[Israel.pm] [hackers-il] Mission Statement for a New Company based on Voluntarism-taken-to-Extreme

Shlomi Fish shlomif at iglu.org.il
Tue Apr 3 02:58:07 PDT 2007


Hi guy!

On Monday 02 April 2007, guy keren wrote:
> Shlomi,
>
> i'm sorry that you got fired.
>

Thanks for the support!

> however, i think you should do some introspection about why you unable
> to find a steady work place for such a long time - you're burning
> yourself out in the market place.
>

guy, your last two messages to me were top-posting preaching:

1. The one about the Technion was a "should have", saying that I should have 
studied CS. I founded it of value because I incorporated some of my reply to 
my essay, but it was still annoying.

Yes, EE was more difficult for me than CS, but I don't regret taking it, and 
today with a B.Sc. in EE (cum laude, FWIW) in my hand, it is behind me, and I 
be glad it is behind me, and be proud that I did not give up.

2. This one may be relevant, but is still very preachy, and I did not ask for 
it. Furthermore, you just tell me to think about it, and don't have any 
concrete suggestions.

As you know, being a hacker and trying to live according to the Hacker's 
ethos, I have learned many technologies and also became interested in 
software management, software engineering, and the philosophy of hackerdom. 
Often I find that many workplaces, where the people in charge are much less 
knowledgable in many respects than I am, are doing things sub-optimally.

I have a tendency to become hypo-manic, where hypo-mania is a type of clinical 
depression, in which the person is overly-excited. This often makes me much 
less focused and productive. Such states-of-mind are caused by a certain 
negative thought that is not handled correctly by the cognition. From my 
experience, such things are normally caused by work-related fears and 
problems.

This has proven it hard for me to work as well. This time around I was OK for 
a long time (over two months), but then became hypo-manic. It took me some 
time to relax, but after I went to work, much more relaxed and determined to 
finish my task, I was informed that I was going to be fired.

-----------------------------

Where was I? Yes: I don't like very much being preached at much especially 
with not-so-constructive criticism like "you should figure something out" 
(how?) or "you should have done X instead of Y" (when it's impossible to do 
it again). My primary intention in the last two threads here was to start a 
philosophical discussion.

Regards,

	Shlomi Fish

> coming up with ideas about utopian companies, without even thinking how
> they'll earn money, can help you release steam. it will not help you
> earn a living.
>
> unlike with the open-source world, where time is not a factor, and it's
> ok if several people do the same thing again and again until they get
> something working properly, and having 10 different projects doing the
> same thing, until one or two emerge as the most useful, and the others
> ar thrown into a niche (or die gracefully) - i don't see many people
> willing to put their money into such initiatives - because they can't
> see how they are ever going to get it back with a nice profit. if you
> don't have a clear plan - it's safer to invest your money in bond
> stocks, in the stock market, etc.
>
> so i would suggest you started thinking why you keep losing jobs
> (quiting early is not better then being fired). and try to work on
> changing that.
>
> --guy
>
> Shlomi Fish wrote:
> > Hi all!
> >
> > I wrote this mission statement as a way to put some of my thoughts on
> > paper. It's just an idea, and I'm not sure how practical it is, but it is
> > still interesting.
> >
> > Comments are welcome.
> >
> > Regards,
> >
> > 	Shlomi Fish
> >
> > I recently got fired from my workplace:
> >
> > http://shlomif.livejournal.com/39976.html
> >
> > That has made me thinking: why can't there be a perfect workplace in
> > Israel? Here's how I define perfect:
> >
> > 1. Integrates the best of http://www.joelonsoftware.com/ ,
> > http://www.catb.org/~esr/writings/cathedral-bazaar/ ,
> > http://www.extremeprogramming.org/ ,
> > http://www.paulgraham.com/ , etc.
> >
> > 2. Google lets its employees work for 20% on the time on their projects
> > of choice. We will demand employees to work on our own projects only 20%
> > of the time, and we will not require them to assign copyrights for what
> > they do, including not at work time.
> >
> > Why? For several reasons:
> >
> >     2.1. If someone has to work 80% of the time, he'll feel frustrated
> > and only works 20% of the time. If, OTOH, he has to work 20% of the time,
> > he'll work more than that.
> >
> >     2.2. Because what employees do on their free days may prove of
> > interest to us.
> >
> >     2.3. Because we're not possessive about our "intellectual property".
> > We're fully open source (see below).
> >
> > 3. We will work on open source software exclusively. Not just GPL - but
> > also ,and often preferably, LGPL or MIT X11. The less other people and
> > companies ask
> > us for permission to use our software - the better.
> >
> > 4. We will encourage our workers to "blog": write essays, maintain a
> > weblog, edit wikis, maintain public web sites, publish articles in online
> > and offline publications, etc. We will have a "planet" for the company.
> >
> > 5. We will allow free choice of language.
> >
> > 6. Everyone can become a member of the company simply by adding himself
> > to the wiki. He or she will not get paid immediately, but they still can
> > consider themselves part of the company.
> >
> > ------------------------------------
> >
> > Now what we will work on? Will there ever be a lack of good ideas?
> >
> > 1. Refactoring MediaWiki - MW is great but its source code is lacking and
> > could use a lot of polishing. I've talked with someone who wants to
> > re-implement it, but based on the wisdom of the patriarchs Joel and Eric,
> > I'd like to try to refactor it first.
> >
> > 2. Writing a web-based email that does not suck - I'm sorry, but KMail
> > still gives a much better E-mail experience than gmail, and makes the
> > people you correspond with, who are using a superior email client, much
> > less angry.
> >
> > I suppose we can take a popular web-based email client and improve it to
> > perfection (as we cannot do the same with gmail)
> >
> > 3. Winapt - http://winapt.berlios.de/
> >
> > 4. rindolf - a perl 5 compiler written in perl 5 that will make perl 5 on
> > Parrot and other VMs, both C-hosting and perl-hosting.
> >
> > ---------------------
> >
> > These are just a few examples - there are many more. But the point is
> > that I believe such a company will not only be very popular, but can in
> > fact be profitable. Paul Graham and ESR have rambled a lot about how
> > people who are left to do what they want to do, rather than what they
> > feel they are obliged to do, produce superior results to those who don't.
> > Such a company can be a very powerful force, even in comparison to
> > Google. And most importantly it will be a great employer to work for.
> >
> > My problem is that while being a competent programmer and a philosopher
> > (or essayist or blogger as they are now called), I'm not sure I'm cut to
> > do management. I need someone who'll manage me. Then I'll need to find
> > funding. This way I and others can get paid for doing the things they
> > like to do on their free time, and the company can actually make a
> > profit.
> >
> > I suppose that once someone has signed a contract, we can tell him to
> > give us a percentage of all the consultancy/contracting he's been doing.
> > Or we can give consulting, contracting and support for projects that we
> > have a lot of experience with. Alternatively, we can have a completely
> > different business model.
> >
> > Regards,
> >
> >     Shlomi Fish
> >
> > ---------------------------------------------------------------------
> > Shlomi Fish      shlomif at iglu.org.il
> > Homepage:        http://www.shlomifish.org/
> >
> > If it's not in my E-mail it doesn't happen. And if my E-mail is saying
> > one thing, and everything else says something else - E-mail will conquer.
> >     -- An Israeli Linuxer
> >
> >
> >
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-- 

---------------------------------------------------------------------
Shlomi Fish      shlomif at iglu.org.il
Homepage:        http://www.shlomifish.org/

If it's not in my E-mail it doesn't happen. And if my E-mail is saying
one thing, and everything else says something else - E-mail will conquer.
    -- An Israeli Linuxer



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