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Showing posts from August, 2009

Technical Certifications are worthless

Technical certifications, especially in the IT field, are totally worthless. Why? All a technical certification prove is that you were able to buy a couple of exam prep books, cram them in a week or two and take an exam. My monkey (if I had one) could do that. I can't tell you how many times I have interviewed certification-carrying candidates for open positions at my company only to find them severely lacking in thorough understanding of computer science. I don't care that you have an MSCD or MCP or whatever it's called these days if you don't know foundational concepts in computer science and database design.
For example, I don't want someone who just knows that you store things in a hashtable using keys. I need you to know why a hashtable is better than an array in some cases. I need you to know when an interface is better than an abstract class; when to use recursion; the different kinds of joins and when to use each one; I need you to understand how crucial sou…

Health care reform

Why would someone that's against the so-called public option on the grounds that govt can't do anything right be proud of having gone to Virginia Tech or another public university? Why would the very same person feel secure knowing the men and women of the [insert juridiction here] police department are on the watch? Last time I checked, the federal govt was in charge of immigration (bad job), airport security (ok job), emergency response (ok job) and military defense (good job).
I don't know which health care system we'll end up but I know a few things: our current system is broken, ineffective and shameful. If we want to claim "best country in the world" status, we should be ashamed of a system where people are forced to marry Canadians for healthare. We ought to be ashamed of a system where every body (except for the very rich) is just one major health issue away from bankruptcyif we don't cover the uninsured in a structured way, we'll cover them in …

Why I hate Nigerians

Ok maybe I don't totally hate Nigerians but I really really hate having to engage in any business deals with people that I call "overt Nigerians". The guy that answers his phone and proceeds to greet you in Yoruba (a Nigerian language) just because he hears your name is Tunde. The guy that goes all "my brother this" and "my brother that". Anytime I go against my natural instincts (or I am forced by circumstances) to use these guys, things inevitably go awry.
The latest moron that I had to deal with was the DJ for last saturday's Ikomo ceremony (baby outing) for our twins. Not being a party guy, I asked a friend of ours for recommendation and he recommended this dude (I'll call him DJ-certainly-not-christmas aka DJCNC). So my wife set things up with DJCNC to do 2 things: DJ the partyarrive (like the other vendors) at 7pm to set up since the party starts @ 8pmFor these 2 things, this dude's fee was $100 per hour. I don't know what DJs go…

The Redskins are fools

What killed the Redskins last season was the break down of the offensive line. The defense ended the year ranked 4th in the league, behind only Steelers, Ravens and Eagles. That means the Redskins defense ended the year ahead of the Giants D with their vaunted d-line. Granted the Redskins D didn't make much game-changing plays (28th in sacks and 17th in INT). But given all that, you would think the pressing need this offseason would be getting O-line help, right? Well that's conventional logic. Around here, we buck convention. We went out and got Haynesworth (DT) and Orakpo (DE/LB). We re-signed DeAngelo Hall (CB) and signed a FA punter. For the O-line, we signed a former Redskins that didn't play last year in Buffalo (not exactly a team with a stout o-line).For the first pre-season game, conventional logic say you give your starters enough reps to get in a rythm, then you play your backups. Against the Ravens yesterday, we allowed Jason Campbell to pass just 6 times (3 of…

Linq, SQL, CAML

So I went to a presentation about Linq yesterday. The presentation was given by Scott Allen. Before I get into my impressions of the content, let me say a few things about the packaging. You know how they say first impressions count? Well Scott Allen either didn't know that or he just plain ignored it. I wasn't impressed with the dude's appearance. But, before you crush me with accusations of superficiality, I have to say 5 minutes into the talk I was already impressed with his content. His tone was just right and the approach he took to explaining Linq (and even the use of "var" which I, hitherto, thoroughly despised) was excellent.
That said, I am sold on Linq-to-everything but sql. Some of the language enhancements that were made to support Linq are things I have always wanted to do. For example, you have a list with several items and you want to find items that match a criteria. How do you do it? You write a loop that has a lot of what Scott called "cerem…

Fatherhood Tales

One of the ubiquitous things in our living room, in addition to all the baby changing stuff, is a notebook that we call the "baby book". This notebook contains a record of our babies' lives. We record who ate what, when and how much. We record who was changed when. We record who weighed and measured what when. We record who pooped and when. We record who took what medicine and when.
Why all the note taking? When we first got home, we had all these time-sensitive things we had to keep track of: babies need to eat every 3 hoursbabies need to poop once a day (or we call the doctor after 2 days)my wife had to take 2 medicines: one every 4 hours and the other every 6 hours
At first, I tried to use the alarm on my cellphone. So basically, I would set the alarm for 3 hours after feeding the babies. That quickly turned out to not be sustainable. So we came up with this simple idea of a notebook with 3 columns: who did itwhat was donewhen it was doneNow if I want to know when the bab…