Saturday, September 10, 2005

TV and Such

I had been suggesting to Kendra that we might want to get the 1st season of Lost, since we both had been hearing about how good it supposedly is. Well, Kendra seemed a bit luke warm about the idea, so I let it drop. But, she surprised me and brought it home from Best Buy on Thursday. So, after watching our recorded television programs, Starved (which is hilarious) and Reunion (which could be good, but is too early to tell), we popped in the first disc. I definitely understand now what the "big deal" about this show is. It is very good and I recommend it to anyone looking for something interesting on TV. We only watched the first three episodes (Pilot 1, Pilot 2, Tabula Rasa) and already we are ready for more.

As mentioned above, I would also recommend watching Starved on FX. While the subject matter might be considered questionable, it is both interesting and funny. IT'S NOT OK!!!

Thursday, September 08, 2005

A Business Trip

While I have been working at SPX for over two years now, I have only had to take two business trips. The first was while I was still a contractor and was doing some work on the Mercury project. The second was just a couple of weeks ago, and it was to finish integrating my portion of the J2534 project ( PassThruIoctl ) with the rest of the system.

Actually, we really didn't do much integrating. Instead, we finished developing the code and waited on a couple other developers to finish their stuff, too. So, we could have done most of the stuff during those two weeks back at the Portage office instead of traveling to Owatonna, MN. However, it was good to see the other office and was a nice opportunity to meet co-workers there, as well as get to know the co-workers I had traveled with.

Aside from missing my family and my home, the only other big problem was eating. I love eating out, but when you do it every day, you need a big variety. There were really only about five different restaurants that we went to regularly, so it got old pretty fast.

The best part of the trip was that it inspired me to try to take more of a leadership role at my company. After seeing that there is more at SPX than just the Harley project that I had been working on since I arrived, I woke up to the desire to be more than "just" a software developer. I spoke with my local Department manager and made my desire to be a project lead known. Happily, his response was warm and encouraging. The next step is to express this desire to my boss, who was on a business trip of his own recently (to present the results of the project I was working on.)

In the mean time, I am working on a new project, which will involve writing scripts in a proprietary language to interface with specific automobiles. Additionally, I am still the sole developer on the Harley project.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005


The National Novel Writing Month is coming up pretty soon. It occurs every year (since 1999) in the month of November. From November 1st through Novemeber 30th, the participants in this event attempt to write a 50,000 word novel. While the resulting work is typically not pretty, it is a good start to actually completing a novel. And, at the very least, it is quite an accomplishment.

I mention this because I am inviting you, all of you, to join me this November in trying to accomplish this goal. It will give us a fun experience to share, plus maybe a little friendly competition / peer pressure. :)

Sign up begins October 1st. While you aren't allowed to start until Novemeber, you can create a timeline / character guide / other notes. The official prize is a pat on the back and the admiration of your peers (plus the story you can tell about writing a novel in a month. ) Won't you join me?

Don't worry about quality; we can take care of that in March. ;)