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visits member for 3 years, 9 months
seen Jul 17 at 1:05

Jun
7
comment Assembly as a First Programming Language?
@Gaius Not at first! You turn on those machines and you're in a basic interpreter. Assembly comes in after a fair amount of experience and hitting the limits of what basic can do...
Apr
15
comment What to legitimately charge clients for
I would disagree with being obligated to fix bugs at no extra charge, given a generally competent approach to the project; bugs are a part of the development process.
Feb
24
comment How to bill a client for frequently-interrupted time
At first I didn't think this would do much for me, but I tried one today and I found it was very effective. I'm not sure if it's really the timekeeping aspect, but because it forced me to be acutely aware of what I was officially doing at any given time I do feel that I had a better picture (at least for today). It turns out that the distractions aren't quite as time-consuming as I thought, but it could also be that the timeclock kept me more focused than usual. We'll see as the novelty wears off whether the positive effect continues, but I'm optimistic thus far.
Feb
23
comment How to bill a client for frequently-interrupted time
@MatthewFrederick - Thanks, that's not a horrible idea at all. I've certainly speculated whether this might be the case (cute online self-tests tend to show borderline). Do you feel like medication (or tips) inhibit your creativity in any way - that is, would you intentionally go "off the wagon" for certain activities?
Feb
23
comment How to bill a client for frequently-interrupted time
@Matthew I think there are two parallel problems, and you've hit on both. There's the cost of context-switching between projects, and then there's the cost of focus breaks, sometimes involuntary (which I think is a similar gray area to billing travel time - you're not really working, but it's time you spend that's still necessary in order to work)
Feb
23
comment How to bill a client for frequently-interrupted time
@Steven Let me take a less argumentative tack (and I intend this with genuine curiosity): are you able to maintain that inspired 20% focus throughout an entire 8-hour billing day? Or do you end up billing the same for very productive hours as for fairly non-productive hours? (Or are you in the same boat I am, where you work 12 hours to feel that you've put in a legitimate high-focus 8 hours for your client?)
Feb
23
comment How to bill a client for frequently-interrupted time
This estimation: bill half or 25% is what I do now. Something like TimeSnapper is probably not relevant in my case either - much of the time is spent thinking (or whiteboarding or reading paper), which means whatever window was up on my screen stays up for a long time.
Feb
23
comment How to bill a client for frequently-interrupted time
Different projects are most a fact of life - I don't mean mean I'm off playing sudoku with my time. These distractions happen in ANY office environment, but become a non-issue if compensation is salary or fixed-fee.
Feb
23
comment How to bill a client for frequently-interrupted time
Actually, I'm selling my clients results; nobody buys hours. An hour of time is an invoicing mechanism. I was pretty specific in my question that productivity/focus improvements are an obvious resolution but that is not what the question asked for. A better response might be "bill the client a fixed fee for that result"
Feb
22
comment What do you think was a poor design choice in Java?
+1 for Security model. Ugh.
Feb
15
comment What issues tend to arise when working with HL7 messages?
+1 for suggested value lists
Feb
14
comment Why do we keep using CSV?
@GrandmasterB He's obviously frustrated, so I wanted to try to be non-confrontational in my answer. Instead of "you're wrong" it's "I'm not saying you're wrong, but let's look at the other side." The OP has some valid frustrations, even if they are somewhat misdirected. In any case, several others seem to agree that this isn't the best choice of wording, so I'll edit...
Feb
14
comment Why do we keep using CSV?
If you're just getting into the health domain and you think CSV is bad... just wait until you run into HL7!
Feb
14
comment Why do we keep using CSV?
+1 for rolling-their-own every time. I see developers who don't learn, not a flawed data format. :-)
Feb
10
comment What is programming like in the Japanese language?
Are those new features language-dependent? What's the difference versus just marketing a different feature-set in Tokyo than in Nagoya?
Feb
10
comment What is programming like in the Japanese language?
@Zeno - That's internationalizing character strings the user will see. That's important to do even if the code is by and for English-speakers. Comments & variable names & internal language aren't really correlated unless the code is going to be released as an API.
Feb
9
comment Assembly as a First Programming Language?
@Whatsisname +1, that would make a nice impressive demo, as long as it can be done without getting caught up in the electronics. Of course, that could be done with a higher-level language too i.e. Roomba hacking, if the "driver" were an instructor-provided black box.
Feb
9
comment Assembly as a First Programming Language?
@Imran I agree in principal, but every college-level program I can think of has degrees in Computer Science which are earned by people who mostly go on to work in Software Engineering. (I'm assuming this question is about a serious basis for a programming career, not e.g. a high-school survey course)
Feb
8
comment Do I deserve a promotion/higher salary?
+1 never burn bridges. There are always "softer" ways to communicate the same message, just takes a little self-control.
Feb
8
comment Do I deserve a promotion/higher salary?
@Jeff Definitely, if they give you an outright no. But seems more typical to use delay tactics - we'll see how things are going in 6 months...