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  Don’t Call Yourself A Programmer, And Other Career Advice


If there was one course I could add to every engineering education, it wouldn’t involve compilers or gates or time complexity.  It would be Realities Of Your Industry 101, because we don’t teach them and this results in lots of unnecessary pain and suffering.  This post aspires to be README.txt for your career as a young engineer.  The goal is to make you happy, by filling in the gaps in your education regarding how the “real world” actually works.  It took me about t...

   Career,Programmer,Advice,Low level,Development     2011-10-29 07:09:23


  5 Reasons to Join a Startup After Graduating


After I wrote my last post, a surprising number of people emailed me asking why I decided to join a startup after graduating from Duke. Many of those I heard from face similar decisions today: either they are college seniors choosing between a big company and a startup, or they are recent graduates who work at a big company and are thinking about making the switch. What’s interesting is that most are already leaning towards the startup career path: it seems they just want someone to assur...

   Startup,Graduation,Work,Advice,Passion,Learn     2011-11-23 08:12:13


  bakercom1 5 Ways to Make Your IT Staff Unpoachable


When it comes to hiring practices, the tables have turned – capsized, actually. After a global recession saw thousands of jobs lost in IT departments everywhere, now the race is on to hire swarms of top talent. The trouble is: There isn’t enough talent to go around, and the threat of losing key staff to “poachers” is growing daily. “In the current war for talent in Silicon Valley, a lot of leaders believe that it is not possible to compete with the Google and Facebook phenomena ...

   IT,Experts,Keep,Unpoachable     2011-07-25 08:35:49


  Ask Bill Gates Anything: Being a Billionaire is Strange, Microsoft Co-Founder Tells Students


How’s the life of a billionaire? “Quite strange,” says Bill Gates, who fielded questions from University of Washington students on Thursday evening as part of a lecture on the future of computing.Gates’ talk, at a packed hall in the UW’s computer science building, focused on some areas where he thinks cheap, powerful computing will have a major impact on society, including education, disease, and robotics.Gates recalled spending time on the UW campus as a young man, back...

   Bill Gate,Billionare,Rich,Advice,UW,Computing     2011-10-28 10:38:34


  10 Secrets of Successful Leaders


Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “A good leader inspires people to have confidence in the leader, a great leader inspires people to have confidence in themselves.” But, becoming a great leader isn’t easy. Successfully maneuvering a team through the ups and downs of starting a new business can be one of the greatest challenges a small-business owner faces.Leadership is one of the areas that many entrepreneurs tend to overlook, according leadership coach John C. Maxwell, whose books include The ...

   Leader,Skill,Calm,Trust,Involvement     2011-11-03 03:36:56


  Don't. Waste. Time.


Stuff we startups do that doesn't delight users:Office spaceLaunch partiesHealth insurance plansSalary negotiationsFounder equity splitsSeries F stockOffice Food Team-building activitiesCRM systemsBookkeepingHead countWorking in SOMAConvertible debt capsValuationsTechCrunchKarma scoresISOsPowerpointBusiness CardsBanksLawyersDesks1099sBug TrackersAgile ProcessesAdvisory BoardsHiringCap TablesPayrollMeetupsMeetingsOf course, much of this stuff still needs to get done.  At some point.&nbs...

   Time management,Work,Startup,How to     2011-11-21 09:55:06


  I am a programmer


Admitting that may be career suicide, or possibly it will cost me dearly because 'software engineers' are raking in the big bucks these days, but the fact of the matter is that I'm a programmer. It's what I do best and it is the job title that I associate with most because it feels as though the biggest chunk of me will always be most likely to blurt that out when people ask me what my job is. That I like to program definitely helps.So instead of choosing some fancy title for what it is that I d...

   Programmer,Skill,Future,Requirements,Software engineer     2011-11-01 07:08:11


  Fear of Ignorance


This past week, I was interviewing a candidate for a VP role along with two of our engineering leads. Everyone in the room excluding myself was classically “technical” – they could write code, had experience solving hard software problems and a background in computer science. I wrote my last line of PHP in 2004, and it had to be rewritten by a real programmer within 6 months.During the interview, we had the following exchange (due to an imperfect memory, I’ll paraphrase):Thomas...

   Leader,Team,Technical,Leadership,Ignorence     2011-11-21 10:03:03


  How to Ace a Google Interview


Imagine a man named Jim. He's applying for a job at Google. Jim knows that the odds are stacked against him. Google receives a million job applications a year. It's estimated that only about 1 in 130 applications results in a job. By comparison, about 1 in 14 high-school students applying to Harvard gets accepted. Jim's first interviewer is late and sweaty: He's biked to work. He starts with some polite questions about Jim's work history. Jim eagerly explains his short career. The intervi...

   Google,Interview,Questions and answers,Job     2011-12-26 09:17:36


  Microsoft wakes up to Open Source … in a big way!


Contrary to popular belief, Microsoft loves open-source. No, really! Don’t believe me? Read on: Today, Microsoft announced that it is open-sourcing all of its flagship web/cloud platform: ASP.NET MVC Web Pages (aka Razor), Web API. Importantly … these projects will be publicly hosted and that the team will continue development in the open (you’ll be able to view the repository and see the code commits as they happen) and that Microsoft will even consider code subm...

   Oepn source,Microsoft,Ruby     2012-04-01 04:23:42