I made this as a sample project using clojurescript.
The canvas is clickable - clicking will swap the value of the spot. Heatmap shows how long a piece of bacteria will live in a spot (Black being just born - White living 25 iterations). It helps to point out patterns that are persistent.
You are better off going in now and making the connection than waiting for the perfect moment. If your skills aren't up to par, at least you will be remembered and they will be more impressed when your skills are up to par (shows you can improve significantly). I applied as an intern for a company sophomore year, got rejected, ended up seeing the person at a conference early senior year, got the internship after senior year. If you truly want to work there, be persistent. Someone who is persistent and shows that they will improve to fill gaps in their knowledge is way more desirable than someone who has great skills from the start (since they may not be as motivated or likely to change their skillset).
One thing that really bothers me is how much universities are allowed to raise their tuition on existing students. I started college paying about $6k a year in tuition my freshmen year. My senior year cost me $11k. The difference in tuition raises overall probably increased my total loan amount by ~$10k by the time I graduated. This is huge and there is no way students can take this into account when applying for college. I don't know why there are no laws protecting students by requiring fixed tuition rates for students? Universities are notoriously bad for raising rates by thousands a year, which students must take into debt or leave.
*Edit - Ok, the tuition when I first went to college was $20k a year. I had a $14k scholarship, so it was a manageable $6k a year. Now the tuition, 5 years later, is over $27k. That is a 35% increase at about 7% a year. Pretty ridiculous if you ask me, especially for a state school which should be affordable.
I'm talking about out-of-state tuition though, which from my understanding was not subsidized by the state government at all. The funny thing is, the university I went to was still cheaper and better than my in-state alternatives.
This report's theory is that if the government stopped pumping so much money into the system, tuitions would cease to rise. It's tricky to answer. There's definitely good reasons for public money in education. But it seems to be hurting for the most part, not helping.
It's not that they're pumping money in that's the problem, it's the place they decided to pump that causes the issue. Financial aid and guaranteed loans are on the side that increases many student's ability to pay. The alternative is to give money directly to schools (perhaps based on enrollment numbers to mimic the "market based" approach of tuition aid). This brings student's ability to pay back down and would force schools to lower, or at least freeze tuition,.
Private financial institutions would no longer loan nearly as much money to students to pay for college, so less money would go through the chain of (student after graduation)->lender->(student when they were in school)->school. This means that overall, less money would be moving from students/graduates to schools.
Schools would have to find a way to manage with smaller budgets or get more government support.
"This is huge and there is no way students can take this into account when applying for college."
"Universities are notoriously bad for raising rates by thousands a year"
These statements conflict. Tuition increases should be taken into account when planning a college education. Some schools have a policy of constant tuition over four years. Students who aren't okay with tuition increases should choose those schools.
It is one of those things that is obvious in hindsight. No one informed me that tuition increased at that level when I was looking at colleges (certainly not the schools). The only way I could even find past tuition levels for my university was by looking at my financials for the loans, there was no where on their website or easily googled where I could find past tuition costs. The outrage over college costs and debt was nowhere as publicized five years ago as it is now. OWS, trillion dollar college debt stories, many of the new education startups didn't exist yet. I am certainly not the only student who felt screwed by a ~30% higher tuition rate their senior year. Universities are also notoriously good at selling a college education and tacking on the hidden cost.
Maybe you as an 18 year old would have been smart enough to figure it out, but I doubt most do. I actually planned out my college finances based on the freshmen tuition rates before even going and had a plan for what I was going to do.
Constant tuition is a very rare thing, I can't even name a school I know that does that.
I just did a quick skim of the article, and call me naive if you want, but in the theory of spontaneous order why is Valve necessary? Obviously, the time and labour of Valve's employees is worth more than what Valve is paying them, otherwise Valve would not be turning a profit. I'm assuming that employees really have 100% work time for their projects as you claim. Then in essence Valve is providing facilities and connections (to other smart employees) in return for the lion's share of the labour profit. Is that really worth it for the employees? Once they have the connections wouldn't it benefit them more to split off their own companies, in a co-op horizontally structured company?
Don't get me wrong, I think traditional corporate structures are often abominations and I think Valve is a great company. It just seems to me that if you take the spontaneous order philosophy to the extreme than corporations in general just become unnecessary overhead.
Economic profit is a function of land, labor and capital. Taking out profit from labor still leaves the other two; You still need shareholders to finance the initial purchase of land and capital, and the shareholders still demands compensation for risk.
The corporation becomes unnecessary overhead if the company is owned by the employees, but then you have issues of what happens to the equity when an employee retires, and thus having an employee become a shareholder.
I think the word I'm looking for is a collective, and looking into the past, despite Valve I still don't think it works. The very idea has caused the deaths of millions of people implementing it.
I think Valve is a great idea; the idea being, the employees of the company get to decide everything in the company besides a few hard rules. Example:
Rule 1: shareholders get 50% of the profit.
Employees can decide how much is spent on profit-sharing schemes and salary versus how much to save for the company, to invest in new equipment, whilst following the rule. Employees dictate all aspects of business strategy.
Failure to abide the rule simply ends in the shareholders dissolving the corporation.
Ideologically it doesn't differ much from corporations you see today. The CEO, an employee, typically has free rein over the company until he does something really stupid, in which case he gets fired by the board. This "new idea" is simply making a hierarchical organisation a horizontal one, i.e. all employees are now co-CEO's. You still have leaders but they are distinguished neither by status or wealth.
I completely agree a horizontal structure is a better working environment for employees. I don't know how the compensation packages at Valve works, but I'm betting the shareholders (and executives at the top who are given shares) are getting the vast majority of the profits, just like most corporations. I bet a lot of the most talented employees at Valve are vastly overproducing the amount they are paid, and could easily gain much more personal equity even after trading some for enough land and capital to start a company themselves. Not saying everyone should start a company, I haven't yet so I guess I'm being a bit hypocritical here.
Good reply. Like I said I figured I was being a bit naive in my post.
It's a long comment so I'm breaking to a second reply.
A horizontal company to a hierarchical one is akin to a group of amoeba compared to an animal.
As a group of amoeba grow, it simply splits into multiple groups. An animal will grow very big, much bigger than any single group of amoeba, but it is vulnerable. Stab it and it dies; once the central nervous system is dead, all other cells will die off eventually. You can't stab a group of amoeba. To kill amoeba you have to kill every single individual one.
Large companies today are much more likely to make mergers and acquisitions than to make divestments. Divestments are only made when a group within the company appears to be unlike any other. I think horizontal companies are more likely than large companies to make divestments. The only other horizontal company I know of, Semco, is an example that is evidence supporting this; it is a company controlled only by employees. At times it has split off its services as separate companies, with the separated companies remaining horizontal, and most of them are very profitable.
I am not an Economist, but what you're discussing reminds me of John Lewis, a British department store & supermarket chain. It's owned by its employees, through a trust, and they all get a share of the profits as well as some say in the running of the company.
Valve provides the connections and environment of trust without which spontaneous order can't occur. It also flattens peoples risk profile (lower risk, lower reward), which is actually quite desirable for most human beings.
> Obviously, the time and labour of Valve's employees is worth more than what Valve is paying them, otherwise Valve would not be turning a profit. I'm assuming that employees really have 100% work time for their projects as you claim. Then in essence Valve is providing facilities and connections (to other smart employees) in return for the lion's share of the labour profit.
I think you're underestimating the value of those facilities and connections. That is the overhead.
Also, the time and labor is valued higher because they're employed together; that same time and labor would not be as valued outside the company.
I've backed out of going to graduate school after accepting to go, which is similar to a job offering since they were offering a fellowship. The only thing I felt bad about was I didn't realize soon enough that I shouldn't go, but it just wasn't the right move for me. Some people may disagree, but I think you should back out of it. There are very few companies who would have qualms about firing you if they could find a better employee to replace you or would make more money by firing you. You shouldn't feel guilty about holding them to the same standard (i.e. you found a better employer or one who offers a better deal).
You might want to check out Microsoft Azure. I use it and it is powerful and has a good free trial. Only thing that is bad about it is fairly long deployment times (10 to 30 minutes). As a disclaimer I currently use it with C#, but it recently added support for python. Other than that, Heroku is a good choice. Google App Engine may be another possibility, though I haven't used it nor do I know a lot about it.
For e-mail I recommend Sendgrid, you can get 200 e-mails a day free. Also easy to integrate in.
For payments I've used Braintree and I like it. I didn't set up the account but I was given a sandbox account to try it out and it should be possible to get one. Easy to use, especially if all you are doing are transactions (even though subscriptions aren't bad on Braintree either).