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The only things that are keeping me going is studying and get SCBCD and SCEA.
BUT If things for me still dont change after I obtained those two certs then there is no much point keep going for anything anymore and there is no meaning anymore
 
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Well said, Natalie.
Will someone please give Billy a job ! My nerves are shot.
How many more certs does he need to get to prove himself ?
Employers please note :-
certification = jobs.
That's the formula.
On a brighter note, Billy , you can see this as time you have to finish the SCBCD and SCEA.
regards and good luck
[ July 27, 2003: Message edited by: HS Thomas ]
 
HS Thomas
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Alfred,
I am researching some JUGs in the London area. Any recommendations ? The one's who had posted a social diary with pictures looked more as though they were dabbling in some black art.
All,
If this thread has gone off topic, time to put it back. I've always read Marks posts with interest. Didn't necessarily agree with all of them. If one were to pigeon-hole Marks views I think they belong to a Management perspective. There aren't as much as there should be at this site.
Then perhaps the certifications to jobs would flow more easily.
Management , I find , are like Grown-ups:
"Grown-ups never understand anything by themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them."
The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint Exup�ry
....
"In the course of this life I have had a great many encounters with a great many people who have been concerned with matters of consequence. I have lived a great deal among grown-ups. I have seen them intimately, close at hand. And that hasn't much improved my opinion of them.
Whenever I met one of them who seemed to me at all clear-sighted, I tried the experiment of showing him my Drawing Number One, which I have always kept. I would try to find out, so, if this was a person of true understanding. But, whoever it was, he, or she, would always say:
"That is a hat."
Then I would never talk to that person about boa constrictors, or primeval forests, or stars. I would bring myself down to his level. I would talk to him about bridge, and golf, and politics, and neckties. And the grown-up would be greatly pleased to have met such a sensible man. "

For those Grown-Ups amongst you, or growing up don't forget that you too were once children.
regards
[ July 27, 2003: Message edited by: HS Thomas ]
 
Billy Tsai
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I dont see how I can not able to get a junior software developer position after obtaining SCBCD and SCEA, it not like I dont have a relevant IT university degree, I DO have a IT degree. And If I am still getting declined after getting SCBCD and SCEA for some junior position then even with master degree I am still going to get declined then screwed them all and I am going to leave this country
 
HS Thomas
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I am still going to get declined then screwed them all and I am going to leave this country


My sentiments exactly !
I'm considering the C's right now.
- Canada
- China
- Chile
- Czech Republic
- Cambodia
- Chechcen Republic
- Cyprus
Well, the first two maybe.
Alternatively , consider a career change.
The librarian idea wasn't too bad. Informational professionals are people with degrees in library science - serve as knowledge managers , helping teams think about how what and how they should contribute learning to client projects. in fact , a good example of Knowledge On-line is the JavaRanch where you have top-notch facilitators and communicators (most of the time anyway). So see you've got some practise.

Just translate that to developing/managing a companies critical knowledge requirements with a rigorous review process that makes sure only the best quality contributions make it to the Intranet.(Glad they are not so rigid here, it'll take some of the fun away).
These jobs have titles like Chief Knowledge Officer,Knowledge Researcher. For anyone who is interested.
regards
P.S. Are we done with Grown-up bashing ? :roll:
regards
[ July 27, 2003: Message edited by: HS Thomas ]
 
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Originally posted by Billy Tsai:
I dont see how I can not able to get a junior software developer position after obtaining SCBCD and SCEA, it not like I dont have a relevant IT university degree, I DO have a IT degree. And If I am still getting declined after getting SCBCD and SCEA for some junior position then even with master degree I am still going to get declined then screwed them all and I am going to leave this country


Billy, the certifications you already have are more than enough to obtain an entry-level software development job. The SCEA would definately be overkill at this stage in your career, and I'm inclined to think you don't need a SCBCD either just yet.
What you do need is a way to bringing your ability to the attention of someone who can hire you.
Broken record time. Read that book.....
 
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Hi Alfred,
I think you nailed Billy problems.

Hi Billy,
You need to learn how to interact with real people. Practice on acquantainces, be comfortable to express your POV. After you followed Alfred advices, march right into the company that you want to work submiting your resume in person. Make sure to mention that you have projects available in your hands. Be persistent not all of them will have a technical person out to give you an interview on spot.
Are you interested into a job or something related to your training? Be flexible.

BTW have you followed the alumini route? In that route you could explain or probably they understand your GPA situation.
Regards,
MCao
 
HS Thomas
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The SCEA would definately be overkill at this stage in your career, and I'm inclined to think you don't need a SCBCD either just yet.



If Billy has the time , it'll certainlty be worthwhile for Billy to do it now. It may be difficult once he start working.
If you think it hurts his chances of getting a job, that doesn't say a lot for the employers. I'd say the full set of certifications will be roughly the equivalent of a years tutored study at a University.
A couple of years ago an SCEA would be expected to report to Senior Management. Now, perhaps that would qualify you for a Team leading role at best. The more SCEAs there are , then possibly , the role would be as Designer.
Billy should only put what is relevant to a job application on his resume. Or highlight what is relevant, more.
If its design , the SCJP, SCJD and SCBCD would be relevant.
If it's a Team leading role, the SCEA wuld be relevant. Packaging and doling out work.
regards
[ July 27, 2003: Message edited by: HS Thomas ]
 
Billy Tsai
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I am not changing to another career, I grew up with computers my parents ran a computer shop since I was born and for nearly 20years from selling computers to software business. I was playing computer games when I was in kingdergarden, so there is no way I am going to waste my time do another kind of different university degree like marketing and mathematics etc..
the only another degree that I will do is Master of Commerce in Information management but that requires at least 2 to 3 years of experience as one of the prerequisits. so it wont happen in the near future.
and I definitely think I am well qualified for a junior graduate Java developer position , but those stupidass recruitment agencies in here dont even know about SCJP,SCWCD,SCJD and what their real values are , they keep asking me to show them my university grades then declined me straight away after seeing I have low avg grades, I reckon my current capabilities and skills can take on and superceed any new graduate with A avg right now, maybe not when I just graduated but I spent so much time improving myself.
Anyway I am still going to get SCEA and SCBCD because I am unemployed and I got nothing to do everyday even though I read the news paper and lookup jobsites and constantly submitting job applications and constantly getting declined
 
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you're a legend man .
Remember my question the other day?
well.. how good are you with social skills? you can have all the certifications you can think of, but if you don't socialize.. hmm...

[ July 27, 2003: Message edited by: Andres Gonzalez ]
 
Billy Tsai
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Well my current social skills are not good right now, I have completely isolated myself from all my friends(male&female), I dont go out at all anymore, I stay at home all day everyday.
But it was completely different about more than 1 and half year ago, I used to go out with my friends to play and hang around in city center, go to Karaoke, go fight with ppl or smash up someone that pissed us off, go to bars to drink, race around in our turbo charged cars, hang around with lots chicks and have parties nearly every weekend. All that was during my first,second and third year of my university. All I was thinking are about modifying cars, how to make my car look cooler and faster then other ppl's,upgrading my soundsystems with bigger subwoofers and powerful amplifers, how to be very popular with girls and score chicks, how to have a lot of connections with lots different kinds of people, and I did know a lot of different kind of ppl, ppl that sell all sorts of stuffs and I even have influence on many ppl(including chicks) because I fix their computers for free. I wasted lots and lots of money in those years.
I ended up failing most of my papers, and my grades were like just pass.I nearly ended up not being able to graduate in time. I realised I had failed way too many papers in the begining of my third year and there is no way I was going to graduate if I dont get serious and my act together so I started not having any social life anymore, even though I managed to graduate intime without wasting extra years retaking the papers that I failed, but I am suffering the consequence of all my actions when I was young right now, if I had know what is going to happen to me now I would have studied my ass off and keep getting high grades for my paper, hell I even could have done a conjoint degree with double major in BSc Computer Science and BCom Information System. At least thats better then 1 degree I have.
There is no way I am going to have cool lifestyle anymore until I get a good job first. That is my current plan and not to mention I barely have enough money anyway.
 
HS Thomas
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Social skills and the SCEA would be a powerful combination.
Seems you were really clued up on socialising in your Uni days.
Cool cars and chicks are some aspects of the social scene working in a company. But that won't be enough. Are you good at helping people ?
Btw , your choice of Master of Commerce in Information management does not sound too different from the Knowledge management path I mentioned.
I'd be interested to know what the pre-requisites are. What sort of projects do you get to do ?
regards
[ July 28, 2003: Message edited by: HS Thomas ]
 
Billy Tsai
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it needs 3 years of proven IT experience and a relevant university degree, its a one year program.
 
HS Thomas
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Thanks Billy. What is the content of the course? The syllabus if you like.
You can tell what a course is like by the projects you are asked to do. A title doesn't mean much usually. and that is the same problem recruiters have - but if you list what you are experienced in under each qualification SCJD, SCEA, MSc Commerce in Information Management - they will get a clue what it's about.
The MSc sounds like a career change.
Take my advice - do the SCEA to fill the time .
But only put it in your CV for a job that specifically asks for it.Recruiters do it all the time.
In a job that doesn't ask for it , you could find yourself successfully applying what you learnt on the SCEA - and then you can "come" out.
As Alfred says ,an SCEA can be too early in your career.Some employers can be scared by the SCEA for an entry-level job.
I was merely thinking that if you had the time now , the SCEA would be useful. And you'd find yourself re-visiting it time and time again as you and it changes , but at least you have something to build on.
The MSC definitely sounds like something you could do in the near future.
regards
[ July 28, 2003: Message edited by: HS Thomas ]
 
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Originally posted by Andres Gonzalez:
you can have all the certifications you can think of, but if you don't socialize.. hmm...

[ July 27, 2003: Message edited by: Andres Gonzalez ]


Well, you know what they say, it's not what you know it's who you know.
 
Al Newman
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One thing Billy could do (perhaps instead of or before another certification) is address the question of whether he can construct working systems by building a website and highlighting it on his resume.
First you do a working system (it doesn't have to be a large one). Perhaps using Apache, servlets, JSP, and perhaps Struts. Write a design document with some charts and whatever (using UML and showing some familiarity with the RUP or Xp, perhaps). Put this together into something deployable onto a publically hosted system. Then go out and look for free hosting somewhere. There are such places available I know, or maybe Billy's University would help out with free hosting. Go and ask. All they can do is say no.
A lot of this Billy will have to do for the SCEA anyway.
 
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There's a guy downstate who's garnered over 25 professional certifications. He keeps getting laid off, and when he does, he's very undignified about it - he whines and cries and begs for a job - any job - at minimum wage if that's what it takes. And adds more certs.
Personally, I find that sort of behavior rather embarassing, and I'd not be inclined to hire anyone who comes across as that desperate.
 
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I have been in IT for going on 20 years and one thing I know for sure: Job security is directly proportional to your ability to find your next job! In this job market, that means almost No One is secure and even they will be next year's has been geeks unless they are very lucky. Almost no one can make a living with the current latest thing AND be working on the next thing where two years from now all the jobs will require 3 years experience. You catch the wave and ride it until it tubes then start paddling again. The point is, no one is in a position to be arrogant. All of use will have our turns digging sand out of your ears. Some of use will catch another wave and some will be driving fork lifts.
 
Al Newman
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Originally posted by Tim Holloway:
There's a guy downstate who's garnered over 25 professional certifications. He keeps getting laid off, and when he does, he's very undignified about it - he whines and cries and begs for a job - any job - at minimum wage if that's what it takes. And adds more certs.
Personally, I find that sort of behavior rather embarassing, and I'd not be inclined to hire anyone who comes across as that desperate.


I think the reputation of certifications suffers from behavior like this persons. I'm not sure whether this comment was aimed at any of my suggestions, but to be honest I don't see that trying to stand out from the crowd using innovative strategies as is undignified in any way.
What you are doing is trying to anticipate the real question any employer is asking, which is 'Can you do the job?'. Most of our troubles here really begin with that question. Whether it's Billy's low GPA, my old-fartism, or Svetlana's frustration, that is what it comes down to. I am advocating innovative ways to change the question.
If Billy does a website he may be able to change the question from 'what is your GPA?' to 'Is this website any good?'. If he uses Guerilla Tactics he may be able to change the question from 'Is this guy the best one out of 200?' to 'Is this guy an easy solution to my dilemma?'. Believe me nobody wants to sift through 200 resumes if you know someone who can do your job without going through all the advertising and sifting nonsense.
 
Matt Cao
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Hi Billy,
Since your folks has a good relationship going on with computer companies, they could help you by collecting some names that have clout. If that person and your chemistry meshed, you are looking into backdoor entry. There is more ways than one to skin Java, borrow from JDJ.
Regards,
MCao
 
Al Newman
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Originally posted by HS Thomas:
Alfred,
I am researching some JUGs in the London area. Any recommendations ? The one's who had posted a social diary with pictures looked more as though they were dabbling in some black art.


Sorry for the delay, HS Thomas. I go to a meeting arranged through this outfit. Typically on a Monday night at Smith's of Smithfield, next to the Smithfield Market near the Barbican. See you there?
http://java.meetup.com/
 
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Originally posted by Billy Tsai:
I am still going to get declined then screwed them all and I am going to leave this country


Billy, have you ever considered to move to another country, like Brazil ou India ? Just for a couple of months.
Here in Brazil, with your certifications and native english speaking you can be a God, but will earn little money !
 
Tim Holloway
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Originally posted by Alfred Neumann:

I think the reputation of certifications suffers from behavior like this persons. I'm not sure whether this comment was aimed at any of my suggestions, but to be honest I don't see that trying to stand out from the crowd using innovative strategies as is undignified in any way.


Actually, I think that what really hurts most certs is that so many of them test one's abilities less than they test one's abilities to cram a lot of trivia into one's head and regurgitate it for a few hours before it can all be safely forgotten again. I'm afraid, that's more or less my view of the SCJP, for example. The CCNA, on the other hand, generally holds a lot of respect, as does the RHCE. The MCSE used to carry some credit, but too many people hold it (dilution) and they blew a lot of that credibility when Code Red swept the Internet despite all the MCSEs.
I can be impressed by a handful of certs - though there are other equally effective ways to impress me. However 25 is a bit much. I could do that myself, since I have an aptitude to test-taking, which may be one reason why I'm not impressed. I'm afraid however, I much prefer working on actual projects to cramming for exams, so until I start seeing fewer MUST HAVE 5+ years Oracle 9i and more MUST HAVE SCWD job adverts, I'm not going to divert the time and money.
Anyway, the 25 certs would make me take pause, but what what really puts me off about this particular guy is his begging and pleading. If he's THAT good, and the certs are that good, why should he grovel so pathetically?
 
Tim Holloway
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Dang, Billy, I'm jealous. I couldn't afford cars or entertainment when I was in college and the chicks would have nothing to do with me. I was 25 before I could convince anyone to go out with me. So I had to spend all my college time programming and memorizing the IBM manuals instead of partying.
Academics are good, but no guarantee. Remember, Bill Gates is a dropout and Steve Jobs didn't go back and actually graduate until after Sculley had sent him packing. Certs are good too, though I've previously stated my feelings there and won't repeat them.
I'm not "Mr. Sociable", but I do make an effort to avoid totally barricading myself in the house (not always successfully). Antidepressants help. My recent job interview came as a result of my activities on the local Java User Group BBS. I also hang out on the local Linux UG forum, which has helped bring in some income over the last few months. It's a long way until true prosperity, but it helps, anyway.
You might want to go back over your academic career and see what you did best and what you did worst. As I've said before, chances are you'll succeed better when you're doing what's fun, and subjects that weren't fun are the ones you're most likely to have done badly at. ON NO ACCOUNT should you stick with anything just because that's what the Family Business was. A Family Business can be a good jump start, but it can also be a real albatross on your neck, if you didn't inherit the right aptitudes.
Anyway, for the curious, my job interview went well. Which is no guarantee, since I have enough confidence in my abilities that the only job interviews that don' go well are the ones where the interviewer tries to bully me into claiming 12 years Java experience or the like just to get the job (It's happened more than once). So in another week or 3 I hope maybe to get some good news. It's certainly TIME for good news. If one more appliance breaks down, I'm going to scream!
 
Al Newman
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Originally posted by Greg Neef:
I have been in IT for going on 20 years and one thing I know for sure: Job security is directly proportional to your ability to find your next job! In this job market, that means almost No One is secure and even they will be next year's has been geeks unless they are very lucky. Almost no one can make a living with the current latest thing AND be working on the next thing where two years from now all the jobs will require 3 years experience. You catch the wave and ride it until it tubes then start paddling again. The point is, no one is in a position to be arrogant. All of use will have our turns digging sand out of your ears. Some of use will catch another wave and some will be driving fork lifts.


Ain't that the truth! The truth is that I was really, really good as a Unix/C hacker, learned C++ to a good level and am (perhaps) breasting the 80th percentile in the Java/J2EE ranks after 4 years of more or less steady effort. Which is finally good enough to get a job I'm finding. In this market which is the worst for 20 years, anyway. I'm aiming to get where I was with Unix and C.
In job search the thing I do best is the phone interview, which is a vital skill for a travelling contractor as I was for a decade. I almost landed my first job over the phone alone and have since landed many more. I could probably do telephone sales for a living. Unfortunately this is not terribly valuable in London, where face-to-face is the rule.
I'm good at face-to-face interviewing, but it's a much different dynamic than the phone interview. It's much easier to steer a phone interview, believe it or not.
Note to Mark: There are plenty of really good people out there these days without a job or even an interview. In times like these you have to be able to do the job and communicate it! Arguably a well-written CV/resume is more important than technical competence.
Confession: If I know something about a technology it goes onto my skills list. Even if I don't know a lot about it. The problem is job screening. Lots of time those long lists of "required" skills amount to 3-4 essential skills and 15 "nice to know". The primary skills you have to know well, and you can get through the other stuff with books and web searches. But the recruiters and HR people won't know the difference, and their resume-scanning software will screen you out every time.
You have to get to the interview to learn what is really important, and your CV/resume has to get through the automatic screen. A CV is a marketing document. I have 4 different basic versions of my CV for 4 markets I have targeted, and will recast my CV to emphasize something if a recruiter asks me to.
A rule I rigidly follow is that I always write a custom cover letter. Usually not a long one, but I typically don't use a template letter of any kind. In my experience boilerplate is always obvious, as is an original letter, no matter how brief. I express the reasons why I wish to do this job and what in my background fits me for it. Briefly, which is appreciated.
I always follow up a resume and cover letter with a phone call. Several calls if necessary to reach the recruiter. If the CV is not read (or comprehended in some cases) it will be thrown away most times. The phone call forces the recruiter to look at my letter and CV. I can answer any questions.
Having obliged the recruiter to invest a little time in me I find enormously raises the chances that the recruiter will send my CV to the client. Better still put me on their active file for consideration for any openings they see in one or more areas. Their short list in other words. With a busy recruiter this can be a major benefit. All three of the contract and job offers I've had this year have been through recruiters in this category. And (I estimate) 70% of my interviews.
Prepare for the interview. If you have time, or if you can, do so. I swotted up on my SCJP materials the weekend before my latest, and ended up aceing the technical test. Hit the company website and read the entire thing. Troll for gossip on google.
 
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OK, I think it's time for me to chime in...
Smart was not the right word to convey what I was trying to express. (And my original flippant answer about standardized tests further obscured my original intent.) I choose the word "smart" instead of "intelligent" because it's not about raw intellectual ability. But I forgot that in this community we are, of course, all very, very smart. Hey, half of all us on this site are below average (for JavaRanch)... now who here thinks he or she is in the lower half? Anyone? Anyone? Of course not, we're all in the upper half.
Back to the point, a better word might have been saavy. It's not about who is the most intelligent, but rather who can best sell himself or herself. There's not much debate. In a lifetime "better people" get more jobs and higher salary. It doesn't matter who has the most knowledge, or highest IQ, or is best at writing a resume. It's the combination of all that and more which is important. I know there are plenty of people out there smarter then me. I know even more people who are at least as good at coding as I am, if not better. I also know I can beat most of them out for most jobs. That's what counts in the job market.

Now let's get to some specific points:

Originally posted by Carlisia Campos:
If person A is smart, person is will adapt and be employed satisfactorily
thus, if person B does not have a job, much less a satisfactorily one, then person B must not be smart


Yep, that's pretty much it, except "smart" is a rough approximation (perhaps a bad one) for what I described above. If you've read my posts, you know I believe in the free market. Consider stocks. You can argue all you want over which company should be better, but at the end of the day, there's a simple, rational, objective measure: whichever company has a greater valuation. It doesn't matter what the books or theories say, the free market acts as the ultimate arbiter.
In the same sense, we are all "companies" and the market is the job market. Over a short time span and/or for a single person or two flucuations do occur. But over decades and/or over large groups of people, I truly believe it does hold. (Granted, that may not have been very clear, since I usually assume its implied.)

Originally posted by Carlisia Campos:
Plus, he's doing this, doing that other to position himself for great success by the time most technical jobs have exited the country. However, I don't see him accounting for the fact that by then, the business environment will have completely changed.


Um, exactly how much do you know about what I'm doign with my life? Are you the one who keeps stalking me outside my office? :-p Seriously, with all due respect, you don't know what all my skills are. But I'll let you in on this secret... 5 years from now, I'm not planning on writing a single line of code (whether the market rebounds or not). Even with a strong market, which you know I believe in, my options will be limited if I continue coding.

Originally posted by Michael Ernest:
Having read Mark's patter for a while and met him, I can tell you he's the type to be fazed by what Mike D. has to say.


I must say I was surprised someone posted it, but when you have strong opinions, you grow a thick skin. I care about what my friends and family think. I care about opinions of people I respect. There are certainly some moderators and posters whose opinions I do take seriously. I have read their posts for years and value their opinion. I also know that any bozo can post something on the web about you, and you just need to learn not to care what a stranger you've never met thinks of you. (I'm not saying any posting here comes from a bozo, just that I have learned only to be actually bothered by people whom I choose to give that power to.) Of course, it should also be clear I just like to debate! :-)

Originally posted by Michael Ernest:

The lamentable thing is mistaking one person's conviction for absolutism, a sense that what is good in Mark's eyes is the way it is for everybody. I doubt Mark believes he has all the answers, but he has answers for the way he intends to do business.


Very true. I believe in what I do. I also believe many developers, a majority even (based on those I've personally met and worked with) out there could stand to improve in areas of communications, networking, personal efficacy, etc. But I can't say its right for everyone. I can't even say it's definately right for anyone on this site, because I haven't really met people from this site. But I do broadcast it in general, because I hope it may prove helpful to someone.

Originally posted by Natalie Kopple:

Mark Herschberg does not know enough in the field of Economics but he likes to show off his knowledge in Economics.


Well, I certainly make no bones about the fact that I learned economics by reading books and chatting with the finance professors at HBS. I also learn by the socratic method. If I am wrong, please tell me where the flaw in my argument lies. It's the best way I learn.

BTW, thanks for all the supportive comments Mike, and everyone else. :-)

--Mark
[ July 29, 2003: Message edited by: Mark Herschberg ]
 
HS Thomas
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Good points raised, Alfred and Mark.
I'll surely be popping into the JUG sometime in the near future as some of the others I researched.
Java Architecture User Group
Java Special Interest Group
The second seem more active than the first.
Just need to do some certifications and perhaps not question too deeply about the value of these.
regards
 
Billy Tsai
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I dont relay on my parents, I dont get any money from them and they wont give me any money, they abandoned me after I graduated and told me "u r completely on ur own and give us back all the money we gave u when u were in schools and university" and I had no choice they transfered $30k directly from my bank account to theirs.
They also told me dont relay on them for anything , dont expect me to have them get me some industry connections, dont want me to work for them, dont want me to use thier names, and told me if "u want to live and survive do it urself, if u want to be successful do it urself"
they told me they can't affect what I am thinking or my decisions , if I want to keep on studying or find a job or get a girlfriend thats all my own business not theirs.
And I think I still owe them so much for letting me grow up ,have education, gave me food, let have somewhere to live, let me have computers to use etc...
Well anyway I am completely on my own and it has been half year And I Dont have my own money to start my own business.
 
Al Newman
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Strategic thinking is important, particularly in times such as these. You need to analyze the process.
The recruiter is the major bottleneck. Recruiters are the gatekeepers, and right now they are getting swamped by resumes emailed in. You need to market to the recruiter, because the recruiter chooses the resumes which go to the client.
This is why it's better to send 5 properly-done applications per day (and follow by telephone) than send 50 or 100 resumes via email each day. It takes more effort, but doing a proper careful application can raise your chances of being submitted to the client to 15 or 20%. Whereas an unsupported resume or one accompanied by a boilerplate letter has at best a 1% (or less) chance of being read and understood.
 
Matt Cao
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Hi,
You must piss them off big time during your college days. Now pay for the consequences. This is the time to think like the rest of western countries people. You need to grow up 100x faster to catch up with the lost time. Go trailing back to our advices and follow them.
Regards,
MCao
 
Al Newman
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Originally posted by Matt Cao:
Hi,
You must piss them off big time during your college days. Now pay for the consequences. This is the time to think like the rest of western countries people. You need to grow up 100x faster to catch up with the lost time. Go trailing back to our advices and follow them.
Regards,
MCao


A really heartfelt, grovelling apology might be in order. From Billy to his parents I mean! Eh, Matt?
 
Matt Cao
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Hi,
I think his parents wanted him pursue one career and he contradicted them. His behavior in college also indicated that he's immature. He's not only apologize to his parents, but the most important things he needs to show them his plane how to get back on his feet. Even if he takes one short step at the time, in the end it's still worth it.
He should have a similar list:
1. Get any job close by so does not required any kind of transportation.
2. Saving money and stay home with parents.
3. Pay for the living cost according to his pitiful money.
4. Figure out how to use mass transportation in his area.
5. Get a job that have higher income (may require longer commute).
6. Use mass transportation.
7. Develop his projects at night time.
8. Send out resumes for professional job according to his training.
9. Think about purchase vehicle.
10. After having a career foothold, volunteer the time to help needy kids in his area. Unless his job requires too much time because the information needs to travel from one country to another.
When his parents see his determination, dedication, and responsible for his actions, they may chip in and help him. The different now and before is that he no longer displays a symptom of obsession.
Between us, I think his goal to big, to ambitious without clear and sound strategies and it's overwhelmed him.
BTW a lot people contradicted their parents career of choice. But they did fan out. Billy stumbled.
Regards,
MCao
[ July 30, 2003: Message edited by: Matt Cao ]
[ July 30, 2003: Message edited by: Matt Cao ]
 
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I don't think Billy is for real. For every new post, he comes up with a new story that is so heart broken and happens to fit that context exactly. For every piece of not so good news or insight about the economy, he posts a message saying that he's depressed. But given he nature of the posts here lately, I don't understand why he keeps coming back for more depressing discussions.
Billy: if I'm wrong, my apologies to you and here's a tip: don't bother looking for a job right now. First, get your spiritual life in order, I suspect you might be cursed. Do some feng shui�or read that book, "Creating Money, Keys to Abundance". You can turn it around.
 
Carlisia Campos
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Originally posted by Mark Herschberg:

quote:
Originally posted by Carlisia Campos:
Plus, he's doing this, doing that other to position himself for great success by the time most technical jobs have exited the country. However, I don't see him accounting for the fact that by then, the business environment will have completely changed.
Um, exactly how much do you know about what I'm doign with my life? Are you the one who keeps stalking me outside my office? :-p
--Mark
[ July 29, 2003: Message edited by: Mark Herschberg ]


You wish!
I didn't mean to imply I knew anything at all about what you are doing, except that I do remmember you mentioning that you are very active in your pursuit of better and better skills for your career. The point that I was trying to make is that things change, and the most successfull will be the ones more prone to follow the changes (which I think will occur in an ever greater pace), and that have a quite bit of luck. The point is exactly that for the purpose of having a successful job in technology it doesn't matter enormously how smart you are, since many smart people don't have jobs, nor what in particular you are doing. I think you have clarified that smart is not what you were talking about, but "the best people". Of course, the best people will be better off. Best could be anything though. My money goes on the versatile and lucky. I agree with you that the well-rounded will be much better off, specially since they will have a greater pool of skills to utilize in many different situations, and this is something that all techies should be trying to improve on as opposed to only chanel focusing on this and that certification.
Anyway, I just had a bone to pick with you for saying, or implying, that only smart people could succeed. But it turns our that wasn't the case. Other than that and that I'm not a proponent of free market to the extend that you are and think that there is a social contract between us and the people we elect that preceeds any benefit that a company could whish to have that undermines the well being of society, no matter how much value that may add to the shareholders (possibly myself included), I enjoy everything else you say and the way you moderate the forum.
[ July 31, 2003: Message edited by: Carlisia Campos ]
 
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Ok, after reading this thread, and several others these are the three main issues I have listed the arguments I have so far regarding free markets and outsourcing. If you had time, Mark, to look these over I�d appreciate your thoughts.
1.What does belief in free markets mean and to what degree do you believe in free markets ( how much government intervention is approvable)
My first question is what does believing in free markets really mean? Does this mean you�re against any and all governmental intervention and regulation in the market or are there certain exceptions you�d make? And if there are exceptions, under what circumstances do you think the government should intervene.
For example, with the Great Depression,as we all know, many government programs were instituted to try to get the economy back on track and also try to get some insurance that something like this wouldn�t happen again. The Banking Act of 1993 creating the FDIC seems to have been one of those legislation with a highly successful track record. An excerpt from another article is below supporting this legislation:
�With this promise, the devastating cycle of banking panics in the United States ended. Deposit insurance immediately restored the confidence the system needed and money flowed back into the banking system. As Alan Greenspan has observed:
"When the efforts of the Federal Reserve failed to prevent the bank collapse of the 1930s, the Banking Act of 1933 created federal deposit insurance. The subsequent evidence appears persuasive that the combination of a lender of last resort (the Federal Reserve) and federal deposit insurance have contributed significantly to financial stability and have accordingly achieved wide support within the Congress."
Can I have your opinion on the FDIC and whether it�s actually something you approve of disapprove of and why and how this fits into your views on the free market? And also, if you do approve, why are you against government intervention in the case of outsourcing? I realize it�s not an apples to apples type thing, but do we really have to wait til things get to an extreme of the Great Depression before our government should intervene and enact legislation especially if it could stabilize the country?

2. The simple business rules you state, can support what many believe, both at the time and in hindsight, to be objectionable business practices.
On the IBM outsourcing thread you gave the following arguments below in favor of outsourcing. I�ve included an excerpt from the article to give context for this discussion.
�During the call, I.B.M's top employee relations executives said that three million service jobs were expected to shift to foreign workers by 2015 and that I.B.M. should move some of its jobs now done in the United States, including software design jobs, to India and other countries.�
Your arguments below:
Now it would be fair to recognize basic business rules, which do imply:
- The have an obligation to their shareholders to lower costs and increase profits.
As a shareholder, I approve.
- Because their competitors are doing this, they need to do so to stay competitive. Customers will benefit from lower costs of software. As a customer, I approve.
- Employees will also benefit. True some will be fired. But to simply keep every employee and act like nothing has changed is to bury your head in the sand. One day they will wake up and find the other companies have left them behind, and the company with all its employees will be in a much worse position. (If I were an IBM employee, as an employee willing to face competition, I approve.)
- It undoubtedly effects themselves. HR will play a big part in this. If more jobs are sent overseas, IBM will need less HR here in the US. Some of the "executioners" will also be on the chopping block.
- Indians and developers in other third world nations will clearly benefit from more jobs and more opportunities. If done right (which is a big if), it can provide a great boon to a developing nation.


Now, I can�t help but draw the comparison, every time I hear justifications about lowering job costs (layoffs/outsourcing), which lowers prices for the consumer, and maximizes the shareholders value, I can�t help thinking of Chainsaw Al Dunlap and his efforts to maximize shareholder value.
Again, an excerpt from the web regarding his work at Scott Paper and Sunbeam.
�At Scott Paper--his pre-Sunbeam tour of duty--he fired 11,000 employees (including half the managers and 20 percent of the company's hourly workers), eliminated the corporation's $3-million philanthropy budget, slashed R&D spending, and closed factories. Scott's market value stood at about $3 billion when Dunlap arrived in mid-1994. In late 1995, he sold Scott to Kimberly-Clark for $9.4 billion, pocketing $100 million for himself--a modest payoff, he says, for the $6 billion in increased shareholder value.
Dunlapping continues at Sunbeam, a stagnant consumer-products company. Dunlap has fired 3,000 of 12,000 workers since taking over in July 1996; sold off subsidiaries employing another 3,000; eliminated corporate charity; and shuttered 18 of 26 factories. The payoff: Sunbeam's stock has climbed from $12 to $44 in barely a year�

If you look at your arguments above compared with the results Dunlap hand, it seems very easy to defend the tactics he used, costs dropped, competitors lay off employees too, might as well, and the stock price in each of these cases jumped big time. Do you approve of what Dunlap did? If not, then how would your arguments be different than the ones you use to support outsourcing, because I�m not seeing a difference here. I�m not saying of course that these business rules aren�t valid, because of course they are, but just that if they can be used to support something as objectionable as what Dunlap did during his tenure, it seems we need to look deeper into the issue at other aspects of outsourcing, including, in my opinion, other costs to the U.S including:
a indirect costs � I think losing jobs to other countries is going to have a domino effect where other jobs are affected indirectly by the outsourcing of our jobs to other countries. I think we�ll see less kids going to school, just because the incentive isn�t there, I mean what does an education get you if you have to keep changing jobs all the time, living a life of stress and layoffs. Maybe it would be better to be an automechanic or construction worker and actually lead a more normal life. I have many friends with college degrees, who are working blue collar jobs now. They fell off that fast track a couple years ago, and actually it might have been better for them if they never even got on it in the first place, just started working straight out of high school instead. I think with Darwinian economics, we�ll see a drop in students at universities, I mean, what�s the point if you can�t compete, if the odds are that you won�t get a job justifying your education? This, of course, would reduce the need for professors, instructors, and other positions at universities. Or if we don�t see this drop, we�re going to see an increase in dissatisfied college graduates unable to find jobs and with student long credit card debt which is going to burden our society/economy even more.
b. social costs �I don�t want to get off on too much of a tangent here, but this is the land of opportunity, but if it becomes a gamble about whether or not your going to choose the right career or be in the right place at the right time to avoid layoffs, or go to the right school, or burning the midnight oil to stay in the upper echelon of people who avoid unemployment, many people will just give up or not even play in the first place. And then what? What happens to people who don�t have that sort of incentive to join the middle class? Or people that are unemployed for a long time? I�m sure there are psychological costs, more crime possibly, even drug use seems to be something that could go on the rise when people lose their motivation and careers.
I�m sure there are other, but I think it just goes to show that just considering simple business rules, isn�t even close to looking at the whole picture.

3. The playing field isn�t level
I know you�re a big believer in free markets, but the thing that bothers me about the outsourcing situation is not a free market situation and that the playing field isn�t level and hasn�t been level for years. H-1b�s, L1�s, Investment Tax Credits for foreign overseas investments, and OPIC (political risk insurance and financing for overseas investments) are all government intervention into this arena, and adds to a Java developer�s difficulty in competing for his job. My guess is that from a free market standpoint you�re against these initiatives, but do you still think that the free market will win out, and nothing should be done by the government to protect the programmers? Correct me if I�m wrong, but it seems like being opposed to government intervention on the behalf of the white collar class, is a two wrongs don�t make a right type of mentality.
I would appreciate your comments.
 
Carlisia Campos
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Well said Natham. Adding to it, there is no free market working in the case of offshoring. Let's take India as an example. Companies have access to a pool of well educated professionals who went to school on a government bill. Hey, if my government paid me to go to school and I hadn't have to work during my bachelors, I'd have kept a 4.0 GPA easily. If I hadn't to pay a ridiculous amount of money back to my loans, I would accept working for less since I would be able to achieve other financial goals with less money. Taking the huge difference between our salaries and that of Indians, I think that there would still be a big difference, just maybe not enough to be a big incentive for offshoring. Another thing: any country/state/city that has developed a plan for growth usually gives tax incentives to companies to start doing business locally and employing their residents. They do that because it pays off, and it's just another government intervention. It is capitalism that drives companies to seek such opportunities, and if we don't watch out and leave it up to them no one would have any employee benefit of any kind and we'd be working 15 hour days. So where do we draw the line? Don't anyone take my comments to mean that I want government intervention on every aspect of our lives, that's not it. It's just that lines are drawn all of the time. With the offshoring case, low wage country governments are working well to draw their game. So why would anyone think that outside governments paying to incentivate job movement away from the US is free market in action is, well, very odd.
 
Mark Herschberg
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That was a very thorough posting; I'm happy to respond.
1. What does belief in free markets mean and to what degree do you believe in free markets (how much government intervention is approvable)
Except for maybe some die-hard libertarians, I can't imagine anyone saying they don't want any government intervention. The government is needed for certain overhead and infrastructure, large impact decisions, and long term strategic economics.
By overhead and infrastructure I mean things like the FAA and highway system. The US is better for having access to easy travel. This is a very expensive undertaking no company could achieve on its own.
Large impact decisions refer to things like general economic and monetary policy (including tax cuts, interest rates, SEC and its regulations, patents, etc) are all decisions which have large impact. In cases like the Great Depression the economy did need a kick start, and only the government could provide it (either by spending or ecnomic policy).
WRT long term strategic decisions, I mean taking the long term view. Businesses rarely optimize for 20 years out. This is because most managers won't be around in 20 years to reap the rewards. Only the government can keep a long term focus. This is often necessary when the current environment creates suboptimal longer term or consumer interests. Labor laws are one example.
Other cases might include breaking up monopolies, preventing consumer
oppression, protecting national security interests, etc. (This is not necessarily a comprehensive list.)
In short, my belief in the free market means you shouldn't artifically prop up a venture, industry, or body if the economics won't support it.

Can I have your opinion on the FDIC and whether it?s actually something you approve of disapprove of and why and how this fits into your views on the free market?
In the 1930s, this was an absolute must. Americans had lost their trust in the banking system and only the backing of the US government could restore it. This is a case where government intervention was necessarily to fundamentally change the environment. Is it still necessary today? Eh, maybe, maybe not. I haven't thought much about it.

2. The simple business rules you state, can support what many believe, both at the time and in hindsight, to be objectionable business practices.
Objectionable is in the eye of the beholder. If its objectionable because it violates some natural rights, I'd be concerned. Given your comments, you seem to use "objectionable business practices" to mean "firing." Firing is not inherently good or bad, it just dependson how its used. Firing people because of their skin is bad. Firing people because the company is better off without them is good. You do not have a right to a job.
I don't know the specifics of what was going on at the companies which hired corporate turnaround expert Al Dunlap. I do know that he was hired to increase company value; in fact, he had a legal obligation to do so. He did that, i.e. he did his job. You can't fault him for that.
Again, I don't know all the details of the company's situation, but it looks like he did the right thing. The company's value went up. (It would be wrong only if it was a short term gain.)
I get the impression you think he did something wrong. He broke no laws. There is no moral obligation to employ people. What exactly did he do that was wrong? (Again, if the company's price fell significantly after he left because he short sold the future, then it was bad--although even then it could've been an honest mistake; but I don't think the price fell in these cases.)
In short, it is about increasing value. This may be done through layoffs or through outsoucring. It might also be done through raising funds, expanding, or strategic positioning. It's all the same.

Originally posted by Nathan Thurm:
a indirect costs ? I think losing jobs to other countries is going to have a domino effect where other jobs are affected indirectly by the outsourcing of our jobs to other countries. I think we?ll see less kids going to school, just because the incentive isn?t there, I mean what does an education get you if you have to keep changing jobs all the time, living a life of stress and layoffs.


There is a lot of incentive to go to school. There is just currently less incentive for EE/CS then a few years ago. People used to go into manufacturing, but not any more. Now they go to school for other careers.
Of course a) I believe EE/CS is not going to be as disappointing as others predict, and b) a good college education transcends a particular domain.

Originally posted by Nathan Thurm:
b. social costs ?I don?t want to get off on too much of a tangent here, but this is the land of opportunity, but if it becomes a gamble about whether or not your going to choose the right career or be in the right place at the right time to avoid layoffs... What happens to people who don?t have that sort of incentive to join the middle class?


It's always been a gamble being in the right place at the right time. It was simply very easy for IT people during the tech boom so now it looks difficult in comparison. Consider the following industries: textiles, farming, coal mining, electronics, aero/astro, gold mining, oil, alcohic beverage industry, Wall St, railroad, automotive, etc. All have had boom times and bust times. Many people got rich in these indsutries. Many people also lost jobs and more when some of these industries soured. Some people were able to jump ship and find new opportunities either in the same industry or new ones. What we're seeing now is nothing new; it's just knew to most people who havem't been through many business cycles.
The incentive is always to join the middle class, or upper class, or somewhere above whever you are. In general, it's a safe bet that people (in general) want more money.

Originally posted by Nathan Thurm:
3. The playing field isn?t level
I know you?re a big believer in free markets, but the thing that bothers me about the outsourcing situation is not a free market situation and that the playing field isn?t level and hasn?t been level for years.


It's a very level playing field. People in third world countries are simply willing to earn less and have a lower standard of living then people in the US. If you're willing to work for those wages and accept that standard of living, you'll get those jobs. If you're not, oh well. It's not an issue of fairness, it's an issue of you don't want to change your lifestyle. (As always in these cases, "you" is used for anyone in general.)
Now the government can alter the playing field with tarrifs, quotas, tax laws, etc. When we have a labor shortage, I think it's good that we import foreign labor. When we have a high unemployment rate, we should stop importing such labor. I do not think we should put up protective barriers around are industries--unless it is absolutely necessary for national security.
Let's suppose US companies have to buy "coded in America" software. What will happen? Labor in other countries will produce the software cheaper. Europe, Asia, and the rest of the world will buy non-US software for the cost savings. The US based companies will only be able to effectively sell in the US. We'll then have an isolated market, proped up only by US laws. As soon as those laws are removed, the cheaper foreign products will beat out US products. This is never efficent.
--Mark
[ July 31, 2003: Message edited by: Mark Herschberg ]
 
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<quote>
Companies have access to a pool of well educated professionals who went to school on a government bill.
</quote>
This is new to me.
Are you stating that the average Indian college student does not have to pay a huge tuition bill?
Isn't that a lot like selling steel for less than the cost it takes to make it?
 
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Originally posted by Mark Herschberg:

It's a very level playing field. People in third world countries are simply willing to earn less and have a lower standard of living then people in the US. If you're willing to work for those wages and accept that standard of living, you'll get those jobs. If you're not, oh well. It's not an issue of fairness, it's an issue of you don't want to change your lifestyle. (As always in these cases, "you" is used for anyone in general.)


Oh, come on. I can't believe you wrote this nonsense.


What's the child labor law in Vietnam? What environmental protections are in place in India? What's the rule on paid overtime in Bangladesh?


Give me a break. You might as well just turn to a random page of Ayn Rand for all the thought you're putting into this.
 
Mark Herschberg
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Originally posted by Mike Dahmus:

What's the child labor law in Vietnam? What environmental protections are in place in India? What's the rule on paid overtime in Bangladesh?


Americans choose to handcuff ourselves by limiting options because of environmental concerns and the like. This costs money. We don't have to do it. We can do it as much as they. Everyone has equal access. What's not a level playing field is the fact that we have more natural resources then many nations.
Now I happen to be in favor of some of these measures. I am willing to pay more to protect the enviornment and not encourage child labor.
Realistically, however, child labor isn't taking software jobs from the US. Neither is environmental constraints. In our industry, India isn't do anything we can't do ourselves, if we so choose.
--Mark
 
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