I just saw an article posted on the LA Times regarding the potential unionizing of the game and tech industries. In particular, Campaign to Organize Digital Employees (or CODE) “is a new project of the Communications Workers of America aimed specifically at unionizing video game and tech companies.” This has a lot of implications for tech workers (such as myself) and I would like to weigh both ends of the spectrum here.
Earlier, I read an article that talked about how Medium will do a pretty big layoff and close a few offices around the country. Medium describes itself as a publishing platform and allows people to “have their voices heard.” Yet from a superficial viewpoint, I can’t see what their platform does that a simple WordPress blog cannot do. Nonetheless, the company has (had?) roughly 150 people to support this system. I don’t know what roles existed that required 150 people for a content based system (beyond writers and maybe sales people) but it baffles me. That said, even with 50 people gone, the remaining 100 still seems like a huge number to me for the type of business they support. With that in mind, why are content businesses more or less doomed?
I’ve been reading more articles on why advertisers want to start changing the rules on their systems as a result of the rise of ad blockers. While most people get the idea from a high level, the real issue is that the advertisements themselves suck, the way they display suck and most are fucking irrelevant. I’m going to hit up each point in this post and hopefully people will start thinking about how the end users feel rather than trying to shovel shit down our throats.
Recruiters are aidzcancer. They are nothing more than 2nd hand leechers profiting off of companies’ inability or unwillingness to properly screen and locate candidates. Instead, what happens is that you get a bunch of people that companies still have to screen that are marketed to the company for an unreasonable fee. Essentially, they’re legalized pimps. I don’t know about the good people out there, but this method of hiring fucking stinks and I’m going to propose something a little different here.
I had to do a project using both Facebook and Twitter authentication for single sign-on. While Facebook had some traction, I found that Twitter was barely in use. Perhaps, less than 0.03% of the users used that feature. After reading some forums early on, I learned that many companies opt not to use Twitter for authentication purposes. This blog analyzes what’s going on here.
Today was a very frustrating day for me as I learned that the job I was applying for ended up getting cancelled and that I was passed over. Now, normally this situation wouldn’t have been so sensitive to me except for the circumstances involving a particular recruiter and agency that I had been using. I want to delve into this experience as well as other issues I’ve had with tech recruiters in the past in the hope that other tech job seekers may find my dealings useful.
Companies like Google and Facebook are famous for having some of the best working environments with perks like free meals, free gym, creative work spaces, child care services, pets, etc. Considering that they’ve been noted as being very forward thinking with regards to their company culture, it’s a wonder that other companies, especially those that want to be competitive or even non-tech companies, have not followed suit in comparison. Still, even with such a lavish work environment, are environments like Google or Facebook perfect? If not, how can companies who do not have the luxury of billions of dollars at their disposal compete or even make their work environments attractive to developers?
While having tea with a friend yesterday, we ended up discussing a mobile application project that he’s been working on. He had been on the project for over a year and in inquiring about the readiness of it, I learned that he needed to do quite a bit more. Part of the issue was that the angel investor he’s partnering with has this desire to continue adding features, many which doesn’t seem necessary for a near term release. As we continued talking about the features and as he demonstrated what his application was capable of, I realized that I saw a pattern in how many non-developers end up treating software products and wanted to create a post to hopefully help non-tech people who want to develop a successful product based on my own experiences of failed and successful launches.
As someone who has worked in the technology industry for 15+ years, I’ve become somewhat of an expert on corporate politics. I’ve had numerous jobs in the states and abroad, learning over time various signs of toxic environments that have made me jump from spot-to-spot. My post here will hopefully help others in making a decision when too much is just too much and to start looking before they get the Note themselves.
In a twist that I think has everyone surprised, Amazon has just bought Twitch.tv for nearly $1 billion. Originally, it was heavily suspected that Google would be the ones picking up the livestreaming site as Google desperately wants to get into the livestreaming market. Twitch.tv provides a very interesting vertical because of the insane amount of traffic it receives, making it a huge value proposition.