1 Super Rare Sign That Proves You Are Meant to Lead People (But It May Cause a Gag Reflex for Most) | Inc.com

Not sure how well this works, but it sure is not intuitive for anyone who’s been in business for more than a couple of years.

I have not worked for a “kind” company, since leaving KAI in 1994. They were a tiny company where you knew everyone, and had a personal relationship with everyone in the company, boss, subordinate, or peer. The ability to relate to others mattered, and affected progress. When I announced my departure, the president told me he really thought I would be one of the “last to leave”. That struck a chord with me, because it sounded to me like he thought that company would go under eventually.

Where I work now, I’ve spoken to my department head a grand total of 4 times. One phone interview, one face-to-face interview, one post-hire visit (3 months later), and one phone call attempt to calm my fears about the uncertainty of the future, where he instructed me to apply for the full time position they will hire for next month. I don’t feel like I have an effective communication channel to management, to provide any feedback at all.

I’ve begun applying for other jobs, which I probably should have started last month. Even though I was hired on a “six month try before you buy” contract, they will be terminating anyone they don’t want to keep in November, before my 6 month contract ends. I’m not even really sure what a six month contract means anymore.

Even if I had any legal way to guarantee my income for the last month of my 6 month contract, they haven’t been “kind” in any way they dealt with any of us contractors competing for the last three full-time positions they announced in September. They deliberately choose NOT tell us which of us they were going to keep, and after four weeks, they appear to be being blindsided because most of the contractors have accepted positions elsewhere, and announced they are leaving. Because of their lousy management skills, there are more people leaving than there are positions to fill now.

What a incredibly stupid move NOT announcing hiring decisions ASAP turned out to be. For two months, we have had to work with lame ducks who are unmotivated, and are only still there because they want the severance pay they get if they hang out until the end. This does not improve anyone’s employee moral. Even if I really am eventually offered one of the few full-time positions left, as I’ve been verbally promised, we’ll still be short-handled on third shift, for the near future.

How do I honestly tell the next guy we hire he can rely on having a job when his/her six month contract ends? When I applied for this position, the contracting firm told me it was a “good company” that hired most contractors. I no longer believe think that was true, then, or now. A good company doesn’t outsource their entire IT department to an Indian contracting firm, and, at the same time, ask you to stick around, just in case that deal doesn’t work out. That sounds like an awful spot to be stuck in. If the Indian company works out (which I have heard it generally never does), we’re liekly out of a job in a year or two anyway, and if it doesn’t, we’re left to pick up the pieces with far fewer talented IT people who understand how anything works. Ugh.

If you think this practice is reserved for weak leaders, nothing could be further from the truth.

Source: 1 Super Rare Sign That Proves You Are Meant to Lead People (But It May Cause a Gag Reflex for Most) | Inc.com

Thoughts on Microsoft Joining OIN’s Patent Non-Aggression Pact – Conservancy Blog – Software Freedom Conservancy

This is the most surprising news I’ve seen in decades. How Microsoft responds to this challenge will be a defining moment in the Open Source community. If Microsoft can honestly join the OIN and stop pursuing trivial patent protection for ancient technology, like the EXFAT filesystem, maybe there is hope for a technical future that includes open source software

The “old Microsoft”, under Steve Balmer, never would have taken this step. He seemed to hate any and all competition, and would pursue all legal actions to try to suppress anyone competing fairly with them. They HATED open standards, and commonly embraced the old IBM practice of “Embrace, Extend, Extinguish” which sought to lock customers into their proprietary extensions to public standards. IBM used to do this with programming languages, hoping their customers would find their COBOL would be considered more powerful and flexible than anyone elses COBAL. Many organizations would take advantage of their extensions, only to find themselves “vendor locked-in” because of the added development costs to migrate to another platform.

I will never trust a fortune 500 company to be good based solely on their intentions, but if Microsoft makes just a few additional steps to prove their loyalty to the OIN, it’ll be a major game changer in the software development industry.

Now I wonder if Apple and Samsung might ever join the OIN too. Imagine if Samsung contributed all the code behind some of their innovative features back to the public code tree. They might actually be able to replace some of the “standard” Google apps that most Android vendors use. Maybe even some of the standard Apple apps. Apple will be a much harder nut to crack, because they don’t like sharing technology with open source software teams any more than Microsoft used to. Before this news, I never thought either would budge on that front. But now that Microsoft has started to take a few small steps, I don’t really know anymore. Maybe the world CAN be a safer place to write software after all.

Folks lauded today that Microsoft has joined the Open Invention Network (OIN)’s limited patent non-aggression pact, suggesting that perhaps it will bring peace in our time regarding Microsoft’s historical patent aggression. While today’s announcement is a step forward, we call on Microsoft to make this just the beginning of their efforts to stop their patent aggression efforts against the software freedom community.

Source: Thoughts on Microsoft Joining OIN’s Patent Non-Aggression Pact – Conservancy Blog – Software Freedom Conservancy

Making sense of the Supermicro motherboard attack | Light Blue Touchpaper

Just learned about this report on the Security Now podcast episode 684. It’s a technical analysis of the contested Bloomberg Businessweek report that some SuperMicro motherboards were implanted with malicious hardware that enabled remote spying and control on those servers. The article spells out it’s reasoning, and seems to conclude that the reports are likely true, even though Amazon and Apple strongly deny it. But they have business reasons to deny it, because they could fear the report’s impact on their income.

I am not all that surprised at the headline. At home, I have a few fanless PC servers, and have long wondered about them potentially containing malicious hardware. It would be easy to do. This article makes it quite clear that the possibility really does exist. The potential attack is not based on fiction. It’s really just a matter of who and when, not if. All my tiny servers were manufacturer in China, every single one. Nobody else makes cheap servers anymore. There are zero choices to buy a PC that was manufactured entirely within the USA anymore. That depresses me just a little.

Source: Making sense of the Supermicro motherboard attack | Light Blue Touchpaper

grub-update detecting all containers OS | Proxmox Support Forum

Found it! The answer to my home server’s weird error messages during OS updates. Turns out, the Ubuntu default is to look around for other operating systems you may have installed, so it can put them all on the OS selector boot time menu. It makes sense, if you have a dual-boot laptop, but not for a server which only has a single OS. Apparently my LXD containers all look like external disks to the OS prober. Sounds like a minor bug to me. Probably will be fixed in 6 months.

Source: grub-update detecting all containers OS | Proxmox Support Forum