Performance pay works just fine in every other profession

Teaching is one of the few professions that are treated like a trade. In few other professions does a union collectively bargain for pay and tie that to the number of years of experience. The rest of the professional world is paid by merit. The best programmers are paid the higher salaries (or get to work for cool companies). They’re rewarded for being good at what they do.

But the teaching profession doesn’t do this. Instead a graduate teacher’s salary is looked up on a negotiated union agreement and they’re paid whatever it says. OK, so they’re a graduate, who knows if they’re really any good at actual classroom teaching? But ludicrously, even after teaching for five, 10 or 20 years, salary is still paid according to tables.

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Tonight, I declare that the home video rental industry is dead

Tonight, I declare that the home video rental industry is dead.

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A problem shared is a problem halved …

An experience (of any nature) shared is 2 to the power of that experience multiplied by the number of other people experiencing it.

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Five recent favourite TED videos

TED is a profound, horizon expanding experience — and I’ve only ever watched the videos. One day I’d love to go to the event. Here’s five of my most recent favorites. There’s no common theme, and there’s no single reason why I liked them. Some of them moved me, others encouraged me or educated me

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FairTrade: Must work both ways

For a trade to be fair, it has to be fair in both directions. The source producers need to be paid a fair price for the product the produce, but I too need to pay a fair price for the item I’m purchasing.

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Pythagoras: It’s not just a theory

It’s called Pythagoras Theory because it’s only a theory. Every triangle that it’s ever been tested on works, so there’s no reason to doubt that it will continue to work on every triangle we ever find. But until there’s a way to prove it, it will always be called a theory. If it’s ever proven, it will be called Pythagoras Rule.

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Responsible policy on Bank Interest Rates

What we must question is that banks are effectively raising the price of a service after it’s been purchased. In no other industry is this legal and it must not be allowed to continue to be legal in the credit industry.

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I listen to Joel Spolsky and Jeff Atwood on the Stack Overflow Podcast and yell at the radio.

From comments they’ve made, I’m sure I’m not the only one. Here’s an open letter to them: Dear Joel and Jeff, You lauched Server Fault for SysAdmins, but you admit to not knowing that crowd as well as you know the programming crowd. That’s fine. But you need to find someone who does understand that

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Environmentalists have it wrong — the economies of scale and inventing the future

There’s a push on to ‘return’ to the idylic times where a man would work the farm chatting to his cows while his lovely wife baked a loaf of bread (probably with a dab of flour on her nose) while a pail of milk (direct from the aforementioned cows) stands on the bench beside her.

There’s a push on to do-it-yourself. To be handy around the garden and home. To plant one’s own vegetables and to bake one’s own bread.

But is that really good for the environment? I doubt it

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Geek Herding

Forgive me reader, for I have sinned. It’s been some time since I last posted to this site. I haven’t stopped writing, but instead have been trying to ‘seed’ my new site with content. There’s only so many words in my head at any one time! Anyway, it’s now ready to be revealed to the

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