Links and Notes - April 15th 2021

Sri Lanka's unbalanced worker protection

This is a running thought I've been having for some time since the pandemic began. Sri Lanka's worker protection is heavily weighted towards protecting people from being fired. In Sri Lanka, an employer cannot legally let go of a person without having significant evidence of malpractice on their side [1]. You cannot fire someone for not performing adequately. An employee can drag you to court and give you hell for attempting something like that.

This isn't to say I disagree with the policy entirely. I've heard too many stories of companies in other parts of the world that are willing to use Performance Improvement Plans as basic legal coverage to move a person out of the company asap. This isn't applied only to people who willingly refuse to work adequately. It can and has been applied to people who don't "get into line" when it comes to how the company operates culturally. It can and has been applied to people who do not in fact have performance issues.

But the policy has its flaws nevertheless. There are many stories I've heard from Sri Lankan companies of employees who feel comfortable to flout rules and do whatever they like because of the protection offered by the labour courts.

At the same time, I'm not interested in the correctness of this policy. What I am interested in is how the bias towards just this policy seems to create a blindspot in actually protecting workers from being abused by company work practices. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the abuse of workers here has been... epidemic? Many of my friends are forced to work extra hours. Their salaries are inadequate. They aren't paid overtime. And they are threatened and bullied to "be part of the team" whenever the weekend arrives. Unfortunately, to the best of my knowledge, Sri Lanka's worker protections laws here are either completely unheard of, or they exist in some weird gray area where no one knows how to seek protection via them.

Sri Lanka desperately needs to change in this aspect. People need protection from being worked more than 40 hours a day. People need protection from being bullied into being "Available" on holidays and after hours. People need protection. Period.

First game in Make Code Arcade

Exciting day in the Make Code Arcade world for me today. I made my first game!

Early this morning, I discovered that the arcade editor has the ability to connect with Github. Code can be committed and pushed from within the editor itself!. It's incredible. It's been something that I've been wondering about since I started: How do I do source versioning with my code? And now I've discovered it and I'm using a github repo to track my work on my first real basic game.

Which brings me to the game. It's a simple basketball style game where you have to try and sink the shots into a hoop that randomly places itself somewhere each time you score a point. You get 3 chances before the game is over.

I already play tested it with my son and it's just about right. It was fascinating to watch him come to grip with physics. At the start he was just shooting randomly and finishing most games with no points (or a random 1 here and there). But then he started moving and making tiny adjustments to sink the shots and before I knew it he was scoring decently. Unfortunately, at the time, there was a significant bug in the hoop collision detection logic which made a lot of legitimate shots go undetected. It'll be interesting to see what he scores now.

Also, I can't wait to try this out on the XTron Pro I purchased which is sadly still in the delivery stage. Hoping it arrives somewhere in the next two weeks.

Also also, Microsoft is hosting a game jam in May. Hoping to level up and take part in that. Determined to make something out of this hobby. Making games was a love of mine a long time ago. Rekindling it is fun.

Oh! Before I forget, you can try out the game here 😁

Analyzing performance of Formula 1 Team sites

An absolutely delightful and educational series of blog posts from Jake Archibald. In each post in the series, he analyzes the loading speed of a team's F1 website. He breaks down what's taking the longest time to load, how he analyzed it in the first place, and how each issue can be fixed. He ends with a demo of his fixes in place vs the actual site.

I found it deeply educational to learn about website performance analysis and I'm looking forward to delving into each of these posts more deeply in the coming months. If you are interested at all in this area, do yourself a favour and read the blog posts.

This blog doesn't have a comment box. But I'd love to hear any thoughts y'all might have. Send them to [email protected]

Previous links and notes (April 14th)

Next links and notes (April 16th)

  1. I'm not a lawyer. This is not legal advice. ↩ī¸Ž

Posted on April 15 2021 by Adnan Issadeen