Death to Technical Monoculture

It’s really starting to appear like the “technical monoculture” that so pervaded the 90’s and 00’s is finally starting to die the long-deserved ugly death it was supposed to. And I couldn’t be happier.

Google's 8 Manager Skills

I’ll admit, my first reaction was, “Hey, some of those 8 things aren’t really skills, per se, as much as they are the effects you want to see come out of your manager”. For example, “Empowers team and does not micromanage” isn’t really a skill, as it were, but more of an abstract guiding principle that would encompass things like, “Gives an employee a goal and a deadline, then steps out of the way to see them accomplish it, unless asked to step in and assist”.

Happy People Still Do Quit

Twitter leads me to some interesting blog entries sometimes, and this time, it led to me to @rands’s entry entitled Shields Down, which appears to have the subtitle “Happy People Don’t Leave the Jobs They Love”. In it, he’s got some good discussion about being a manager and the realization that by the time of the exit interview, it’s already way too late for him to “save” his employee from leaving.

Farewell, IE

For those of you who missed the announcement, Microsoft has officially end-of-lifed Internet Explorer. Microsoft explained why the move was necessary, but let’s be honest, we all knew this was coming, and why: Because IE had long since fallen behind its competitors in terms of its implementation. First Chrome came out, then Firefox got better, and when even Safari (which is not the world’s most standards-friendly browser, let’s be hoenst) surpassed IE in terms of speed, it was pretty clear that Microsoft was going to have to take some serious action to bring their browser back up to speed.

Clausewitz on Policy (Software Craftsmanship)

As many readers know, I didn’t spend my collegiate years studying algorithms; instead, I obtained my degree from UCDavis in International Relations with an emphasis on military strategy and history. That meant a tremendous amount of study in history, pyschology, a little philosophy, and military affairs. One of the great books on strategy, Strategy, written shortly after the end of World War Two, was widely considered to be Hart’s best work on the subject, though he had plenty to say before the book’s publication; the great German general Guderian was quoted as having studied Hart prior to the war’s outbreak.

The Story of the Chimps (Or, Why Passwords Must Be Eight Characters)

This just crossed my Facebook feed: Take five chimpanzees. Put them in a big cage. Suspend some bananas from the roof of the cage. Provide the chimpanzees with a stepladder. BUT also add a proximity detector to the bananas, so that when a chimp goes near the banana, water hoses are triggered and the whole cage is thoroughly soaked. Soon, the chimps learn that the bananas and the stepladder are best ignored.

Blog Details

Here’s a little ditty about Ted’s blog, new and old. In case you were wondering.

2016 Tech Predictions

As has become my tradition now for nigh-on a decade, I will first go back over last years’ predictions, to see how well I called it (and keep me honest), then wax prophetic on what I think the new year has to offer us.