Pete Pan

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Recent posts by Pete Pan

lets see, 6 years of grad school with MIT students (2 different schools). Working for 12+ years with 100+ MIT grads (2 different companies). Living in Boston.
Yes, I think that is that is 1st hand experience with MIT people, not the school, but the people and that is what I am talking about.
So a minor in film with other engineers minoring in film.
How many of the students met that one english major?
You make a good point. Everything that you mentioned about MIT seems to have a number associated with it. Everything I hear about MIT has a number associated with it.
What perscentage of the students were Engineering/Business/Science? Not a well rounded group?
Film study at MIT? Here are the two lowest level "film" classes from the "program of media arts" (maybe I looked in the wrong area)
Fundamentals of Computational Media Design
Introduction to Doing Research in MAS
I have nothing against the school personally. I never mentioned that people were dorks. I just mentioned that very few of the hundreds of graduates that I have met are well rounded. I just want my children to expereience more than just technology.

Originally posted by Mark Herschberg:
Yeah, MIT is a little unusual in that our undergraduate ratio is 50%-50% (+/- 2%). One of the things I learned at MIT is not to jump to conclusions. You know about 50 people from MIT who are dorks, so you conclude MIT must be the cause. I would have to wonder if maybe it's your company that attracts the dorks, and simply that people with social skills, from any school, don't take jobs there. You didn't seem to account for these other factors. (I'm not really saying I think you, or your company, necessarily does this, I'm just trying to make a point.)
--Mark
hershey@vaultus.com
[This message has been edited by Mark Herschberg (edited April 11, 2001).]


20 years ago
BS Rutgers (I was in the engineering school)
MS Georgia Tech
PhD Princeton
live in Boston now.
I hear the same things said about GT that you said about MIT (and I do NOT want to get in the argument about MIT vs GT, I will admit that MIT is better is almost all fields)
GT had a huge sports program. It had thousands of eningeers playing sports with mostly other engineers. They took 25% humanities, mostly with other engineers. The B school was the up and coming one when I was there, and you guess it, they specialized in "technical MBA's". How can you be well rounded it everyone you meet is into the same things that you are?
You will never meet a Dance major or a Film Major or an English Major (may be wrong about this one) at MIT. There might be a film class or two, but since no one in the class is magoring in the area, it is still treated like a 2nd level class. How many MIT people have ever said "I blew off that Calc III final because my film professor was showing the latest french flick".
At GT I think the ratio of Male to Female was 4-1 undergrad when I was there and the poor guys didn't know how to talk to a girl. I ended up working at a place that 50% of the people were from MIT (100+ engineers), and I would have to say that on average their social skills were below average. Great engineers, but no one wanted to talk to them, so a lot of their knowledge went to waste.

Originally posted by Mark Herschberg:
I strongly disagree with your implied statement that MIT does not produce well rounded individuals. 25% of the classes taken by undergrads must be in humanities. Our school of management is one of the top in the country. Out economics program is also considered one of the best, if not the best. When I was an undergrad, our political science dept was ranked seventh in the country. Our urban studies in planning was also in the top ten. We also have a world class linguistics and philosophy department. MIT also has the largest sports program of any university, offering more varisty and JV teams than any other school in the country. Then there's clubs and social life, but that's hard to quantify.
Pete, did you go to MIT, Stanford, or both (or neither)?
--Mark
hershey@vaultus.com
PS I posted this a couple days ago, but it got lost whne the server went down, the W3C is located at MIT. I used to work down the hall from them.


20 years ago
It should be good for people to see what goes on there. It is an excelent school, but I would never send my kids there. I feel they need a school where they would become more well rounded (Standford is a good example). Technology is only part of the job, people skills count for a lot too.
20 years ago
Here is my input:
I think a CS degree is important, very important. I majored in both CS and EE in college and two didn't compare when it came to programming. The EE's all had programming classes, but didn't really learn HOW to program, they just learned the language de jour. I would have CS classes where you would learn 6 languages in a semester. You learned different "types" of languages and more importantly you learned that the language was not important, it was you ability to use the tools that you were given that really counted. Half the EE "programmers" are probably still using the one language that they learned.
As for the MS degree, I think that you can learn a lot. I think I did it backwards (I went to a "theory" school for undergrad and a "practical" school for grad school), but my skills in the years I spent in grad school grew beyond belief. The people that I met (shared an office with people that were "drafted" by Sun and Xerox Parc before they finished their PhDs) taught me so much that it is hard to explain.
As for the job search, I think one of the most important thing is to be truthful on your resume (not saying you are not). The resume gets you the interview, but what good is an interview for a job that you cannot do? As soon as someone catches you on the "enhancements", the interview is pretty much over. If you are unemployeed right now, keep up own your skills. Donate some time to a charity and set up a kick ass website for them just for the experience.
As for headhunters, they suck. Most of the ads out there on the "big job sites" are fake and are just used for headhunter to collect resumes for their own databases. Some are even for just collecting email addresses to add you to their "free jobs list". So beware, create a "fake" email address on yahoo or something and watch out for posting for jobs where the salary is too good to be true, it probably is.
-pp
20 years ago
I feel the same say except that I also include the SCJP one as well. You see examples of it on this site.
Pete Pan, DDS, PDQ, LMNOP

Originally posted by M Prembroke:
But the point he is making is a well known one- there is a huge oversupply of people with certifications in networking and other similar areas due to the fact that these exams can be passed via memorization of test questions, aka "brain dumps." People can pass these tests without really knowing what they are doing. Any certification that can be passed in this manner is worthless.


20 years ago
Wouldn't even consider highing a person without a degree (even with 5 years expereince). It has been my experience is that unless they were lucky and had a good mentor a t their first job, they spent the 5 years learning to write bad code. I have a job right now where I have to maintain a 1,400 line C++ FUNCTION that contains 72 gotos. Not my only job, but I spend a lot of time on that ONE FUNCTION
Pete Pan, BS, MS, PhD, Member FDIC.

Originally posted by Peter Tran:
I always thought that after 5 years in the industry, that a degree really doesn't have as much weight as it does straight out of school. Does anyone else have an opinion?
-Peter


20 years ago
It is a trade off between allocating memory not used, or the time to reallocated memory knew you would have needed in the first place.
You you know exactly how many elements you are going to need, then set the inital number to ceil(num/.75)+1 (I always add one for the heck of it).
One interesting things I have always wondered about in the hashtable constructors is the constructor:

Why the hexk did they choose ELEVEN?

Originally posted by Tim Williams:
One of the constructors to Hashtable takes an int to specify its initial capacity. Are there any guidelines for how to calculate a number for this?
For example if I know there will be about about 15 entries in my hashtable should I still use the default constructor which creates a hashtable with a capacity of 101? Or maybe use a different value - say 30?
Tim


20 years ago
Have you checked out the bostonworks.com site? Even if you ignore the jobs from resume collecting companies like kforce there seems to be some ok ones.

Originally posted by matthew austin:

I would like to do more server side web development with Perl or Java and am open to the SF Bay Area, the Boston Area, or LA.


20 years ago
Yup, he was the guy who was SUPPOSE to talk me into the job (set up before the interview). I told him the story and we pretty much just bashed the company all night.

Originally posted by Peter Tran:
Hey Pete,
The person who took you out to dinner, was he/she a Microsoft employee?
Good stories.
-Peter


20 years ago
Then there was the Microsoft interview. I had 5 interviews scheduled and it was a day trip each way (from Atlanta). So I spend a day to get there, and then I show up. Of the 5 people to interview me, 3 cancelled. Of the remaining 2, they were with the two groups that I said I would NEVER work for. They were both suppose to be 45 minute interviews. One guy was 30 minutes late and the other was 15. I was so pissed at this time (they left me in the hallway for a couple of hours by myself between interviews) that I started to throw the questions. They would have a sheet of 5 questions, 2 easy, 1 medium, 1 hard, and 1 impossible. I would go and get the hard AND the impossible and get the easy ones wrong on purpose. So at the end of the day I was back in HR and they asked me if I wanted to work for the compnay. I looked at the person and said "I would rather have my a**hole removed than work for your comany and I am going to run up the dinner bill tonight". I told the person who took me out to dinner the story and we had a $300 dinner.
20 years ago
I had an interview with a small start up company. It was the type of thing where they had 4 interviewers and 4 candidates. You spent 1/2 with each one. The first 3 I met were the technical people and I nailed all 3 and really liked the people and was excited about working there. Then I met with teh director. He started asking me questions like my High School GPA and SAT scores. Meanwhile I had graduated with 2 masters degrees and had been working for 6 years already. He started asking things like if you were an animal, which would you be an why. Then he went in to this big speech about how they are a start up and they means long hours and that they don't miss deadlines because they are a startup and startups can do that because people have to work long hours and then get their work done and how he never missed a dealine at this company (it was one big run on sentence). This would not have been so bad, but the guy I interviewed with right before this "director" told me that this guy had only been with the company EIGHT DAYS and there hadn't been a deadline in a month.
So the guy goes and asks me "what is your biggest weakness" and I said (maybe not the exact quote, but it was a while ago) "Stupid people who ask stupid questions". I then stood up, excused my self, took my resume back from him and left. Two weeks later I got a rejection letter.
20 years ago
And another thing, I think the BK University is a great example.
Would it hurt a chef with it on his resume? You bet, and they teach you the "fundimentals" there.

Originally posted by raimondas zemaitis:
Honestly speaking, Pete, I do not feel you are kind of person to discuss with. You do not answer or discuss but bite.


20 years ago
You do not feel that I am the kind of person to discuss things with, but here you are doing just that. If you really feel that way, take your comments else where.
As for me "biting", I only do it to idiots like you. If you do not want to be part of this discussion, then don't.
I do not need to run your example through the compiler to know the answer. I am NOT accusing you of this, but it is just a case of poor programming practices that come about from poor programmers without the proper experience. You should only access static methods/variables throught the class name to make people reading your code understand that they are statics. Of course it works, and if I didn't know it, it would take me 10 minutes to figure it out. But since there are thousands of cases like this, and the odds of me running into them in the real world are slim, I think it is better to actually spend my time are projects to learn "real world things" and to learn the "non real world cases" as I need them instead of memorizing them all at the beginning. But someone coming for solid progamming experience (and I am NOT talking about hacking for 2 years), then learning new things is easy. You spend your whole career learning new things, and if you were trained correctly in the first place (where you are trained how to learn languages, and not just to use the "current" language) then learning RMI and EJB are no different than Corba a few years ago, and STL before that and C++ before that, and C before that and ...

Originally posted by raimondas zemaitis:
Honestly speaking, Pete, I do not feel you are kind of person to discuss with. You do not answer or discuss but bite.


20 years ago
But if you saw that the person had 5 years experience in java and then felt like he had to go out and get certified, then wouldn't that look bad? To me it does. I would much rather see that he spent his time doing an indepth RMI course then study things that he should have already known. It just makes me wonder if they really have the experince that they say they do.
As for people with no experience, I would rate a certification high, but no where near a college degree. 4 years of tests vs. a couple of hours.

Originally posted by Marcus Green:

I have been in the position of recruiting many Java programmers. I would much rather recruit people with solid real world Java programming experience. If I am presented with two approximatly equal candidates, and one has certification they the certified candidatae will have the edge. In addition to my expertise in interviewing and judging another human being I have the additional comfort of test provided,validated and managed by a multi billion dollar corporation.


20 years ago