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From: chows at (Gregh)
Subject: Looking for a tool

----- Original Message -----
From: "Dave Howe" <>
To: "Email List: Full Disclosure" <>
Sent: Wednesday, March 03, 2004 1:54 AM
Subject: Re: [Full-Disclosure] Looking for a tool

> Gregh wrote:
> > ...and on the other hand, spending time taking a computer out of the
> > loop and all that entails is much better than getting the job done
> > without fuss?
> And indeed this is the principle usually applied to motor cars - you know
> how to start and stop them and point them in vaguely the right direction,
> but everything is by rote or is assisted (like automatic gearboxen).
> However, you would expect the mechanic to *know* how the gearbox works,
> not rely on the "Acme gearbox fixer" to do it for him and be completely
> clueless on what to do next if it doesn't.

In fact, to an employer, you have to know all possible ways. If the way that
works for the great majority of the time means spending less time (thus
money) and isnt used because the person is busy attempting to find the
manual answer "just in case it is needed again in the future" you can expect
to see a pink slip - not a car registration form - in the near future. If
you dont come to the job with all the tools (knowledge IOW) available, you
dont deserve the job (which is likely the fault of the employer for not
investigating you thoroughly, admittedly) and if something new comes up
which you dont know as it is new to all (which we know happens often
enough), you should already be prepared to take the path of least time
waste. If you dont know how to do that and waste time investigating how it
happened ON THE JOB, you NEED to be fired - IMHO of course. Anything I come
across that I dont know - and SHOULD know - is researched on the net from
home. There may be companies that encourage you to find out the details in
work time. Fine, that is the company's decision and please get me a job

Now please take into account that most people specialise. So, someone who
specialises in building web sites doesnt necessarily have to know how to
replace power supplies on tower cases for example.

What I am saying, though, is KNOW YOUR JOB before you start, be ready with a
real approach to a brand new "thing" that doesnt waste time and research the
reason it happened on your own time. You may be saying to yourself "Why
should I learn something on MY time and not COMPANY time?" and my answer to
that is "How much do you want to earn?". Anything you learn makes you
potentially more employable. Specialise and dont learn and one day someone
will find a way to automate your specialty. Been there, done that!

> > In other words, learn off the job and apply sensible practice once
> > there!
> My boss strangely enough likes that idea - why should he pay for my
> training (either implicitly in terms of my time taken or explicitly by
> sending me on a training course) if I can be expected to buy or borrow my
> own training materials *and* train myself to be more productive for him on
> my own time?

Read above. You don't HAVE to be "beholdin'" to him for the rest of your
life. In Australia, once you get to a certain age, you can NOT get I.T. jobs
any longer. It isn't an industry-wide rule, it is just an industry-wide
tool. It has many company benefits. Eg, you appear to be employing young
people, giving newbies a chance etc. If you manage the flow of staff well
enough, what you actually get is less chance of long service leave (which is
a law in Australia) payments, less rigid thought processes in management of
I.T., new I.T. teachings implemented (good OR bad). When you get on the I.T.
employment conveyor belt, don't forget the belt has an end to it eventually.
You are more likely than not to end up thrown off the other end and looking
for income. This is why you SHOULD be training yourself in your own time.
Not only do you make yourself more employable, if you like your current job,
you make yourself more needed. Don't see learning in your own time as a
chore. See it as a way to get more pay!

FYI, I am a person who lives and breathes anything "computer" as a job, a
hobby and a pastime. Learning something new is just "feeding my fix needs".
That attitude coincidentally makes me someone more desired in the job. If
you see learning at home as an imposition, you might consider if what you do
is a job or a chore. If it is a chore, maybe you need to find a different
area in I.T. or different field altogether. It took me a long while to learn
that. The job I had prior to computer related work WAS a chore to me. Don't
make my mistake!


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