|Nix Bits -> Work|
Tue, 19 Apr 2005
Does Outsourcing Deliver the Goods? Outsourcing seems to be all the rage for businesses. This article is focused on the financial return of such efforts and concludes outsourcing is not the grand panacea it's often cracked up to be.
The conclusion: Either the costs of purchasing outside work are too high for the "losers" -- that is, they don't manage their purchases well -- or their businesses have inherent flaws. Flaws that cannot be cured by shifting work to others.No surprise there.
My take -- as someone who works for an outsourcer -- is that organizations need to make a more careful assessment of their outsourcing needs. Merely throwing all IT work at a contract isn't going to produce magic savings. The amount of work, after all, doesn't change. The right answer is probably a mix of contracting and internal talent.Wed, 30 Mar 2005
Yikes! New York has decided that a worker employed by a company in NY State can be taxed on 100% of their income in the state. What?! So my question is does the worker now get double-dipped having to pay income taxes in both his state of residence and NY? Be interested to see if the US Supreme Court takes an interest in this one. My suspicion is that it will definitely dampen employer enthusiasm for telecommuting.Wed, 02 Feb 2005
This article over at kuro5hin is both satire and unfortunate truth. I've worked on enough projects that appear to follow this development model. I have been lucky, however, to work on a few that don't operate this way.Wed, 11 Aug 2004
I've always kept a copy of my resume posted online. It's just easier to point requesters at a URL link. I can also cut and paste it quickly and the format I have it in prints well. I like this because I don't have to maintain a separate copy in a word processor.
A couple of years ago I was asked to make extensive revisions to it to make it more concise. Previously, I used a more detailed C.V. format. The downside was that I lost of lot of what I think is relevant and interesting detail. On the one hand, it's the kind of detail you might include in a cover letter or talk about in an interview. But I feel like it's these details that differentiate me.
So I came up with a fairly unique solution. If you glide the mouse over the resume, some of the items become bold and the text changes to blue indicating a clickable link. Click the link and a popup appears providing context and further depth on that item. It's a compromise between the two resume approaches and makes it more compelling -- in my opinion at least. :)
I do sometimes get questions about posting my resume so publically and potentially offending my current employer. I don't think posting a resume necessarily says I'm job hunting. In fact, I like to think my resume speaks well of my current employer. And I'm proud of the work I've done and continue to do in my career so this is my way expressing that.Wed, 23 Jul 2003
Been plowin' away at a whole bunc of projects of late, both home and work oriented. I upgraded a while back to OpenBSD 3.3 on my firewall and that gave me some nice advantages.
The new pf code has plenty niceties in it. Probably the nicest of which is the TCP ACK prioritization capabilty as described here. It also offers a nifty spam tarpitting functionality that I'm playing with. In addition to these nifty features, it has an app, pfstat, that can generate lovely little graphs. But the TCP ACK stuff is nice. It's nice not having your upload activity interrupt your download.
I've built a few more gentoo boxes. One is destined to be a file/www server for a site I'm helping to manage. The cool trick on this one is that I built gentoo completely under RedHat and then replaced it.
The box came with a RedHat install as it is a highly optimized Dual Athlon 1U server. I was able to build a copy of Gentoo in a chrooted subdirectory, boot off of a temporary CD and move all the original RedHAT out of the way and move the gentoo inplace, then reboot with my highly optimized system. I really like Gentoo for system management.
With that same site I've had plenty of work tuning a replicated www server environment with a custom php app and doing a mysql master-slave setup that's quite busy. Lots of db tuning to reduce load on those guys. I'll detail some of that here later.
I've also built myself a nifty little mini-itx fileserver for the home. I was going to build a custom case but ended up purchasing one instead. For under $300 I built a complete box with 256MB RAM and 120GB storage. The only part I didn't purchase was an old CD-ROM used to load the initial OS. I'm running Gentoo on this one as well. It is replacing a very old Sun E150 that I started losing disks on some time ago. Tons more storage, vastly reduced power consumption and noise, and a vastly smaller footprint.
Lastly for my work I am working on integrating qmail, OpenLDAP, and Samba 3.x into a single environment. I'll detail these many many parts in a separate post. It's really pretty involved and I need to keep track of my notes. It's also slow going since I can only do this work off-hours as my regular contract job for this company is my 40 hour job. Plus I'm having to do the work in such a way to provide minimal interruption to the current corporate LAN. But at least it's mine to do as I wish.Thu, 27 Feb 2003
I've been wrestling with a problem at work along with our vendor. We have a product on Win2K Advanced Server that kept blowing up during the install very earlier in the process. Some DLL call in Installshield was mailformatted in some fashion but we couldn't find why or what. We kept re-installing and removing hardware and diddling with registry entries and DCOM stuff to no avail.
Today however, I found on Installshield's site a direct reference to our error. We finally have a root cause and probable fix. The fix, though, requires the vendor to write some code. But at least its a fix. I'm definitely anxious to get moving forward again on this.
And of course I will get high visibility for being the miracle worker which feels pretty good. I love being the guy who does the magic voodoo. I suppose that's why I do what I do for a living. Between that, getting squirrelmail installed for my employer, tweaking this site, and getting the new nolug site set up, I've had a pretty darn good career day.