First Job and Office Politics : Learn the Game

I’m 22. I just graduated from university and took a leap from student life into professional life. It took me almost a month to figure out what I wanted to do with my life from here on out. Although I graduated with a decent GPA in a respected program with over a year of professional experience, I’m still pretty lost. With some decent amount of effort I was able to land two permanent jobs, hectic, I know. But you really can’t do anything if you are driven by an ambition. At this point when I was under the impression that I have ‘the purpose of life’ figured out, the reality of professional life found me unguarded. And in more casual terms ‘Shit Just Got Real’, multiply the idea of college politics, backbiting, leg-pulling by two fold and include an egoistic boss, that’s what I am up against.

When I look back on my university year I can’t help but feel like there were things I could have done differently, skills that I could have learned, instead of being a cynic a little optimism would have helped, instead of good grades, could have worked on my ‘people’ skills, so I compiled this (very subjective) list on how to tackle first impressions and office politics.

Disclaimer: This list is based solely on the personal experience of someone who is at home and on the internet at 1 am on a Wednesday. I’m also not wearing any pants.

As Plato wrote in 380 B.C., “The beginning is the most important part of the work.” It’s a truth that still stands today: How you begin a new job sets the tone for how the rest of your work days will go. If you make the right impression, you can achieve faster, stress less, and gain a general sense of respect from your brand new peers.

  1. Be Prepared.
    Get ready to give a 30-second explainer of who you are and where you were before, as many new colleagues will likely ask about your previous place of employment, Taylor says. Be prepared to also describe what you’ll be doing in this new position, since there may be people who have a vague understanding of your role or simply want to strike up a conversation.
  1. Pick your side smartly.
    Two of the more important factors in succeeding at a job are to not only get along with your coworkers, but also to associate with the right ones. In any sizeable work environment you will find cliques, and some mesh better with management than others. If you want to eventually move up in the ranks with your new employer, you’ll need to associate with the right crowd.

    It’s also essential that you begin to determine the office politics on day one. Power is an interesting, quite important, and sometimes elusive thing in the work environment. Certainly it is vital to understand the articulated positional hierarchy in your organization — who answers to who. This should be as easy as reading your coworker’s titles. However, because power can manifest in so many different ways, it is imperative to understand who actually answers to who.

  1. Don’t try too hard.
    The urge to impress can take you off-track, so remember that you’re already hired — you don’t have to wow your new colleagues. And I know it’s every new employee’s dream to hear that people noted how brilliant and personable they are, or how they seem to “get” the company so quickly. But that can be a lot of wasted energy; you’ll impress naturally — and more so once you understand the ropes.
  1. Don’t avoid playing Politics.
    Especially if you care about being successful.
    If you’re not good at playing politics, you’ll find yourself frustrated and angry because of how ineffective you are. Your good ideas don’t get listened to. Your good plans don’t get taken seriously. Your good intentions and hard work ethic never seem to get the attention they deserve.

    So instead of being pushed around, here are a few ideas that can help you pump up your game:

  1. It’s a job, in reality you don’t owe anyone anything, they actually owe you for the work you do for them, so when you see a problem, point the finger as long as you’re honest even if you’re at the receiving end.

  2. If somebody else does something wrong and gets away with it, doesn’t mean you will too. Don’t satisfy yourself with such arguments.

  3. If those around you don’t know what you’re doing, that means you’re not doing anything at all. Market your work.

  4. A little bit of respect and humility goes a long way. Be courteous and make sure everybody owes you.

  5. If things are not going as you wanted, you aren’t successful, you aren’t productive, don’t take your frustration out on your peers.

  6. Even the smallest of things, argument, confusion, mistrust can become a huge obstacle. Solve them.

  7. Get people to see things your way with personal conversations. Less meetings, more one to one communication.

  8. How you say what you need to say is more important than what you actually say.

  9. Similarly what is understood of you is more important than what you intended.

  1. Master the game
    The truth about playing politics is that you don’t hate the game itself. You just don’t like it when the game is played poorly. You don’t like being lied to. You don’t like being talked down to. You don’t like not knowing where you stand.

    So don’t be that person who does that to others around you. Get better at playing the game.

First Job and Office Politics

And you might end up in a similar situation : The Expert (Short Comedy Sketch)

And if you’re still in college and this article made no sense you might wanna read 8 Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me Before I Started University

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Microsoft Build 2015

Microsoft Build 2015

Starting at 8:30am PT / 11:30am ET / 3:30pm GST, Microsoft will be taking the stage for an expected two hours to talk about the future of Windows, Xbox, Windows Phone, HoloLens and more.

Yes folks, Build 2015 in San Francisco, California is getting ready to kickoff. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Terry Myerson, Joe Belfiore and others are all on hand to show us what they have been working on and what is to come in 2015 and 2016.

Project Spartan gets a new name

Microsoft has been talking about its Internet Explorer replacement for months, but current builds of Project Spartan on Windows 10 have been in a bit of a rough state, with much of its promised functionality missing. The same is true for builds on Windows phones.

The new browser is now officially dubbed Microsoft Edge. Edge is built as a universal Windows app, meaning it can work across devices. It also has Cortana built-in, which opens up the possibility of Cortana on iOS or Android if an Edge app becomes available on those platforms.

Belfiore also briefly showed off Continuum, a feature that will help apps identify which type of device you’re using and then modify the universal Windows app appropriately. He didn’t have hardware to show how it would look on a phone, but did show an on-screen simulation of how it works.

Visual Studio 2015 RC, Visual Studio Code and Application Insights previews

Microsoft-Visual-Studio-Code

The tech giant is announcing previews of a free cross-platform code editor called Visual Studio Code, as well as a new app-monitoring feature within Visual Studio Online called Application Insights.

The news, which is being unveiled at Microsoft’s Build conference, is directed toward the soul of Microsoft — developers, those people who produce applications for Microsoft devices and other platforms.

All of today’s Visual Studio announcements have a clear theme: allowing for cross-platform development. That points to a broad corporate acknowledgment that some consumers and businesses use devices that don’t run Windows.

The Visual Studio 2015 release candidate, which has a go-live license to enable companies to use the software in production, enables cross-platform app development through Apache Cordova, Xamarin, and C++. Of course, developers could also use it to make universal apps for devices that run Windows, Somasegar said.

The new Visual Studio Code software is available for Mac OS X, Linux, and Windows. It packs code completion, Git integration, linting, and sophisticated debugging capability. And it works with a wide range of languages.

HoloLens Devices

HoloLens

Microsoft’s HoloLens has been in development for a few years, and Microsoft’s Alex Kipman said on stage at Build today that during that time, the hardware has improved by a couple of orders of magnitude due to advances in mobile processing, sensor and computer power and affordability.

Screenshot (32)

Microsoft’s HoloLens can work with DIY robot kits, for instance, letting you view an advanced 3D animation representation of a robot avatar overlaid on a more basic, real-world wires-and-steel hobbyist machine, as well as access the robot’s software interface control panel at the same time. You therefore have your hardware and software both manipulable in an immersive, integrated real-world environment.

Based on the demo, programmers working with robots will be able to easily program things like routes and path in a what-you-see-is-what-you-get style, instead of using the more complex and abstract console-based programming methods that are commonly employed today.

IN 3 Hours of None Stop Announcements at Build a Quick Updates
– Windows Phone 10 will Run Android Apps out of the Box
– Windows Phone 10 will Run iOS Apps be Recompiling Objective c in Visual Studio
– Goodbye ie and Welcome Microsoft Edge
– Windows 10 is running on build 10107
– The Super cool App Logic of Azure
– Microsoft Spotlight on LockScreen
– Cortana in Apps Super Cool Voice Commands “Cortana Call my Wife on Viber”
– Chrome Extensions Running on Edge
– Xbox Live on Windows
– Visual Studio on Mac
– Visual Studio on Lenix
– Web Apps to Apps Converters

Joint Action Committee on CYBERCRIME Bill 2015

Cyber Crime Bill 2015[15 April 2015]
[PRESS RELEASE]

The Press Conference was addressed by Wahaj us Siraj, Convener, Internet Service Providers Association of Pakistan (ISPAK), Farieha Aziz, Director, Bolo Bhi, Syed Ahmad, Spokesman, Pakistan Software Houses Association, Asif Luqman Qazi, Executive Director, Center for Discussions and Solutions (CDS), Khawaja Saad Saleem, Vice President ISPAK and others.
The Government of Pakistan has submitted the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Bill (PECB) 2015 in Parliament, which is currently believed to be before the NA Standing Committee on IT. The proceedings of NA Standing Committee are being kept under secrecy, making it non-transparent and non-consultative. A copy of Bill has been obtained which is at http://bolobhi.org/whats-brewing-pakistans-proposed-cybercrime-law/

The draft Bill in its current form will seriously impact the Internet users, ICT industry, print and electronic media, academicians, researchers, the legal community and ordinary citizens particularly educated youth of Pakistan.

A few glaring highlights of the Bill that would seriously effect civil liberties are as follows:

  1. In Sections 17 and 18, political criticism and political expression in the form of analysis, commentary, blogs and cartoons, caricatures, memes, etc., has been criminalized.
  2. Obscene or immoral messages on Facebook, twitter, etc., have been made offenses as per Section 20, without defining obscenity or immorality, thus giving sweeping powers to investigating agencies to implicate anyone on these charges.
  3. As per Section 19, any person who tests system security will be an offender;
  4. Sending an email or message without the recipient’s permission will become an offence as per Section 21;
  5. As per Section 20, posting of photograph of any person on Facebook or Instagram without their permission is an offence.
  6. Section 31 gives the government/PTA unfettered powers to block access or remove speech not only on the Internet but transmitted through any device, limiting the media’s freedom and citizens’ right to expression;
  7. In Section 26, the definition of service providers – traditionally ISPs and telcos – has been expanded to now include any place that offers access to the Internet to the public, i.e., restaurants, malls, hotels, offices, airports, stations and the additional burden of retaining traffic data has been placed on them – and they can be punished for not doing so.

Fundamental principles of law, such as requiring intent, especially malicious intent to be established for conviction, have not been followed – in fact the requirement has been omitted from the modified version of this Bill. This is true even for offences such as Cyber Terrorism, which carries a penalty of fourteen years imprisonment. There is a grave danger of white-hat hackers, hobbyists, people who hack for academic purposes to identify security flaws in systems, or teenagers who for recreation (albeit wrongly) deface websites, could end up getting convicted as cyber terrorists.

Checks and balances on investigation agencies and officers have been removed. For example, requiring an investigation officer to obtain a warrant from court for search, seizure or arrest on the basis of a list of qualifications he/she was required to present before court, making clear reasons why the warrant should be issued, no longer exists. Similarly, other safeguards that were previously built in, such as protection against self-incrimination and an accused’s right to know the charges against him/her, have also been omitted.

The above provisions of the draft Bill in particular, and several others in general, violate fundamental rights of expression, freedom of media and due process as enshrined in the 1973 Constitution. In its current form, the draft Bill will not counter crime or terrorism; on the contrary it will lockdown the society, industry and the media; and will criminalize innocent citizens.

We, Pakistan Software House Association (PASHA), Internet Service Providers Association of Pakistan (ISPAK), BoloBhi, Civil Society, Students and Professionals, therefore demand that
• the draft bill be made public;
• public and independent expert input be sought and incorporated before the Standing Committee finalizes its debate.

The alarm bells have been sounded. Time for you to do your bit. Don’t take this lightly!

Sign this e-petition asking legislators to make the bill public and seek public input here

Cyber Crime Bill 2015-2

Source : Joint Action Committee on CYBERCRIME Press Release.

How to bounce back from a failed intern-ship?

I am currently doing bachelors from  a top university ( FAST ). After nailing many rounds of interviews, I had secured an amazing internship this summer 2014. I cannot reveal the details of my internship but it’s just that after struggling for a lot of time, I was unable to get good results.

Hard as it is to admit my mistakes, I went through a slight emotional roller coaster as I reflect.

I had to tell myself ‘know that you’re not alone’. Many people have failed internships, including people who I may look up to or are later extremely successful. Most people don’t walk around talking about their failures though, so I likely won’t hear these stories.

Since I’d like to rejoin the company later on, I asked myself a couple of question to clear my head, I hope they help you too in some point in time:

  • Did I fit into the company culture? If not, why? Is this something I can resolve without changing who I am?
  • Why do I want to work here? Is it the company vision, people, or something else?
  • What would I do differently next time?
  • Were my technical skills up to par with what was expected in the company? If not, why? How can I improve those skills?
  • How can I balance working and socializing at work (or getting to know my coworkers)?

Word of Advice:

When you apply to the company again, the recruiter will likely bring up your internship and try to gauge how you’ve grown and matured since the experience. Be ready to show how you’ve grown in technical and interpersonal skills.

Remember to add this internship to your resume like any other work experience. Don’t skimp on your project(s) or technologies touched when talking to future recruiters; your experience here is as important as any other internship.

Finally, End your internship on a professional note. Thank the people who helped you, were part of your team, and an integral part of your internship experience. Be humble and grateful for the experience. Don’t burn any bridges; you never know where you or your coworkers may end up in the future.

Go forth and hold your head up high!

Finally HP Envy Bios Update

What’s a BIOS you ask?

The term BIOS, or Basic Input/Output System, originally referred to a specific type of interface between a computer system’s firmware and its operating system. However, among consumers, the term BIOS has evolved into a term used to describe any interface between firmware and operating system. Some PC-based systems now use Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI), however most systems still use the BIOS interface.

Recently I purchased HP Envy TouchSmart J0137tx with the hope that i’ll get started with Windows 8.1 Mobile Application Development. But it wasn’t as easy as i thought it would be. The issue started with the problem in the RALINK Bluetooth and LAN hardware device, which for some reason didn’t allow virtualization to work.

When ever i enabled virtualization my notebook would get stuck on the load screen for an infinite time untill i restored it to the previous image. With the hope that i might only be person facing this problem i did some googling and came acroos 100s of post where HP users were complainig about this issue. Some threads were even dated as old as the year 2012. I was shocked. I just spent 1300$ on this machine and for one purpose and it all is going in vain.

I contacted HP support, and i am sorry to say the worst support i have seen so far, the people there didn’t know what virtualization is. What a BIOS version is? How to Flash BIOS? etc.. Like all other blogers out there i lashed out on HP commenting and mailing people from HP and no solution, there came a time just couple of days back when i almost gave up and was planning to sell my machine. Since it didn’t serve the purpose.

And today after almost a month the HP Support Assistant prompts me with such a news that my happiness knows no bound.

” HP Notebook System BIOS update available “  *ba dumm tsss* *happy dance*

So how should you do it?

Step 1

Make Sure that your Windows is installed by using UEFI partition if not see Step 7

Step 2

Determine the BIOS version in Windows 8 using the “msinfo32” command.

Select “Run” from the start menu, type “msinfo32” into the open field and click “OK.”

Locate the BIOS version/date entry in the items column.

The BIOS information will be listed in the adjacent column labeled “Value.”

BIOS

Step 3

Check your version the latest version available is 2014-03-10 , VersionF.53, 11.69M

If you’re already on it no need to update. If not

Step 4

Go to this Link http://www8.hp.com/us/en/drivers.html

Enter your device model number and search. Find your device. Under the heading of BIOS you’ll find the update. Download it.

Step 5

Close all running application, and make sure that you’re on AC/DC power supply. And RUN RUN it 😀

It will prompt you that you wish to continue or not. Click Yes.

Step 6 

Sit Back and Relax because this will take a while, After the installation is complete. Reboot your system. It will flash the BIOS and if all is good. That’s pretty much it

Step 7 ( If not on UEFI and Legacy Boot)

When your system will boot it will not find any boot media, now restart and TAP F10 or F8 which ever opens the Boot manager for your device. Go into boot option and set boot priority back to Legacy.

And save setting and you’re good to go.

 

Still facing some issue? Comment Below

NetBeans 7.0 and above UML plugin

If you are using NetBeans 7.0 or above, you probably can’t find your UML plugin any more in the default repository.

From what I can read on the net, the team is working on the plugin rewriting it, and this will take a while.

Semi-broken solution

There is another way to install it, but beware, the plugin will be semi-broken, so jump down to another solution if you like to generate a pretty UML diagram from your code:

  1. by the menu navigate to Tools -> Plugins;
  2. select the “Settings” tab;
  3. click the “Add” button;
  4. as URL copy the following into the textbox:
    http://dlc.sun.com.edgesuite.net/netbeans/updates/6.9/uc/m1/dev/catalog.xml

Now on the tab “Available Plugins” there should be UML in category UML.
The problems are:

  • “reverse engineering” command seem to work but you can’t open the files;
  • You can write a class diagram and work on it, but when you open your project next time you will unable to open the diagram again.

So all you can do is work on a temporary diagram, if you need only it.

Another solution

NetBeans UML PlugIn
NetBeans UML PlugIn

You can use yWorks UML Doclet community edition.
This solution will only let you generate a pretty UML diagram from your code.

  1. Download the library from here;
  2. right click on your java project in project explorer within NetBeans;
  3. click on “Properties”;
  4. select  Build => Documenting;
  5. On “Additional Javadoc Options” textbox paste the following (beware, I’m under windows):
    -docletpath “<yworks-uml-doclet-path>\lib\ydoc.jar” -resourcepath “<yworks-uml-doclet-path>\resources” -doclet ydoc.doclets.YStandard -umlautogen

    Where <yworks-uml-doclet-path> is the path of the yworks-uml-doclet folder.
    In my case <yid> is:
    C:\Users\KhawajaAli\Downloads\yworks-uml-doclet-3.0_02-jdk1.5\yworks-uml-doclet-3.0_02-jdk1.5

  6. click “OK“;
  7. right click on your java project in project explorer within NetBeans;
  8. click Generate Javadoc;

Now, within your Javadoc you will have a very nice UML driagram for your classes.

Thanks to Matthew W. Johnson for this solution.

Still unable to create UML design ? Post your issues in the comment section below

Installing ns-2.35 on Ubuntu 13.04

NAM ns-2.35Before we again, the time required for the installation depends on your system and internet connection. Internet is required to complete the following procedure.

Here are the steps for installing ns-2.35 on Ubuntu 13.04 and before versions.

Open Terminal and …

[Step 1] Install some Essential Libraries and Softwares:

sudo apt-get install tcl8.5-dev tk8.5-dev

sudo apt-get install gcc-4.4 g++-4.4

sudo apt-get install build-essential autoconf automake

sudo apt-get install perl xgraph libxt-dev libx11-dev libxmu-dev

[Step 2] Download ns-2.35

Download ns-2.35 from http://sourceforge.net/projects/nsnam/files/latest/download

Unpack ns2 to your Desktop directory tar -zxvf ns-allinone-2.35.tar.gz -C /home/khawajaali/Desktop

(or simply unzip the package on your desktop)

[Step 3] Modify the OTcl makefile

Open /home/khawajaali/Desktop/ns-allinone-2.35/otcl-1.14/Makefile.in

Change CC = @CC@ to CC=gcc-4.4

Save the file

[Step 4] Install ns2

cd /home/khawajaali/Desktop/ns-allinone-2.35

./install

(this will take a while)

[Step 5] Modify ~/.bashrc

Once the installation is successful (without any errors), we need to add the path information to the file ~/.bashrc

gedit ~/.bashrc

Now Add these lines in the end of the file

#LD_LIBRARY_PATH
OTCL_LIB=/home/khawajaali/Desktop/ns-allinone-2.35/otcl-1.14
NS2_LIB=/home/khawajaali/Desktop/ns-allinone-2.35/lib
X11_LIB=/usr/X11R6/lib
USR_LOCAL_LIB=/usr/local/lib
export LD_LIBRARY_PATH=$LD_LIBRARY_PATH:$OTCL_LIB:$NS2_LIB:$X11_LIB:$USR_LOCAL_LIB
# TCL_LIBRARY
TCL_LIB=/home/khawajaali/Desktop/ns-allinone-2.35/tcl8.5.10/library
USR_LIB=/usr/lib
export TCL_LIBRARY=$TCL_LIB:$USR_LIB
# PATH
XGRAPH=/home/khawajaali/Desktop/ns-allinone-2.35/bin:/home/khawajaali/Desktop/ns-allinone-2.35/tcl8.5.10/unix:/home/khawajaali/Desktop/ns-allinone-2.35/tk8.5.10/unix
# Note: the above two lines starting from XGRAPH should come in the same line
NS=/home/khawajaali/Desktop/ns-allinone-2.35/ns-2.35/
NAM=/home/khawajaali/Desktop/ns-allinone-2.34/nam-1.15/
PATH=$PATH:$XGRAPH:$NS:$NAM

Save the modification and close the file

source ~/.bashrc

And that is all 😀 *cheers*

Now type ns to see % and type nam to show the nam startup window, This shows the installation has been successful.

Important : you should replace /home/khawajaali/Desktop with the path to your Desktop folder.

Still unable to complete the installation ? Post your issues in the comment section below