Friday, January 05, 2007

Five Things You (May) Not Know About Me

OK. I've been tagged for the blog meme/chain letter of the moment. I try to assiduously avoid such things. And I definitely don't have any photos as amusing as a very fresh-faced Catherine with Ozzy Osbourne. Nonetheless, for you Catherine, here we go. "Five Things You Don't Know About Me." (Most of which shouldn't be particularly surprising to anyone who has really dived into my website.)

  1. Out of engineering school, I designed offshore drilling rigs. In addition to spending a lot of time in shipyards and flying around in helicopters, I worked on various mechanical subsystems (including piping systems such as ballast control) on the Ocean Odyssey which is now an equatorial satellite launch platform.
  2. During c. the nineties, I spent much of my free time developing DOS software (shareware and freeware). Although I wrote a variety of things, I spent most of my time on a file manager called "Directory Freedom" that grew out of a couple of PC Magazine utilities and some subsequent work by Peter Esherick of Sandia Labs. It clocked in at a whopping 39KB because it was written in x86 assembler. (Shudder....) I sometimes get emails from people who (still!) use it--which is nice.
  3. When I was at Dartmouth, I helped found The Dartmouth Review, an alternative (conservative) off-campus newspaper that recently celebrated its 25th anniversary. I also created the last word quotes column; at one point I tried to get a compilation published as a book, but didn't find a publisher.
  4. I've climbed 20K ft.-plus peaks including Island Peak in Nepal and Cotopaxi in Ecuador. I haven't done this recently because I've been recuperating from a broken foot that I suffered in the Grand Canyon.
  5. And (most obscure, but probably least interesting), I grew up right next to a Nike Hercules base West of Philadelphia (very near where Unisys is today--Burroughs at the time) in an old farm house. (Which should have keyed me into the issues associated with old farm houses such as the one in which I'm now living--but I digress.) This was the PH-82 site--later purchased by the University of Pennsylvania and now a housing development.

Tag: Stephen Shankland, Stephen O'Grady, Bob Sutor, Irving Wladawsky-Berger, James Governor.

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