IEEE starting to wake up!

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by krasic » Sat, 28 Dec 2002 14:36:58



"Dissatisfaction with the field is growing rapidly. Layoffs, the
influx of foreign workers, and offshore outsourcing of jobs have
caused the pocket-protector set to either leave the profession in
large numbers or seek new careers after being laid off.

And if that isn't enough to make engineers' neckties curl in
Dilbert-style desperation, there's the nature of the work itself. In
an era when high-tech gear becomes obsolete almost as fast as dairy
products, many in the field feel they must advance at a steady pace or
risk being cast aside.

It's a far cry from the era when engineering skills were a ticket to a
lifelong salary and, some say, raises questions about America's
ability to remain at the forefront of technology."

see:

http://www.csmonitor.com/2002/1226/p02s01-usec.html

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by Mike Smit » Sun, 05 Jan 2003 03:24:09



Quote:

> And if that isn't enough to make engineers' neckties curl in
> Dilbert-style desperation, there's the nature of the work itself. In
> an era when high-tech gear becomes obsolete almost as fast as dairy
> products, many in the field feel they must advance at a steady pace or
> risk being cast aside.

Oh, how *horrible*!  You mean that people who work in technology are
expected to... *keep up with technology*?  Say it isn't so!

Quote:> It's a far cry from the era when engineering skills were a ticket to a
> lifelong salary

Why should any skill be a "ticket to" anything?  Ya think Tiger Woods would
keep raking in the dough if he didn't practice and work to stay ahead of the
pack?  Newsflash:  Life is hard.  Deal with it.

--
Mike Smith

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by Liz » Sun, 05 Jan 2003 04:27:55



<< Newsflash:  Life is hard.  >>

How profound.

Quote:> > It's a far cry from the era when engineering skills were a ticket to a
> > lifelong salary

> Why should any skill be a "ticket to" anything?  Ya think Tiger Woods
would
> keep raking in the dough if he didn't practice and work to stay ahead of
the
> pack?

you take the observation too literally and trivialize remarks far more
intelligent and useful than yours ... the message was spread far and wide,
by academia, government, press, corporate interests :  get credentialed and
skilled in technology and there will be ample numbers of jobs ...  It was a
lie.  It was  fraudulent.  The promise has been breached and tech workers
have a legitimate grievance.  If the same were to happen to professional
golfers, I assure you they would be equally unhappy .. probably more so, if
the attitude of other professional athletes and entertainers is any
indication.

Tiger Woods is magnificently skilled and every week of the tour he gets the
opportunity to compete ... nobody ever tells him that he can't play a
tournament because he has no experience with the Thrasher 18 Degree Driving
Iron ...

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by krasic » Sun, 05 Jan 2003 13:42:15


Sorry if it wasn't clear that the remarks were a quote from the link.
The link itself, I think, is an attempt to speak to a broad audience
about our often-incomprehensible-to-the-layperson profession.

It doesn't invalidate your response although Liz's subsequent comments
are worth your time to absorb.




> > And if that isn't enough to make engineers' neckties curl in
> > Dilbert-style desperation, there's the nature of the work itself. In
> > an era when high-tech gear becomes obsolete almost as fast as dairy
> > products, many in the field feel they must advance at a steady pace or
> > risk being cast aside.

> Oh, how *horrible*!  You mean that people who work in technology are
> expected to... *keep up with technology*?  Say it isn't so!

> > It's a far cry from the era when engineering skills were a ticket to a
> > lifelong salary

> Why should any skill be a "ticket to" anything?  Ya think Tiger Woods would
> keep raking in the dough if he didn't practice and work to stay ahead of the
> pack?  Newsflash:  Life is hard.  Deal with it.

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by Jerry Lesl » Sun, 05 Jan 2003 15:12:30


: the message was spread far and wide, by academia, government, press,
: corporate interests :  get credentialed and skilled in technology and
: there will be ample numbers of jobs ...It was a lie.  It was  fraudulent.  
:

Like this Texas Workforce Commission page ?:

   http://www.twc.state.tx.us/careers/infotech.html
   Hot Careers in Texas: Information Technology

  "Texas will need up to 57,000 new Systems Analysts, Database
   Administrators, and Computer Support Specialists within the next seven
   to ten years. According to the U.S. Department of Commerce's Office of
   Technology Policy, even the slowest growing occupation, computer
   programmers at 29.5 percent, is expected to grow at more than twice
   the average for all other occupations in the nation, currently
   projected at 14.4 percent growth.

   With salaries ranging from $30,000 to over $50,000, IT occupations
   earn at least 10% more than the statewide average income of $26,834.
   Special programs and incentives are available to help people become
   and remain IT professionals.

   Find out more about making a living and making a difference in
   Information Technology in Texas..."

Perhaps a fraud complaint with the Texas Attorney General is in order.

--Jerry Leslie   (my opinions are strictly my own)

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by Mike Smit » Mon, 06 Jan 2003 02:16:33




> : the message was spread far and wide, by academia, government, press,
> : corporate interests :  get credentialed and skilled in technology and
> : there will be ample numbers of jobs ...It was a lie.  It was  fraudulent.  
> :

> Like this Texas Workforce Commission page ?:

>    http://www.twc.state.tx.us/careers/infotech.html
>    Hot Careers in Texas: Information Technology

Did you folks actually decide to go into software because of
*government* propaganda?  When did we all start believing what the
government tells us?

Maybe the dot-com boom and subsequent bust wouldn't have been so severe
if there weren't a herd of people who just decided to get into it for
the bling-bling.  Personally, I wanted to get into the software field
from the day I saw my first PET, before I even understood people take
jobs to earn money.  (I was maybe 8 or 9 at the time.)  I just thought
it was so *cool* that I couldn't imagine doing anything else - and still
can't, really.

--
Mike Smith

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by Mike Smit » Mon, 06 Jan 2003 02:28:14





> << Newsflash:  Life is hard.  >>

> How profound.

And yet people constantly seem to want to forget it.

Quote:>>>It's a far cry from the era when engineering skills were a ticket to a
>>>lifelong salary

>>Why should any skill be a "ticket to" anything?  Ya think Tiger Woods
>>would keep raking in the dough if he didn't practice and work to stay

 >>ahead of the pack?

Quote:

> you take the observation too literally and trivialize remarks far more
> intelligent and useful than yours ...  the message was spread far and wide,
> by academia, government, press, corporate interests :  get credentialed and
> skilled in technology and there will be ample numbers of jobs ...  

When I was a boy, I remember being taught "Don't believe everything you
read".  I also remember being taught that "money isn't everything."  I
don't know about you, but I didn't get into this field because of
anything I read or heard about money or jobs.  I've been fascinated by
computers, and programming, since I was very young.  There was never any
question in my mind that it was what I would do with my life, one way or
another.  It's nice that there happens to be decent money in it, for
those who are good at it, and keep pace with advancements, but it's not
the reason I do what I do.  Doctors make good money, too - but how many
of them, do you think, sweat through eight(? seven? can't remember)
years of college, then years of internship and residency and sleepless
nights and hundred-hour weeks, just for the Benjamins? - Who don't
absolutely *love* the practice of medicine, and are sworn to be good and
*stay* good at it?  Think of me what you will, but I don't have a
tremendous amount of sympathy for a bunch of people who rode a wave,
with dreams of dollars in their heads, only to find out that there are
no guarantees in life (they should've *known* that already!) and that
the computing industry is not a free, easy meal ticket.

 > It was a

Quote:> lie.  It was  fraudulent.  The promise has been breached and tech workers
> have a legitimate grievance.  

If you say so.  *I've* got no complaints.  And that would be true even
if I were to lose my job tomorrow - I wouldn't go blaming it on someone
else.

--
Mike Smith

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by Mike Smit » Mon, 06 Jan 2003 02:30:15



> Sorry if it wasn't clear that the remarks were a quote from the link.

I was aware of that, and I was responding to those remarks, not to you
personally.  (Though I'd imagine that, if you took the time to post the
link and the quote, that they are representative of your own view -
correct me if I'm wrong here.)

--
Mike Smith

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by Liz » Mon, 06 Jan 2003 02:35:49





> > : the message was spread far and wide, by academia, government, press,
> > : corporate interests :  get credentialed and skilled in technology and
> > : there will be ample numbers of jobs ...It was a lie.  It was
fraudulent.
> > :

> > Like this Texas Workforce Commission page ?:

> >    http://www.veryComputer.com/
> >    Hot Careers in Texas: Information Technology

> Did you folks actually decide to go into software because of
> *government* propaganda?  When did we all start believing what the
> government tells us?

Mike, the whole culture spread the message, not just government ... (my
original point .. which Jerry appropriately supported with the TWC material)

Quote:> Maybe the dot-com boom and subsequent bust wouldn't have been so severe
> if there weren't a herd of people who just decided to get into it for
> the bling-bling.

maybe ??

Quote:> Personally, I wanted to get into the software field
> from the day I saw my first PET, before I even understood people take
> jobs to earn money.  (I was maybe 8 or 9 at the time.)  I just thought
> it was so *cool* that I couldn't imagine doing anything else - and still
> can't, really.

so did a lot of other people ... but it remains a fact that people choose
careers based on the totality of information available to them ... I don't
think you'd have written a whole lot of code -- as an * -- if the whole
world told there was no way in hell for you to make a living doing it.  In
other words, *coolness* is a necessary but not sufficient condition for
pursuit of a career ... [and not even necessary for a lot of people]

I'm not really sure what your point is.  What IS your point ?

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by Liz » Mon, 06 Jan 2003 03:23:43






> > << Newsflash:  Life is hard.  >>

> > How profound.

> And yet people constantly seem to want to forget it.

no, I think there are far too many people being reminded of it 24 hours a
day

Quote:> When I was a boy, I remember being taught "Don't believe everything you
> read".

good advice .. but it doesn't mean "don't believe ANYTHING you read"

Quote:> I also remember being taught that "money isn't everything."

also good advice ... but again, it does not mean that money is NOTHING
either

Quote:> There was never any question in my mind that it was what I would do with
my life, one way or
> another.

sit tight .... it may become a question in your life

Quote:> only to find out that there are no guarantees in life

life is full of mutual covenants;  people should be able to reasonably rely
upon them;  nobody is running here around throwing a temper tantrum because
they thought they'd have a Porsche or a Gulfstream before the age of 30 and
now they don't ... they're furious because they HAVE worked very long and
very hard at their craft and now their jobs are going to people who have
contributed NOTHING to the development of the economic infrastructure which
created and sustains those jobs ...

Quote:>  > It was a
> > lie.  It was  fraudulent.  The promise has been breached and tech
workers
> > have a legitimate grievance.

> If you say so.  *I've* got no complaints.  And that would be true even
> if I were to lose my job tomorrow - I wouldn't go blaming it on someone

yes.  I say so.  YOU are not everyone.  Stop being so goddamn arrogant,
short-sighted and philosophically smug.  Whether you know it or not, you've
got nothing more than a thin layer of ice between you and a LOT of
complaints.
 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by krasic » Mon, 06 Jan 2003 10:17:41




> > Sorry if it wasn't clear that the remarks were a quote from the link.

> I was aware of that, and I was responding to those remarks, not to you
> personally.  (Though I'd imagine that, if you took the time to post the
> link and the quote, that they are representative of your own view -
> correct me if I'm wrong here.)

I read your comments and was confused as to why you were so bent out
of shape about an informational piece that described the conditions in
our industry.

The reason many of us are posting these articles is because so many
questions are getting asked by computer science students on this very
subject.

Furthermore the information is what it is - it's not an opinion or
point of view.  There is a measurable and growing disatisfaction
throughout the commercial computing world about what's going on.  This
may not be true in academia (I see your ACM address) where jobs enjoy
cozy union protections.  May I assume you are cozy looking down your
nose at working  people who aren't working nor cozy??

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by krasic » Mon, 06 Jan 2003 11:25:52





<snip>

> Did you folks actually decide to go into software because of
> *government* propaganda?  When did we all start believing what the
> government tells us?

Mike,

What most of these threads are about is rectifying the statistical
'evidence' that is planted by special interests into very important
government guideline documents. These interests do not have *our* best
interests in mind.

You are partially correct in treating this as government propaganda.
If we are generous we can even categorize it as a 'think positive'
conservative spin on a depressed industry sector.

But it's obvious that you're sooo much smarter than falling for
propaganda so let's dissect the thing.

Do you think it means that Texas will suck the computer-science-jobs
life out of the other forty-nine states? I, for one, wouldn't put it
past the King of Texas to feather bed the fortunes of that State at
the expense of all of the places already in pain.

It could just as palpably be that the current administration is
generating political bullshit at unprecedented rates fueling a
.com-like need for databases to handle it.  Cross-referencing the
methane gas futures could tell us if this is the case.

But to address the initial issue, numbers like these are not just
benign, so-what numbers.  These are exactly the kinds of numbers used
to undermine our livelihood.  They are used to justify even more
high-tech immigration when the nation is already full up.

Quote:

> Maybe the dot-com boom and subsequent bust wouldn't have been so severe
> if there weren't a herd of people who just decided to get into it for
> the bling-bling.  

There was no American herd that acted this way.  If you investigate
the numbers you'll find that the bust is the result of H-1B visa
policy and not anything we generated or deserve to be watching H-1B
workers work while we sit unemployed with families to feed.  I have
been doing this for over twenty-five years.  My starting salary was
$13+K per year plus silly benefits - LESS the salary of teachers in
that day- bling, bling back at 'cha.

Quote:>Personally, I wanted to get into the software field
> from the day I saw my first PET, before I even understood people take
> jobs to earn money.  (I was maybe 8 or 9 at the time.)  I just thought
> it was so *cool* that I couldn't imagine doing anything else - and still
> can't, really.

You'd make a great industry apologist spokesman.  Keep it in your back
pocket - just in case.
 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by Mike Smit » Mon, 06 Jan 2003 12:52:17



> There is a measurable and growing disatisfaction
> throughout the commercial computing world about what's going on.  This
> may not be true in academia (I see your ACM address) where jobs enjoy
> cozy union protections.  

I don't work in academia.  I develop software and manage software
development for a small research & development company that has survived
(and grown, in a sane, controlled fashion) during the bust by designing
and building industrial products that work as promised for reasonable
prices, rather than trying to surf the dot-com/e-business wave (as if
anyone couldn't see that that wave wasn't going to crash eventually).

 > May I assume you are cozy looking down your

Quote:> nose at working  people who aren't working nor cozy??

I'm not looking down my nose at anyone, except people who prefer
*ing and moaning to taking personal responsibility (which includes
looking ahead down the road and looking for where the potholes might
lie, rather than just believing everything they're told).

--
Mike Smith

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by krasic » Mon, 06 Jan 2003 17:33:59




> > There is a measurable and growing disatisfaction
> > throughout the commercial computing world about what's going on.  This
> > may not be true in academia (I see your ACM address) where jobs enjoy
> > cozy union protections.  

> I don't work in academia.  I develop software and manage software
> development for a small research & development company that has survived
> (and grown, in a sane, controlled fashion) during the bust by designing
> and building industrial products that work as promised for reasonable
> prices, rather than trying to surf the dot-com/e-business wave (as if
> anyone couldn't see that that wave wasn't going to crash eventually).

I have news for you.  The 'dot com bust' is a label that is inaccurate
for the phenomenon we are experiencing today.  The economic bust that
we are experiencing is the result of the American people being duped
into voting Republican three years ago. The original mistake was
compounded in this past election cycle through the exploitation of
their legitimate fear and over-reactionary anger.  The Republican bust
was the predictable bust.  Any fool who survived Daddy Bush knew what
was coming when Jr started dusting off all the old Republican zombies
with bad ideas.

The dot com industries you disparage are actually doing very well -
better than B&M during this past Christmas season.  The failures along
the way were predictable, yes, all industries winnow their way to
smaller numbers. NBD.

E-Commerce is a thriving economic engine in what's left of IT in
America.  Web Services is a thriving by-product.

Telecom which has little to do with true dot coms is a disaster.

Complicit to any business failures are greedy investors whose demand
for immediate and spectacular gratification is the true villan in this
mix.  Much of the technology that's blamed is still vital and worthy.

I'll make the wild prediction that once whatever you do is discerned
in India or China or Cuba or where-ever, you too will learn a little
more about waves and crashes no matter how well managed you think you
are.

Quote:

>  > May I assume you are cozy looking down your
> > nose at working  people who aren't working nor cozy??

> I'm not looking down my nose at anyone, except people who prefer
> *ing and moaning to taking personal responsibility (which includes
> looking ahead down the road and looking for where the potholes might
> lie, rather than just believing everything they're told).

Your double-talk is endearing.

A favorite quote of mine comes from Martin Luther King, Jr.  He said
something to the effect, "Our job [as citizens] is to comfort the
disturbed and disturb the comfortable."

A number of years ago, I found out that a painter who I studied with
had died in a tragic accident.  I related my sorrow and loneliness at
the loss to a friend who I was teaching with, an intellectual of broad
and deep wisdom, Herb Gerjuoy.  He comforted me AND disturbed me by
relating a mytheme to me - "when your mentor [teacher] dies it's your
responsibility to carry on and transcend him'. Wow!

The older we get, the obligations we accrue become clearer. Life may
be unpredictable but I can't say it's meaningless because I can look
ahead and see things that maybe others can't or won't see.  So, much
as I'd like to just be left alone, I have this *personal
responsibility* or calling to share what I can.  In the days of
Camelot, we were told , 'nobless oblige' in certain classes and it
wasn't because these sons and daughters of factory workers were
born-into-it.  We had something to share AND were being reminded of
the obligation!

So as I read your complaint, I can only speculate that you are
expressing the point of view that the government should not be
propping up, let's say, a  failing industry.  You might even think
people get what they deserve. Too bad, tough luck. You [the
individual] bought a bad bill of goods - deal with it.

A fair enough argument.

However, this industry is ours and it is the backbone of middle
American wealth and culture.  It is being mortally wounded by
individuals and organizational manipulation that threatens to destroy
our livelihood.  NOBODY is addressing the issue despite IEEE and ACM
organizations that, at least, appear to represent the industry.  They
are limited to sitting around with their tongues tied for whatever
reason. I am not.

If you read these things believing that they are a solicitation for
sympathy then you are misreading the text and subtext.  The nature of
newsgroups make redundancy a necessary device to maintain a narrative.
 If this offends you, skip the threads.

But if you read the threads you will find that intelligent
professionals are incapable of helping themselves or 'taking
responsibility' because the very government that should be protecting
our interests is undermining those interests.  American labor being
cut down by friendly fire so to speak.

 
 
 

IEEE starting to wake up!

Post by Jerry Lesl » Mon, 06 Jan 2003 18:27:33



: >
: > : the message was spread far and wide, by academia, government, press,
: > : corporate interests :  get credentialed and skilled in technology and
: > : there will be ample numbers of jobs ...It was a lie.  It was  
: > : fraudulent.  
: > :
: >
: > Like this Texas Workforce Commission page ?:
: >
: >    http://www.twc.state.tx.us/careers/infotech.html
: >    Hot Careers in Texas: Information Technology
:
: Did you folks actually decide to go into software because of
: *government* propaganda?  When did we all start believing what the
: government tells us?
:

Liz has already said why I provided the example.

I entered computing in 1966, as a programmer/analyst at TRW Systems
working on the Apollo program, probably before you were born.

I had one job offer as a mathematician from the Link Group of General
Precision, which involved checking partial differential equations for
one of the Apollo simulators. I decided that was too specialized and
accepted the programming job at TRW.

: Maybe the dot-com boom and subsequent bust wouldn't have been so severe
: if there weren't a herd of people who just decided to get into it for
: the bling-bling.  

I wouldn't know. I come from the process control/scada environment,
which has dried up due to mergers & acquisitions, and distributed
control systems like the Honeywell TDC 3000 LCN, which has replaced
the need for a host computer for many advanced control applications.

: Personally, I wanted to get into the software field from the day I saw
: my first PET, before I even understood people take jobs to earn money.  
: (I was maybe 8 or 9 at the time.)  I just thought it was so *cool* that
: I couldn't imagine doing anything else - and still can't, really.
:
The PET came out in 1977, per:

   http://www.portcommodore.com/commodore/pet/pet.html
   the Commodore PET Computer

As computing moves offshore, its future in the U.S. could be reduced
to those who have jobs that require security clearances, and those who
do it as a hobby writing free software, like a friend of mine who wrote
the software such as a DPMI package and a VMS EDT-like editor:

     http://clio.rice.edu/
     Research in Chemical Engineering at Rice University

--Jerry Leslie   (my opinions are strictly my own)

 
 
 

1. UPS - UPS 6/99

Well I posted in an earlier message that the united states postal service now
plans to be done 6/99 (as opposed to 9/98 their original target date)  Looks
like they are running neck and neck with United parcel service .. they too plan
on being ready on this magical date.. 6/99 ... anyone ever wonder why nobody
picks 5/99 or 7/99 ? :) LOL

<snip from United parcel services y2k statement>
4.
                           When will UPS be Year 2000 ready?

                        Since UPS believes that the majority of its business
                        critical IT assets are controlled by the IS Group,
                        implementation of the Year 2000 Readiness Plan for
                        these IT assets was scheduled to occur first. UPS
                        expects to complete the first six phases for business
                        critical IT assets controlled by the IS Group, which
                        includes the currently available UPS OnLine? family of
                        products, by the end of the first quarter of 1999. The
                        completion of the first six phases for both non-IT
assets
                        and IT assets controlled by all business functions
other
                        than the IS Group is scheduled by the end of the second
                        quarter of 1999. UPS anticipates conducting additional
                        system integration testing of all UPS IT assets
                        throughout 1999.
<end snip>
http://www.ups.com/about/y2k.html
.
.
Remember to practice a RANDOM ACT of KINDNESS :)

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