RuRu

The Offical Weblog of Russell Jennings

NYT: The Boys in the Bunkhouse

Henry’s Turkey Service, which was paid directly by the plant for the men’s labor, was capitalizing on a section of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 that allows certified employers to pay a subminimum wage to workers with a disability , based on their productivity when compared with that of nondisabled workers.

The company also deducted hundreds of dollars from the men’s earnings and Social Security benefits for room and board — and “in-kind” services, like bowling, dining out and annual visits to an amusement park. The rest was deposited in individual bank accounts in Goldthwaite that the company dipped into to pay for incidentals and medical costs, since the men had no health insurance or Medicaid in Iowa.

Will never forget that this not only happened in America and not a third world country; but in our society, in our time.

Build Everything That Everyone Wants

When you have any type of long tail of features that have little usage, you’ve gone off course, or your strategy is “build everything that everyone wants”. The latter might sound crazy, but products like Microsoft Word have very done well with that plan. But you’re probably not building Microsoft Word. If you want a well defined product, you must be comfortable killing features.

Great tip. Most of the time, you can and should drop features. But sometimes, it’s appropriate to take the Microsoft Word path (though I’d argue even then, you can probably slim down the features)