remembering that this is actually doing my job, rather than what it feels like, conspicuously wasting time chatting

I agree with BG, it sounds you're not bad at it.

[I have the experience a little too often where I'll be talking with a co-worker about something they're working on and then realize that I keep zoning out of the conversation thinking about whatever it is I was working on when they interrupted. I don't think I'm a bad co-worker, I can usually give helpful advice, but it just reminds me that I don't like being interrupted -- even when I wasn't being productive and was just being aggravated by whatever I was working on.]


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:02 AM
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33 sounds like teaching writing to (some) undergrads. There is a spirit of perversity that wants to find a way to write a terrible paper by not understanding the point of the directions at all.

Currently, I am supervising a research project that has a former student hopping all over the globe going to libraries and archives. Weirdly, it's going great. He's doing fine, learning tons, and charming all the special collections librarians in the world. In fact, he's working so hard that I am afraid his entire summer, day and night, is being spent in dark corners of university libraries. I keep suggesting perhaps he might take some personal time, and he just responds that it's such a great opportunity to do research.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:08 AM
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14: Oh, the number of songs I have modified to sing to my cat. It prognosticates decades of social isolation.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:09 AM
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32: I sort of am doing that with the current company project, which has fallen mostly on me, but it's really managing my peers rather than subordinates. I suppose I could put it on my resume as management experience and then hope to successfully wing it if I get a real management job.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:11 AM
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Oh, the number of songs I have modified to sing to my cat. It prognosticates decades of social isolation.

Followed by a hit musical?


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:15 AM
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re: 38

I don't see why managing peers shouldn't count if you slant it as project management, or whatever the appropriate term is in your field. I manage projects, which can involve managing groups of my peers [although in practice often only one or two at a time], but I had to take on a couple of subordinates in order to get a management pay grade for stupid bureaucratic reasons.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:16 AM
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But if a solution doesn't present itself on a plate, she just doesn't do the research or work out how to do shit for herself. Because of the jack-of-all-trades nature of my job, I find myself needing to do stuff I don't have a clue about all the time. I have some generic techie skills, but never enough to cover everything. I just get on and try to find out how to do stuff, or bodge it.

Have you made this explicit -- something like "Look, I'm (at least sometimes) figuring out how to do things as I go along by googling: if you can come up with solutions on your own, I don't care how you get stuff done. If it works, there's no need to worry about whether you did it my way."

I mean, she's a grownup, she should know that already, but sometimes people really are waiting for permission, even if they shouldn't need it.

(I sort of ran into this with Sally this spring; her Spanish class was putting on a play, and she got stuck doing sound, in some fairly limited sense that involved hitting the buttons on the sound board without knowing much of anything about how it worked. She came home complaining that that something had gone wrong and the guy who knew how to fix it wasn't around, and I had a talk with her about how she'd been assigned to make the performance sound right on the night -- if she didn't know how to work the equipment yet, it was her job to figure it out, ask questions, get the information somehow so she didn't leave the people on stage hanging with squealing microphones. Things seemed to work out pretty well after that, And of course she was twelve, not an adult getting paid to be useful.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:16 AM
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re: 41

I wrote a somewhat grumpy email to her while I was away at a conference: breaking down a problem she was 'stuck' with, and explaining how I'd solved it by basically breaking it down into parts and then googling the techniques for doing the parts. It was pretty clear what was expected, and that I'd been able to do it in about 45 minutes, from a moving train. I'll need to do more direct guiding as time goes on, I think. And make it clear that some things are 'figure the shit out for yourself' things, and only after that 'ask ttaM' things. She's new, and used to working in larger teams, I think, where less thought/research is required. Widget-making, rather than 'building a widget factory' stuff.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:20 AM
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Arg. Beginning to try (admittedly, in a half-assed way) to work with some (other people's) students and finding that saying "I think it might be interesting to take a look at whether X can explain Y, why don't you take a look?" only leads to them disappearing and then getting back to me a week or more later saying "what's X?" I've heard people say that grad students help them get more research done, but I guess I'll need to be very choosy about taking on grad students if that's going to happen.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:23 AM
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43: I am starting to wonder if undergrads are maybe just better at some things.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:25 AM
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And make it clear that some things are 'figure the shit out for yourself' things, and only after that 'ask ttaM' things.

I've mentioned this before, but in my first computer job (which involved teaching myself programming, since I didn't have any background), my boss made it clear that I shouldn't come to him with questions until I had at least started to debug it -- it was okay to ask him "why is this happening?" but I had to establish what was actually happening before I asked him. So, "this broke, what's wrong?" wasn't okay, but, "every time I try to add a record to the database it's showing the same userid, rather than the one I'm trying to enter" might be.

That ended up helping me learn a lot on my own since, of course, defining the problem is about 80% of debugging (it was also a stressful and exhausting job, but that's another story . . .).


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:26 AM
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What I was thinking the specific roadblock might be is that she's afraid of coming up with a solution that, even though it appears to work, isn't the 'right' one somehow -- that she feels like being told to figure stuff out for herself is a trap where if she comes up with the 'wrong' solution, she's fucked up worse than by just pleading inability. (Obviously, I'm mindreading someone I've never met -- I'm extrapolating from situations where I've frozen up.)

Making it explicit that you're really not hiding the ball: if you'd had a method in mind, you'd have told her, and you're perfectly happy with whatever method she comes up with as long as it gets the job done, might help, along with a shot of positive reinforcement if she ever does show any initiative might get her moving.

(And of course there's a good shot you've already done all this.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:29 AM
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40: I suppose you are right. I'm a little at sea with this current job search. All the other jobs I've had I've managed to figure a way to climb aboard over the transom without the formalities and so forth. This time it looks like that option isn't there, so I have to jump through the regular hoops. I tend to sell myself a bit short in that situation. I need to work on pitching myself, which feels very uncomfortable and unnatural to me.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:30 AM
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And they pay me to edit other people's work. Assume that was written in English.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:31 AM
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I've only dealt with undergrads, what with being a grad students myself, but figuring out how to say "come to me if you have any questions, but if you didn't had any questions until you had really exhausted all the avenues of trying to figure shit out yourself, thatwould be great" in a way that they understand has been challenging. I've tried to sort of slowly walk people through "well, what's the next thing that you should try?" in the hopes that will lead to "hm maybe I should think if there's something else to try before going to [ busy Sifu ]" but have had mixed success.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:32 AM
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re:40

At my last position, I had 9 direct reports and 5 or 6 indirects.

It's amazing how much time that takes up, just on logistics and organization.


Posted by: delurking | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:32 AM
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51

I choose to read "busy" as a verb, there.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:33 AM
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It would be of a piece with the terribly-composed rest of the comment.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:39 AM
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And make it clear that some things are 'figure the shit out for yourself' things, and only after that 'ask ttaM' things.

That was my point in 23, except that I don't know to make it clear so I just randomly yell until the figure it out.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:40 AM
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53 was me.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:41 AM
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In my time with people reporting to me, I came to value "knowing when something needed my attention and when it didn't" above almost every other quality in the folks reporting to me. (Well, if you exclude showing up--obligatory Woody Allen.)


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:48 AM
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50. Conventional wisdom is that 6 or 7 direct reports is the most that can be handled properly.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:50 AM
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55: And it does go right to the heart of the concept of hierarchical organizations being even minimally informationally efficient in making decisions and performing work.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:53 AM
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Working in an ill-defined hierarchy isn't all cheese and sprinkles. The times when hierarchy kicks in do tend to be simpler, if not easier.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 9:57 AM
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Do people studying computer programming ever get a formalized course on debugging? Are there books on successful debugging practices? Not even debugging, necessarily, but figuring out how to use unfamiliar software or an unfamiliar method for just about anything. I feel like a lot of the problem can be that telling someone "well, poke around and tinker with it and Google things if you get stuck" only works for the kind of person who can already do that without asking for advice.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 10:48 AM
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I did succeed in getting one guy I was working with to bug me less often about computer problems by finally telling him one day "look, if I do this for you, literally what I'm going to be doing is opening up this unfamiliar code and searching for your error message and adding lots of print statements until I see something fishy. I know nothing more than you do about how this software is structured. And I'm busy. Do you think you can try that yourself?"


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 10:52 AM
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Obligatory xkcd.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 10:53 AM
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We use a fair bit of freeware code in my research. There are some very helpful message boards devoted to the various packages, often frequented by the developers.

One thing I've found is that I have to teach my students good message board etiquette; What commands did you enter? What error messages did you get? What did you try in order to fix it? What was the result?

If you provide that information you can often get a workable solution to your problem within 30 minutes.

"It's not working! Help!", on the other hand, is not the sort of message that will get a useful response.


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 11:07 AM
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60 is what I was taught. Different environments generate more or less friendly and useful error messages; some of them come with step-through facilities, some don't. But at the end of the day it's "Print 'label'" until you find it.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 11:10 AM
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One thing I find weird is that my mom has stunningly terrible intuition about computers and technology and will dig herself into godawful messes with basically user-friendly interfaces. Like, perhaps she'll mis-click and not realize that she's been redirected to some commercial site and then go down a rabbit hole of downloading weird stuff. Or she'll get a pop-up from the computer and get flummoxed, when most of us would just ignore, ignore until we finished our task at hand. Or she'll google some poorly-chosen search terms and then spend a frustrated 20 minutes wading through search results that are self-evidently not what she wants.

She's got just an unbelievably bad intuition, coupled with getting intensely frustrated along the way. Intuition is a hard thing to teach someone. Or she missed her developmental window, or something.


Posted by: heebie-heebie | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 11:29 AM
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I remember feeling that way about my parents back in the early nineties with their first Mac -- tech support over the phone was like "Okay, close the window. No, you know how there are sort of overlapping rectangles on the screen, with words or pictures in them? Each rectangle is a window. Okay, close the window. No, do you see how there's sort of a stripe along the top of the rectangle, and in the lefthand corner there's an 'x'? Click on the 'x', and then the window will 'close' or disappear. No, to click on it you have to move the mouse until it's on the button, and then click. No, leave the mouse on the desktop. You see how when you roll the mouse around, it moves an arrow on the screen? Move the mouse until the arrow is on top of the x in the top corner of the rectangle, and then press the button on the mouse."

That stage lasted weirdly long -- where they couldn't retain a computer-related word or concept long enough to learn anything new. Then they got over it, but it was immensely frustrating while it lasted.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 11:38 AM
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65: My grandpa was kind of like that for a long time. Nothing seemed to stick, and then suddenly it did. Unfortunately, this also means he figured out how to forward me racist shit about Trayvon Martin, so there's that potential downside.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 11:40 AM
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There's this one weird trick for solving colleagues' and relatives computer difficulties.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 11:43 AM
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65.1: well no wonder they struggled. Pre-OS X close boxes never had an 'X' in them.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 11:47 AM
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I actually stared at the screen for about thirty seconds, trying to remember exactly what you clicked on to close a window in Mac OS circa 1991, because I was pretty sure it wasn't an x. And then I figured, "Fuck it, no one's going to call me on this." How dreadfully wrong I was.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 11:56 AM
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65: We had a long phase with my grandfather during which he couldn't figure out that the motions of his hand on the mouse corresponded to the movement of the little arrow on the screen. I thought he must be putting us on.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 12:01 PM
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69: a white square. Eventually, a grey square.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 12:04 PM
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I fear the day a few decades from now when I have to call up Caroline or Joey for help with my new neural implant or whatever people will be using then.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 12:17 PM
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Ha! "Call up." Good one, helpy-chalk.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 12:19 PM
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I fear the day a few decades from now when I have to call up Caroline or Joey for help with my new neural implant or whatever people will be using then.

We commonly refer to this futuretech as "Crazy Ice."

"Jesus. NO, that's not how Crazy Ice works! It's NOT HARD, you guys, just adjust your breathing and stop trying to make it stupid."


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 12:26 PM
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59: That's a good idea, but it doesn't seem to happen. Instead, people who can't figure out for themselves fail and switch to another program.

In my introductory circuits course we had to implement increasingly complicated circuits. We started with something trivial (e.g., make an XOR from NAND games) and the last homework was to implement an ALU (add, subtract, multiply, divide, plus all of the basic logical ops). Most people had no idea what to do when they hit the wall and had to make something big enough that they couldn't do it flawlessly.

Logic gates in simulation are pretty much the easiest things to debug in the entire world: is the output what you want it to be? No? Then look at the inputs (there are often only 2 inputs, and at most 4 or 5, for realistic logic, and there are only two possible values) to figure out which one is bad. Repeat until you find the source. And yet, I had to explain to my partners how to figure out how to track down a bug. Most groups didn't figure it out. I heard that one team re-implemented their divider again from scratch after staring at their broken implementation for a few hours and getting nowhere. By sheer luck, it actually worked the second time, but there's no way to consistently do something that size perfectly without testing or automation, and scaling that method to the the next class in the sequence (where a typical assignment might be to implement a simple DSP or CPU) would result in thousands of hours of work per assignment.


Posted by: sral | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 12:37 PM
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I remember in HS doing some college application related task on a computer in the guidance counselor's office, and he and his secretary were astonished at how fast I could navigate around using the mouse. They called other people in the office over to see it. It was totally weird.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 12:45 PM
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And before you let them try to use the mouse, you removed the ball.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 12:52 PM
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67: A rickroll just isn't the same when there's an ad before the song starts.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 12:54 PM
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I've generally been pretty good at figuring out how to do $foo when needed, but I've found it difficult to find a job that pays me to do that.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 12:57 PM
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80

74 is excellent.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 1:00 PM
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81

74: I'm really worried one of my children will say "Dad, this whole thing will be a lot easier if you just let me into your brain and delete all the useless crap."


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 1:03 PM
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82

Once upon a time I had an important client whose wife needed to learn MS Publisher for her business. So, I went over there with my Thinkpad and gave them both a demo of some simple things she could do with it.

"Great! Show us again how you did that." So I did.

We went through that cycle at least four times before one of them said "I mean, how are you making the stuff on the screen move?"

They had never seen a trackpoint/nipple mouse/etc. and hadn't seen my hands move except for some typing of text.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 3:11 PM
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83

I know someone who took a buyout to retire from an airline, because there were 2 people managing 400 people.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 07-30-12 4:27 PM
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84

83 is extremely frightening.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07-31-12 2:22 AM
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85

When I used to work for an ISP, I directly managed about 30 people. Admittedly, that was largely in a call centre, and there was rarely more than 10 or 12 people ever working at one time.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 07-31-12 3:49 AM
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86

85. Yeah, but they weren't directly involved in the business of making huge metal contraptions full of explosive fluids hurtle through the air at high speeds with people inside them.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07-31-12 3:55 AM
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87

Yeah. True. Was thinking more re: the comment about maximum numbers of direct reports above. Although I had the advantage of the Digital Panopticon, and all that.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 07-31-12 4:09 AM
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88

87: I think it depends a lot on what people are doing, the reports in 50 were all engineers and scientists, and the work was all technical. If we doubled the number I woldn't have been able to get anything done, I suspect.


Posted by: delurking | Link to this comment | 07-31-12 4:45 AM
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