Four years ago today I started work at Lookout, Inc., embarking on the longest journey of my career to date. I had left Apture frustrated with our inability to grow the product and engineering team, but with pockets full of experience at building and deploying service-oriented applications "my way." At the time Apture was literally down the block from Lookout, so on a Friday I left Apture and the following Monday I took my same commute in to Lookout. What I wasn't able to get at Apture, I found at Lookout.
Late last year I changed roles at Lookout from the 'Engineering Lead' of the Enterprise team, to the 'Engineering Manager' for the "Core Systems" team. I've not been keeping track of whether this means I'm writing more, or writing less code on a week-to-week basis. But the charter of Core Systems does mean much more of the software and tools we write can be open sourced, or even started as open source projects.
It's that time again! FOSDEM 2015 is quickly approaching and just like last year I'm thrilled to be going again. This year I will be making a stop-over for a few days in London (Jan 24-28th) to visit the Lookout London office before heading towards Brussels. If you're interested in drinking a beer in either location, ping me via twitter or email.
For the past three years at Lookout we've hosted an event called "Hacksgiving." Historically the event has been focused on cool hacks typically oriented around projects or ideas that are internal to Lookout. The first year, for example, a colleague and I prototyped the messaging system that would power our business product the following year. Another group of hackers created the precursor to our signal flare feature that same year (hif I'm remembering correctly).
Earlier on this year I wrote this post as a "mid-season" report on how the little backyard farm (named Croy Family Farms) of mine has been doing. Since that time, in July, I've been eagerly waiting to write this post and somewhat "conclude" the 2014 growing season.
This past October I was invited to represent JRuby in the JavaOne 2014 "Script Bowl." A panel where community members from various projects which implement scripting languages on top of the JVM pitch their language to a live studio audience. This year's panel consisted of a members from the Groovy, Clojure and Scala communities, and me representing JRuby of course.
This past September I was selected as a speaker at PuppetConf 2014 and given the oppoortunity to talk about some of the patterns that we've developed to help run the Jenkins project infrastructure.
My first excursion into the internet or as it was then known by newscasters, the information super highway, was courtesy of the University of Georgia. My mom had gone back to school and as part of her program, there were a number of new-fangled "online classes." We bought a 28.8 baud modem to go with our Macintosh LC III, in this year it was already 3-4 years old, and used the instructions distributed by the university to set up the Chooser to AppleTalk or some bullshit like that. Mac OS System 7.6 was not very internet friendly.
Followers of mine on Twitter have no doubt seen photos and periodic reports from "Croy Family Farms," the tongue-in-cheek name of my backyard garden. I've not written or chronicled some of the experiences in any amount of depth, despite this (2014) being the third growing season I've been gardening. Unlike previous years, this year I'm keeping much better track of what is growing well, what isn't, and what different plants are yielding (with photos).
Note: I originally posted this here, on the Lookout hackers blog. I encourage you to check the blog out and follow @LookoutEng.