Older blog entries for ErikLevy (starting at number 182)

Spring is almost here. Now can you figure out my geographic location from that?

The application project is coming along well. Just adding in the last pieces that the users will need for most operations. Then the secondary features will be built in. Once all the above are completed, a demonstration to all involved will be commenced and any additional features or adjustments will occur.

Hopefully I will get this baby off my hands in the next two weeks. Then we have a rigorous testing period and then hopefully another product will be out in the land of users.

While this product is for in-house use only, it has a significant impact on the e-business infrastructure here at this company. The external and internal become the same thing in a new package in the world of digital.

Went away on a mini-vacation, that was definitely nice.

I have been writing code at both the low level bits and bytes level and the higher level 'object' level. It's extremely important to understand when one approach, say memory management of the heap versus GC is the best trade off for a given project. How many times have I heard, "I don't like GC because it is slow" or "Why would I want to bother managing memory when I need this to work now."

The truth is that, like the projects that many of us have to deal with, trade offs always exist and being closed minded is going to hurt you rather than help you many times.

Since software is by definition flexible, projects always evolve and the most difficult aspect can be just to predict where a project is going to lead.

Unfortunately, as the US stock market shows, we humans are not necessarily very good at predicting.

Lets see, revenue is up several times more than expected at the company, I have about 60 items on my to-do list at work, and I feel a bit 'energized ' for some reason today.

All in all, I'm in a great mood. Things are coming together quite well indeed.

I have been around and even visiting advogato, but I haven't felt I've had the time to write. I'm still developing administration tools to make my and everyone else's life easier at the company.

The problem is that there are a lot of tools that would do things a lot faster, which also means it takes the time to prototype, build, test and maintain more and more pieces of software. Since I'm a limit resource, this all takes a bit of time to get done. The benefit is that once they are done, I should have more time to do other things.

I went to San Francisco on business on the day SFO (the airport by the city) had a shoe bomber who walked away. While I was not delayed, I saw on the local news there that a lot of people were (like several thousands).

Also, I didn't feel that safe when the pilot turned on the com unit and said that there aren't any delays at the airport you are going to because someone had bomb chemicals on their shoes, but they can't find them, so after rescreening everyone, things appear safe. Since that was the first I heard of the incident, I wasn't too pleased.

Otherwise though, the trip was a success and drummed up business for the company's products which I lead the development on and manage.

All and in all, everything is sort of the same but a little better. I like the sound of that.


Well, DNS went out and cause all sorts of problems. Got that back up and things are happy again. Luckily, clients never noticed from their end.

I made some changes to the credit interfaces. That wasn't to hard. Now I'm working on some needed admin tools that I've wanted for a few months.


Wrote some C code last night, and that went well. Also worked on some math stuff. That went well too. I'm expecting to finish the current C stuff in the next two weeks. Then I'll start the more complex software develop part.

I have to say I like things about C better than Java, but I miss the OO stuff from a conceptual part. C++ has advantages and disadvantages in these areas as well.

Between the last entry and this one, a lot has happened. Let's see what seems interesting.

I have a nasty cold/infection that I've had for about a week. An Invitation with some friends to come over for fondue ended with me getting something one of them had.

I'm hacking away in C. Mainly looking at memory management issues.

My girlfriend got into the toughest Master program she applied for and now we are waiting to see what the other schools say. I'm very proud of her.

Work has mainly consisted of my European counterpart trying to make sales and me fixing or explaining issues that come up. Usually, it is just that he didn't realized we used some new method to compute something or other. I am also finishing the functional specification for the third product I will probably start on in a few weeks.

The break for the holidays was good. I needed it to re- center myself.

I've almost finished 2 books, and I received about six or seven that I look forward to perusing. Hacking at both Java and C at the same time is an interesting experience.

I started reading a new book on the Theory of Computation, which seems to be going well (with all that fun math some people seem to hate).

At work today I have been developing mainly software improvements that I've known I've wanted to do for a while but didn't have time to do. I finished one this morning and did testing on it, now it is a matter of trying to work on some small improvements in related areas.

Advogato's spammer is certainly annoying. However, it is manageable at the moment. It does show a weakness in the social constructs that are used to manage user activities. Actually, there is a more glaring problem with how certificates are used in the system but that is probably an issue of how users are using certificates versus how they were intended to be used...

Let's see.

Do you ever wonder if you are getting to the place you are aiming for or if you are just treading water? I'm a goal oriented person (GOP). I see something down the road and I work to get there. I try to see the logic al steps between point A and point C.

But some days it seems you have to feel like you aren't getting anywhere to actually realize where you are going.

You need downtime to realize you are having uptime.

Father, I wrote code today. Lots of code. And I got paid for it. Actually, what people pay for software is amazing. Open source is as amazing as the fact people will pay us to do something we love.

Okay, not everyone loves the pressure that goes with technology jobs, but some people look at it as a challenge. I believe, truly believe, the future will bring much more interesting challenges and that's a good reason to stay in the game. I don't know about you but my mind needs to be stimulated more than a lot of the people I seem to talk to. Filling out forms all day does not make work interesting. Dealing with problems I've never even knew existed and needing to get it done ASAP is interesting.

My statistical professor from college died, I just found out. Not only was he one of the rare professors that could make math more than just route, but he could make it fun.

My girlfriend just received a recommendation letter from him for her graduate studies...she was probably the last person he wrote one for.

Once again, life has thrown a curve ball that I couldn't have predicted. Today is going to be dark blue.


Still working on the internal/external use project. Found out that the company credit card network had some information that was setup improperly by a third party. Luckily, I corrected the problem before any clients used it.

Incompetence can be frustrating.

Otherwise, just trucking along. Same old, same old. Nothing to see here.


Had a relaxing weekend with much hacking.

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