The year was 1994, and I was travelling with good friend Sally over to the US to attend the wedding of a mutual friend Cathy.
It was my first trip overseas, but Sally was an experienced traveller and suggested we do a bit of sightseeing in Canada, including visiting Prince Edward Island. As well as being a beautiful, picturesque island it also happens to be the setting for the Anne of Green Gables books.
On one of our excursions around the island we happened to stop at Fisherman's Wharf Lobster Suppers. As you can see, they supply a practical (if not very fashionable) bib. To be honest, I probably got more out of the 60 foot salad bar than the lobster, not being a huge seafood fan, but it was an experience nonetheless.
"That's nice Dave, but where's this trip down memory lane leading?", you say?
As Dean Hutton would respond, "I'm glad you asked!"
Well I've been offered the position of "Senior Consultant" with LobsterPot Solutions!
I'll be working with Rob Farley and the rest of the LobsterPot team, providing consulting and training services around SQL Server and Business Intelligence. I also hope to bring my .NET application development experience to the mix.
I'm quite excited about this next step in my career. In some respects it seems like it will combine many of the best parts of some of my previous positions – the training and professional development support that I got working at UniSA, and the intellectual stimulation and enthusiasm of working with some seriously smart guys at Viterra/ABB Grain.
I start on Monday 15th February, so that gives me two weeks break – to do a few jobs around the house, take the kids to school, go for the odd bike ride, and do some more research on that Hyper-V server I'm planning to build.
Ten years ago, a crack IT-commando unit was sent to prison by a static code analyser for a bug they didn't create. These men promptly escaped from a Triple-DES security stockade to the Adelaide underground. Today, still wanted by the government/higher education and private sectors, they survive as developers of fortune. If you have a software problem, if no one else can help, and if you can find them, maybe you can hire... The AoM-Team.
If I recall correctly, I wrote those words not that long after I started as a contract developer at ABB Grain around 18 months ago. This Friday the 29th is my last day contracting at what is now known as Viterra. Our team is finishing up as "the job is done".
It has been an exciting and fulfilling adventure being part of the team that has created a software solution that has been so widely praised by the end-users. More often than not, IT project fail, but against the odds we managed to succeed in a big way. I'm proud to know that our work made a real difference to the staff who have just worked through one of the biggest grain harvests in recent history.
Without doubt THE highlight has been working with a group of awesome colleagues – my fellow "AoM Team" members:
- Ben Laan
- Nigel Spencer
- Brian Kelsey
- Ping Liang
- Raaj Kumaar
- Jo Wegner
- Angelo Tsirbas
- Tony Miller - Yes I can now proudly say (along with apparently all the residents of Eyre Peninsula and the west coast of South Australia) that I know Tony Miller!
(And previous team members Timothy Walters, Richard Hollon and Solan Dogan).
I will really miss working with you guys - sharing stories, parenting tips, learning new coding tricks, Jo's lollies, plying everyone with "Dad" jokes, visiting lots of country bakeries and creating great software.
"So what's next?", I hear you ask? Well while it isn't a secret, I'm going to make you wait until my next blog post to tell you!
As part of my research into suitable components for a Hyper-V server, I thought it would be interesting to see the cents per gigabyte of the various drives offered by MSY.
|Brand ||Capacity (GB) ||Cost (AUD) ||Cents/Gigabyte |
|Hitachi ||320 ||50 ||0.16 |
| ||500 ||59 ||0.12 |
| ||1000 ||97 ||0.10 |
| ||2000 ||224 ||0.11 |
| || || || |
|Seagate ||160 ||47 ||0.29 |
| ||250 ||49 ||0.20 |
| ||320 ||55 ||0.17 |
| ||500 ||59 ||0.12 |
| ||1000 ||102 ||0.10 |
| ||1500 ||139 ||0.09 |
| ||2000 ||239 ||0.12 |
| || || || |
|WD ||160 ||49 ||0.31 |
| ||320 ||54 ||0.17 |
| ||808 ||77 ||0.10 |
| ||1000 ||105 ||0.11 |
| ||1500 ||140 ||0.09 |
| ||2000 ||235 ||0.12 |
Prices from MSY PARTS.PDF dated 25/01/2010
So as far as value for money, those 1.5TB drives from Seagate and WD appear the winner.
Ahh.. I will miss Brian's little pranks :-)
On the bright side – yes those are Cherry Ripe bars attached to the sticky-tape.
That's something we've particularly enjoyed over the last few months – Jo (one of the testers in our team) has most generously taken it upon herself to be the "filler of the lolly bowl".
Today I joined around 8,000 fellow cyclists in the Mutual Community Challenge Tour – riding 111km along part of the same route that the professionals took later in the day. The full route started at Norwood, but owing to my limited preparation we started with the majority of riders at Woodside.
This year I was once again riding with my Dad and the rest of the Mud, Sweat and Gears team.
This year was different for a number of reasons – most significantly it was the first year that BicycleSA weren't responsible for organising the ride, and boy was that obvious (in a bad way).
First of all, there was the jersey size debacle. There appear to have been hundreds of complaints already that the same "size" is way larger than last year.
Around 5,000 of the total riders started at Woodside.
- Car parking was a joke.
- Everyone had to squeeze through 2 "gates" to sign in. Talk about bottlenecks!
Strathalbyn was the major drink and food stop.. except there was no food! Poor planning. It should have all been delivered by the night before. Apparently it did turn up later in the morning – but too late for us and the hundreds of others who'd already been and gone.
Milang drink stop only had about 4 water taps running off one hose, whose pressure was pitiful (they should have had a water tanker provide water).
Goolwa finish was at the footy oval which at least was a suitable size to deal with the crowd, except:
- Poor signing and poor directions – took ages to find the 'cloakroom' to pick up our bag
- I felt sorry for the guy singing and playing guitar who was being drowned out by commercial radio on a separate PA.
At least we got our lunch ok.
The other problem that I remembered also happened in Angaston last year – the mobile phone network becomes useless. The organisers really need to get the phone companies to bring in temporary towers to provide extra coverage.
So apart from a bit of grumbling, we finished our ride in good time (though that wind was pretty nasty).
Here's a few photos from the end of the day:
The crowds watch on as the riders and support teams in the professional race approach the finish line at Goolwa.
Packing up the bike. Looks like that daughter of mine is using her powers of levitation!
Also note that baggy jersey.
That's my new bike by the way. You may recall my old bike met with a slight accident after last year's event.
I'm now riding a Cannondale CAAD7 with an Ultegra group set.
Driving back to Adelaide, we saw this guy. He must be fit.