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31  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: What's the haps? on: June 17, 2016, 03:15:32 AM
All this talk about jobs and stuff has made me decide to be uncharacteristically open and actually talk about myself...I don't know, it might make a good story.

I finished my PhD in physics back in December 2013.  But for various reasons (too long to go into here), I decided I really didn't want to continue on in physics and it was time to switch fields.  I picked data science/machine learning for my future career because: 1) it sounded interesting, 2) I had been programming forever (since well before I started pursing physics actually) and I was looking for something in that direction, 3) it's also math heavy so seemed suited to my skillset, and 4) It's a super-hot field right now and I kept hearing about how they couldn't find enough people and the salaries were high.  Seemed like enough reason for me.

I didn't really do much in the way of job searching while I was still in grad school because I had some savings and honestly wanted to take some time off before I started working for real.  I figured I had plenty of time to get series about job searching after my dissertation was done.  In retrospect I was pretty arrogant.  I had no experience in the field, no connections, no portfolio of work, and no real experience even in writing resumes or job searching either.  I had absolute confidence that given my skills I would have no difficulty doing the job.  But I kind of forgot about trying to sell myself to the people hiring.  I guess I thought they would figure it out on their own somehow...

Obviously that didn't happen.

Months went by with my job search yielding nothing.  Eventually it was over a year.   My savings dwindled.  The gap on my resume started growing uncomfortably large, to the point where I had to awkwardly try to explain it.  I started to realize that the prospect of ever getting hired only grew dimmer with time.  The odd thing about job searching is that nobody wants to hire somebody who doesn't already have a job.  It's a real bias, there's an implicit assumption by many recruiters that anyone worth hiring would already have been hired.  And by extension somebody who hasn't been able to find a job for over a year must be scum on earth...

I grew extremely depressed.  I think anyone would, really.  Constant rejection is never fun.  But in my case I took it particularly bad because, well, this was the kind of stuff I was supposed to be actually good at.  Look, I'm not a people person.  Hell I'm a bit of a misanthrope.  I never had much success in relationships and even my friends I keep at a bit of a distance.  But I am smart.  A bit presumptuous to say that myself, maybe, but they don't give physics PhDs to just anyone.  I've always excelled in academics and problem solving.  Not just academics, though.  When I was still in high school and other kids had jobs bagging groceries I got an internship at a software company.  They liked me enough they offered me a full-time position, but I decided to go to college instead.  Even though my degree was in physics this wasn't exactly an unknown world to me.  I knew I could do the job, but I felt like nobody would even give me a chance to demonstrate that I could...

But having gotten nowhere I started seriously thinking about suicide.  It's not like I was so desperate I had no other recourse, but I really felt like if I couldn't make this work then I couldn't make anything work in my life...that there was no point in continuing it...that I should just end it rather than cling to a life with no future...

(Incidentally before now I never actual admit the above to anyone, ever.  I tend to keep stuff to myself...)

At some point I decided that I would kill myself when my savings ran out.  My savings ran out.  I didn't kill myself.  It's hard to say for sure how serious I was about it, really, but I did feel like it was nothing but cowardice keeping me from doing it.   Since I had basically no money left I started putting all of my expenses on credit cards that I had no way of paying off.  Totally unsustainable and I damn well knew it, but it works for a little while.  And being sustainable really wasn't the objective.  After all this was meant to be nothing more than a temporary concession after I chickened out of killing myself the first time.  This way once those cards were maxed out I would feel like I really had no other choice...

Funny thing happened, though.  I got a job before that happened.  Exactly the kind of job I had been looking for.  The details of how...well, that's kind of involved.  Suffice to say that I hadn't completely given up and had continued to look the whole time.  Sending out resumes by this point was basically pointless but I was going around to local meetups and stuff trying to make connections.  And I did manage to make some, and finally someone actually gave me a chance.

Incidentally, it turns out my earlier arrogance was pretty justified.  Of course my earlier way of job-searching was...flawed to say the least.  But once I actually got a job I really was fucking good at it.  I've basically gotten nothing but praise at work, and increasingly it feels like they're going to be basing the whole strategic direction of the company on stuff I've built.  Heck, at one point we were discussing at work the need to hire more people and one of my coworkers said (quite sincerely), "We just need to hire another <my name>.  He's worth at least 3 people."  I never told him I was on the verge of suicide before I got this job...wonder what he would think about that.

It's amazing how much things have changed.  These days my worries include topics such as what to do with all the money I make.  No, seriously.  I went from being a grad student (not exactly living the high life) to being unemployed to a six figure salary.  I'm still living in the same shitty old apartment because I'm too fundamentally cheap to live somewhere nicer (well, and I hate moving...).  I have no major expenses or debt (Those credit cards I mentioned?  Paid them off in like 2 months.  Too longer than that to accumulate the debt...).  What am I supposed to do with this much income?  I already bought a nice car but I barely drive it.  Any good kickstarters out there I should drop $10k on?

So there's my story.  I'm not sure what the message is supposed to be.  Don't give up?  Don't act completely arrogant (even if you're right)?  That the whole job-interviewing process is kind of flawed?  That if you try to max out your credit cards good things will happen?  Probably not the last one...
32  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: What's the haps? on: June 15, 2016, 02:05:37 PM
Sometimes I wish my life was interesting enough to have something to talk about...
33  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: FF12 HD - Zodiac Age (whoomp there it is) on: June 14, 2016, 11:36:56 PM
FF12 had some great characters...and then there's Van.

If continue with the Star Wars analogy (with which there are a ton of parallels in FF12) then Van is basically Luke minus the whole force thing, any relationship to Darth Vader, or any relationship to the story at all, really.  He's just a kid who wanted to pick up some power converters and then somehow started following around the important people.

But I can't say Penelo was much better.  Her only reason for even being there was basically Van, making her twice-removed from the actual story.  Though I suppose if you just take Van's existence in the party as a given then her motivations made more sense at least.
34  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Youtube on: June 13, 2016, 01:38:18 AM
Kongou Bongo
35  Media / General Games / Re: E3 2016: E3 2015 was better Edition. on: June 12, 2016, 11:58:42 PM
I remember Prey!  It was going to be the coolest game ever...like, back in 1996 (when single-syllable non-descriptive names were all the rage).  Wait, it actually got released?  I just remember it as DNF-level vaporware.  I guess by the time it was released I had stopped paying attention.

But hey, why not reboot a 'franchise' with only one game in it that everyone forgot about!
36  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: June 12, 2016, 09:02:39 PM
Two things:

#1 Yeah, the premise of the story is completely unbelievable in many ways. You just have to roll with it without thinking too much about it.
Still, the character interactions are entertaining (and Hishiro is HHNNNGGG lvl moe). As far as slice of life goes, this is a good one.
Also, I really like the art style and character designs. Hoping they keep everything the same there for the anime.

It's not really the premise that bothers me.  Tons of mangas have unrealistic premises.  I mean in some sense that's kind of the point.  But I think there are a lot of elements of the story that aren't even self-consitent when you stop and think about them.  And that's the sort of thing that bothers me.

#2 That you complain about my suggestion of ReLIFE instead of Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA☆ILLYA 3rei!! is a small victory to me

Victory?  I think we're on the same side on that one.  I've liked Fate/kaleid from the start.
37  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: June 12, 2016, 04:18:38 PM
Seriously... watch it. The comic is awesome.

Going to have to disagree with you there...

I've read all of ReLIFE that is currently out (Mainly because it's on Comico and I really like their app.  There aren't a lot of places you can access Japanese manga overseas with so little hassle.) and I would rate it OK at best.  It's occasionally interesting but I just can't get over how poorly thought out the whole main plotline is.  There are plotholes big enough to drive an aircraft carrier through, and that ruins the whole suspension of disbelief for me...
38  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: FF12 HD - Zodiac Age (whoomp there it is) on: June 12, 2016, 03:56:45 PM
Everyone rants about the treasure chest thing, but I have to confess that I made it through the entire game without even knowing that there was such a system in the first place.

It's not hard.  I never consulted any guides or anything (because I think guides ruin a first playthrough I generally don't use them...) or listened to comments on the internet.  I just played the game.  And if you're just playing the game, why would you ever reload an old save to try opening the same treasure chest again?  Why would you even think to do that?

I'm not really defending the system because I agree it is pretty dumb, but I think my point is that you don't *have* to let it ruin the game for you.  I enjoyed the game just fine without knowing such a system even existed.

(This approach is not recommended for obsessive completionists, but then FFXII is not recommended for obsessive completionists...)
39  Media / General Games / Re: Misc. Gaming News Topic on: June 07, 2016, 12:04:44 PM
Crap?  Clay Fighter was awesome!
40  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: What's the haps? on: June 03, 2016, 10:53:19 PM
Apparently it was layoff day at work today.  Happy Friday, bunch of people got fired.  Not me or anything, but it's still become a pretty dark atmosphere there as everyone wonders who will be next.

But what really drives me bonkers about this whole situation is how ass-backwards it is.  Our company has a bunch of sales people who seem to run around promising the world to potential customers without bothering to even check with the engineers to see if the things they're promising are remotely feasible.  Then when they win contracts (which makes management happy I guess), engineering is given impossible deadlines with very limited resources.  Shockingly, these deadlines are not met (which makes management sad).

The core problem is that engineering is severely understaffed for the amount of work we are given.  There just aren't enough people.  What's management's solution to this problem?  Apparently it's to fire a bunch of engineers.

Because that will help...
41  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Today's News on: June 02, 2016, 11:02:47 PM
I don't feel like I ever 'became' an atheist.  I grew up without much religion in the first place and for me at least it was just kind of the default.
42  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: May 28, 2016, 09:37:07 PM
I mostly just stream to PCs (and yes, I have a PC hooked up to my TV).  I'll agree that Crunchyroll's apps never seemed very good...but I don't use them.  Their website has always worked great for me.

Funimation's website, on the other hand, is an abomination.  Whoever designed that piece of crap should be shot.

I don't mind paying for things at all.  I just want them to actually work.
43  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: May 28, 2016, 01:54:38 PM
I try to support legitimate streaming sites.  Really, I do.  But Funimation's site is so bad I can't stand to watch anything on it...videos don't always load, some of their tabs don't even work, everything is so poorly organized, it takes far more clicks than should be necessary to do anything, every click is accompanied by excruciatingly long load times...

Get your fucking shit together, Funimation.  I may end up just going back to piracy...

Funimation's streaming site is basically Hulu+.

If all of their stuff was on Hulu that would be a huge improvement.  But it's not.
44  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: May 28, 2016, 12:06:11 AM
I try to support legitimate streaming sites.  Really, I do.  But Funimation's site is so bad I can't stand to watch anything on it...videos don't always load, some of their tabs don't even work, everything is so poorly organized, it takes far more clicks than should be necessary to do anything, every click is accompanied by excruciatingly long load times...

Get your fucking shit together, Funimation.  I may end up just going back to piracy...
45  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: FINAL FANTASY XV, This is a fantasy based on reality. on: May 27, 2016, 11:13:36 PM
Friend of mine is trying to argue that uncharted 4 has better graphics than XV. I show him these screens..."Cinematics don't count."

I really can't wait to see the full finished game in action.

I don't really think that's an unreasonable argument at all if somebody is comparing pre-rendered cinematics to a game that does everything in-engine.  That wouldn't be a fair comparison at all...and as I understand it Uncharted 4 does everything real-time (though I haven't actually played it yet...).

That said, it's not like the real-time graphics of FFXV are bad at all.  They're pretty amazing too.  But you're not going to prove that with pre-rendered stuff.
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