It’s happened again

Well – another 2 months has gone by, and been meaning to add another post, but the mailman has been sick.

( get it ? post ? mail-man ? *sigh* another dad joke )

More babies, more music, more Dad-stuff , more nerdy/tech stuff- just life-in-general…

Congrats to the following people who have added rug-rats :

* Elaine & Greg Van Bergen – with the arrival of VB-VB 1.0. Victor Bernard Van Bergan to be precise – and he’s already a nerd – check out the Microsoft baby-suit.

* Gavin & Dana Ronan – with the arrival of Samuel James. A mate of mine from Uni days (the only one !) We went for a drive up to Ballarat to see them, although only saw Samuel for about 3/4 of an hour, sleeping mostly. Sounds like it was a pretty traumatic birth – with Dana having eclampsia (sp?) – and have a “fit” in the shower, before an emergency cesarean. But – Mum & bub OK now. You hear about women who die in child-birth – and Dana woulda been close, about 50 years ago. a bit morbid I know – but it’s great that they’re all OK – Gavin too >

* Tony & Alicia Vaccaro – another Samuel, but this was a Samuele – Italian spelling of the name. The sister-of-a-friend, I’ve known her since she was about 8 years old. So great that they’re now “with child” – and just gushing about being parents. Tony is a particularly dry & quietly spoken man – but was commenting on “how it brings tears to your eyes to see, doesn’t it ?” joys of child-birth ! >

Music / Entertainment
Couldn’t get a more eclectic grouping in the last month or so – firstly, another “ritualistic gathering of angry-young-white-man wearing black T-Shirts” ie. heavy-metal gig.

This time, it was HATEBREED – hard-core punk/thrash from New York (I think). Great riffs & rhythms – although only knew 3-4 songs (including the awesome “I will be heard”)…

Another “gig” was to see THE LION KING. Amazing musical – and made even better by having seats that were (literally) front-and-centre.

The front-est row of the place – in the centre-est seats. But – was probably a bit too close – like being front row at the cinema. Missed a few things – but could see all facial expressions – and hear the conductor’s cue’s. Loved the sets & costumes, and lots of laughs too.

Next gigs – just bought tickets for THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT playing at the Hi-Fi Bar in the city. Will include material from their new album (due in June) – but gig isn’t till August 4th.

And – thought seriously about Pearl Jam – but not for $100. (hey – I got a wife and two cars to feed, man !)

Been listening to the new TOOL album, on high-rotation – and also the new GODSMACK album.

And awaiting the new SLAYER album – and just found out about a new HELMET album. Going to be recorded in analog, for that raw & rough sound – when everyone else is going digital. Will be good to hear.

The press release mentioned that HELMET have influenced many bands, including CHEVELLE – well, that was recommendation enough to go find some, and first listen has returned a thumbs-up. more to come >

Nerdy / Tech stuff

* Got a revised Beta of WINDOWS VISTA, and works fine now with the nVidia drivers that caused me problems with earlier release – and thus works with the new monitor. Loving it so far – will have to install some more day-to-day software (Outlook, Nero, etc) – and give it more of a real-world trial – not just a poke & play.

* Windows Workflow – attended a great session just last week, to cover some demo’s. Am planning to get a Virtual-PC setup, with WinFX and all the bits for new-dev. and just bought a 300 GB external hard drive – for such V-PCs >

* MOSS-2007 – attended another dev/tech session in late-April about Microsoft Office 12 – including the Sharepoint server, Excel server and so forth. And with Windows Workflow all through – will be some good learning afoot.

* ASP.NET – more and more involved with some SDM projects that have been testing my thoughts & skills – and that’s been great.

* Overnight maintenance – for a major provider of train services within Melbourne (have a guess – go on !). Was archive of SQL Server data, for 12+ months older data.

Biggest news within this area ( tech / nerd / work ) was the surprise redundancies of three staff members within SDM, about a month ago.

It was a decent shock for most people, but was necessary for continued viability & profitability – business-is-business. We’re being creamed in the market-place, on our rates – and missed out some some major work.

Felt like I was lucky to retain my position – and sad to see one bloke go, who I was/am pretty good friends with. It put a bit of dent in my enthusiasm for SDM, work and career in general. Left me a bit flat & depressed. and maybe a reason why I’ve been a bit of a non-poster >

One of the reasons was the down-turn in “custom dev” – and the change within SDM to be more “architects” than “builders”. And to out-source the labour (programming) to an off-shore development group (Sri Lanka). Will be interesting to see how it transpires for my role, and how SDM follows this new direction.

Check out this article for an overview of this down-turn & subsequent forced evolution within the IT market, and SDM.

. . . predicts that the average IT worker will be unemployable in five years time because just writing code is not enough.

This is especially related to “custom-dev” – ie. MY team ! Part of me is worried about losing my job – another part is worried about losing my grip on core skills & a forced shift in perspective (design vs code).

I’m initially just focussing on the task-at-hand (day-to-day) – with this new perspective at the back of my mind. ie. business as usual – let the chips fall where they may.


This is probably THE reason I haven’t entered a post, or why I haven’t played XBox – or installed Office-12.

Cameron is just so cool now – with big hugs & smiles when I return home from work, and lots of babbling & it really sounds like he’s talking (even if it’s just within his own little world).

He’s walking everywhere, and getting into everything. He loves buttons – especially remotes, phones, TVs, keyboards, etc – no idea where he got that from !

Dancing and jiggling to Hi-5, drawing with crayons, emptying the nappy bag – so much fun to be had. A few wake-ups, and bad coughs – but he’s been pretty good really, we’re lucky parents.

Anyway – best get into some more of the same (ie. all of the above) – and promise to do more blogging – it’s sad to see my visit-stats as big columns of ZERO’s.

Hopefully someone will actually READ my blog !


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