The name 996.ICU refers to “Work by ‘996’, sick in ICU”, an ironic saying among Chinese developers, which means that by following the “996” work schedule, you are risking yourself getting into the ICU (Intensive Care Unit).
What is 996? A “996” work schedule refers to an unofficial work schedule (9 a.m.–9 p.m., 6 days per week) that has been gaining popularity. Serving a company that encourages the “996” work schedule usually means working for at least 60 hours per week. Visit 996 working hour system on Wikipedia for more details.
GitHub and Microsoft works support the 996.ICU initiative, as well as many other companies and teams.
I have recently blogged about the Faces of Open Source project. That’s a great initiative. But here’s another one, with a lot more practical approach – Programmer Playing Cards. It is a deck of playing cards, featuring people who influenced the world of computer programming in a variety of ways. Each card has a photo of a person, his or her name, what was the influence, and, as a nice touch, a quote from that person.
Here’s an example with Larry Wall.
More examples as well as instructions on how to get these cards are here.
Technology come and go, but it has a lot in common. Set priorities right. Invest 80% of your learning time in fundamentals. Leave 20% for frameworks, libraries and tools.
After 20 or so years working with technology, it always amazes me how most of the new and cool tech is actually another iteration on something that existed and has been used since forever.
Cloud computing, and even the newest hype of serverless architectures, are just another iteration on the ever-going problem of large and centralized versus small and decentralized (mainframes, PC, terminal servers and thin clients, and on, and on, and on). NoSQL databases have a very familiar feeling to anyone who have worked with LDAP. All the modern instant messengers iterate over the same problems (and often solutions) from the ancient protocols – NNTP, email (POP, IMAP, SMTP), IRC, and tools that implemented them for different purposes. And on, and on it goes.
There isn’t enough time in the world to learn even a fraction of all that technology. But focusing on the fundamentals helps a lot. If there was one thing to add, I’d also prioritize open technologies and formats versus proprietary. Open technologies survive the longest and tend to be reused a lot more.
Faces of Open Source is an on-going photographic documentation of the people behind the development and advancement of the open source revolution that has transformed the technology industry.
Given the immense contribution of these people to the world around us, I find it surprising that they are so far from the celebrity status and most people in the world won’t know any of these faces. Even people in technology sector itself, won’t probably name even half of these people by the picture alone. For some, even the name won’t mean anything.
Kudos to this project for trying to make these faces slightly more familiar and for giving credit where credit is due.