Job adverts

On Hacker News there is a particular kind of post that reads “X is hiring” with a link to the company’s hiring page. There’s one company that has posted several times in the past few weeks. I wish that “X is hiring” posts were open for comments, because sometimes it seems like employers need feedback on their terrible job adverts, and this company is clearly confused why they are advertising on a forum frequented by some of the most talented programmers around but they still aren’t getting the response they want.

Here’s the ad:

I wouldn’t apply anyway because I have no desire to live in London, but anyway:

1. The salary is ‘competitive’. What does it compete with? Does it win? I’m guessing the answer is no, otherwise you’d just give a number.

2. “Unlimited vacation time”. Really, your employment contracts guarantee your employees unlimited holiday?

3. “beer together as a company on Fridays”. Mandatory fun is a turn off at the best of times, but here you’ve managed to make me feel uncomfortable about applying for a job as a software developer not because I might lack the skills or experience to do the job, but instead because… I don’t drink?

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Student loans

In case you missed it, the government recently tried to privatise student loan debt but Vince Cable torpedoed it. It seems rather ironic that one of the first things this government did was to increase tuition fees to the utterly ridiculous figure of £9000 per year, and now, towards the end of their term, they come out with the revelation that the money they are lending to allow people to pay for it isn’t getting paid back. Economic genius George Osbourne at work.

I see the following possibilities:

1. Conservatives are obsessed with privatising things to the point of it being some form of mental disorder.

2. The government has quite happily allowed overall profits to increase but for less and less of that money to end up in the pocket of the average worker, and has not considered how that might impact student loans which are paid back monthly as a small percentage of salary.

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Ain’t no party like a communist party

I was reading the Guardian (first mistake) and noticed on one of the articles about the Malaysian plane crash a commenter was staunchly defending Russia. I looked a bit closer and it’s very interesting – – he has a British sounding name and yet his comment history is formed entirely of defending Russia and attacking Ukraine on news stories about Russia.

Remember when the internet wasn’t full of people being paid to spread propaganda? I liked it back then. Let’s go back to that.

It makes you wonder – how do the putinbots* come up with these identities? It’s called ‘Chris Leach’ and it has a photo. Is Chris Leach a real person, and is that his photo? If so, how does he feel about those comments being posted against his name and photo? What happens when a future employer googles his name and sees him going off on one about how evil western europe is and how we need to be liberated by the peaceable Russian military? The web is a scary place. Originally it was always advised that you didn’t place any personal information or photos on the web. Back then, people followed the advice and it was paranoia. Right now, nobody follows it, but ignoring it is more dangerous than ever.

*and let’s face it, it’s not just Russia doing this.

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British Problems

1. Judge is appointed to head up investigation on widespread child abuse among ‘the establishment’.
2. Said judge is forced a few days later to step down from investigation due to being closely related to members of said establishment who may have been involved with covering it all up in the first place.

It’s all a little bit farcical.

The child abuse thing is just as baffling to me within Britain as I imagine it is to anyone getting the select highlights outside of Britain. The only explanation I can offer is that the British upper classes tend to come from a fairly small genetic pool.

In other news, what else did David Icke get right? Imagine if they really are lizards! We’ll feel like right idiots then.

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Alone :\

1. I have the house to myself this week. It feels very weird already. A few days is ok but a week seems like a very long time. I guess that I will just be getting used to it by next Friday and then my tranquil utopia will be shattered again. It is strange though. At the moment, I wish I had a dog.

2. My glute strengthening is off to a good start. Today let us just say my gluteus maximus is rather sore. I am very surprised by this and it shows they really are weak. I was doing the resistance band hip extension exercise for the last week or so, but when I really really paid attention, I realised it was my hamstrings doing all the work, not my glutes. Yesterday I tried it a few times throughout the day without the resistance band, but making sure I was contracting my glutes before starting. This morning I woke up with a rather sore arse. It’s pretty sensitive. It seems amazing that some very light exercise has done this. You would think that with running frequently they would be, well, at least a bit strong, but apparently they really aren’t used to doing anything at all. I’m pleased with this because it gives me something very definite I can work on quite easily, and maybe this is finally the real source of my knee problems. It would also explain some of my chronic muscle tightness, if those other muscles are doing work that the glutes should be.

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Running last night: 1.3 miles and it was a disaster. It started off ok, but then my knee started hurting (inner side, maybe slightly at the back) and it wasn’t getting any better. I tried some 100m strides instead and gave up after the third one.

I’ve been having trouble with this knee on and off for what seems like forever now, and it amazes me that it still manages to throw new situations at me. I’ve never had pain that worsens WHILE running, and I’ve never had this particular pain in this particular location. It also felt very tight on the inside of my leg, just above the knee, when walking back, which I haven’t felt before.

It is very difficult to stick to any form of consistent rehab plan when the symptoms seem to change rapidly… but I am going to stick to glute max/med strengthening for now. I also might try some stability shoes although I don’t expect them to help.

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Knees revisited

Let’s talk about knees. My knee is mostly ok but not 100%. It felt 100% for a couple of months until the start of June, then it’s been wavering a bit with the same sorts of sensations as I had earlier in the year. In brief I get pain and aches of various forms of various intensities around the inner side of the knee. At the moment it feels ‘ok’. For example, on Sunday I noticed I was landing heavily on my right foot but not my left, and Monday evening I had some twinges in my right knee (there’s that magic 36 hour delay again). Tuesday evening during a run the surrounding muscles felt tight but eased off, and immediately after I stopped, there was some vague dull aching for about 20 minutes or so, in yet another location (side/back), but it didn’t last long. So it’s ‘ok’. It’s not complaining loudly, but it is telling me I should be cautious.

It’s taken me a while to put all this together, while becoming a leading expert on knees, but I think it’s a stability issue of my right leg. I think the reason the symptoms are so unpredictable and seemingly random is because I’m not actually doing anything wrong that I have any fine control over, it’s just that sometimes my leg doesn’t stay stable enough, but it depends on volatile conditions exactly what that means physically so the symptoms move around accordingly. Basically, my right leg collapses inwards while it’s bearing my weight and pushing my forwards, probably because my right hips/glutes are doing a poor job of keeping me upright and balanced, and this places strain on my inner right leg.

With this epiphany I now have a focussed plan, and my plan is to increase my hip strength and try to balance the flexibility (right much tighter than left). There is a good exercise which has you balanced on one leg, stood on a resistance band which is around your back leg, which you extend out behind you (so the supporting leg anchors the band and the back leg pushes out against it). Using my left leg for support this is a bit hard. Using my right leg for support and my gluteus medius starts burning. This is a good exercise because it’s not dissimilar to the landing position; your back leg extended behind you and your front leg supporting you with knee slightly bent.

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