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blackbootz




"But what is happiness except the simple harmony between a man and the life he leads?"


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By Ron Chernow? God I loved that book. I picked up Titan, his book on Rockefeller, based mainly on the strength of Chernow's writing. I couldn't put Hamilton down (then again, I'm a sucker for American revolutionary-period history).

blackbootz  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: May 29, 2019

I’m back from the west coast soon—message me the deets!

blackbootz  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: May 15, 2019

Just for fun, although I've been known to compete. There's a friendly, low-stakes association that permits anyone of any skill level to compete at any of the association's meets (meets are the competitions where two or more teams compete events). If my school continues to travel to these meets, I'll hitch a ride with them and show 'em what I got :)

blackbootz  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: NASA: We Are Going

I, too, think space is exciting, and I've read 1% of the science fiction you have. Saw a tweet the other day; what do you think?

blackbootz  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: May 15, 2019

I graduate college in 8 days. Last week of exams.

Like veen, I'm stoked for a trip westward. I think the trip might also serve as part of the larger ritual of graduation and transition from college. Trips West tend to do that.

Have the summer planned planned to a first approximation. I'll be training gymnastics at a high level about 10-16 hours a week (for free! perkz). I will also be paid to coach at all levels at the same gym for about 25-30 hours a week. There are several pockets of 4-5 hours during the week that I will fill with the Udemy courses in Python. The goal was to save up money so that I could--if accepted and assuming I still really like the idea after a summer of getting my feet wet--attend Lambda school in late September in a 9-month intensive program in their data science track while not having to work. Unfortunately, even with the generous amount the gym is paying me, I don't think I'll be able to save up enough. Which means I'll have to get creative in the fall.

On the one hand, I'm frustrated. Even though I'm graduating I'm deciding to put off having substantial income for another year. On the other, I think if coding works out, I could be set up really well for the future. It's not even that tough a decision to make; just have to tighten the belt for a bit more.

I'm sincerely happy for you that you know a lot of people that embody these values.

I'm only just getting there. I've had to create community, having felt intense isolation that at times bordered on a major depressive disorder. And while a large part of that community is around me in meatspace, a lot of it has taken place excitedly online, over email, on weird link aggregators with people with funny usernames who I give a massive shit about. I say this knowing full well that there was an internet before I was born ('91) with people doing just the same.

I hope our celebrating doesn't take away from your strong identity as someone grounded in a community that embodies these values.

And yea, the writing is cringey at times.

    We're not taught this stuff because it's pure elitism [. . .]

    But let's get real: my buddy went to good schools with the kids of other people who wanted to send their kids to good schools and while we can be mad that Felicity Huffman paid for her kid to get in on a tennis scholarship or whatever, the fact of the matter is the world has been run by Old Boy's Clubs since it was Thag and Ag and always will be. Both books argue that these networks are not aberrations but are the archetypal human response to organization - you need a hierarchy for officialdom and you need a network to accomplish things in spite of the hierarchy (the "tower" and the "square" of Ferguson's book).

It certainly seems like an archetypal human response. I didn't see the connection until you point it out, but C.S. Lewis wrote much more generally about the inner ring (and then warns us that the desire to be in the inner ring is responsible for a lot of the evil):

    In the passage I have just read from Tolstoy, the young second lieutenant Boris Dubretskoi discovers that there exist in the army two different systems or hierarchies. The one is printed in some little red book and anyone can easily read it up. It also remains constant. A general is always superior to a colonel, and a colonel to a captain. The other is not printed anywhere. Nor is it even a formally organised secret society with officers and rules which you would be told after you had been admitted. You are never formally and explicitly admitted by anyone. You discover gradually, in almost indefinable ways, that it exists and that you are outside it; and then later, perhaps, that you are inside it.

This all said, I still just see the OP as a beacon to like-minded people. Not a celebration per se, but a hey, gather round if this sounds like it's up your alley and it seems like right up Hubski Road.

I totally agree. In fact, I read the spirit of your quoted section as they did a bunch of fancy technological analysis and fooled themselves into believing what they already wanted to believe: that there was no risk and all upside. It reminds me of an exchange of my other piece of financial journalism on the crisis, This American Life episode "The Giant Pool of Money":

    Alex Blumberg

    It's easy to ignore your gut fear when you're making a fortune in commissions. But Mike had other help in rationalizing what he was doing, technological help. Mike sat at a desk with six computer screens connected to millions of dollars worth of fancy analytic software designed by brilliant Ivy League graduates hired by his firm. And this software analyzed all the loans in all the pools that Mike bought and then sold. And the software, the data, didn't seem worried at all.

      Mike Francis

    All the data that we had to review, to look at, on loans that were in production, that were years old, was positive. They performed very well. All those factors, when you look at all the pieces and parts, and you say, well, a 90% no income loan three years ago is performing amazingly well. It has a little bit of risk. Instead of defaulting 1 and 1/2% of the time, it defaults 3 and 1/2% of the time. Well, that's not so bad. If I'm an investor buying that, if I get a little bit of additional return, I'm fine.

    Adam Davidson

    Wait, Alex, I want step in here, because this is a very important piece of tape. A big part of this whole story, the whole crisis, is that a lot of really smart people, people who knew better, fooled themselves with this data. It was the triumph of data over common sense. Can you play that tape again?

    Alex Blumberg

    Yeah, sure. Here you go.

      Mike Francis

    All the data that we had to review, to look at, on loans that were in production, that were years old, was positive.

    Adam Davidson

    As we now know, they were using the wrong data. They looked at the recent history of mortgages and saw that the foreclosure rate is generally below 2%. So they figured absolute worst-case scenario, the foreclosure rate might go to 8% or 10% or even 12%. But the problem with that is that there were all these new kinds of mortgages given out to people who never would have gotten them before. So the historical data was irrelevant. Some mortgage pools today are expected to go beyond 50% foreclosure rates.

I was like, blind date??? Ah, good. The family is still happily intact. Cheeky ;)

I love Hubski, too. It’s a place to share and shore up. I’m so grateful for all the support I’ve received here, and for the relationships I’ve built. Oh, and the endless reading material. My poops would have been marginally less interesting, so thanks for that.

What's the actionable take-away? A single 24-hour fast? Intermittent fasting (if so, how long?)?

Had this article stickied for a while, but started fasting today and only just read it.

blackbootz  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: April 17, 2019

It's not even the financial obligation that would be committing me. In order of importance/utility to me, it's the schedule and structure primarily, then the sunk financial cost, then the faculty support, and then the credential.

When I think on my own about it, I convince myself that a bootcamp is the way to go. When I talk about it with people, especially experienced folks, I start to think that self-starting is the way to go.

Would hiring managers really be convinced if I told them, "The ~yearlong gap in relevant work experience is because I taught myself" and then coded them FizzBang?

blackbootz  ·  link  ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: April 17, 2019

That's so cool! I agree they're definitely onto something. They have a pipeline of software developers going right to Facebook, Stripe, myriad startups upon graduation. There's probably a bit of a low-hanging fruit/selection bias with their early success--a horde of would-be engineers with pent-up desire to enter new careers--but I think their income share agreement is a great idea. $30k is a bit steep, though. But for 9 months of intense bootcamping? Plus the final 3 months of job search assistance? I think it's the best way to develop the skills that's available right now on the market, given that I learn best with a commitment device such as regular class and meeting time.

I see the program as a way towards developing hard skills and becoming sought-after. A medium-term goal is to use my communication and people skills and become a killer group or project leader. Then maybe start a business.

Things get fuzzier the farther I look in the future. And I'm not without my doubts--a friend who owns an online marketing business with 20 employees and knows how to code thinks I could get into the industry without a paid coding camp. What do you think?

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