The Coming Boeing Bailout?
Hi, Welcome to Big, a newsletter about the politics of monopoly. If you like it, you can sign up here. Today I’ll discuss how a merger in the 1990s ruined Boeing, and why the government will have to step in to save the company. Let’s start by admiring the company that was Boeing, so we can know ...
Interesting analysis of financial and corporate incentives that lead to Boeing getting where it is and the resulting root cause of the 737-MAX saga.
I would take some pieces of this with a grain of salt though as the author appears to have an axe to grind.
“In 2005, Boeing hired its first ever CEO without an aviation engineering background, bringing in James McNerney, who got his training in brand management at Proctor & Gamble, then McKinsey, and then spent two decades at General Electric learning from Jack Welch how to erode industrial capacity in favor of shareholders. He brought these lessons to Boeing, and...”Posted on 2019-10-20T20:46:01+0000
engineeringThe $10m engineering problemCalvin French-Owen on Oct 17th 2019When evaluating the value of any business, one of the most important factors is the cost of goods sold (or COGS). For every dollar that a…Read more
This was a great read covering how focus engineering projects to optimize business metrics (cost reduction). Goes from the top down, from goal setting to measurement to execution (lots of technical engineering data!).
I also really appreciate the attention towards making things measurable and repeatable so they don’t just regress right after. That avoids the “death by a thousand paper cuts” problem of inefficiencies and costs coming just due to technical debt.
“Instead of creating a one-time fix, we’ve now put the systems and monitoring in place to repeatedly forecast the areas of biggest spend and help save our pipeline in the future.”Posted on 2019-10-20T04:15:13+0000
My favourite Git commit
I like Git commit messages. Used well, I think they’re one of the most powerful tools available to document a codebase over its lifetime. I’d like to illustrate that by showing you my favourite ever Git commit.
I agree with the author here. Great commits matter. This is a practice that seems to only exist in certain projects or teams, but I really wish it was more universal.
The number of times I’ve been debugging something for hours straight and found the solution in a well written commit message is too damn high (in a good way)
“I like Git commit messages. Used well, I think they’re one of the most powerful tools available to document a codebase over its lifetime. I’d like to illustrate that by showing you my favourite ever Git commit.”Posted on 2019-10-19T04:32:40+0000
Making the Tokio scheduler 10x faster · Tokio
We’ve been hard at work on the next major revision of Tokio, Rust’s asynchronous runtime. Today, a complete rewrite of the scheduler has been submitted as a pull request. The result is huge performance and latency improvements. Some benchmarks saw a 10x speed up! It is always unclear how much th...
This was a really solid technical read covering a bunch of topics that usually interest me: Rust, operating systems, atomics/concurrency, scheduling, and async/await.
Well worth reading to understand how these things work under the hood.
I also found it quite interesting and exciting that the Rust implementation here was able to borrow ideas from a lot of solid engineering that had gone into Go’s implementationPosted on 2019-10-15T05:13:08+0000
Why we built CockroachDB on top of RocksDB - Cockroach Labs
CockroachDB uses RocksDB for its storage engine because of RocksDB's rich feature set, which is necessary for a complex product like a distributed SQL database.
This was a great read into modern distributed database implementations. It starts off by discussing single node LSM databases (RocksDB) and what they provide, and then how to build a performant distributed databases on top, and for composing an SQL database on top of a K/V one. Worth a read.
"If you surveyed most NewSQL databases today, most of them are built on top of an LSM, namely, RocksDB. You might thus conclude that this is because modern applications have shifted to more write-heavy workloads. You would be incorrect."Posted on 2019-10-07T02:39:02+0000
I Was a Low-Income College Student. Classes Weren’t the Hard Part.
Schools must learn that when you come from poverty, you need more than financial aid to succeed.
This was a moving read on how just getting folks into college with scholarships isn't enough - that often is just the beginning of another, difficult struggle. The author walks through their own story from being a first-generation college student, to a first generation graduate student, to becoming a professor at Harvard.
"By my junior year, I had secured four jobs in addition to monitoring and cleaning the gym. My financial-aid officer didn’t understand why I worked so many jobs or why I picked up even more hours at times. That fall, right after Hurricanes Katrina and Wilma, I was called in to the financial-aid office. They wanted to discuss my work schedule and to tell me that they would be reaching out to my bosses to let them know I needed to cut back hours. I was working too much; that’s what the work-study rules said.
I pleaded with them not to. I needed the money. More truthfully, my family and I did"Posted on 2019-10-07T00:22:37+0000