Essentially, engineering is all about cooperation, collaboration, and empathy for both your colleagues and your customers. If someone told you that engineering was a field where you could get away with not dealing with people or feelings, then I’m very sorry to tell you that you have been lied to. Solitary work is something that only happens at the most junior levels, and even then it’s only possible because someone senior to you — most likely your manager — has been putting in long hours to build up the social structures in your group that let you focus on code.

Tagging this one is difficult. Is #thehumancondition a stretch?


thundara:

Thoughts:

- It's pretty annoying to see the guy described as having a PhD in systems biology from Harvard. Word from a friend is he dropped out after 2 years. And even if he had the degree, it doesn't really doesn't make him any more an authority on psychology or gender dynamics than the layman. Especially when half his links are blog posts.

- The guy's an idiot if he expected to keep his job after calling his female colleagues more neurotic and less stress tolerant. Especially coming from a biology background where environment is just as stressful but the gender ratio tips the other way.

- Saying "I'm just commenting on general trends, don't take it personally" doesn't make what comes after any less offensive or wrong. The same goes for "PC culture isn't going to like this but..."

- The arguments from inherent genetic differences tend to always ignore the social differences, past and present, that favor one group over another. Most positive initiatives (select training and outreach to women, under-represented minorites) are evolutions on previous affirmative action policies as a way of addressing the whole "it's not fair to those of us in the present who aren't responsible for the actions of others in the past" argument.

- It's hard to read this:

    I’ve heard several calls for increased empathy on diversity issues. While I strongly support trying to understand how and why people think the way they do, relying on affective empathy—feeling another’s pain—causes us to focus on anecdotes, favor individuals similar to us, and harbor other irrational and dangerous biases. Being emotionally unengaged helps us better reason about the facts.

And not think that this guy doesn't play well with others.


posted by galen: 131 days ago