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Alden Coleman is an anagram for Called No Name [userpic]

Halloween Party

October 2nd, 2015 (07:56 am)

Costumes, families, friends & fellowship. Perhaps a tasty beverage or two. Kid friendly. Potluck: bring a dish and drink to share.

My house, October 31st, 6pm to Midnight

Ping/call/email me for directions.

Alden Coleman is an anagram for Called No Name [userpic]

I stole a lawyer's dog Thursday, and broke into a gated community

May 2nd, 2015 (09:50 pm)

I had an appointment midtown, near 21st and Lewis. As I went inside an older brown male schnauzer barked at me and walked around. I checked and he had a collar. He was friendly, but ran off before I could call his human. So I went to my appointment.

30 minutes later I came out and he was still in the parking lot, running around. This is right off of 21st, and I didn't want to see the dog get hurt. So I called to him and said 'let's go'. He followed me to my van and jumped right on in when I opened the door.
I called the number on the collar and left a message after the robotic voicemail intro. Welp, I don't have anything to do for an hour and a half, and the address is only about 2 miles away, I'll take the dog on home.

I get on down the road and turn in to the neighborhood off of Lewis. Gated community. I browse through the list of names on the buttons, but the dog tag doesn't have a name and the numbers aren't matching the number on the collar.

Just then someone was leaving the neighborhood. I waited until they turned and saw the exit gate was still open. After a half a heartbeat of debate, I let myself in.
This neighborhood was quite swank. All modern houses, decked out. Zillow listed the dog owner's house at $840k, in Oklahoma.

As I parked in front of Hank's house (that wasn't his name, but I already forgot it) he got excited. When I opened the door he ran right on up to the side garage door. He pawed at the door, and you could see his nail marks from years of having done this. But still, no answer at the door, no answer on the phone, and I needed to get to an appointment in little over an hour. I didn't really want to drop him off at a vet or at a shelter.
Then I noticed that his tag had a faintly engraved number on the back. Problem was, one of the numbers could have been a 0 or a 6, couldn't really tell. I went with the 6. No answer, but I left a message.

After a few minutes of uncomfortably waiting in a neighborhood quite a bit out of my league, I tried the front door, the side door, and then the back fence gate, which was unlocked. After opening it Hank ran right on in. So I closed the gate and slid the small cinder block in front.

2 hours later I got a call from a woman who was asking about her dog. I explained what happened and she said oh, well, okay, so he's at home? A few minutes later I get another phone call. Mr. Hank's dad, the lawyer, had brought Hank to work, since Mr. Hank's mom went out of town to visit family. After multiple reassurances that I had left hank at home, he thanked me and said he had to run home anyway for something.

So that's how I wound up temporarily stealing some lawyer's dog one day.

Alden Coleman is an anagram for Called No Name [userpic]

It's not bad, it's that it should be so much better

April 10th, 2015 (02:16 pm)

Taking the internal work survey yesterday was quite depressing. Some of the questions answers came directly out of what I've been thinking lately: The Boss is getting us to do more work for less money.

I'm not even really that against the basics behind that. In a world of Automation, in a Capitalist society, you get more and more profit by getting more work for less.

But let's think that through a bit. Extrapolate to the extremes.

Right now, we're the lucky ones. We're the highly skilled, intelligent people that machines can't replace. But for how long?

A theoretical company buys robots to replace workers. The robots work 24x7, they don't get sick, they may need repair but not that often, and they don't cost that much, really. Take Baxter and Sawyer for example. Baxter costs $22k. Sawyer, $28k. That's a one time cost. Averaged out over a year, $425/wk for one year, or $540 for Sawyer. These brothers will work 24 hours per day, 7 days a week. No vacation, no holidays, not much sick time, at the cost of a bit more electricity.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gXOkWuSCkRI (Baxter)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S4mULTknb2I (Sawyer)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FJJe8PXEUhk EDI (Eddie)

And so I look at the things that we are doing and I keep shouting at myself, why Why WHY are we doing it this way? It seems patently obvious and plain to me that we can track what equipment is going bad and failing based on our ordering and shipping manifests, so why are we re-tracking that same information in redacted? Why are we recording our daily routines in a dozen different software environments? Badging into redacted, android location tracking (gps and wifi), redacted, tickets, bugs, redacted, redacted, redacted, redacted, time sheets, account login-logout, blogs, resumes, redacted, ...

It goes on and on. We spend more time than necessary tracking what we do, when the machine is already tracking everything we do, more efficiently, and with more detail.

So, we have machines that work cheaper than us with better follow through. But they don't think, right? They can't possibly do all the humany things we do?

I'm sure that's what the law degree people of the 90's and 00's were thinking. As computers became more and more efficient the entry level law job "discovery" was phased out in only a handful of years. Want to make good money? Become a Doctor! Oh, wait, IBM's Watson is better at diagnosing cancer than human doctors: http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2013-02/11/ibm-watson-medical-doctor.

There is nothing that we can do that the machine can't do better. And that's what I want to work on. The machine! Making the machine better.

But what will that do for us?

Why have this machinery work more if we weren't to be working less.

Even our boss's boss's boss, all the way at the top, thinks that we should be working less.

"If you really think about the things that you need to make yourself happy—housing, security, opportunities for your kids—anthropologists have been identifying these things. It's not that hard for us to provide those things," he said. "The amount of resources we need to do that, the amount of work that actually needs to go into that is pretty small. I'm guessing less than 1% at the moment. So the idea that everyone needs to work frantically to meet people's needs is just not true. So the idea that everyone needs to work frantically to meet people's needs is just not true." - Larry PAGE.


Now, I'm diagnosed with Adjustment Disorder by the VA. I feel like this topic, alone, is consuming me. It infuriates me to see anything happening that goes in the face of this direction, and it pleases me to help move it along. I want nothing more than to find ways to optimize the processes around here, and free up time.


"Occupational and social impairment with occasional decrease in work efficiency and intermittent periods of inability to perform occupational tasks (although generally functioning satisfactorily, with routine behavior, self-care, and conversation normal), due to such symptoms as: depressed mood, anxiety, suspiciousness, panic attacks (weekly or less often), chronic sleep impairment, mild memory loss (such as forgetting names, directions, recent events)"


I want to find my niche here at Google, but I feel like we are, as a department, moving further and further away from actual optimization and toward frivolous busywork, drudgery, and simply justifying work to get employees.

Alden Coleman is an anagram for Called No Name [userpic]


December 1st, 2014 (05:55 am)

1.19 miles, varying incline, most at 2.5-3.0, 27 minutes.

Alden Coleman is an anagram for Called No Name [userpic]

Fall depression cycle begins

October 24th, 2014 (02:29 am)

I've been in a pretty bad place... well always, but this is my tiny rant for my current situation :) :| :/

I keep waffling about my job. I love the place, the people, the culture. I don't have any job satisfaction at all though. I have little to no creative outlet here. I find most of the work I'm assigned is redundant time filler exercises. I do them, but I pay very little attention to them. I'm either on workwebpage, or reddit, or imgur, or clickerheroes, etc. etc. I rarely do only work. My attention is split and I'm only halfway here.

I keep getting told by both peers and managers that when I choose to put my mind on it they're amazed by my contributions to the team. I'm told that the things I know and do are invaluable. At the same time I'm told that I need to fall in line and do what everyone else is doing. That simply doesn't add up to me. If I'm valuable at doing the things I'm doing, and also meeting the requirements set out in front of me, then that should be at least adequate, if not good performance.

After 3 years of commuting 117 miles round trip daily I uprooted my family from their home of 8 years. We needed the change, but in doing so I feel like we killed our sense of place in community. We were Cub Scout and Boy Scout leaders and members. We were active with a community center Karate program. We were actively involved at Church with small devotional groups. It was rare to go shopping and not run into someone we knew and cared for in the community.

Now my oldest needs be prodded, and nearly dragged to Boy Scout meetings. My youngest has also asked to quit Scouting. The Mrs has a new job (in part what prompted the ability to move) and doesn't have the time to volunteer that she used to.

We haven't sold our old house yet. We bought our new place in late June, so we've had dual mortgages and utility bills for 4 months so far. The house we bought has been full of problems including foundation issues, water damage, mold, and more. We bought the place "as-is" from the local church that we'd be attending if we had the time to do anything other than juggle house repairs.

I drained our family stocks last year when my wife had a panic-attack over her student loans and no job yet. I paid off my sister for her half of my grandmothers house that she left the two of us. The house that my Mom and Dad live in rent free. Bought new windows and a new heating/air conditioning unit this year too for that house. So yeah, I'm up to three houses now with the insurance and taxes to go along with them.

Wednesday my account balance was < $6. I'm not used to living paycheck to paycheck at all. We haven't had to live that way since very early in our marriage. We were DualIncomeNoChildren for a while, and both active duty Military, when we started out.

So on my way home from night shift Wednesday I swung by Radio Shack. I wanted to pick up a simple little servo for my 3d printer, to add in auto bed levelling functionality. I checked the account balance from my phone in the lot, and started crying.

It seemed like such a frivolous simple thing to be defeated over, but that was my tipping point.

Things are looking slightly up though. We got an offer on the house that we accepted. It's about $6k less take home than we wanted.

I also applied for a different job. It looks like something right up my alley: automation and simulation, with a focus on the US Navy, specifically my old department and ship class. I'd hate to leave my friends and coworkers here, but I need some more personal fulfilment at work. Right now I loathe and resent myself because that's the perceived attitude I have reflected from a few of my peers.


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