2005 and beyond beckons!

Friday - November 19, 2004

Well it looks like TheFaceBook is driving lots of traffic my way and I've picked up stalkers from Dana and Coburn. I update for the fans, man. I mean yeah, it's also about the code, and the girls, and the money, but I do it for the fans. </rockstar>

Speaking of rockstars, Chris really wanted my address a few days back. Perhaps to send me evil things because I've been chatting with his sister online. Or perhaps to send me a nice present from Edinburgh all the way over to Seattle. Man, I need to get my pictures organized like his. Someday, someday.

In the meantime, I've been tearing up the Wiki at work. Does it bother anyone else that Wiki isn't WikiAble because it's not WiKi? Anyway, I've blown past the top 100 and I'm now in the top 30. Rock. And to think the other day Rachel just wanted to write code. How did we end up doing the opposite of what we did in college?

Lalala, I think that's all I have for now. You need a TiVo. Even if the 40 hour version can only hold 18 hours at any sort of a respectable quality. Even if they screw you on the rebate. Just make sure the month you buy it and get a lifetime subscription isn't the same month your monitor dies or you might put a hurting on your wallet to buy a new one. Only one dead blue subpixel @ (1520, 451). I'll live.

Monday - October 18, 2004

I feel a journal entry coming on. The first one hosted on septor.name as I've finally gotten around to moving off of colby.edu. At least my favorite stalker will find it.

Last night I stayed up (yay West coast!) to see the Red Sox beat the Yankees. It was amazing. And then the Sox won again tonight! Last night I was there for all of it, but tonight I was stuck at work until the last bus in the tunnel. I was playing around with this simple yet awesome tool for making UML sequence diagrams. At first I was playing with ArgoUML, but apparently they disabled that feature over a year ago and never turned it back on because it was too buggy. Pfft. Version 9 of sequence is only ~6,500 LGPLed lines, easy to use, and has every feature I need. The author is my hero of the week.

Last night winter happened. Yeah, just like that. First time I've had to use heat and it's mid-October. Crazyness. Maybe it was the cold rain, or the fact that I've already built up $8.43 in loose change, but I gave my change from the gallon of milk I bought at Ralph's to the guy claiming he was here from Vietnam for only two days and wanted to buy a bowl of noodles for $4.50. He spoke very rapid and clear English. And after I shot him down across the street from Ralph's on my way in, he was standing right infront of the door on my way out. That 21 cents marks my first handout. I bet he has less debt than I do, sorry. But I should give blood again soon. BTW, I figured out what happened to that missing $4 from last time. Cokes! That vicious little vending machine doesn't produce change or a receipt. Better than dealing with those evil $1.10 ones at Colby, though.

On my way out tonight I ran into Mimi, yay! It's wacky how often we run into each other around work. She just doesn't understand being a Red Sox fan. So what if I don't live in Boston and only lived in Maine for four years? It's infectious, you can't walk away from the area without seeing the heart the fans put into it and become one yourself. It's not like the soulless evil stupid Yankees that expect to win and are supported by a bunch of loser fans who support the most winning team. Gah. I hated the kids in middle school that claimed to have been a fan of whatever football team happened to be doing well at the time. Fenway was packed last night at 1:30am, even with them being down 3-0 in the series. Go Sox. I believe.

Monday - September 27, 2004

So I'm a little behind from my promised Wednesday update, but this is much better than my wicked long hiatus. Don't sweat the small stuff. Except I can't get over the $4.00 I can't account for with GnuCash, ahhh!!! It's driving me batty because I managed to track all my of loose change correctly, but not four crisp, clean dollar bills. Okay so maybe they weren't all that clean. Nor was that penny from 1951 I discovered I had while counting up the change. This must be real exciting, I'm going to move on.

On Wednesday I was having a bad day. I was at work a long time, I couldn't get my software stack running, and there was much general grumpyness. It also happened to be the day of the Colby welcome to the city night in Seattle. I had booked Mimi to be my "date" but I just wan't feeling it. I'm shy, and I'm not very good at hiding my emotions, so I'd probably not look approachable (even with my Mimi by my side) so I said the hell with it. Even though there were Bates and Bowdoin people there. Bah, I'll meet 'em next year. The door prizes couldn't have been all that great.

Instead we went to this fabulous chain Italian restaurant on 6th & Olive Way called Il Fornaio. It was very yummy (I had the gnocchi) and reasonably priced, plus the atmosphere was amazing. I'd also like to take this time to recommend Easy Street Records. Why didn't I just go there to buy a used copy of Countdown to Extinction in the first place instead of having to deal with a Merchant that sent me the stupid copy protected remastered and remixed hunk-o-junk? Ah well, lesson for next time I suppose. I'm kind of snobby about some used things. Oh, I'll buy cheap new stuff, but cheap old stuff seems to irk me for some reason. Except for my good old '87 Jeep Cherokee. I love how I can get a ding or a scratch, or even hit the (metal) bumper with sledge hammer and it'll still look good.

Thug: Drop your gun and kick it over here.
[Sledge puts the gun down]
Thug: I said kick it over here.
Sledge Hammer: Forget it, Slimeball. I never kick a friend when he's down.

At least I'm amusing myself. :) On Sunday I made the best decision ever and bought a vacuum cleaner. Must have been a pet owner living here before me. Yay bagless action. Speaking of which, I should get the area I have yet to clean (I'm a busy man, see) and get to bed. This morning I noticed I was somehow 8 minutes over my cell phone allotment. We'll see if I can minimize the damage until Satuday.

I bought a new domain today, so I'll post news about migrating this site over soon. See if you can guess it in the meantime. Hint: my name.

Saturday - September 18, 2004

Hello, again. :)

It would appear that I've finally been inspired enough by Mimi's blog to update mine. I'm actually a little angry with myself for not setting aside time to keep track of all of the wonderful, new things in my life. Let's see if I can't fix that at least a little bit tonight.

On May 23rd I graduated from Colby.
On May 24th I moved back to Ellicott City.
On June 1st I moved to Seattle.
On June 7th I started work at Amazon.com.

Pretty crazy stuff. I had a week to pack up as best I could and see some friends just before moving all the hell the way out to Seattle. When I touched down at Sea-Tac in the afternoon of June 1st, it was only the third time I had been on the west coast. I can't see any reason to leave, aside from short visit and trips. Soundgarden played on the radio as I drove around the bend on I-5 Northbound and the city came into view. A good omen, indeed. I was in a cute, shiny, and new little blue Kia Optima. I grew a more attached it than you might think, despite the fact that I couldn't fit more than one suitcase into the trunk and the engine wasn't very powerful. I was on my way to the fabulous Harbor Steps, where I would stay for the first month (NE tower).

I leeched Wi-Fi from the balcony and looked up where to buy a cell phone (about time!), groceries, get a haircut, and everything else I needed (*cough* Wal-Mart). Hey man, they had cheap nice looking dress shoes for my first day of work, you gotta do what you gotta do. With the maps my parents gave me before leaving home I planned out East to Fall City and then up Monroe. This turned out to be quite useful later on because our company picnic was held in Carnation year. So I had no trouble convincing Mimi to go East just three more miles on our way back so that we could swing by Snoqualmie Falls. Yes, the falls featured in Twin Peaks. Turn out CMU Chris also has a thing for the series and ~6 of us get together once a week to watch a couple of episodes. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

I also figured out the whole Free Ride Area and tried to relax for my first day of work. I took the 36 up to PacMed, watched a fun video and other orientation things, got badged, and finally found out that I would be working down in US2 for Brian in Customer Self Service (CSS, now part of OX) with Jacob (among others). Basically, when you hit the "Your Account" button, the stuff under there. This reminds me, I still haven't been to TRB yet. I should do that. Have you noticed the high amount of acronyms I've thrown out already? Yeah, it's INSANE. But I love it. :)

I signed up on the newgrads@ list fairly quickly, but no one really sent any mail to it, and I was busy enough apartment hunting and such anyway. Turns out I was one of the first new grads to actually arrive and it wasn't until about a month later when things really picked up. Mimi sent an e-mail to newgrads@ asking who wanted to "get their bite on" the Bite of Seattle on July 17th. I bravely replied, and my new group of friends began. Since I've gone canoeing, saw the Mariners rock the A's after work in the 10th inning, gone to Seafair (more canoeing), seen Spider Man 2 at Cinerama, watched the Olympics, played broomball (2nd place), played dodgeball (on Jeff Bezos' team - made it the the quarterfinals), discovered the awesomeness of Scarecrow, visited several parks, Oktoberfested and gone partying and dining with too many people for me to list, lest I forget one and feel bad about it. :) But it's more about quality than quantity and I've made some good friends out of the many new people I've met.

It still feels weird to go out with a bunch of Amazonians and Microsofters sometimes. Who knew my life would end up like this? Sarah would probably tell me she knew it. :) Sarah has been an amazingly fabulous best friend throughout all of this. Her love and support is constant and I'm super glad to have it. She came out to visit in late July which was great, and in the meantime we keep in touch with her free weeknight minutes (yay time zones!) and my free T-Mobile to T-Mobile minutes. It's great to have a mutual best friend that I can call at 2am her time and that she can call 5am her time. Even though I can't fully wake my brain up. :)

GECCO was in Seattle this year so I got to hang out with some Colby folks and go on a ferry ride just for fun. I highly recommend it. But I'm going to be a dork and talk about Amazon some more.

Amazon rocks! The culture is just amazing. Everyone is smart (unlike colleger where somehow there are a bunch of boneheads), guest lectures by the likes of Andrei Alexandrescu, fun company sports, awesome downtown Seattle location (Uwajimaya is great, I'm eating Pocky from there right now), the people are all nice, and I like the direction the company is headed. Come on, aside from that one-click patent thing, everyone loves Amazon. Free shipping on orders over $25, woo! And now you can save even more if you use A9. It came out of beta on Wednesday, thus the Amazon project I've been working on also launched. Yes! *does the fruits of my code being visible on the site happy dance* The best perk is working for the company behind Earth's largest selection. Plenty of musicians and authors stop by to play us a few songs over a free lunch or read from their new book. Bob Schneider and the Clif Bar guy come to mind. Hello free autographed copies!

On Wednesday I'm going to a CBB alumni welcome to the city event, woo! I'm quite excited. Seattle is by far the best city I've ever been in. Hopefully I'll come back and update then. I'm off to bed, goodnight. :)

Friday - May 7, 2004

Well, there goes the last day of classes. Hanging out on the steps with everyone was great. Lots of hugging, lots of high fives, lots of handshakes, lots of group hugging, lots of broken glass on the ground, and then more hugging. I even hugged one of the ski twins, Abbi. :) Not quite sure why they were there seeing how they're not seniors, but whatever. Having it at 4 and the BBQ afterwards was much better than the old noon nothing afterwards system, I think.

I've been crazy busy since about, oh, April 16th or so. But as of tomorrow when Dale gives us the rest of our compilers final, I won't be receiving any more work. Wild. All I have to do is finish what I have at the moment, and then I'm done. Well, until grad school. :) Don't you worry, even if I get a job I'll be working on a masters a night.

Think I'm going to go work on cleaning out the ol' inbox and then hit the sack. It just seemed like I should write something about my big day as a senior. By the way, Seattle was amazing.

Thursday - April 29, 2004

Lately I've traveled to Venice, FL (Spring Break), Schenectady, NY (CCSCNE), Augusta, ME (CS major/minors dinner) and this weekend I'll be in Seattle, WA for a job interview. I've been pondering various ways to get myself out there for a while now.

I've been very busy working on grabber, but after my presentation today all I have to do is finish up the thesis.

Monday - March 15, 2004

My parents' birthday gift (why yes, my birthday is on Jan 22nd) finally arrived today. No, the mail wasn't slow, they just don't love me. Wait. Their present was cash money, so maybe they do. Hum...

It snowed about an inch late last night. Will this be the last snow of the season? I sure hope so. I need to move on to warmer, rainer places. As such, I applied for my 3rd Seattle area job yesterday. I started my job search in Jan, but I want a great job that'll make me happy, so I've been rather selective.

I decided to sleep in a bit today. Eh, I think I deserve it. Writing a thread-safe reference counted smart pointer from scratch isn't easy ya know. It was only later on in my quest that I discovered those are the magical words needed to search for the subject online so I wouldn't have to piece it together alone. Terms like "multithreaded shared pointer" just don't yield the right kind of results.

Sarah loves The Monster Mash CD I gave her for her birthday yesterday, even though the autograph was made out to me. Who could have known Bobby "Boris" Pickett would be not only alive and kicking, but would take the time to personalize the autograph instead of just scribbling his name? We can only find the lyrics for two of the songs on the CD, so I suppose it would be worthwhile to transcribe them. In all of my spare time. But everyone should know the lyrics to Wolfbane!

Kyle came up from BU on Friday for a short visit with Kate. We had a mini-Gamecube party at Clare's house with The Ben. We cleaned up because of the blue sparks. Kyle's a good wheel man.

Mmmmmm I can't wait until Thursday afternoon. I'll be headed down to Portland for my 6am Friday morning flight to Florida. Ohhhhh it's going to be nice down there. Then I'll be in the CT/RI area from Wed-Sat and back in Maine on the 28th. Eep, March will be almost over. There's not much time left, indeed.

Sunday - March 7, 2004

On February 17th I went to see the Barenaked Ladies in Portland. Best concert I've ever been to. So that was BNL show #4. Sarah and I went down early without much of a plan and happened to find a Margaritas restaurant across the street from the civic center. Of course it was packed, but we were down there early enough that the "it's going to be about an hour, hour and a half" threat didn't scare us. It worked perfectly because we got a table, had a nice meal (which was actually free for me because it was my belated birthday present from her), and found our seats with about five minutes to spare before the opening act.

And then that Saturday Sarah and I went to cotillion. Busy week.

Along the way, I captained The Turing Machine, the CS department's broomball team. We ended up going 0-5-1 for the season, but we had fun and the department is experiencing unprecedented levels of unity, if I may say so myself.

The Florida Institute of Technology recruited me because of my participation in BOSPRE which is pretty slick. Are you hearing me, potential employeers? I think I'm going to pass, because I have this nifty goal of being in Seattle by election day, but this seems like a good place to mention that I'm going to Venice, Florida for spring break. Ohhhh yeah. Yay cheap Internet airline ticket sites. And since I'll be staying at Sarah's grandparent's house, my room and board costs will be minimal. :)

On Friday, Feb 13th at 7:00pm, I decided that I'm ready to graduate. Yeah, it just sort of hit me that I'm mildly tired of being here and I'm ready to move on to bigger and better things. This is important because I've been fearing graduation for a long time. College is very awesome, I don't deny that, but living in Seattle and not having to share a bathroom with 20 guys would be nice.

On V-Day I went out to eat with some of Aubrey's family because they were up. It was stressful, but I made it though alive and then we went to see the Portland String Quartet. Stephen Kecskemethy looks so much like Dale, it's kind of creepy. We're trying to convince Dale that if we win the CCSCNE-2004 programming contest he should shave his beard. Yeah, the one that he's been growing since '75.

Have I linked to Robert C. Martin's articles for Software Development magazine yet? Well, there you go. Having a mentor is how I really learned how to program. I suggest you give it a shot.

Monday - March 1, 2004

I've got a lot to report on but only a little time to actually do so. I made a nice pile of memoirs on my desk to help me update, and I'll do it when I find just a bit more free time.

Wednesday - February 4, 2004

Nothing but good news to report about on my last first day of classes. Lunch with Rumbi, Kris, and Chris. Chillin' on the fourth floor of Mudd with Marc, Chris R., and Noah waiting for compilers with Dale to start. Worked on my project a bit. Dinner with Mahdi and Chris. Failed attempt to see 21 Grams with Aubrey that turned into a successful viewing of The Usual Suspects in my room. Who knew Railroad Square would sell out of $1 tickets on the first day of classes when no one has any work yet?

Today was also the end of my month long vegetarian experience. Yes, on the night of Jan 3rd I had tasty tacos and for breakfast on Jan 4th I started my meatless for a month diet with some pancakes. Well, I made it and chowed down on sweet, succulent meat for lunch and dinner today. Yummy. And I didn't get sick either. So now I know what it's like. Good for those people saving animals and such. But I can't deny my omnivore heritage.

Well it's getting to be around 1:30am on the 5th so I should hit the sack.

Saturday - January 30, 2004

Had a lot of fun with Noah and Chris hanging out at Clare's house playing Double Dash. Aww yeah. Noah is a very reliable rear guy, that's for sure. We made a stop at everyone's favorite evil big box store to buy a 4th controller because Clare still hadn't gotten around to it. Stayed for quite a long time, got some Mario Party 4 in, and watched a little Wallace and Gromit while we ate pizza. Apparently there's some small fundage from the dean's office for having students over at a professor's house, score!

Heh. I've moved up to 2nd on the waiting list for that gender and popular culture class, and I've been given permission to show up at the first class. Maybe if I keep coming she'll just let me stay. :) In the meantime, I've signed up for science, technology, and politics. That works for me, I'd say I dig technopolitics. Only has 6/30 in it though, hurm.

Last night Saara IMed me and we had a nice catching up chat.

Tuesday - January 27, 2004

Today Carolyn came over and I was was talking about and showing her my plants and she noticed that one of my clementine seeds has sprouted! No, really I think clementines are that cool and tasty. It was strange because it wasn't until the very last one in the box that I found seeds.

Yet another awesome CS pub night tonight. Actually I met with Kathy before it all started because she'd never been and needed to escape after her wellness lecture. Haha. Bro should be forced to sit through one of those. Before the pub I went kickboxing, yay! That's two Tuesdays in a row now.

Friday - January 23, 2004

I certainly had my best birthday ever yesterday. Chris set up an elaborate scheme of "this guy is 23" posters and a huge suprise party in the Spa. Chris, Marc, Andre, Mahdi, Rachel, Kelly, Leif, Brandy, Lisa, Lisa, Kris, Kathy, Aubrey, Carolyn, and Brendan were all there. And there were also plenty of well-wishers that stopped by for a bit as well. Rachel might be classified as one of those because she ran off to the pub, but she did arrange for the cake and had a friend from home up. Chris was waiting for me outside and called the phone in the Spa which was the signal to get the candles lit. I almost foiled his plot by suggesting we take the sky bridge to get from the ATM to the Spa but he quickly recovered with some "Uhhh, I want to ask the people in the pub first if it's okay to bring food in." Anyhow, it was amazing and I got to keep the box of plastic forks. Not that they compared to the awesome homemade card from Aubrey after T'ai Chi or the swank one from Kathy at the party.

And then today I was pretty lazy and didn't get much work done. But we did have a rockin' CS lunch. Go read about what you can't say while I head off to international coffee hour.

Sunday - January 18, 2004

Today I played Slide with Johnny, and later Mike as well. QuakeForge worked like a dream. Sweet memories. And the Colts are getting crushed by the Patriots. Talk about a good day. :)

Saturday - January 17, 2004

Last night was one of those times I wished I had a camera to preserve the memory. Well, actually I knew it would be, but I decided against lugging it around anyway. So a journal update will have to suffice.

Last night I went to an off-campus party. A Nintendo party. Oh yeah! Mahdi and Chris accompanied me to Clare's house for a little N64 and Gamecube action with Ben. Mario Party 4 makes me want to buy a Gamecube. Although I'm probably using Nintendo's trademark incorrectly, you know what I'm talking about and perhaps maybe you'll check out MP4 now.

Today I went to the women's basketball game with Aubrey (we lost big) and then to what was left of the women's ice hockey game (we won big). All of this was after my morning Tai-Chi practice of course. Yeah, I've been going to a class twice a week and Carolyn and I get together with Aubrey on our off days for a quick tree hug and run through the routine. I was habitually forgetting to go which was really lame, especially when Carolyn couldn't make it. Standing up our nice new freshman friend. :(

My honors project is coming along. Lots of things to clean up and get ready for the release I'm supposed to have in two weeks. Eep.

I like being able to program. But it's not just for the hardcore geeks you know. I've been trying to come up with a clever domain name and I wanted to get a list of four letter words to use as a prefix or suffix.

#include <string>
#include <fstream>
#include <iostream>

int main()
    using namespace std;

    ifstream file("/usr/share/dict/words");

    if (!file) {
        cout << "Couldn't open file" << endl;
        return 1;

    string word;
    while (file >> word) {
        if (4 == word.length()) {
            cout << word << endl;

Bam! A little piping to less and I'm all set. It's also handy to know your way around a Linux box. There are these physics majors working on something in C++ at Brookhaven remotely from the Linux Lab and boy were they ever having trouble. Not with the C++ so much as with getting C++ to work! The build of the program they were trying to modify was being handled by autoconf and since they copied things over from some other guy's account it just wasn't working. So I taught them about passing --prefix to the configure script. Tell me you know about this because you're running something like epkg.

Oh, I also went to a hypnotist. Want to know the secret? I volunteered to go up so I can tell you. The secret is that they can't actually hypnotize you, just convince you that it's okay to act stupid because everyone else thinks you're actually hypnotized. Perhaps if these washed up comedians were combined with an improv troupe hilarity would ensue.

After the hypnotist I went to Friendly's with Rachel and then we hung out in her room and her roommate Kirsten taught us how to play Beirut. It turns out Kirsten and I have the same birthday, Jan 22nd, except she's two years younger. Before the hypnotist I hung out in Chris' room and we listened to the new BNL in magical 5.1 DVD audio goodness. The rear speaker sounds were subtle, but rewarding. I can't wait to see them on Feb 17th! :)

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