User Tools

Site Tools



  • Why are the business units in most companies forced to get their own funding, especially if they share internal resources? CON: They're called business units, probably for a reason. However, I just imagine more of them are interconnected than they might think. Data Center Group depends on excellent software and silicon from other groups to run with, and vice versa.
  • How much does making up products and spreading out features over years to keep the company alive happen?
    • Selling a new smartphone with the exact same dumbness, except it runs a little faster.
    • Isn't USB-C kinda dumb? Oh, “it's only one cable”!!!! Is having 2 more cables going to hurt you?
    • Why have there been 4 evolutions of USB cables over the years? Surely they were thinking about power over USB, orientation-agnostic, and display-over-USB back when they started!

You (Nolan) aren't necessarily very good at economic development. But, you're apparently pretty good at getting paid a lot of money for doing something you don't mind and even like sometimes!. So…give money instead. But! be “open” / “willing” to change to something as frustrating and gut-wrenching as ministering to murderous tribesmen. How's that for laying down your pride!


  • Or making cloud gaming work. I don't care about it, no matter the technical innovation required! The application matters. Google searches yes, but selfish 1st world things, not so much.



Found it was hard to advance at Intel as a person that enjoyed software. Grade 7+, you had to show hardware advances + papers. Etc. Intel probably wouldn't keep him at the same pay grade for 20 years (they kind of require ppl to move up, clarify), so he'd get laid off eventually anyways. Might as well move to a software style company now and get paid more and likely stay around longer, making software advancements. leet coder, paid. CS concept refresher.

Also really practiced behavioral interview questions. Do you align with the company's philosophy? Buy some nice new clothes. Practice in the mirror and have 1-2 examples for each question.



15 days - 2 days for summer reunion - 6+1 days for robotics trips. Leaves 5 days about, not counting unfull 8 hours, but lunchtime.

Today I don't really want to write more documentation. We haven't done it that much, thankfully, but agonizing over every last word for a dumb CLI command so meaning is clear and we aren't grammatically incorrect isn't my cup of tea right now, regardless of how many people it helps.


Is it so bad to work on a project for a while? To switch basically means to lose most of the understanding and ability to make good architecture level conclusions…however it's good to mix it up and check out what other people are doing too!

AEP Celebration

Good time. Had a question for Mohamed, but was basically interrupted from someone in marketing/sales who had a long discussion about plans for future products and to whom 10s of millions of dollars were in the balance. A rather important conversation with several miscommunications resolved, only occurring because of a celebration for a previous generation product because one person was in Arizona and another in Oregon.

Mohamed answered my question about “why only 6 AEP dimms on CLX vs. 12” saying that customers <always?> wanted to shore up aep bandwidth with ddr4.

Looking at OpenWater req, I am disappointed that I'm not practiced/skilled in that work. It's definitely approachable. I also like it because they so clearly are improving things for a lot of folks.

Also, I was doing some thinking earlier today. It's likely that code generation systems will start taking off in the next 20 years. All you have to do is provide examples, specs of what you want. What jobs will remain, since programming (in the typical sense, “talking computer”) is heading out the door?

  • Example gathering and spec writing
  • Working with hardware, new sensors / physics
  • Debugging? Knowing where to look.

I think I'm most motivated by the outcome, the application. If that's even at all generic or worse for things I don't agree with, then not as much fun.

Other than learning about the basics of reducing expenses and investing the extra in a wise low-overhead way, I don't really like spending my life trying to outsmart the market in a highly researched way. It feels like there's no gain to society in general by betting on stocks, and soon I won't need more money (which is the main outcome from that). Granted, for startups and things they need capital to innovate and deliver, so I guess that's useful, but I mostly want to enable good tech and not make a bunch of money off of it.

Rick Cno said:

  • Is there runway with your current position?
  • Are you learning?


It's a lot easier to get better at something you desire when it's your job!

At least 250 people working on just the dimm alone…crazy. Not counting contractors, dungeon folks, PAEs, customers, the underlying media, or the client version of this. Crazy. Lots of work to get a product out the door.

Hey. Just a friendly suggestion. When describing issues, stick to the data/facts and try not to add the emotional comments. I saw similar in some of your source code comment blocks. No need to add hysteria to an already hysterical program 😉

The UEFI driver in its current state *will* attempt to “correct” this LSA upon restart of the platform. Unfortunately it has the same behavior as OS and freaks out, seeming to revert to a backup state, even though it seems to read the namespaces/regions perfectly fine. *this causes data “misplacement”*, and we need to determine desirable behavior soon.

Also, above comment, when I read it seems to suggest UEFI driver is at fault. Reality is that UEFI driver is following spec and Linux left LSA in bad state…

No big deal, just suggestions…

Enjoy / meaningful

  • Working with smart people I can learn from and can leverage when I'm stuck. Soo…valuable.
  • Making big performance wins on complicated code using profiler or something in a few weeks/months. Requires deep knowledge of CPU and interconnects, but not of customers code and requirements / people.
    • Then give them the program afterwards! Enable them too.
  • Understanding at a deep level important things. Haven't made any time for employable topics here, perhaps I can if I change positions
    • Deep Learning (not there at all yet)
    • Christianity / philosophy
    • Cooking / food / investing
  • Big impactful applications. Think 3rd/whole world problems not 1st world problems. It's as simple as fixing a few words on a webpage to ———. NOT encouraging more meaningless emotional consumption (most gadgets).

Not sure

  • Teaching as a teacher. idk, not sure why exactly
  • Kinda
  • Cranking out math to discover a new way to do something. I like having a defined, achievable goal in mind. So, enabling customers with working computer vision / algorithms solutions sounds pretty cool.

Don't enjoy

  • Surprisingly, big programs, lots of moving interdependent pieces. While one focuses on small chunks generally, it's kind of annoying to ramp on. I like the way Alex wrote stuff, readable and easily testable with no global variables.
  • Security and stuff, like spectre. Necessary evil.


Rick Coulson

Sometimes you need to do nothing. Some poor things that Intel tends to do:

  • Moving teams
  • Cross geo

Is ipmctl important?

  • Yes, business wise
  • Is it necessary? Yes, might change form (go to bmc), but creating goals and getting debug information is still needed. Especially noticeable when it breaks.

You won't understand the details as you become more senior. Therefore in a time and brain limited environment:

  • It becomes more about trust / developing a working model of their behavior. Do they understand things completely?
  • Is this person okay with telling an inconvenient truth? When they screw up

Video will probably be here:,

Exercise 5 times a week for Coulson, gives him energy on Fridays.

If you overwork, you work “more stupidly on tasks that are increasingly meaningless”:

Why is it so important to get promoted?

  • From Jim Held, it helps …

7am meeting because a guy from Israel might come. But he's never come. How about we move the meeting to 8am and then if he wants to join, then adjust it that one time?

“Intel has lots of problems, I need to fix them!”

<combining your comparison people together into one super-person>, Imposter syndrome,

If you don't like change, you're going to like irrelevance even less.

You need to prune good things to have mental room for really working hard on a few excellent things

  • Intel wouldn't be in SSD's if Rick hadn't pruned off his managee who was working on DVD decryption <a cool other topic>

Time off

I took 4 months in between work to study more on how to learn, understand, and communicate effectively from some authors that I had been waiting to read. In addition, I spent some time with my family back at home.

Turns out that's a really bad idea. Don't do that. You lose steam very quickly and people start to look at you funny if you don't have anything on your resume to show for it.

Yaroslav Bulatov Deep Learning guy from Oregon State that currently works at Google and does OCR stuff. Seems very approachable.

From Giles Bowkett (Ruby, Archaeopteryx MIDI generator AI). Make a business that is profitable, then you can direct how you spend your money and time, instead of a VC person making you make them look good but ultimately not make any money / expect you to IPO in 4 years.

Similar information from Quora post. “There's an economic penalty assigned to real work, because more people want to do it.” Basically, everyone wants to do meaningful work, so you compete against those people for PhD positions.

Honeycomb is an interesting mapping company in Wilsonville.

Unemployment in California is effective for 1 year, giving you 12-26 weeks of some wages back. seethe website

Apply for jobs right away, don't dawdle (or else you'll get demotivated)

I kinda like what Magic Leap is doing (Hardware Tech and Systems Engineering Technician. However, I'm quite underqualified for the position and honestly don't have that much fun when I muck with hardware vs. usefully applying existing hardware to something useful like reading. Put off for now? Read / listen to job / startup books.

How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big

By Scott Adams (Dilbert cartoonist)

This is a great book that helped me understand that my failures mean more than my victories. It also helped motivate me to do more things and take more chances all the while teaching me how to manage my personal energies and prioritizing the right things in my life. – Chris Pavlas


A few options:

Professor / Academia



  • Peter I. feels that you won't really push yourself through stuff on your own time. You won't be able to push through to completion and application.
  • Alex feels that without a deadline assigned by someone else, you won't have the guts and hutspah to finish something.
  • Also, for me, I won't be able to interact with smart professors / paper suggesters either.
  • Alex feels like having the piece of paper still matters for less progressive companies.


  • Amazon interviewer only has his bachelor's. He feels like more progressive companies are reviewing based on your abilities and not your piece of paper. He did similar things on his own time.
  • Practice for interview questions
  • Worldview analysis. Does God want me to do the above?

In general, try to work through the problem/idea on your own and only refer to your answer for small hints. All the questions that come up along the way, answer them too?

You need to do some introspection to figure out why you want to go to CMU PhD.

In-Between Time

I am getting laid off soon and would appreciate the time to work / think about things / study.

A truck or large car would allow moving of bike easily. But, usually I would take a jog. A vehicle makes a nice portable covered nap spot. However, studying the inside of your eyelids isn't frowned up too much either.

Home (Portland)

I would really enjoy working at a place where we are constantly pushing to do things better and dream about what is possible as opposed to settling for going the boring less thinking route and doing things how they've always been done. The former takes more work, will probably make heated discussions and tired nights (and annoyed spouses?), but is a ton better for the growth of the company / organization and sustainable innovation. Wait, this is how I want to approach life!

Why isn't the company that you work for not only worthy of your time, but your money as well? –Larry Page from his 2014 TED Interview

Laura H. recommended reading Visions of Vocation and really liked it.

Visions of Vocation

I should have gotten the PDF/ebook through IV Press. Forgot!

  • What in the world am I here for? How do I know? While doing self-interested things makes sense to some extent, I don't even know how to do it?!
  • The author of this book wants to do things that matter too! w00t
  • Living in a commune looks like a great way to go for cheap living.


Do you have a good reason to be responsible for history? –Leaders of Tianenmen Square

Novelist: a physician of the soul of society

They see themselves as responsible for China's future, for love's sake

  • Hmm… love… interesting.


Though I have been a lover of the grandeur of skies and mountains and oceans my whole life, at age twenty I was beginning to understand that all of life was not glory— in sad fact, that much of it was awful, that there was much unhappiness in human hearts, and that superficial responses only aggravated the problem.

It could account for beautiful babes and expensive champagne, but not for love— just as it could not make sense of justice and truth and good.

But for most questions that matter and most answers that matter, science as science cannot address them; its method has no tools that can assess what is beyond the measurable, the quantifiable, the repeatable, the observable.

  • Not sure that I totally agree yet.

July 1 2014

Coding/programming is short-term, algorithms are more long-term. Also, I feel many companies are cleaning cotton seeds “by hand”, as opposed to inventing the cotton gin / unafraid of doing things differently.

I don't feel that qualified yet to make it through the interview process for companies that do good algorithms work like Amazon / Google / Edwards R&D / PhD program, etc.

I feel like only 3-6 months of taking more machine learning / algorithms classes is necessary, and I can take most of them online through Udacity.


  • However, You Are Not Your Art. Wow…really dead-on comic/cartoon artist talking about the effects of your art or “calling” if you choose for it to define your life. Do not let your art define your happiness
    • Are we not content with fishing by the sea?
    • The problem is, is this parable really reality? What if someone gets sick? You pray for God to heal them…and when they die, you say God did it.
<Your regrets:> Sitting in 2062, you wish that you had spent more time with your children. That you had told your spouse how much you loved them more frequently. That you could have even one more chance to hug your parents and tell them how much you appreciate them before they passed. That you could have smiled more, laughed more, danced more and created more. That you better used the gifts you were given to empower others and make the world better. –Sal Khan MIT commencement speech
  • Why would such a smart, technical person say love is the greatest thing?

Type of Company

Daiki Itoh asserts that not all startups are money-hungry and short-term and materialistic. There are a lot of long-term-innovation companies.

Paul Bucheit

Gmail founder/developer, said Google's “don't be evil” policy

Investing money, creating new products, and all the other things we do are wonderful games and can be a lot of fun, but it's important to remember that it's all just a game. What's most important is that we are good too each other, and ourselves. If we “win”, but have failed to do that, then we have lost…This doesn't mean that we can't push ourselves or stretch our own limits. Those things can be very healthy, but only when done for their own sake. –Paul Bucheit (Gmail founder/developer) from his blog

* Likes this Bill Watterson comic (comic artist of Calvin and Hobbes), but somehow you have to pay for all your stuff!

When our lives are smashed to bits, and it feels like the ground has disappeared from under us, we look for guidance, for our North Star, for a light that can provide meaning and direction to what remains of our life.

For me, this light lies in unconditional love. This is something that I wish to remember not only at an intellectual level, but at a more visceral level as well. I want to feel truth.

So I made a simple story, a fable. Stories are powerful because they engage our imagination, bringing abstract concepts to life inside of us. This one uses the familiar characters of God and the Devil, but you needn't believe in anything supernatural to understand it.

Long ago, the Devil boasted that he could easily gather more followers than God. God's way of gathering followers was simple: give everyone Unconditional Love and Forgiveness, nothing more and nothing less. Naturally the Devil was more devious. He knew that most people would not knowingly follow the Devil, so his plan was to lie and claim that he was the One True God, promise his followers a great reward in the afterlife, and threaten that those who didn't worship him would be sent to hell when they died. God was betting on Love, but the Devil believed that Greed and Fear are stronger than Love, and therefore even good people could be tricked into following him.

The God of Unconditional Love and Forgiveness brings union through love. The false Gods bring division through fear and greed. If a God promises to reward you with 72 virgins in paradise in exchange for flying an airplane into a building, it's a false God (or a false image of God, if you prefer). If a God threatens to send you to hell for loving the wrong person, it's a false God. If a God tells you to coerce people into worshiping him, it's a false God. If a God promises protection in exchange for doing his bidding, it's a false God.

Genuine, unconditional love is a gift that must be freely given and freely accepted, with nothing expected in return. Love can not be delivered at gun point, or with the threat of eternal damnation.

In this winter of fear, suffering, and division, the God of Unconditional Love gives comfort and direction. His spirit is reborn in our hearts when we give the gift of unconditional love and forgiveness to others and, most urgently, to ourselves. – Paul Bucheit, from another blog post

God (of Bible) on Innovation/Work

I am still very unclear.

Darryl Brumfield

  • 3 parts to a human (physical, mental, spiritual) I trust Darryl somewhat, but the concept seems pretty rigid though
  • Paul gave alcohol to Timothy to help with his upset stomach. Did Paul pray for a miracle? No. Treat an upset stomach with a physical cause with a physical solution (alcohol, aspirin, etc). However, a physical ailment might be caused by a spiritual issue, which needs a spiritual cure.
    • But didn't Jesus do miracles like healing the sick? (spiritual healing the physical)?

Tim Keller

It depends on who you're talking about. It seems to me the evangelical tradition tends to talk a lot about how faith essentially spiritually helps you deal with the troubles and the stresses of work. You need help to face challenges. Mainline churches tend to put more emphasis on social justice and basically did a critique of capitalism early on, so whenever the mainline churches or ecumenical movement did faith-and-work stuff, it was usually critiquing the market, not “how's your heart?” The Lutheran stream emphasizes that all work is God's work. Worldview doesn't matter. You make a good pair of shoes, then you're doing God's work, because work is God's way of caring for creation. The Calvinist stream was more like yes, it's not just you are caring for creation through work, but you are shaping it. and therefore your beliefs have an impact. When you put those four streams together, I think they're very comprehensive. If you isolate them from each other, they can create idiosyncrasies at best and imbalances at worst. – From Tim Keller in Every Good Endeavor

Don't limit yourself to never stepping off the sidewalk because you don't know what the street will hold or whether you're “supposed” to step off the sidewalk! –Neil Degrasse Tyson (on God)

Other People

Cal Newport

Wrote a new book called So Good They Can't Ignore You where he recommends not following the advice of “follow your passion” but instead asserts that your passion will develop when you are able to do any specific thing well.

  • Everybody is able to join in the effort, regardless of skill level.

It appears that Google proclaims the above with their HR and does crazy projects that require that sort of attention to optimization, but that viewpoint might be harmful too.

Silicon Valley's Youth Problem

  • The reason companies have perks is to attract top talent to work on their problems and not someone else's.
  • Also, “old-school” folks (particularly a small number of them) have done a crazy amount of work to get everything today working. Respect them for that!

Learning More

I feel like there's a cloud of understanding that is still above me, and writes in the language of calculus, linear algebra, algorithms, programming, UI, basically Bret Victor's stuff and… lots of cool papers. It takes hard work, but it's how you understand how these fancy algorithms (or non-fancy) are done!


  • Doing R&D would be pretty cool, but I think you need some experience going into it…


  • Second Sight? (recommended), Google, Amazon?,

Getting a Job


  • How would you build a fast search engine? Unit 5 and 6 from the Udacity course, great!
work.txt · Last modified: 2020/03/30 14:26 by admin