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Archive for the ‘Fotzepolitic’ Category

The Cost of Incompetent Programmers

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PHP New Hire Diagram

This topic comes up for me not necessarily as a rant, but as I was going through some old notes before tossing them away, and this issue came up. How much damage can an organization do to themselves by hiring discount, unqualified programming resources?

The answer: A hell of a lot.

If you own a small software development shop, do yourself a huge favor and keep reading.

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Table BitValue – NoYes, DisabledEnabled, FalseTrue

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Screenshot from the ridiculous product

Warning- this may not be really all that funny unless you are a database administrator or a geek with the right knowledge. This rather silly product I am working with stores its data in the backend via a Microsoft SQL Server database. There’s nothing wrong with that… but on further examination of the schema I found a pretty ridiculous jewel of a table setup. Click on the picture to see the bloody details.

For those not technically inclined- this is precisely NOT how you would utilize a relational database server. It’s poor design, and rather an extreme and laughable example.

Written by Tijger Tsou

May 1st, 2009 at 4:35 pm

Separated At Birth? The American and Chinese Processed Food Industry

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It seems that the processed food industry has a lot in common between these two countries. Or perhaps its just better to say that corruption and greed have no language barriers.

The 2008 melamine tainted milk scandal in China has a surprising number of similarities with the Peanut Company salmonella scandal that is currently unfolding in the USA.

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Written by Tijger Tsou

February 12th, 2009 at 9:18 am

Explaning Taiwan & China’s Political Situation

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I have found myself having to try and explain the relationship that Taiwan and China share, and usually to other Americans. Of course I am oversimplifying the issue, but the scenario I have come up with is this:

  1. Imagine that the Confederacy (CSA) had won the American Civil War.
  2. Now imagine that the government of the United States of America had fled to Cuba and set up shop there (kicking out most of the native Cubans), with the new capital being in Havana.
  3. Lastly, imagine in this crazy situation that both governments to this day still exist, but have  continued strains on their relationships.

Does this make sense yet? Let’s do some substitutions so it does…

  • The Confederacy in this case would be akin to the Communist government of the People’s Republic of China.
  • Likewise, the USA government would be Taiwan, who fled their with a ragtag collection of military expats, businessmen, and intellectuals.
  • Lastly, the Cuban natives who were largely displaced would be the various indigenous tribes that inhabited Taiwan before the “mainlanders” showed up.

So now this makes a lot more sense right? Of course, I realize that this is not a 100% correct analogy, but it holds up well for ‘elevator speech’ and ‘raging bar conversation’, and now ‘totally random web search’ material. Your mileage may vary, of course.

Dubya – Goodbye and Good Riddance

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I guess there isn’t too much to say. Good riddance to quite possibly the worst president in American history.

Written by Tijger Tsou

January 20th, 2009 at 10:02 am

Some In-Flight Turbulence at The New School

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I work at The New School, a liberal arts university in Manhattan comprised of eight separate schools unified as one university. Arguably the most famous of them is the Parsons School of Design. There has been some controversy of late- basically at time of writing what has happened so far in a super-condensed form:

  • The newly hired provost Joe Westphal left his position after roughly three months on the job. Mr. Bob Kerrey, the university president announced that he would assume the role of interim provost until one could be found.
  • The full-time  faculty held a meeting and voted no confidence in Mr. Kerrey along with James Murtha, the executive VP.
  • A flurry of communications between the two parties, mostly through third party media worsened and escalated the situation to some degree.
  • Mr. Kerrey then met the faculty face to face in a meeting that was off limits to students (presumably for the sake of airing out grievances on a straightforward manner and not to involve student issues).
  • Some students then occupied the cafeteria and neighboring study facility at the  “GF” building on 65 Fifth Avenue.
  • A video was released of a small fracas between one member of TNS security and a student.  This happened around noon on 18 Dec 2008, into the second day of the student occupation.
  • Bob Kerrey canceled the student senate meeting which was due to have met in that very building on 8PM that night.
  • Students occupied some parts of the ‘main’ building at 55 West 13th Street for a period of several hours starting from roughly 10PM on 18 Dec 2008.
  • At some point near midnight, Bob Kerrey left the 55 West 13th street building and was chased down the street by a large group of student protesters to his apartment building a few blocks away.
  • The students who occupied the 55 West 13th eventually left early in the morning of the 19th after some of their demands were met. The students holed up in 65 Fifth Avenue are still there.

If you’re a parent and you’re reading this, I just wanted to express some of my opinions about the situation so far. If you’re a parent of a New School student, thank you for putting your trust in the school and its staff.  I’m not a faculty member, and what I do for the university is akin to that of a ‘digital janitor’. There are a lot of dedicated and hard working staff trying to make sure that students get the best services and support that we can provide.

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Written by Tijger Tsou

December 19th, 2008 at 10:06 am

Posted in Fotzepolitic

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