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Messages - Faust

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Aneristic Illusions / Just to all the American Spags
« on: June 28, 2022, 05:08:05 pm »
Five years ago if you told me there was going to be a systematic and targeted attack, dismantling of women's / LGBT / Minority rights I would have taken it as a bit of hyperbole.
Now I would be surprised if interracial marriage is still legal within the next two years.

I am terrified at the thought of any developed nation, deliberately driving its own populace to poverty, and embracing full on fundamentalist values but here we are.

Be safe, wherever you are.

Apple Talk / Re: Open Bar: Curbside Pickup Only
« on: June 22, 2022, 09:24:44 am »
*convulses on floor, stands up wearing RWHN beard*
Did your near death experience make you are born again pastafarian

Me:  "In any case, the file you need is already loaded in your computer, under the file name 'anaerobic threat'."

Bacterial existential threat? Sorry sorry, one of the bacterial existential threats?

Apple Talk / Re: Open Bar: Curbside Pickup Only
« on: May 26, 2022, 11:56:25 pm »
It sounds like for the most part this is temporary, hopefully the cancer meds will do their job, and the bloods  will stay stabilised, hang in there

Aneristic Illusions / Re: UNLIMITED American gun slobber thread.
« on: May 26, 2022, 11:53:05 pm »
Is it really bad that when I saw this in the news I was numb to it. Over the years, every time its happened, I've said there is no function or utility for the average person owning a gun other than they are fun. If you are a farmer or have a hunting licence, there's an exception but even then, a slow single shot rifle is plenty at most. Seeing this happen again and again leaves me cold

I'm not against fun, as long as someone can justify it. As a society the US has chosen that, yes this is an acceptable cost for fun, the human sacrifices that come with it are the cost.

Apple Talk / Re: Open Bar: Curbside Pickup Only
« on: May 04, 2022, 11:18:23 pm »
That's hopefully good news, bloods can mess with the brain bad, but at least if it's corona that should subside once its run its course

Apple Talk / Re: Open Bar: Curbside Pickup Only
« on: May 01, 2022, 02:48:11 pm »
I'm so sorry, that's up there with my worst fears.

Apple Talk / Re: A thought experiment
« on: April 27, 2022, 09:58:31 am »

I don't think the race of the people on the floor should be a significant factor.  My monkey brain says "maybe the black dude will get along better with the floor employees, or feel more responsibility towards them"... but that's racist/tribalist bullshit, and my monkey brain needs to SHUT UP.

yeah, thats a bias: "We hired the guy because he speaks Black, which most of our floor staff speak"

Apple Talk / Re: A thought experiment
« on: April 27, 2022, 09:56:30 am »
Hrm, doesn't it depend on the role? If the engineer was responsible for critical systems, was there an expectation of familiarity with those kind of systems or a proven record of responsibility with them?

When we are hiring, its the right person for the right job, unfortunately with software devs: the resume doesn't matter a shite, anyone can put a shopping list of technologies on it. Sometimes years of experience don't show it either, you often get people who on the resume looks like they were working on some complex systems where in fact they might have been pigeonholed into a small task role. Even personality isnt often a good indicator beyond people skills and communication: have had people in interviews who come off as strong communicators but when put to the test are donkey's when it comes to making something.

What we do is a small project, done on the candidates own time, which tests a few common dev skills they would be using in the job. It is the number one way we judge candidates ability and I haven't seen a better way to do it yet, could something like that apply to your two candidates?

The other thing you said that sticks out in my mind is the responsibility of the role: I wouldn't ever put a graduate on a product that carries high risk unless they can show their approach with similar risky work (volunteer projects, github portfolios etc instead of employment).

What you can end up getting then though is a fear of hiring people without experience and stagnation in the industry (people only hire tried and tested people as opposed to those fresh out of college), so its really important to have multiple roles:
Roles for graduates
Roles for intermediates
Roles for very experienced seniors.

On race: I prefer to hire the best candidate for a given job (this does not always mean having experience but its definitely weighted that way, the ones with experience and ability that did not get the job have effectively talked themselves out of the job in the interview by raising red flags).
But to not address race and the difference in the role would be misleading: For us, anyone coming in from a non EU country they need to get a critical skills Visa, this creates overhead for the company up front BUT it is a pair of handcuffs: the candidate cannot work at another company without starting the visa application process again, it effectively means if you get someone good from abroad you are guaranteed to have them for the 4 years of their visa, in an industry with high turnover as such it is a benefit to the candidate. However if you were to put two candidates in front of me with similar experience and ability and one comes via critical skills visa I wouldn't use that as a deciding factor, it wouldn't be fair on either of them.

But you could argue there is a bias in there, subconsciously, because our dev team is a mix of about 50% Non EU to 50% EU. However that is pretty much in line with the proportions on applications we get.

On the ethics of the thought experiment:
For me in the example you have given, safety would trump all, so if the guy had no experience I wouldn't be hiring him for the job, just as I wouldn't if any of the the experienced guys referees came back saying he was sloppy or cut corners in working.

I have the privilege of not having much interest in race in hiring, and get the benefit of all candidates competing on skill alone. However that may not be the case in the US based on its history: I know America is a country that for a long time removed the opportunities for black people in desirable roles, so it would be ethically good to do something towards helping reduce that imbalance first, make a level playing field before asking all candidates to compete, but even that is secondary to the ethics of safety.
If you have multiple roles you can tackle both, if you cant have both (cheating the thought experiment), safety through demonstrated ability with the risky system trumps all.

If this is a real scenario and you want to hire someone to support affirmative action, create a graduate role for the graduate, or wait for enough resumes to come in with a black candidate with experience comparable so there is a good pool of candidates to compete.

Apple Talk / Re: OH NO
« on: April 20, 2022, 11:54:46 am »
Too goddamn beautiful for this world

Apple Talk / Re: The Compleat Billy Chronicles (thanks to Zenpatista)
« on: April 15, 2022, 10:25:35 am »
I did a double take when I got to "Bones", cant fault that knowledge of his process control though, takes someone who really loves their system to think of ways to improve them like

Well, it's not our system, we just get paid to make things more efficient.

It went really well, too.  We got a whole cow through the grinder in less than 5 minutes.
A whole cow, thats like 5-6 People a minute!

Apple Talk / Re: OH NO
« on: April 14, 2022, 09:46:14 am »
St Gottfried, may you bless those thieving bastards in heaven with your velvet angels voice as you practice your lyre

Apple Talk / Re: The Compleat Billy Chronicles (thanks to Zenpatista)
« on: April 14, 2022, 09:35:52 am »
I did a double take when I got to "Bones", cant fault that knowledge of his process control though, takes someone who really loves their system to think of ways to improve them like

Aneristic Illusions / Re: Picking Cain's Brains
« on: March 08, 2022, 12:23:02 pm »
So a week in and I am still not sure what to make from it. I dont like getting my information off whats being shared on social platforms and if you were to go off of reddit news articles the Ukranians have decimated the Russians.

Does it hold up, has Russia taken enough of a black eye to consider withdrawing, or is the damage they have taken inconsequential for their goal of capturing Ukraine and all this is doing is delaying the inevitable?
How can Putin still have support from this back home surely at home in Russia there would be:
Those who oppose the war
Those who dont really care but intend to use it as a cudgel to remove Putin and take power for themselves?

Or is his own support base so unwavering that he still able to weather this?

Aneristic Illusions / Re: Picking Cain's Brains
« on: February 28, 2022, 02:23:45 pm »
I think you're giving too much credit to the US here and too little agency to the Russians.

Let's be very clear here: Russia had a choice. I thought up until about a week ago that this was simply then playing hardball on the Minsk agreement - a framework agreed upon by Russia, the US, the EU and Ukraine that in theory would have resolved Russia's concerns about NATO on their borders without dismembering Ukraine entirely. The essence of it would have been that the separatist regions of Ukraine would have been recognised as having a special regional status and greater freedoms to institute their own laws but in return would get a veto over future national security arrangements. This would have allowed for Russia to covertly control them from behind the scenes and use them to keep them out of the NATO framework. Again, this was agreed to by the US, though Ukraine was dragging it's feet on implementing it.

However, we can now clearly see that was not the case. Indeed, Russia was engaging in duplicitous diplomacy with France and Germany right up until the point the invasion started precisely to convince them that this was their aim.

Furthermore, the Ukraine of today is not the Ukraine of ten years ago. Despite not being a member of NATO, it's armed forces have been considerably hardened by US and EU aid, most notably advanced Stingers and MANPADs were unlocked for sale a couple of months back - in conjunction with everything else they've been given over the past eight years, they have the means to turn Ukraine into a hellish insurgent landscape. The kind of urban fighting that commanders hate and irregular fighters love - that's what awaits the Russians currently in Kiev and Odessa, and they are going to be bloodied night and day until they leave. Bombs on the street, rat poison and glass in their's never going to end and they'll be looking over their backs every moment they're there.

Finally, Russia's economy cannot afford a protracted conflict, and nor can their military. They are trying to run a superpower on an economy the size of Texas. Three-quarters of their available manpower is now concentrated on Ukraine or the borders around it. That means they are weaker everywhere else - and the longer this goes on, the weaker they will get. NATO won't take direct advantage of this, because no-one wants two nuclear powers fighting - but you can bet Russia's partners in the Middle East, the Caucasians and in Central Asia will feel their absence.

In short, there were a lot of reasons to believe that Russia would not invade, because invading is about the dumbest thing Putin could do. But he did. Putin chose to wage a war of aggression, when he had other options available, and the reasons for that are complicated but essentially there is a revanchist, nationalistic movement within the Russian "mainstream" that wishes to rectify the "mistakes" of history, such as the dissolution of the Russian Empire and it's successor state in the Soviet Union.

This movement views countries like Ukraine and even Belarus as illegitimate creations of the Soviet state that should have returned to a Russian status at the end of the Cold War. It's this movement which managed to get a vote through the Russian Parliament that those Ukrainian regions be recognised as independent - and certainly it can be argued that such a proposal never would have made it through without being agreed on from higher up. But Russia is not a straightforward dictatorship where a single man rules - there are factions and key constituencies who need to be listened to and supported, and there is negotiation back and forth between these groups and various power centres in the Russian state, which includes oligarchs who stand to profit not only from a conflict in Ukraine but the establishment of new markets where sanctions are not applied to them. These power centres, for their various reasons, decided a Ukrainian invasion was the way to go, and so allowed the vote to go ahead.

That's not to say that the US and NATO do not share some blame - they certainly could have done more, both historically and in the present to try and assure Russia of it's security aims. At the same time, given what has already been provided, it's hard to say what would have actually convinced the Russians to back off, without a complete change in NATO policy going back to the early 1990s or similar. A democratic Ukraine was always going to be on contentious ground with an autocratic Russia - and would naturally seek allies and frameworks agreed on with them to try and blunt any Russian aggression. The lack of natural barriers - barring the Dnieper - in the region mean security is always going to be fraught and hard to obtain in any concrete way except through these alliances and agreements, and short of telling Ukraine to fend for itself and leaving it to the Russians to absorb, I think any degree of assistance was always going to be looked upon by a suspicious Kremlin as the first step in a NATO agreement. In short, Russia views Ukraine in a simple binary position of either it is with them, or it is against them. Clearly it is not with them for now, so the only thing to do is secure a regime change to ensure that is not the case in the future.

Thanks Cain,

I haven't been able to get my head around it, I expected posturing but not an outright invasion, is there really that much support for it back in Russia?
What do you think of the economic sanctions, will they be tight enough screws to finally get people to turn on Putin and end this mess, say if it was coupled with heavy losses in Ukrain when they expected a cake walk?

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