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Mike Henderson
08-18-2008, 12:32 PM
While poking around the web the other day, I happened upon a book ("Telecommunications Technology Handbook", published in 2003) that had material which looked a lot like a paper I had written in 2001. Upon further investigation, I found it was my paper. Not only that, but the author gave me credit for the material.

Problem is, I didn't know anything about it.

Technically, the company I worked for back then owned the paper since I was working for them when I wrote it - so I hope the author got permission from the company before including it in the book. But even if true, it would have been nice to contact me, as the author, before publishing it. If nothing else, I could have provided updates and corrections to the paper. A simple search on my name would have turned up my contact information.

I contacted the publisher and they sent me a copy of the book.

I actually don't mind that the paper was used - in fact, I'm flattered it was chosen for publication. But I would have appreciated a note.

It's a dense technical publication that only a geek could love, but you can see it on Google books (http://books.google.com/books?id=ZO9RWurSS0IC&printsec=frontcover&dq=telecommunications+technology+handbook&sig=ACfU3U0xygCvDD60YV28bobVE5k-eNKl7Q)- my work starts at page 175 (Chapter 6). Go to the table of contents and click on the page number to get there quickly. If you're having trouble getting to sleep, I guarantee reading this will cure you.

Mike

Ken Fitzgerald
08-18-2008, 1:04 PM
Congrats Mike! It's nice to get recognized. It would have been nice for the author of the book to have notified you.

A few years ago a doctor and a resident took me to lunch and milked me for information and bought me lunch. It was a long lunch. Some months later a letter arrived. Inside was a letter thanking me for my informational contribution, a copy of the paper the doctor had written for a professional magazine and highlighted in the references was a note listing me as a contributor.

Jim Becker
08-18-2008, 1:28 PM
Very kewel, Michael!

But I do agree that you should have been informed that your work would be used...as a matter of courtesy at the very least. ;)

Cliff Rohrabacher
08-18-2008, 1:38 PM
Make sure you Stuff it in your resume.

Mike Henderson
08-18-2008, 1:51 PM
Make sure you Stuff it in your resume.
I did, even though I'm retired now. I actually hate being retired and wish I could find a decent job - I'm bored to death. But I don't want to work as a greeter at Wal-Mart and at my age, employers won't even talk with me - age discrimination is very much alive and well in the US.

I always laugh when I see articles saying that baby boomers won't be able to retire at 65 but will have to work longer. Good luck finding a job at that age, or for that matter, any age over about 55.

Mike

Mark Rios
08-18-2008, 1:58 PM
A very big belated congrats Mike. :D

Belinda Williamson
08-18-2008, 2:30 PM
I always laugh when I see articles saying that baby boomers won't be able to retire at 65 but will have to work longer. Good luck finding a job at that age, or for that matter, any age over about 55.

Mike

Congrats from me also, Mike. As the others said, as a courtesy you should have been notified.

You absolutely correct about age discrimination. My best friend just turned 60 and has been searching for a job for months now. She's a very talented artist, funny, smart, well dressed, able to discuss any variety of topics intelligently. Here's her main problem, she chose to let her hair go gray, instead of coloring. One look at her hair and employers immediately see their grandmother. It really isn't fair that they never even give her a chance as she would be a great asset for any company.

How about consulting?

Jerome Hanby
08-18-2008, 2:43 PM
I had something similar happen with a patent. Another engineer and myself put together a patent application project to use as an example for the Engineering staff. Someone asked if the idea were real or just something made up for an example. It was a legitimate idea, so someone did all the paperwork and submitted it. I forgot all about the whole thing until I tried goggling myself a few years ago and got a hit from the US Patent office.

So if you still have trouble sleeping... (http://www.patentstorm.us/patents/5485583/claims.html)

Mike Henderson
08-18-2008, 3:01 PM
Congrats from me also, Mike. As the others said, as a courtesy you should have been notified.

You absolutely correct about age discrimination. My best friend just turned 60 and has been searching for a job for months now. She's a very talented artist, funny, smart, well dressed, able to discuss any variety of topics intelligently. Here's her main problem, she chose to let her hair go gray, instead of coloring. One look at her hair and employers immediately see their grandmother. It really isn't fair that they never even give her a chance as she would be a great asset for any company.

How about consulting?
I have grey hair, also. But when I was really active in my job search, I colored my hair to hide the grey.

I also modified my resume to appear younger (left off early jobs, military service, and anything else that would indicate my age). I got a job interview. My interview schedule had me talking to a variety of people, with the hiring manager last. I was sitting in a conference room waiting for her. I remember her face when she walked in the room - it was obvious she was surprised by how old I was. I knew immediately I was not going to get an offer, and sure enough, a few days later I received the "thank you" phone call.

I tried consulting but there isn't a lot of opportunities unless you have some really special knowledge that the company needs. Also, most of the time, the opportunity is out of town which requires you to go find a hotel room or apartment and live away from the family for the period of the job.

What I really wanted to find is an local opportunity, even at greatly reduced salary. But even that scares employers. They think you'll take the lower paying job today but leave soon for something higher paying. I just don't know how to beat it.

Mike

Mike Henderson
08-18-2008, 3:04 PM
So if you still have trouble sleeping... (http://www.patentstorm.us/patents/5485583/claims.html)
I know exactly what you mean. Reading patents is the worse - much worse than reading technical papers. It's a special language that only patent attorneys can love.

Mike