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Saturday, June 29, 2019

H1B horror

If you weren't afraid to fly before, you will be now that you know how Boeing is producing its 737 flight software:
It remains the mystery at the heart of Boeing Co.’s 737 Max crisis: how a company renowned for meticulous design made seemingly basic software mistakes leading to a pair of deadly crashes. Longtime Boeing engineers say the effort was complicated by a push to outsource work to lower-paid contractors.

The Max software — plagued by issues that could keep the planes grounded months longer after U.S. regulators this week revealed a new flaw — was developed at a time Boeing was laying off experienced engineers and pressing suppliers to cut costs.

Increasingly, the iconic American planemaker and its subcontractors have relied on temporary workers making as little as $9 an hour to develop and test software, often from countries lacking a deep background in aerospace — notably India.

In offices across from Seattle’s Boeing Field, recent college graduates employed by the Indian software developer HCL Technologies Ltd. occupied several rows of desks, said Mark Rabin, a former Boeing software engineer who worked in a flight-test group that supported the Max.

The coders from HCL were typically designing to specifications set by Boeing. Still, “it was controversial because it was far less efficient than Boeing engineers just writing the code,” Rabin said. Frequently, he recalled, “it took many rounds going back and forth because the code was not done correctly.”

Boeing’s cultivation of Indian companies appeared to pay other dividends. In recent years, it has won several orders for Indian military and commercial aircraft, such as a $22 billion one in January 2017 to supply SpiceJet Ltd. That order included 100 737-Max 8 jets and represented Boeing’s largest order ever from an Indian airline, a coup in a country dominated by Airbus.
I have had just one experience working with Indian software developers, when I was designing a game-training tool for 3M. To say that they were completely incompetent would have been an exaggeration, as in the end, they did manage to get a very basic, ugly version of what I had designed working. But I would estimate that they were about one-tenth as competent as the worst Western programmer with whom I ever worked.

Think about how poorly Skype and the average application works today in comparison with five years ago. Now apply that level of technological degradation to literally everything that involves putting people in the air and transporting them from one place to another.

Then again, the first rockstar programmer I ever knew was a young Indian who was the best programmer at my father's company despite being hired right out of college, and who is still a brilliant programmer and entrepreneur. But that was literally the opposite of outsourcing. So, it's not that Indians simply can't do it, it's that the probabilities don't favor outsiders attempting to determine who can and who cannot.

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104 Comments:

Blogger Shrugger June 29, 2019 6:53 AM  

Indian programming teams are Brooks' Law on steroids

Blogger Don't Call Me Len June 29, 2019 7:10 AM  

The widespread delusion that the only proper and logical objective of corporations is to maximize shareholder value is utterly ruinous, on a par with giving authority to SJWs.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan June 29, 2019 7:16 AM  

It would have been cheaper to bribe the Indian airline execs, zerohedge ran a blurb about orders at some recently held airshow on how Boeing got blanked versus Airbus.

I have a solution, maybe, but it will give us some satisfaction. At incidents like these we decimate the Chamber of Commerce by draw.

Blogger steb June 29, 2019 7:28 AM  

At my current company I work with Indian developers and I'd say they average out about the same as the westerners. At past companies where we have had outsourcing nightmares, it's always been the same as described above: the developers write something that technically fulfils the specification but only in the worst way imaginable.

It comes down to loyalty. The team I work with now are involved, have a pretty low churn rate and seem to care about the end product. The ones who were working for Boeing were obviously only loyal to their own company, which means writing the worst code they can get away with because they know it will generate more billable hours fixing the problems that they introduced in the first place.

Planes need to be built by people who want to build planes. There's a management sickness that wants to pretend that all of the non-managers are just interchangeable cogs that can be controlled by the right set of targets and rewards. It's a myth though. Companies are only successful when the people who work there do the work that their managers don't even know to check.

Blogger Tanjil Bren June 29, 2019 7:30 AM  

"To say that they were completely incompetent would have been an exaggeration."

My friends in IT all say exactly the same thing.

One wonders how much longer these companies can continue to fool themselves that these 'cheap' Indian hires aren't, in fact, costing them the farm.

Blogger Balkan Yankee June 29, 2019 7:32 AM  

The Boeing H1B. Coming soon to an airport near you.

Unless the FAA grounds it first.

Blogger InformationMerchant June 29, 2019 7:36 AM  

This is what they get. If Skype messes up, no one really cares. If cheaping out on coders makes your planes crash, you can't just ignore the problem.

It's disappointing that Indian contracts will cushion the blow they should've taken. If industry disruption isn't possible, it'd be nice for at least some fundamentals of capitalism to hold up.

Libertarians waiting for a new [insert every big converged tech company here] haven't got me optimistic about all the outsourced coding getting better. At least the left eating itself might make SJW coders vs Indian coders an interesting battle.

Blogger JAG June 29, 2019 7:45 AM  

The lesson here is that being good at spelling bees does not mean you will be good at math, programming, or engineering.

Blogger dienw June 29, 2019 7:45 AM  

I believe that India needs to to be more diverse: it must import more Chinese, especially STEM professionals; that way when Boeing outsources its coding work, it can be sure its jets won't crash. Diversity will be India's strength.

Blogger SB71 June 29, 2019 7:46 AM  

These rat bastards on top of it all have been sucking taxpayers dry for decades! Boeing is one of the most subsidized manufacturers and the politicians kept the gravy train rolling, ostensibly because "We need manufacturers here and not moving abroad!" Heads should roll but they won't because the GOP Congress are eunuchs!

Blogger Bobiojimbo June 29, 2019 7:47 AM  

I too work with Indians. They don't read our troubleshooting notes and can only "read" our screenshots. This led them to asking us to verify steps we already performed and notated, but didn't screenshot. When I messaged one of them, he told me in no uncertain terms, they don't fix the software and simply review logs.

Blogger Doktor Jeep June 29, 2019 7:56 AM  

The whole H1B and out sourcing thing is related to the whole thing about putting these jobs only in leftist coastal cities.

Yes. It really is about making sure white American men do not get these jobs.

Blogger Freeholder June 29, 2019 7:57 AM  

It is an odd sort of reverse racism, they see the occasional gifted programmer and think, well since they are Indian, and India has a billion people, there much be a billion people who are just as good as the gifted programmer I am working with. I didn't understand the thought process 20 years ago when I first encountered it and I don't understand it now.

Blogger depth June 29, 2019 8:04 AM  

I spoke with an American recruiter several months ago about how most of the tech jobs in this area have been taken over by Indian recruiters.

He told me that he read a ranking of IT schools worldwide, and that the best IT school in India is ranked 358th in the world. I couldn't verify that, but I saw a list of the top 50 and there were no Indian schools listed.

I personally work with a couple dozen of them. For every one that's decent there are two or three goldbricks. The American employees are expected to work around their inadequacies, and everybody knows it.

Blogger Nation-Deprived June 29, 2019 8:32 AM  

That last sentence rings so true. And not just the Bindis. I happened to work for an insurance company that liked to hire H1Bs from all over the world. The diversity came at the cost of constant mistakes and poor office cohesion due to culture clash.

Blogger Robert What? June 29, 2019 8:33 AM  

I own a small tech company in the data security industry. A long time ago I outsourced my testimg to an Indian firm. They would do exactly what I told them to do and nothing more. They had no ability to think outside the box. If I didn't think of a test for them to run, they didn't run it. I wanted them to run tests that even I didn't think of.

Blogger Ferdinand June 29, 2019 8:41 AM  

Russians are pretty scared of flying inside their own borders because it is so damn risky. Would be a shame if that is the future for the west.

Blogger camcleat June 29, 2019 8:48 AM  

Called this locally as soon as I heard about the MCAS issues on the aircraft. No one I mentioned the H1B roots of this issue to really wanted to hear that, so I'm glad to see articles like this coming out.

I recently asked a friend that works for Boeing if he thought the Max issue was going to hurt the company. He blew it off, saying in effect "too big to fail."

I disagree with his assessment. Boeing is about to get H1B-raped.

Blogger Daniele Grech Pereira June 29, 2019 9:02 AM  

Most of my programming jobs have been completely rebuilding what some incompetent indians have made. How these people keep getting paid to do absolutely nothing other than bungle every single line of code, is way above my pay grade.

Blogger Ken Prescott June 29, 2019 9:03 AM  

So, to the idiocy of having non-pilots write the code, they added H1Bs who have no cultural alignment with Western aviation--the kind of culture where everything is out in the open and ruthlessly critiqued, with lots of elbows thrown, which is completely alien to placed like India--AND the kind of quality you get at $9 an hour.

Blogger Skyler the Weird June 29, 2019 9:11 AM  

They replace competent Western engineers with anybody with a funny sounding name who got their job in India because of Aunt Pushpa and Uncle Ravi then pat themselves on the back for saving money. Someone tell Jesse Jackson that Indians are taking Middle Class jobs from African-American programmers.

Blogger camcleat June 29, 2019 9:12 AM  

Daniele Grech Pereira wrote:Most of my programming jobs have been completely rebuilding what some incompetent indians have made. How these people keep getting paid to do absolutely nothing other than bungle every single line of code, is way above my pay grade.

It's not just in programming. A friend of mine was contracting for publishers of science and math books and algorithmic educational content. He identified a pattern:

Companies, very big ones, would blow their project budget hiring incompetent authors and other content creators many of which were very likely H1B holders. Then they'd come to him to fix the issues, but they had little-to-no money to pay him.

He often worked at well below a competitive hourly rate to get some work coming in. Even when it was pointed out to them that they could save $$ long term by just hiring him at the beginning, these big, major player companies refused to do so.

It's almost like they believed they had some legal or moral obligation to hire H1B's at sub-standard performance levels. In a pretty good example of convergence, they knew the quality sucked, but simple didn't care.

Blogger Brett baker June 29, 2019 9:13 AM  

What if you're in a near monopoly position? "Take it or leave it" becomes a common attitude then.

Blogger Brett baker June 29, 2019 9:16 AM  

Jesse's paymasters wouldn't let him act on that.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan June 29, 2019 9:18 AM  

Fixing Chamberpot of Commerce designated business practices is in itself a budding business paradigm. I know of a bike shop two blocks from a Wally World and offhandedly asked how they could compete against Big Wallymart and China bikes, the owner told me fixing China bikes so they actually worked was his business model then when real bikers finally decided on a real bike they bought from him.

Blogger Skyler the Weird June 29, 2019 9:20 AM  

I worked second tier support on a helpdesk that started hiring Sepoys and Pinoys to take calls. We'd get calls first level support couldn't handle. We had a drop down to explain why we had to get the call. One of the options was 'Missed Troubleshooting at first level'. That quickly disappeared from the menu as we outsourced more and more.

The scary thing is that the Big banks that survived the financial crisis are hiring H1b's to create their financial software. We're going to wake up one morning unable to access our accounts or will find our funds transferred to Mumbai.

Blogger Unknownsailor June 29, 2019 9:30 AM  

depth wrote:I spoke with an American recruiter several months ago about how most of the tech jobs in this area have been taken over by Indian recruiters.

He told me that he read a ranking of IT schools worldwide, and that the best IT school in India is ranked 358th in the world. I couldn't verify that, but I saw a list of the top 50 and there were no Indian schools listed.

I personally work with a couple dozen of them. For every one that's decent there are two or three goldbricks. The American employees are expected to work around their inadequacies, and everybody knows it.

If American IT wants to take its field back, it is going to have to learn to document this shit, and quantify it with money figures.
-Unknownsailor-

Blogger Brick Hardslab June 29, 2019 9:35 AM  

Boeing computer services and Boeing support services were always the red headed step children of the company. Boeing worked very hard to limit the union hourly employees in those divisions giving the employees less clout and less ability to resist outsourcing and replacement. If those employees would have been unionized yes they would have earned more but since Boeing has made a conscious decision to disconnect management from employees it has gone downhill. They were setting themselves up for this the day they moved headquarters from Seattle. They used to have regular working breakfasts with young guys from each division with the big bosses, get to know the kids who will be recruited to management from the ranks then teach them Boeing culture. Teamwork, loyalty, regard for your workers was ingrained. Guys started in the ranks and knew the workers. Not anymore and it shows. Boeing knew how to take a guy and develop him now they hire empty suits and foreigners. The die has been cast.

Blogger binks webelf June 29, 2019 9:36 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Damelon Brinn June 29, 2019 9:54 AM  

Many of those who own software companies today would have owned sweatshops a century ago, or slave ships a century before that.

Blogger Roman Daoist June 29, 2019 10:00 AM  

People will be accused of racism for claiming Indians aren't as competent as Westerners, long before anyone changes corporate practise. Who in management is going to say the words "I think we should hire more local talent instead of relying on Indian recruiters given their apparent record of poor quality". FIRED!

It's a cult and sacrifices will be made.

Blogger Gregory the Tall June 29, 2019 10:02 AM  

It is part of the project of letting foreign powers establish a no-fly zone over the USA.

Blogger pnq87 June 29, 2019 10:11 AM  

Boeing is Strong!

Blogger Ray - SoCal June 29, 2019 10:11 AM  

The quote in the article of a Boeing manager saying we don’t need senior engineers because this is a mature technology is damning.

Blogger Damelon Brinn June 29, 2019 10:12 AM  

But I would estimate that they were about one-tenth as competent as the worst Western programmer with whom I ever worked.

I'd say that's about right. And the problem is that competence isn't additive, not in any job more complicated than plugging the thing in the thing. If you hire ten 10%-competent programmers, you might theoretically get as much competent code as one 100% competent guy would have created (the stuff copied and pasted from StackExchange), but you also get the other 90% of incompetent code, and it's all mixed together and none of the incompetents can tell you which is which. So now you need a truly competent guy to fix it, which could take as long as writing it from scratch, or you have him patch it enough to make it work and ship it and hope for the best.

Blogger Ray - SoCal June 29, 2019 10:14 AM  

Boeing with the MD merger brought in GE management that has changed the culture to a numbers / cost focused one. Moving the headquarters to Chicago was part of that. There are no more bet the company new plane projects.

Blogger Gregory the Tall June 29, 2019 10:14 AM  

Satan to his underlings: "Diversity is our strength."

Blogger Great White June 29, 2019 10:23 AM  

My previous consulting job was literally nothing but fixing multiple man-years of development that was outsource to Indian code farms. We'd rewrite entire apps in months, and come in at 15-20% of the overall lines of code with less bugs than the original devs. Worst case was a 3000 line file that replicated functionality of the framework, ended up being brought down to 200 lines. The bugs introduced from the needless complexity by the offshoring is prevalent and consistent.

Every time I've ever brought this up, even the most avowed SJW developers will chime in with their own horror stories of working with or fixing code written by the Indians. You know it's beyond awful when even the SJWs pile on a brown group.

Blogger Goodnight June 29, 2019 10:24 AM  

I spent many years handling some global software support operations for a massive tech company. After the turn of the millennium, the execs decide to go all in on offshore outsourcing. It was my team that was tasked with implementing it. I spent the next decade constantly running back and forth to India, often to fix things that shouldn't have been broken.

I could write volumes on the craziness we experienced. Nepotism and education fraud were so rampant that we eventually considered them just a part of doing business. The local managers would hire "engineers" who supposedly had Masters degrees in Computer Science and then we'd have to teach them basic skills like how to search for a file. It turned out a lot of the schools were set ups run from storefronts and a lot of the new hires were the cousin of somebody connected.

We would get really good solid techs occasionally, but the problem was that they always got quickly promoted away from troubleshooting or poached by a company with a better offer. The thing was, almost every single person I met in India who went into IT did it because they thought it was the best path to be able to eventually move to the US or UK (and take their families with them). It was like a universal rule. We were constantly getting asked about open positions that might sponsor a work visa.

Blogger Gregory the Tall June 29, 2019 10:27 AM  

@38 You wrote: "You know it's beyond awful when even the SJWs pile on a brown group." Proof that the truth has its own ways to assert itself.

Blogger Avalanche June 29, 2019 10:39 AM  

@19 "How these people keep getting paid to do absolutely nothing other than bungle every single line of code, is way above my pay grade."

Old navy complaint; well, old Navy TRUTH!

We NEVER have time or money to do it right the first time; we ALWAYS have time and money to do it over.

Blogger Whitecloak June 29, 2019 10:40 AM  

This feels like it ties in with the student loan issues from the last few days. H-1Bindis have replaced even our young who did the 'right' thing and got STEM degrees.

The result is that you can no longer safely fly. Guess I'm driving to my next vacation.

Blogger pyrrhus June 29, 2019 10:43 AM  

Whatever happened to the old expression "you get what you paid for?"
But in the case of our tiny company outsourcing some software to Asia 20 years ago, we didn't even get that...The result was 100% worthless.

Blogger Avalanche June 29, 2019 10:48 AM  

@28 "They used to have regular working breakfasts with young guys from each division with the big bosses, get to know the kids who will be recruited to management from the ranks then teach them Boeing culture."

Worked for a few years with a young fellow (at Boeing Computer Services) Brilliant kid, super hard charger, was going to be -- and ended up -- a truly excellent manager... but not at Boeing! He was pulled into the mgmt-candidate group, which was what finally made him quit and move on.

He'd come back from a week of classes and training and experiences at some other Boeing plant or operation, just super excited and full of pleasure at the "GREAT new processes and programs" Boeing was setting up and the paths Boeing was building to even better future programs -- and then he'd be stopped dead because: "well, we weren't going to be doing any of that HERE!"

Poor, big, bureaucratic, govt-suck-up Boeing... We peons loved and cared about Boeing -- and then got stomped.

Blogger John Rockwell June 29, 2019 11:10 AM  

The dysfunctional caste system where Indians kiss up and kick down. And the fact that they are nepotistic to the point of being anti-merit.

Makes it a mistake to even let them come to get jobs in the country in the 1st place.

Blogger 1100 June 29, 2019 11:15 AM  

A couple of years ago my son worked for a company that outsourced some computer code work to India to try and save some money. The company ended up needing the American code writers to fix the problems created by the Indian outsourcing. This turned out to be an expensive lesson for the company.

Blogger Jim the Curmudgeon June 29, 2019 11:26 AM  

I've worked with some good Indians, but in general I find them irritating and overrated. There's a different set of norms regarding honesty that can become a problem, particularly when you have regulatory issues. Indians treat a lot of that stuff as optional, and you can't trust them to do an honest job instead of an expedient one.

In a country of > 1 billion people, you are going to have some really smart programmers. However, we have to keep in mind that this is a country that scores so low on PISA that it isn't even ranked, and whose universities don't seem to crack the top 300. In comparison, China is absolutely surging, with Tsinghua climbing the charts and Chinese researchers dominating entire fields these days.

The nepotism, clannishness, misogyny (ha ha, finally a correct use of the term) and dishonesty of these people cannot be over-estimated. Letting low trust people like this into a high trust society is a titanic error.

Blogger bdoran June 29, 2019 11:30 AM  

Yeah.
Exactly.
1 billion geniuses - shitting in the streets.

Let me gift you understanding: its called kickbacks. Of course they’re paying off to save relatives from poverty- the Americans have no excuse but greed.?

Blogger AaMcavoy June 29, 2019 11:32 AM  

I recently learned that my state's biggest medical company requires its doctors to follow diagnostic procedures written by a woman engineer in India with no medical background. Suddenly, all my medical experiences made sense.

Blogger Jim the Curmudgeon June 29, 2019 11:32 AM  

Fav recent memory of Indians. They put a couple of girls from marketing across from my desk in our open office space recently, one of whom was a moderately attractive sandy-haired blonde of about 27 years of age. They were not very happy campers, as they were surrounded by dorky men and no other women. The Chinese men pretty much ignored them, but the Indians would stare at them like starving dogs looking at hamburger. Behind their backs, of course, but women can always sense these things.

Being married, I have no such issues with other women so I talked to them routinely. Once when they weren't around, one of the Indians came up and said 'you are very good talking to women'. He seemed amazed at my prowess. I mumbled something about being married, but I wanted to say that a first good step is to actually learn to say hi.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 29, 2019 11:40 AM  

Jim the Curmudgeon wrote:n comparison, China is absolutely surging, with Tsinghua climbing the charts and Chinese researchers dominating entire fields these days.
Chinese routinely falsify research.

Blogger Aeroschmidt June 29, 2019 11:48 AM  

There was an attempt at outsourcing on the 787 for my subsystem. Everything came back. From India, from France. The second attempt to outsource was with Mexico. If you can write code to do it easily, you can outsource to Mexico. Don't try with anything that requires thinking. All the Mexicans that can think already excaped.

Blogger Leatherwing June 29, 2019 11:51 AM  

I'm a software tester and find that maybe 1 out of 5 Indian developers is half as good as a junior dev from a Western European country or the US. But two things I find especially annoying: 1)They will almost never say "No", so they agree to any task even when they know it can't be done, then just fail to deliver (or deliver crap). 2) They will never admit they made a mistake. They will go fix it and tell you to try again, but will never admit that they made a change or had to correct it

Blogger cyrus83 June 29, 2019 11:52 AM  

I've dealt more with the so-called "nearshoring" concept at work, where the workers are located in South America but not on the company payroll. Among other things, they are engaged in IT support, and the results have been less than stellar.

Changes and updates for the system are often implemented wrong the first time out, and they don't really test that their changes are working correctly. Sometimes fixes to one thing break something else, they don't think outside the box very well, and more than once they've come back to the person with the service request asking how to do the thing we've asked them to do.

Aside from the time spent in correcting all the mistakes that flow from errors in the system, putting in a request requires very careful spelling out of both what to do with screenshots and warnings on what not to do and what not to change.

Blogger Gen. Kong June 29, 2019 12:02 PM  

The solution to much of this boils down to something VD has touched upon a few times: abolish corporations. Boeing's Haaaaavaaard Biz Schul execs will not be losing any pennies or sleep over their monstrous decision to increase their bonuses and golden parachutes at the cost of several hundred lives of mostly zeks and proles. The major stockholders of Boeing will not be on the hook for this financially as they're immune from liability. The payouts for the deaths will be picked up by insurance - yet another racket run by the casino owners of Wall Street to ensure the real criminals never pay. The same applies to the various chamberpots of commerce all over the country. If the local plaid-pants clowns who fund the Gay Old Pedos faced liability for their various schemes and shortcuts which result in real damage - e.g. the Honduran invader hired under the table for cheap who drives drunk, kills and seriously injures Americans (to give one all too common example) - they wouldn't have so much loose money around to fund the likes of Miss Lindsay Graham. Those who enable invasion are engaging in an act of treason. This should leave them liable to have all of their assets forfeit along with either the rest of their days in a place like Gitmo or a fast trip to the gallows.

Blogger TMLutas June 29, 2019 12:04 PM  

If you have a properly developed software specification with adequate test cases, outsourcing can work.

Virtually nobody does this.

By a properly developed spec, I mean devote a majority of the time to defining what it is you actually want and for every feature that is developed, you automatically develop tests that the feature works as designed as part of the requirements to develop the code in the first place. This shrinks down the part of the job that the programmers do from perhaps three quarters to maybe a quarter of the work. But it's the quarter that the outsourced people can manage.

It's painfully slow on the front end and requires management competence to know what they want and commit to it before letting the programmers loose. Good luck with that in any country.

Blogger Jack Amok June 29, 2019 12:14 PM  

Boeing computer services and Boeing support services were always the red headed step children of the company.

This is a common problem in "hardware" companies. Software gets seen as a cost center, a necessary evil the company has to pay for. Given the opaqueness of software development, non-coders have a very hard time comprehending what's actually going on, so they short-shrift the coding. The big shiny plane is easy to see and obviously it takes some skill to make that! The code? Eh, whatever... It's one reason I - despite being a programmer - don't think computerizing everything is a good idea at all.

...since Boeing has made a conscious decision to disconnect management from employees it has gone downhill. They were setting themselves up for this the day they moved headquarters from Seattle. They used to have regular working breakfasts with young guys from each division with the big bosses, get to know the kids who will be recruited to management from the ranks then teach them Boeing culture. Teamwork, loyalty, regard for your workers...

Yep, Boeing changed from being a partnership between management and labor, to being just another unionized shit show. Unions really are a death-knell to a company, because it signals that the people running the company and the people doing the work are no longer on the same team.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 29, 2019 12:29 PM  

They heard the phrase "code monkeys" and decided to give it a try.

Blogger kurt9 June 29, 2019 12:29 PM  

There's a management sickness that wants to pretend that all of the non-managers are just interchangeable cogs that can be controlled by the right set of targets and rewards. It's a myth though.

This is one aspect of what I call the cult of management. The cult of management is the idea that the business method taught in MBA schools can be applied to any business, everything from accounting services to making airplanes, without the managers having knowledge specific to the operations of the company.

Boeing with the MD merger brought in GE management that has changed the culture to a numbers / cost focused one. Moving the headquarters to Chicago was part of that. There are no more bet the company new plane projects.

This was Philip Condit's doing. He was the first of the MBA-type CEO's at Boeing. Yes, he was originally an "airplane" guy early in his career. But he cut his teeth on the SST program, which was entirely government-financed until it was cancelled. The MD acquisition resulted in MD managers (who were terrible) being promoted at Boeing. Condit took down the "firewall" between defense contracting and the commercial aircraft divisions. This is what has done the most damage to Boeing. I believe the move of HQ to Chicago was a part of this.

Blogger Azimus June 29, 2019 12:30 PM  

VD:
Now apply that level of technological degradation to literally everything that involves putting people in the air and transporting them from one place to another.


I'm in manufacturing operations and it is fascinating and terrifying to see the degradation happening in the physical world. Even if we train our own people to top-notch status (which is itself a bit of a pipe dream), we are hopelessly at the mercy of our suppliers - we have this great automation but if the packaging is globbed together with glue - it breaks down. If the screws are dull or filthy, it breaks down. If the plastic components are warped, it breaks down. And thats just components of our saleable product, nevermind the conveyor belts that shred in 2 months when they used to last years, the robot wrists that cause continual faults, the wires that fray and break internally, the network crashes, the vacuum generator failures, etc., etc., etc.

In my 15 years in manufacturing labor in my plant and in the companies I work with has A) never been more expensive and B) never been less competent. When I started my plant had probably 60% "1st choice career" employees who wanted to work in a factory, and chose it. They had a loyalty to their company and took pride in a job well done. Now 90% of the people we get are wash-outs from another career, hate the hard work of a factory, and only come because its better pay and benefits than working retail.

In the last few years, this trend seems to be accelerating. When the boomers leave, we will be in trouble - they had only 1 kid, and they sent him to college to get a Bachelor of Arts in something meaningless. Well now he's 25, knows nothing, hates that he can't design video games for a living (no offense intended to our host), is $70k in debt, and despises his fate that he has to load a box machine for 8hrs. And those are the ones who are willing to leave mom's basement to "work."

We are losing our ability as a civilization to operate sophisticated machines. We will probably never see the power go off in NYC on our way to Galt's Gulch, but we are on a terrible regressive trend right now and we need to turn it around - fast.

Blogger kurt9 June 29, 2019 12:40 PM  

The rot at Boeing started with Philip Condit. Turning around Boeing will require that "airplane" people (people who like planes and want to build them) be put in charge of Boeing. That's the only way.

Blogger Dirk Manly June 29, 2019 12:46 PM  

"The Boeing H1B. Crashing soon to an airport near you."

There,I fixed it for you.

Blogger Brick Hardslab June 29, 2019 1:06 PM  

I remember when they put Condit in charge. No more breakfasts with the bosses, no more internal development if got out soon after

Blogger Franz Lyonheart June 29, 2019 1:08 PM  

But I would estimate that they were about one-tenth as competent as the worst Western programmer with whom I ever worked.

Ok, one tenth is a bad deal indeed.

London investment banking calculation roughly goes as follows : you try to get the Indians to up to a third or half as good. Their cost rate is about a fifth of London based staff. So if they perform at half or even only a third of effectiveness (even taking bugs and delays into account), the London head office ends up with a profit. Anything worse than a quarter of performance - a loss. Time or top quality critical items have to be developed in the West in any case, for obvious reasons. It kinda works for now.

The problem is that using that springboard, many Indians come to London and whilst here, start to set up their tribalistic nepotism.

Blogger thethirdcoast June 29, 2019 1:09 PM  

#60 Az-

I also work in a light manufacturing facility and every part of your comment is 100% for my facility.

Training at our facility is perfunctory because 80% of the floor staff are now 6-month contractors who are guaranteed not to be renewed.

Lack of attention to detail or straight up broken processes kill us over and over again. For example, we send uncleaned product to our conformal coating house and expect them to deal with bonding the coating to something covered in contaminants.

We tried implementing limited robotic assembly. No one could keep the robots calibrated, much less operational for any length of time.

We have multiple, highly-experienced troubleshoot techs that only come in to get out of the house. There is no active effort for them to document their knowledge or mentor an understudy.

Speaking of those experienced techs, they are also swamped trying to repair the low-yield, garbage designs that come off the production line.

Then, they have to enter repair notes in the byzantine mountain of trash Oracle database rather than having a stenographer or understudy to handle that.

There are a few good younger folks around, but they are pretty rare. They don't have much hope of effecting a culture change because the Boomer and contaminated early-Xer trash that run the place are perfectly fine with things as they are while they promote their incompetent, sycophantic, sometimes vibrant pets to undeserved positions of authority.

I actually deal with a plant we have in another country. That is becoming much, much easier because our US facility is so degraded. Heck, at least the folks working overseas are long-term employees so that there is some continuity in terms of knowledge and process.

Blogger doctrev June 29, 2019 1:22 PM  

India's debt has decreased from where it was in 2005. The country is growing economically, to the point where 6% is below average growth. It has a nationalist government and a relatively united people, especially compared to the US. Yes, some Indians are lazy bastards, but Western companies are farming out projects to the lowest bidder. Any scammer can see how to milk that, and India's going to have its fair share. A lot of Western nationalists absolutely hate India and Indians, but India isn't the one outsourcing your jobs. It's Western corporations doing that, in this case because Boeing wanted a ton of money from plane sales. Those managers have no idea how to do quality control, much less assess whether the project will be completed well. And that's a problem that doesn't start in India either.

... but please let this be the spark that forces companies to reconsider their use of H1Bs...

Blogger camcleat June 29, 2019 1:26 PM  

kurt9 wrote:There's a management sickness that wants to pretend that all of the non-managers are just interchangeable cogs that can be controlled by the right set of targets and rewards. It's a myth though.

This is one aspect of what I call the cult of management. The cult of management is the idea that the business method taught in MBA schools can be applied to any business, everything from accounting services to making airplanes, without the managers having knowledge specific to the operations of the company.



We've seen this exact same rot in STEM education, and it started at least prior to 1990.

The idea promulgated at that time was "anyone that knows how to teach can teach anything." So, we saw a reduction in scientists teaching science.

One stat I used to quote a lot, current in about '92 or '93 was that at that time, there was about 22,000 high schools in the US and only about 6,000 actual chemists teaching high school chemistry.

My middle school earth science teacher in the 70's was a math major in college, and in high school we had crap like english majors teaching history and all kinds of stuff.

Thus we've been seeing the replacement of "expertise" by "some form of theoretical knowledge" for a long time. And no matter how bad it is shown to be or how often it is shown to be that bad, the clowns at the top keep doubling down on this utterly failed principle.

Yet another Enlightenment failure: equivalency of education and experience.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 29, 2019 1:35 PM  

thethirdcoast wrote:Training at our facility is perfunctory because 80% of the floor staff are now 6-month contractors who are guaranteed not to be renewed. Lack of attention to detail or straight up broken processes kill us over and over again.
And whose fault is that? Who demands loyalty from people they explicitly reserve the right to dispose of at the slightest whim or bad mood? Who expects not just domain knowledge but company, job or even task specific knowledge, but refuses to provide any training of any kind whatsoever? Who expects to build a reliable process by churning the employee pool every 6 months?

It's Boomers. All the way down, Boomers have killed, not just the manufacturing industry, but every American industry that involves useful work,, skinned it, sold the meat, the bones and stomach contents, and are wearing the skin to town.

The last time I got company provided training was in 2001, when I last worked for a Silent Generation managed company. Now that I work for a GenX managed company I am again being offered training. In between, I worked for Boomers.

Blogger Xoph June 29, 2019 1:56 PM  

So I'm recently laid off after 30 years of industry experience. Of course the folks in the corner office who are forced to lay us off see no impact, in fact I suspect they will see a bonus based on cost control. Meanwhile I'm seeing that to work for a fortune 500 company and to be over 55 means to being laid off at least once unless you are in the C suite or unless you are good at jumping from job to job. Age discrimination doesn't exist except it does.

Loyalty in the US is dead. Valuation of knowledge and those details that matter is dead. The goal of management is value extraction and not value creation. It's easy to measure direct costs and not opportunity costs. Addmitting you made a mistake on the opportunity costs is not going to happen, people are going to double down and get more savings by more outsourcing. It's car guys versus bean counters on steriods repeatedly. It's Pournelle's Iron Law without lubricant. Anyone less than 30 is afraid of process. Not sure why as process is to make things easy, predictable and repeatable. If process doesn't get the job done, change the process. Is it fear of change or actually admitting things aren't working that scare the younger generation? Are they afraid to say the emporer has no clothes? Are they afraid of confrontation and thus afraid of those old curmudgeons who embrace creative conflict as a way towards spotting something that needs fixing?

Go to the small family owned companies, the people still proud of America. They value experience and competence. Anyone on the stock exchange is most likely infected with the value extration outsourcing don't tell me about the opportunity cost mentality.

Blogger Jack Ward June 29, 2019 2:06 PM  

The degradation in quality software and firmware [chip sets from Intel not worth a darn anymore]. I've learned some hard lessons these last months including a new Lenovo laptop that, probably with marginal intel chips and, possibly bad laptop building with a healthy dose of Microsoft punitive updates, which you cannot stop, killed off said laptop twice. Traced to the same update. The laptop, which was still in warranty through all this, and Lenovo refused to work on, sits in a closet gathering dust. I think they knew the chips/MS updates were conflicting and there was no way to solve it. They sure were not going to give my money back.Suppose I will throw it away someday. Most of this can probably be traced to the H1Ba visas and bad techs from places like India.
Don't where all this ends but, how can you risk purchasing another something from a supplier that is delivering crap and won't back the warranty? No more Lenovos for me. Anyone that knows what would be a good laptop, with good chip sets and an operating system that will allow one to lock out MS updates please share the knowledge.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 29, 2019 2:08 PM  

Xoph wrote:It's Pournelle's Iron Law without lubricant.
Good observation.
Perhaps better expressed as an extension to that law.
For those who are abysmally ignorat, Pournelle's Iron Law of Bureaucracy is:
"In any bureaucracy, the people devoted to the benefit of the bureaucracy itself always get in control and those dedicated to the goals the bureaucracy is supposed to accomplish have less and less influence, and sometimes are eliminated entirely."
The codicil would be that Bureaucrats will pursue this internal rivalry to the bitter end, destroying the organization rather than letting the people who could fix it have any influence.

Blogger Jack Amok June 29, 2019 2:16 PM  

The last time I got company provided training was in 2001, when I last worked for a Silent Generation managed company. Now that I work for a GenX managed company I am again being offered training. In between, I worked for Boomers.

For reasons that would only make sense to an MBA, the company I'm at now has an odd structure. Though I run the Seattle engineering office and report to the CTO, my budget comes from and has to be approved by a regional VP who's part of an entirely different reporting structure. The CTO and I are both X-ers and generally see eye to eye, but every budget review I have the same argument with the Boomer regional VP about the training budget.

We pay people salaries in the $100k to $250k per year range, and he insists spending more than $500 / year per person on training is "too expensive.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 29, 2019 2:37 PM  

It's not the money, it's the principle.
At my last job, after we bought over $2,000,000 of equiment from HP, HP wanted to send our tech lead for training. HP were willing to pay the entire cost of the training class, as well as travel, hotel and meals. About $5000 all told.
We had to go all the way to the Executive Vice President level to get it approved. Even then, they made him pay for his own rental car.

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 June 29, 2019 2:42 PM  

I have had some recent experience with this. I am currently in charge of overhauling a service API for the product my team is working on. The previous code owner was an Indian, though I'm not sure if he was an immigrant or first-generation citizen, but that doesn't matter.

The code he wrote was atrocious. Our client has a requirement of 70% code coverage, something that can only be achieved with proper unit testing. The way he wrote the code, it is clear he had no intention of properly implementing unit testing or he simply didn't know that you write code to allow that to happen.

He was let go and now works for a major banking institution. So this kind of stuff is going to spill out into most major institutions because executives in many of these companies are too naive to realize that software development is not an assembly line skill.

Blogger Johannmon June 29, 2019 2:42 PM  

Longtime IT guy. Quality varies from person to person but overall they are below the average American, and I could tell stories about things I've seen and heard on resumes and in interviews. A huge issue is communication. Most of them are difficult to understand and they don't understand idiom, vernacular, etc. This makes it stressful to communicate. I hate when they lead training classes, as they usually talk fast and heavily accented, which means you're trying to "translate" while learning.

Blogger sammibandit June 29, 2019 2:51 PM  

@Whitecloak

It ties in here in Glorious Canada. There was a Globe and Mail article I read the other day via Voat about Indians' parents at home buying them tuition at private universities while they work part time under student visas trying to get hired on work to residency visas. No one wants to hire them because of the reams of paperwork needed. These people already finished their programs anyway. I tried to find this article but since it's a popular topic for this arts and entertainment paper I was overwhelmed. Lots of articles about how hard international students have it. Can't say I care.

Blogger Damelon Brinn June 29, 2019 2:55 PM  

Who in management is going to say the words "I think we should hire more local talent instead of relying on Indian recruiters given their apparent record of poor quality". FIRED!

True, but they're saying it privately a lot more now. Five years ago, I heard a lot of, "Oh, I know there are a lot of poor quality code/support shops in India, but *we* found a really solid one." Now those same people are cussing about that failed experiment and desperately trying to find local people, who aren't there because 20 years of outsourcing and H1Bs scared all the smart young people away from the field.

So if they perform at half or even only a third of effectiveness (even taking bugs and delays into account), the London head office ends up with a profit.

One problem is that few companies ever truly analyze that; most take it for granted that cheap foreigners will be cheaper. It's right there in the name, after all. If they do try to analyze it, they will tend to overvalue the foreign labor and underestimate its costs, because they're already invested in it. It's hard to set aside your biases and judge their work objectively if you're one who recommended using them in the first place.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 29, 2019 3:06 PM  

Face it. Boomer mismanagement believes in treating it's best employees worse than the most vicious, uncaring Tsarist aristocrat would have treated his serfs.

Blogger sammibandit June 29, 2019 3:18 PM  

I write VBA baby talk. I love it and think it's great for what it is. For admin positions knowing VBA is the difference between spending 10 minutes on a daily task or 1 minute. When I was laid off I was writing a script to automate monthly sales reports in an aesthetic way, fast and slick looking with portability across the Suite.

Nothing too ambitious but also something I could take to other companies. Well, I can't get hired in my second chosen field and I have nothing to complain about compared to perennially underemployed Gen X admins. I work in retail now and only do that because I have industry connections and a reputation in my field.

Snidley talked above how Great Gen values training. When the MVP program at Microsoft was scrapped, a program of mostly white volunteers, the whole UI of the suite went south. Even bread and butter features suck now. Like what is this F4 "find" dialog box? I just want "repeat" back.

Blogger sammibandit June 29, 2019 3:20 PM  

At least the Kulak and the Rittmeyer had the decency to die with their serfs at the hands of the Hammer and Sickle. Leaving the serfs behind was verboten.

Blogger The Lab Manager June 29, 2019 3:35 PM  

So in the end, 'we saved $$$$$'. Mission accomplished. Any monkey is interchangeable with another one.

This dis-civilizational save money at any cost has filtered into every aspect of America at least at the corporate level. It's rule by the MBA. No wonder you can't get competent and prompt service anymore.

Blogger rycamor June 29, 2019 4:21 PM  

The Boomer ethos has always been "we shouldn't have to dirty our hands with actual work". That's the generation that gave us the ridiculous idea that everyone should go to college. They figured everyone can become doctors and lawyers and CEOs and let all the inconsequential people (mainly brown) do the actual hands-on stuff, because none of that really matters. In the modern world, coding is just another ugly hands-on task and should go to Mahesh the programmer just like cleaning their house goes to Maria the maid.

Blogger Jeff aka Orville June 29, 2019 4:34 PM  

This is almost singularly my hot button nowadays, Apu and his cousins. I don't write code anymore, but I sit on a number of contractor scrum calls as an SME. My ears literally bleed when an Indian goes into his/her sing-song, nearly incomprehensible presentation.

If I call a helpless desk and get an Indian I hang up and try again. Freaking useless.

Some of the big name companies like CSC, GDIT or Ventech are heavily infested.

Having worked as a programmer, requirements analyst and project manager the thing I continue to see is that the tech folks (usually programmers) leap out into the unknown solving problems and writing code before they have adequate specs from the end user. Hell I even have to fight that urge myself.

Blogger justaguy June 29, 2019 4:57 PM  

There is a big difference between the coders and the architects for any big software system. At issue here is how much to pay for simple coding as opposed to defining the breakdown of functionality to a level where someone does not have to know entire system to write code. At some point, if the interface and breakdown are done right, what is left is a decreasing level of architecture and the need for more coding.

Whether or not one set of Indians or other H1Bs can code-- well you tend to get what you pay for. The projects I was involved with needed security clearances so that was one barrier to entry.

Boeing issues were more high level than something individual coders would see. The functionality supervisors and architects should have seen the issues and likely did. Boeing's problems with 737 MAXX make me think that they do not have a rigorous software testing program set up, and as aptly put in other articles, they tried to use software to fix hardware and design problems.

Blogger rycamor June 29, 2019 5:09 PM  

@justaguy, I guarantee you there were H1Bs involved as architects and PMs. It's part and parcel of life in one of the "Top 50 Companies for Diversity."

Blogger rycamor June 29, 2019 5:11 PM  

After a couple of years of receiving "noteworthy" status in DiversityInc’s annual rankings, Boeing has broken into the magazine’s Top 50 Companies for Diversity.

Blogger Vaughan Williams June 29, 2019 5:16 PM  

And we don't even need to start on Boeing's use of slave labor. I speak of prison labor.

Blogger The Pitchfork Rebel June 29, 2019 5:28 PM  

This is common, but less conspicuous because in other places, people don't die.


When my employer decided to install Oracle as their "ERP", the existing IT staff was completely steep in the in-house custom designed system.

They brought in one of the big consulting firms, who brought in an army of Indians and Pakistanis, with the promise that not only would they not only convert our accounting, but review existing processes to ensure that they were state of the art.

One day, I had a conversation with a woman named Tanya. She had made a statement that betrayed a distinct lack of the fundamentals of accounting. I became curious about her academic background and prior experience; and when the time was right, casually inquired.

It turned out that she had a degree in Electrical Engineering and left India because she could make an astoundingly greater amount of money working for the American consulting firm in question than for any Indian employer.

It's too bad we needed people more familiar with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles than Maxwell's equations, but fortunately accounting deficiencies can be fixed without killing people.


Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 29, 2019 5:32 PM  

The Pitchfork Rebel wrote:One day, I had a conversation with a woman named Tanya. She had made a statement that betrayed a distinct lack of the fundamentals of accounting. I became curious about her academic background and prior experience; and when the time was right, casually inquired.
It's too bad we needed people more familiar with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles than Maxwell's equations, but fortunately accounting deficiencies can be fixed without killing people.


I will guarantee you that Tanya knew even less about Maxwell's equation than she did about GAAP.

Blogger Damelon Brinn June 29, 2019 6:14 PM  

At issue here is how much to pay for simple coding as opposed to defining the breakdown of functionality to a level where someone does not have to know entire system to write code.

Part of the problem is this idea that a lot of coding is "simple" or can be made simple by breaking it down far enough. While simple coding does exist, modern high-level languages abstract away much of it or tuck it into libraries behind APIs so it isn't necessary to duplicate it. When you write a program today, much of the simple stuff has already been done; your job is to hook those pieces together to make something not-simple happen.

Regardless of how simple management may think a coding task should be, if it's important, it should be written by smart, conscientious people who are detail- and logic-oriented. We're going to start seeing failure cascades in technology because of how much wasn't.

Blogger Doug Cranmer June 29, 2019 6:14 PM  

justaguy wrote:There is a big difference between the coders and the architects for any big software system.

You see this idea of workers being interchangeable at even the engineering level. The final implementation of a solution will be code but perhaps 10% at most of the total work from start to finish will involve coding. Often there's a fair bit of mathematics involved and from the outset there is no clear solution. It's part of the job to figure it out, using existing literature and your own original work.

You'll end up with a manager who's background is software development, though, who's only exposure to the field was implementing that final 5 or 10 percent. But they've decided they can manage the whole process and decide you should approach the problem by using the only technique they know as coders: just try things out until something seems to work.

I've seen this happen so many times with programmers being put into engineering positions because "they can code."

It's made only worse because this is an excellent way for Indians or Chinese to move up the management ladder. The problems just compound but they do not care. They don't expect to be around long enough to have to face any real consequences themselves.

I used to be angry about this but it's done and baked in how we do things now.

Blogger Jack Amok June 29, 2019 6:18 PM  

This is common, but less conspicuous because in other places, people don't die.

To be clear, Boeing's problem only became public knowledge because a couple of poorly trained third-world air crews mishandled the emergency situation created by the bad software/aeronautics. For the moment anyway, Western pilots are competent enough to deal with these bad designs. That will change in time too, but it's another aspect of how the rot works.

We built up so much capital - social, political, financial - that our society could compensate for an incredibly large infection of parasites. We've just about burned through all those reserves though, and debts will be due cash on the barrel head soon for us, just like they've always been in low-trust societies.

Blogger justaguy June 29, 2019 7:23 PM  

#85: There might have been lots of H1Bs at the pm and architect level. The comments after mine are right that the architects or whatever term one uses for the designer/implementer is very much more important than those who link things together.

IMHO, many of the mistakes I saw in projects were from higher levels than the coder not reading/interpreting the interface or design specs properly. It was at some level writing the intermediate or detailed specs, things didn't get translated because the people who started the project and did the initial design got rotated out to another project and couldn't/didn't answer questions for the next set who didn't have the same understanding. I am sure that all big corporations have these type of bureaucratic issues.

Blogger rycamor June 29, 2019 9:24 PM  

@justaguy, it really depends. It may seem comforting to the designer to think he can just specify the abstract interfaces or contracts within the system and let the programmers handle the low-level details, but there are very few languages that can enforce things to the degree that a bad programmer can't cause significant harm by forgetting little issues like validation, bounds checking, etc..., or worse--being ignorant of them. And if those same $9/hr programmers are also developing the test harnesses...

Blogger ldigiorgio June 30, 2019 1:21 AM  

As a recently former avionics tech on Boeing Everett flight line who loaded and trouble shot S/W when any first came out I would say there was a 25
% chance it wouldn't load to the airplane the 1st time and needed to be corrected.

Blogger SciVo June 30, 2019 5:02 AM  

At this point, I don't even look for excellence anymore. If a company can just competently execute its core tasks, that is enough to impress me.

Blogger Doktor Jeep June 30, 2019 10:43 AM  

All this talk of H1B visas, one thing that gets overlooked is that the entire "Women in tech" thing actually suffered because of these H1B pajeets.

While we know of the 3 laws of SJWs, one thing we don't consider is that they also divert. So while all this shreaking over white males in techs, "brogrammers", etc. the real camel in the tent has been the H1B wonders and how they act towards and treat women.

Oh sure, they don't perform the horrible evil act of trying to date them. But they do ignore them and circumvent them in ways that women find aggravating. So they H1B wonders won't come out and say something that HR could fire him for - though if he did then it's Oppression Olympics time, and maybe white women are lower on the totem.
What the H1B wonders do mainly that I have seen drive women up the wall is act like they never said anything. That is, any idea that comes from a woman is no idea at all. Imagine being brainwashed to be a total cubicle rat with your degree and all that and some brown guy will listen and nod when you tell him to do stuff but then he proceeds like the conversation never happened. And since he's a protected faction, you can't get rid of him.

Blogger mapster68 June 30, 2019 12:05 PM  

So so true. That is the delusion of modern management - workers are interchangeable cogs. That may have had some validity in the early days of the industrial revolution, but not any more and especially not when it comes to programming. I work for at a petrochemical facility and we had a major capital expansion some years back. The safety and control system configuration and programming was outsourced to some 3rd world outfit. It was a total disaster. Everything, and I do mean everything, had to be redone from scratch. I have heard similar stories from people in other companies.

Blogger sammibandit June 30, 2019 7:25 PM  

Herr Doktor,

That's right. I know a nice, clean married Han girl and she worked for a Pajeet pharm company. She's a scientist but described be treated like she wasn't there. It doesn't appear to be race-related misogyny.

Blogger SciVo June 30, 2019 7:31 PM  

Reality will out.

The MBAs are basically using the SJWs to make themselves immune from serious accountability. They were just treating Indian academic credentials as business ethics as equal, what's wrong with that?

And so they have created a massive country-wide incentive to impugn the competence and integrity of an entire nation, so that American managers will be held responsible for putting lipstick on Indian pigs.

And then maybe they will stop putting out 3rd-world crap, or at least not under their premium labels. I mean, if they had a separate "this is 3rd-world crap" label then that would be fair, I guess. Plane crashes, well, that happens. But that should be Boeinding.

Blogger CarpeOro July 01, 2019 8:42 AM  

One of my outsourced jobs went to HCL. Their answer for resolving data backup issues? Remove the item from backups. You don't really save if they don't actually do the work for which you pay them.

Blogger The Sasquatch July 01, 2019 11:55 AM  

HCL. Not surprised.

Blogger Stephen St. Onge July 02, 2019 1:32 AM  

        I'd bet, if you dig into this, you'd find the accountants at work, "cutting costs."  They can't make a precise estimate of relative competencies of Indian vs. American programmers.  So they ignore the issue, which is, mathematically, precisely the same as making an estimate of zero difference.

        But accountants aren't trained to realize that many of their figures have no relation to reality.

Blogger Stephen St. Onge July 02, 2019 1:55 AM  

13. Freeholder
        “It is an odd sort of reverse racism, they see the occasional gifted programmer and think, well since they are Indian, and India has a billion people, there much be a billion people who are just as good as the gifted programmer I am working with.  I didn’t understand the thought process 20 years ago when I first encountered it and I don’t understand it now.”

        Thought has nothing to do with it.  It’s a matter of emotions: a desire for simple answers based on “objective” formulas, hatred for our existing civilization, visions of effortless wealth . . . it makes them feel good in some way.

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