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I grew up in a very small town in Idaho and went to high school at Idaho Falls High School. The high school was located in a town 50 miles from my home, so needless to say the bus ride was very long and boring (and dark). I had to wake up at about 5:45 AM and catch the bus at 6:30. This sorry state of affairs led me to develop a serious aversion to waking up early--now I am definitely not a morning person.
While I was growing up my two main passions were computers and Lego toys. I had an Apple IIGS, and spent a lot of time writing BASIC and assembly code on it. I once won the "one-liner" programming contest in Nibble, which was a popular Apple II enthusiast magazine. I liked building stuff with my Lego toys, and I still have a sizeable lego collection to this day.
After high school I moved on to college. I studied Computer Science at Yale University, and received my B.S. degree there in 1996. College was quite an experience. There was a lot of work and very little sleep. Caffeine was a staple of my diet. To unwind, on the weekends my friends and I often went on late night adventures into the university's underground steam tunnel network. This illict activity culminated in some wild and bizarre pranks, among them a night-before-midterms power outage, the lawn in the elevator incident, the mystery of the misplaced steam valve, and ghost duty in Woolsey Hall.
After I graduated from college, I entered the workforce as a software engineer. Some of the companies I worked for were fun and full of smart people that I could learn from. And others, unfortunately, were grossly mismanaged train wrecks. What's the moral of the story? Software companies should not be run by people who know nothing about software development. Not exactly a stunning revelation, is it?
I've been moving around quite a bit in the last few years, mostly between southern California and Houston, Texas. Houston has great restaurants, low living expenses, friendly people, lots of trees, and interesting weather, but unfortunately there aren't a whole lot of job opportunities for me out there, the traffic is hell, and everyone drives an extra-large SUV. Southern California, on the other hand, has more tech jobs and less humidity, but it's oppressively expensive, crowded, and polluted. What to do, what to do.
My long term ambitions are the same as those of most software engineers: to develop a killer application. From time to time, I do development on one such application, a skunkworks software project that may someday change the way you view the Internet. If I ever manage to finish it, that is.
So what does the future hold? I'd like to have my own software company
someday. Or maybe start a crawfish farm. In the distant future, I see
myself living in Australia; I've always been drawn to Australia, even
though I've never been there before. I'm also clinging to the hope that one
of these days, the government will tap me to work on some top-secret
UFO project. Hey, you never know.