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Someone could probably make a nice bit of money on the side helping new engineers in SF review/deal with their stock options. You'd have to know this stuff well, but I don't think that's a big hindrance to anyone.

Think of it as both giving back and pushing back on what can be predatory treatment of employees.

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Isn't that what lawyers are for? I paid mine a small fee to review my equity agreement before I signed and I made it clear to my potential employer that I couldn't sign until my lawyer signed off on it.

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A bunch of Silicon Valley CPAs do this as well as financial advisors/planners. This is a high-class problem to have though, which is also the point where one comes across the need to hire a financial advisor or have a professional CPA do some tax planning.

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Learning Haskell is not out of the question for most devs. The real question is whether they're willing to let go of a lot of their programming experience so as to admit a different style of programming.

It's more akin to studying than anything else. I've had evenings where I've been unable to proceed because I can't write one line. It's OK; it's part of learning. No one said it would be easy.

Beginner's mind is key.

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I can't help but feel part of this is due to the fact that SF/NYC salaries are really great if you live somewhere with a cheaper cost of living. Developers have significant amount of leverage in this situation.

I don't think this is necessarily conscious; I just think that businesses sense a power differential that comes with remote work: part of it being a tacit acknowledgement that this really expensive area is not the best place ever for talent, part of it being that this employee has a much better living situation comparatively, and part of it being that not seeing them in person regularly means less warm fuzzies for management.

Progressive minded businesses make it work by realizing that empowered workers produce better work. Everyone else hobbles by doing what everyone else does to stay into the warm blanket we call groupthink (aka 'best practices').

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Isn't the DSL just an ad-hoc implementation of a rules engine in many cases?

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Can be. I see a lot of those, but rules engines are far from the only denotation of a DSL. It just tends to be that people want DSLs to be sort of natural language which drives people to end up with something like predicate logic which drives people to end up with something like Prolog and then you might as well have a rules engine.

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Nobody wants to pay for infrastructure. Devs expect it all for free, even if it puts you in a Turing tar pit of plugins.

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Last year's Lang.NEXT conference had Stroustrup, Pike, some ES6 devs, and Rust devs (among many others). I really enjoyed it.

Hoping it happens again; seems like it's every two years.

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What sorts of interesting R&D is going on?

I keep my ears to the ground for this sort of thing, but I don't hear much about it.

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> I keep my ears to the ground for this sort of thing, but I don't hear much about it.

I'm actually kind of shocked to hear this question. The person I was responding to originally is probably just going for the childishly rebellious "I'm gonna say something contrarian to seem like a deep thinker!!!!", but you don't seem to be saying anything of the sort.

I would be extremely surprised if you hadn't heard of any of this stuff; I think the problem is rather that your definition of what innovation is may be arbitrarily and inappropriately defined with respect to the topic of conversation.

This has been a good few years for AI and there have been some impressive advances recently in voice recognition, computer vision, language understanding, core machine learning research, etc. The AI labs at Google and Facebook alone are an important part of this ecosystem. Silicon Valley has also been producing advancements in diagnostic nanotechnology, space exploration and travel, feasible and long-range electric cars, self-driving cars, power generation and distribution systems, manufacturing efficiency, etc. There's a thriving biotechnology startup scene. Then you get down to less "sexy" (but still very important) innovation in things like datacenter design, distributed systems, software-defined networking, network protocols (like SPDY), etc. Even softer stuff like the work being done on the economics of distribution, or the efficient delivery of compute cycles is seeing a lot of advancement in the last several years, and a lot of it is centered around here.

I fully expect a response from some commenter who hasn't been able to grasp what this conversation is about to claim that a lot of that isn't "true" innovation at the kind of low level one finds in academia, but that's missing the point. It begs the question of whether companies in SV are innovative by defining innovation in for-profit companies as more or less impossible (which is, of course, nonsense). Government-funded academia is an excellent vehicle for fundamental research, just as corporations are good vehicles for the next step in the chain (and occasionally fundamental research). The funny thing is that even if you move the goalposts by restricting yourself to academic advancements, both Stanford and Berkeley are world-class research universities and parts of the SV ecosystem.

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I would imagine that many of us working on interesting things are prohibited from telling you about them. No point in letting everyone taste the secret sauce.

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Mostly 30 year old DARPA projects.

I joke, I too would like to hear about exciting SV research projects.

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This is awesome. Do you still work?

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Some of the best experiences I've had developing have been with the uncool languages where we've had the ability to design the system end-to-end, get feedback from stakeholders, and adjust as necessary. Crunch was rare because we knew the system in and out, and could easily manage our technical debt as we went. These days, everyone [here] thinks programming is little more than throwing as many ready-made pieces at a problem and duct-taping them together to call it a solution, because productivity and don't reinvent the wheel and community.

The result is mediocre products with bog-standard interfaces (productivity), suboptimal architectures (so devs are easily replaced), and speed prized over quality. We cling to design fads, rather than creating original designs.

In short, it reflects a culture-wide lack of ambition. It's easy to create a cat picture sharing app. It's not easy to think beyond that because we're mentally beholden to the idea that there isn't enough money, and we need to get ours now, and then we can go after our big ideas.

Tech was supposed to be transformative. Now it asks us to be impressed with business models that prey on addictive behaviors, advertising, and annoying users because we lack the imagination and will to do anything better.

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Most of the time, you should be building an initial version and throwing it away anyway.

Internet time does not justify poor program design.

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