TweetFollow Us on Twitter

December 93 - VIEW FROM THE LEDGE

VIEW FROM THE LEDGE

TAO JONES

[IMAGE 122-123_View_From_Ledge_1.GIF]

Dear Tao,

I'm nearing the end of my rope and have become desperate enough that I figure even a letter to you couldn't hurt. Over the last couple of years I've found myself working longer and longer hours. I pointed this out to my boss and she said that there's no way the company could afford to hire more people, and that I was going to have to learn how to "work smarter." Just what the heck is that supposed to mean? P.O.

Dear P.,

In order to work smarter you have to do two things: first figure out who is smarter than you, and then copy their actions and claim them as your own. This is a problem that's easily solved if you look at history.

Unless your name is Stephen Hawking, it's pretty safe to say that Albert Einstein was smarter than you. Let's see how he handled a similar situation.

Early in his career Mr. Einstein was working in a patent office, but he was having trouble keeping up with the ever increasing workload. Upon asking his boss for advice, he too was told to "work smarter." He was also advised that he'd be a little more presentable around the office if he wore a hairnet while he slept.

Very disturbed, he went home and contemplated these words. The story is told that after several hours of soul searching and a couple of Fuzzy Navels he was able to get in touch with his Inner Physicist Self: he quit his job, came up with the General Theory of Relativity, and as a result started a career as a professional smart guy.

Taking the cue from Al, I'd say the answer's simple: quit your job and never go back to anything even remotely related to it. True, it's not likely that you'll win the Nobel Prize for physics, but I'm certain that at the very least you'll find it much easier to balance your checkbook (a task that is quite a bit simpler when you don't have to worry about income).

As for wearing the hairnet, I'd say that's optional. On the off-chance youdobecome famous, you won't look nearly as cool when they make a poster of you if your hair is neat and tidy -- something always worth considering in any situation.

Dear Tao,I keep a pet hamster at work, and the guy across the hall has a rat. We're thinking of getting one of those cages that link together so that our pets can visit each other, but before we do I have a question: would it be possible for them to have babies? I think it'd be really cool and break up the monotony of the day.

Sign me,

Dr. Doverylittle

Dear Doctor,

It sounds like you may have not been paying very close attention to your biology classes for, say, your last ten years of school. The short answer is no, you can't cross-breed rats and hamsters. However, you'll get a brief but downright eye-opening demonstration of what food chains are all about if you decide to take the leap and give your pets a formal social introduction.

Speaking of rodents, it's worth noting that they can be of tremendous help in your company's advertising efforts. Let's say you have a list of possible slogans to use but are unsure which is best. Simply tape all the slogans you're considering on the side of your rodent tank and then watch carefully. The one your little beast walks toward will be the natural winner. Remember, advertising works on the most primitive portions of the brain, so a rat is as good as an ad exec for the task, and you get the added benefit of Purina Rat Chow being quite a bit cheaper than the cost of a two- martini lunch.

Can't even come up with a slogan? No problem. You can use single words just as easily and then string them together. It might take a few trials until you get something that makes sense, but keep at it. I tried this using random words cut out of the newspaper and came up with the ultra-highbrow "Price last, anybody's near Russia." It's got everything you need: concern for the customerandfaux concern for other countries. Even today I'll bet you could sell a few Lisas using that heady doublespeak.

Dear Tao,

I had a conversation with my boss the other day in which he accused me of "gross incompetence" merely because I was personally responsible for the failure of our company's last three products. I could use your advice on how to proceed.

Spud Boy

Dear Spud,

If what you said is true, your boss is right: you are incompetent. Don't let that bother you; competency is only one of several factors related to your job, and in some ways your future has never looked brighter. However, you should take action if you're interested in staying where you are.

The key here is to slyly change your company's employment guidelines. In the 1990s nearly all businesses of any size have a bylaw that says something like, "Sproutbud Software has a policy of equal opportunity hiring and we will not discriminate with regard to an employee's ethnic origin, religious beliefs, age, sex, sexual preference, marital status, or even if they wear brown shoes with a blue suit."

Obviously the phrase that you want added is ". . . will not discriminate with regard to ability," but that's going to be hard to get on the first pass. What you'll need to do is get very militant about something that seems relatively trivial. The next time you have a large meeting, hint that you have reason to believe that your company discriminates against people who like sherbet. Once they deny it (as they undoubtedly will), say "OK, maybe you're right, but I won't be comfortable until our employment guidelines are changed to reflect this." Next, insist there is discrimination against people who like the color magenta; then, those with a penchant for keeping more than a dollar's worth of change in their pockets. Eventually people will get so sick of you that they'll just say "Yeah, whatever! Just fill out whatever you like. Anything to get you to shut up!"

Be careful. Once you have this power you'll feel like flaunting it by saying something like ". . . will not discriminate against people whose last names end in y." It sounds catchy, but it's a sure tip-off to your plans.

RECOMMENDED READING AND LISTENING

  • The Airline Passenger's Guerrilla Handbook by George Albert Brown. Get the lowest airfares and learn how to open that bag of peanuts.
  • Shakespeare's Insults compiled by Wayne F. Hill and Cynthia J. Ottchen. Gives you the weapons you need in case you're ever called a "flinty Tartar."
  • John Lee Hooker, The Ultimate Collection, Rhino Records. It's time to get blue, irrespective of your day-to- day color.

TAO JONES, in a high school English class assignment years ago, was asked to describe his ultimate fantasy. Although the exact details are now forgotten, it had something to do with huge castles, large bicycle tracks, and "The Gong Show." When he discovered that the rest of the class had described things like "a long weekend with Farrah Fawcett," he immediately started working on an all-encompassing philosophy to explain the rest of humanity. It's taken years to perfect, and today this philosophy is commonly referred to as his "bad attitude." *Tao Index: Do not trust those who have their jeans pressed. *

Used chewing gum? Place it here.*

Tao needs questions or he may be forced to do his real day job. Please send your queries regarding the social and political aspects of office survival to AppleLink DEVELOP. If your question is published, he'll reward you with an incredibly cheap, yet heartwarmingly collectible, gift. *

 
AAPL
$97.67
Apple Inc.
+0.64
MSFT
$44.50
Microsoft Corpora
+0.10
GOOG
$589.02
Google Inc.
-4.33

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

TinkerTool 5.3 - Expanded preference set...
TinkerTool is an application that gives you access to additional preference settings Apple has built into Mac OS X. This allows to activate hidden features in the operating system and in some of the... Read more
Audio Hijack Pro 2.11.0 - Record and enh...
Audio Hijack Pro drastically changes the way you use audio on your computer, giving you the freedom to listen to audio when you want and how you want. Record and enhance any audio with Audio Hijack... Read more
Intermission 1.1.1 - Pause and rewind li...
Intermission allows you to pause and rewind live audio from any application on your Mac. Intermission will buffer up to 3 hours of audio, allowing users to skip through any assortment of audio... Read more
Autopano Giga 3.6 - Stitch multiple imag...
Autopano Giga allows you to stitch 2, 20, or 2,000 images. Version 3.0 integrates impressive new features that will definitely make you adopt Autopano Pro or Autopano Giga: Choose between 9... Read more
Airfoil 4.8.7 - Send audio from any app...
Airfoil allows you to send any audio to AirPort Express units, Apple TVs, and even other Macs and PCs, all in sync! It's your audio - everywhere. With Airfoil you can take audio from any... Read more
Microsoft Remote Desktop 8.0.8 - Connect...
With Microsoft Remote Desktop, you can connect to a remote PC and your work resources from almost anywhere. Experience the power of Windows with RemoteFX in a Remote Desktop client designed to help... Read more
xACT 2.30 - Audio compression toolkit. (...
xACT stands for X Aaudio Compression Toolkit, an application that encodes and decodes FLAC, SHN, Monkey’s Audio, TTA, Wavpack, and Apple Lossless files. It also can encode these formats to MP3, AAC... Read more
Firefox 31.0 - Fast, safe Web browser. (...
Firefox for Mac offers a fast, safe Web browsing experience. Browse quickly, securely, and effortlessly. With its industry-leading features, Firefox is the choice of Web development professionals... Read more
Little Snitch 3.3.3 - Alerts you to outg...
Little Snitch gives you control over your private outgoing data. Track background activityAs soon as your computer connects to the Internet, applications often have permission to send any... Read more
Thunderbird 31.0 - Email client from Moz...
As of July 2012, Thunderbird has transitioned to a new governance model, with new features being developed by the broader free software and open source community, and security fixes and improvements... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Jacob Jones and the Bigfoot Mystery : Ep...
Jacob Jones and the Bigfoot Mystery : Episode 2 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Jacob Jones is back in Episode 2 of one of Apples 'Best of 2013' games and an App Store... | Read more »
New Trailer For Outcast Odyssey, A New K...
New Trailer For Outcast Odyssey, A New Kind of Card Battler Posted by Jennifer Allen on July 25th, 2014 [ permalink ] Out this Fall is a new kind of card battle game: Outcast Odyssey. | Read more »
Garfield: Survival of the Fattest Coming...
Garfield: Survival of the Fattest Coming to iOS this Fall Posted by Jennifer Allen on July 25th, 2014 [ permalink ] Who loves lasagna? Me. Also everyone’s favorite grumpy fat cat, Garfield. | Read more »
Happy Flock Review
Happy Flock Review By Andrew Fisher on July 25th, 2014 Our Rating: :: HERD IT ALL BEFOREUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Underneath the gloss of Happy Flock’s visuals is a game of very little substance. It’s cute, but... | Read more »
Square Register Updates Adds Offline Pay...
Square Register Updates Adds Offline Payments Posted by Ellis Spice on July 25th, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
Looking For Group – Hearthstone’s Curse...
For the first time since its release (which has thankfully been a much shorter window for iPad players than their PC counterparts), Blizzard’s wildly successful Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft CCG is sporting some brand new content: the single... | Read more »
Poptile Review
Poptile Review By Jennifer Allen on July 25th, 2014 Our Rating: :: SIMPLY FUNUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Simple yet a little bit glorious, Poptile is a satisfying entertaining puzzle game with oodles of the ‘one... | Read more »
Modern Combat 5: Blackout Review
Modern Combat 5: Blackout Review By Brittany Vincent on July 25th, 2014 Our Rating: :: LESS QQ, MORE PEW PEWUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad The fifth entry into the blockbuster Modern Combat series is what mobile... | Read more »
Watch and Share Mobile Gameplay Videos W...
Watch and Share Mobile Gameplay Videos With Kamcord Posted by Jennifer Allen on July 25th, 2014 [ permalink ] iPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad | Read more »
THE KING OF FIGHTERS '98 (Games)
THE KING OF FIGHTERS '98 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $3.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Series’ masterpiece “KOF ’98” finally joins the battle on iPhone! FEATURES:■ The best game balance in the “KOF”... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

iMacs on sale for $150 off MSRP, $250 off for...
Best Buy has iMacs on sale for up to $160 off MSRP for a limited time. Choose free home shipping or free instant local store pickup (if available). Prices are valid for online orders only, in-store... Read more
Mac minis on sale for $100 off MSRP, starting...
Best Buy has Mac minis on sale for $100 off MSRP. Choose free shipping or free instant local store pickup. Prices are for online orders only, in-store prices may vary: 2.5GHz Mac mini: $499.99 2.3GHz... Read more
Global Tablet Market Grows 11% in Q2/14 Notwi...
Worldwide tablet sales grew 11.0 percent year over year in the second quarter of 2014, with shipments reaching 49.3 million units according to preliminary data from the International Data Corporation... Read more
New iPhone 6 Models to Have Staggered Release...
Digitimes’ Cage Chao and Steve Shen report that according to unnamed sources in Apple’s upstream iPhone supply chain, the new 5.5-inch iPhone will be released several months later than the new 4.7-... Read more
New iOS App Helps People Feel Good About thei...
Mobile shoppers looking for big savings at their favorite stores can turn to the Goodshop app, a new iOS app with the latest coupons and deals at more than 5,000 online stores. In addition to being a... Read more
Save on 5th generation refurbished iPod touch...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 5th generation iPod touches available starting at $149. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping is free. Many, but not all... Read more
What Should Apple’s Next MacBook Priority Be;...
Stabley Times’ Phil Moore says that after expanding its iMac lineup with a new low end model, Apple’s next Mac hardware decision will be how it wants to approach expanding its MacBook lineup as well... Read more
ArtRage For iPhone Painting App Free During C...
ArtRage for iPhone is currently being offered for free (regularly $1.99) during Comic-Con San Diego #SDCC, July 24-27, in celebration of the upcoming ArtRage 4.5 and other 64-bit versions of the... Read more
With The Apple/IBM Alliance, Is The iPad Now...
Almost since the iPad was rolled out in 2010, and especially after Apple made a 128 GB storage configuration available in 2012, there’s been debate over whether the iPad is a serious tool for... Read more
MacBook Airs on sale starting at $799, free s...
B&H Photo has the new 2014 MacBook Airs on sale for up to $100 off MSRP for a limited time. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only. They also include free copies of Parallels... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
Sr. Project Manager for *Apple* Campus 2 -...
…the design and construction of one building or building components of the New Apple Campus located in Cupertino, CA. They will provide project management oversight for Read more
WW Sales Program Manager, *Apple* Online St...
**Job Summary** Imagine what you could do here. At Apple , great ideas have a way of becoming great products, services, and customer experiences very quickly. Bring Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.