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bijan:

This morning Governor Deval Patrick will make it clear he is seeking an end to employee non compete agreements in our state*

Employee non compete agreements are not enforceable and are deemed illegal in California. Yet the opposite is true in MA. They are used and enforced. And because of this they…

hopsandchops:

Come bid Daryn good tidings as he heads off to Porch — we’ll be gathering for a pop-up Hops & Chops on Tuesday, April 15 at Auto Battery.  Come by any time after 6pm — we should be there til 8ish. 

hopsandchops:

Come bid Daryn good tidings as he heads off to Porch — we’ll be gathering for a pop-up Hops & Chops on Tuesday, April 15 at Auto Battery.  Come by any time after 6pm — we should be there til 8ish. 

Romans had very few first names, so they started numbering their kids.

Hence Tertius, Quartus, Quintus, Sextus, Septimus, Octavus, and their various diminutives.

So you might have brothers that are numbers. In other words, if Gaius Iulius Caesar had had legitimate male offspring, the first would have also been Gaius Iulius Caesar, the second Secundus Iulius Caesar, the Third Octavus and so on.

This gets confusing when someone like like the fictional Quintus Iulius Caesar has children. His first born son will usually be Quintus, but will his second be Secundus? No, he may be Sextus. However, if there is already a living Sextus Iulius Caesar, you may go with a diminutive, such as Quintillus, or you may cherry pick a later number out of order, such as Decimus.

None of this applies to women. Their father’s last name became their first name. Thus, Gaius Julius Caesar had a daughter, Julia. (What looks like a Roman middle name is actually the last name to our mind. Nobody called Caesar Caesar. He was known to his friends as Gaius and the public Iulius. The Caesar was appended from time to time to distinguish him from other people with last name. ) Ocatavianus had Octavia. Agrippa had Agrippina (the elder). She was a complete and total nut job - crazy as loon. Second and third daughters often had exactly the same name as their sisters, with a nickname that honors an ancestor appended. The second they were married, their first name was their father’s last name and their last name was their husband’s.

In this way most Roman names live on today as women’s names. Julii family, aside from having one son named Gaius Iulius Caesar, had many, many daughters named Julia. Thus Claudia, Amelia, Octavia, Melissa, and their associated names like Julie and Emily are with us today, particularly among folks whose native tongues are Romance Languages.

For the boys, we get Trey and Quin. A fifth. A cokehead named after a bottle. Go figure.

A quote from a college buddy who is a high school classics teacher. 

#youlearnsomethingneweveryday

New Jersey equals a banana republic of the old Soviet Union — like Kyrgyzstan or whatever. The dealers are rent seeking and it’s clearly not in the interest of consumers. Instead it’s promoting the interests of an industry that deserves to die because it’s not efficient and doesn’t serve consumers. That’s because rent seekers don’t create anything of value.

Tomasello’s account of how co-operation drove the development of our distinctive intellect is controversial – Bekoff too would point to the growing body of evidence on how other species co-operate. It is also highly speculative: a trait such as co-operation leaves few traces in the fossil record. But it is speculation by a thinker at the top of his field, based on the latest research, and as such is likely to be the definitive statement of human uniqueness for some time to come.

His account also makes me feel better about not having invented the iPad or landed on the moon: it suggests that these are indeed triumphs of the human spirit, but not because they sprang from the minds of lone superhumans. Rather, it is because they are products of the distinctively human practice of putting heads together.

What sets humanity apart - FT.com

Sawickipedia says: Great quote and rightly shows, without saying it, we likely celebrate the individual (someone like Steve Jobs) when the team (the company Apple) more truthfully deserves the credit.

bijan:

Getting through the muck

It’s amazing how much a small team can get done. 

(Consider David and Marco during the earliest days of Tumblr)

The team is small, the balance sheet is tiny but productivity soars. Any and all decisions are solvable by getting everyone together in a room. That is because it’s literally easy to get everyone in a room as the team is small.

Small teams are durable, flexible and productive. Decisions by consensus works. 

But the company has ambition and needs more people for the mission. So the company starts to hire.

As the company starts hiring productivity slows down (or worse). All of a sudden the founder says, “Holy hell, how did we get here. We have more talented people than ever but we are moving so slowly.”

image

And while it’s painful for the founder(s), it can be beyond frustrating to the team. They left their previous job to work at a hot growing company only to find that the team is completely disorganized and people are now complaining.

So here is some good news and bad news:

The good news: you aren’t alone. The majority of growing startups go through this stage.

The bad news: it’s not fun and it highlights a number of things you need to watch out for. And if you don’t, companies can get stuck in this phase for far too long.

Things to consider:

-how good is your vp of engineering. he or she may have been an amazing developer when the team was small but can do great people want to work for them?

-how good are other members of the management team? 

-is the team organized properly. are the right people working on the right things. i love this interview with chris fry who runs engineering at twitter. 

-is the team bought into the plan. if not, why? are deadlines arbitrary? did the team have input? is it ambitious enough or too ambitious?

-on boarding process. it’s a tragedy to go overcome so many challenges to hire a new person only to have them join and not know what they are supposed to do. 

It’s seductive to convince yourself in the early days that all we need to do is keep our culture and hire more people and assume productivity goes up. Hiring without great management can be a full blown nightmare. 

But if you can build the right foundation with the best managers, you will have the opportunity to build something truly great.

sawickipedia comment: I can’t endorse enough the point about the plan and whether it’s arbitrary esp with regards to deadlines or not.  I have made that mistake more then once in my career and often without realizing it was an arbitrary deadline built on arbitrary assumptions.  As CEO of Zemanta - I consciously try to identify anything that’s an arbitrary assumption in our plans.  Then we’ll know what we really need to prove as quickly as possible so that our plans are based not on assumptions but on proven results and/or known facts.  I bet if you did a postmortem on a project, then you will find that failure was often a result of moving forward based on arbitrary assumptions instead of known facts or proven results.

gregcohn:

joshuanguyen:

Google search is eating the world, one personalization at a time.

Also, that is fucking terrifying.  On the flip side it’s great how apple maps fetches addresses from mail app.  Maybe I feel this way b/c I’m less terrified of AAPL vis-a-vis data.

AAPL isn’t as scary because it’s detection occurs client-side instead of server-side.  Also this is a good reason why I stay logged out of Chrome and Google search.

gregcohn:

joshuanguyen:

Google search is eating the world, one personalization at a time.

Also, that is fucking terrifying.  On the flip side it’s great how apple maps fetches addresses from mail app.  Maybe I feel this way b/c I’m less terrified of AAPL vis-a-vis data.

AAPL isn’t as scary because it’s detection occurs client-side instead of server-side.  Also this is a good reason why I stay logged out of Chrome and Google search.

rickwebb:

It would be awesome if this actually fixed mail. Please work this time. Third time’s the charm, right?

Oh god please.

rickwebb:

It would be awesome if this actually fixed mail. Please work this time. Third time’s the charm, right?

Oh god please.

This is yet another reason not to shed too many tears for doctors. They’ve basically brought this on themselves. If the market were allowed to produce as many doctors as there’s demand for, they’d already be getting paid less. Right now they’re enjoying the substantial rents that come from squeezing their own supply, and they’ve fought like lemmings for decades to keep it that way. You can hardly blame them for that, but there’s no reason the rest of us should put up with it. It’s time to fight back.
“I had no idea the bikers were speeding here. I just started measuring their speed because they were on the road. They have to obey the same rules of the road as the cars,” he said.

Police speed trap snaring bicyclists, too | Seattle Times Newspaper

Cyclists who fail to obey traffic rules (stop signs, lights, etc.) are idiots and deserve tickets like cars.