Thursday, September 30, 2004

Non-scientific poll

Just trying to get an update on a vital issue in this election year:

Friday, September 24, 2004

For a second, I thought that Keenspot had taken to advertising pr0n in their banners. [I wouldn't advise clicking on that at work, btw.] Ends up that it's not pr0n, but I think it's a tad risque considering that kids might peruse Keenspot (and that appeared on It's Walky!, not something more adult-oriented).

Work update: lots of stuff has happened, partially a result of me getting the conference award and raising my visibility within Cadence. Maybe? I'm not entirely sure. Anyway, to sum up: I had wanted to transfer to another group (CAT) within Cadence after the acquisition because what they do meshes very well with my interests. Problem was that this is outside of the Neolinear CEO-cum-Cadence VP's (Tom's) fiefdom, and he's very leery of losing headcount. (Never mind that I would still be working in the Pittsburgh office, interacting with people from his groups, and essentially enabling free--at least, to him--resources from CAT to work on various integration problems. That would make too much sense, see...)

This was communicated to me (by my acrimonious manager, Rodney; the food chain is Tom > Glen > Rodney > me) as an ultimatum: "You will work on what we tell you to work on, or you can go find another job." Given this limited set of choices, I chose the latter.

Last week, Glen (who happened to be in San Jose at the same time as me) stepped in and started making some waves. He essentially pointed out to Tom that he's going to lose me either way; by allowing me to transfer to CAT, though, I can still do useful stuff for him.

Yesterday, the approval for the transfer was issued. Yay!

So, it looks like I'll be staying with Cadence after all. I'll be working for Iain, who is fairly laid back and will be pleased to have me on his team. He also has a very thick Scottish accent, so teleconferencing will be interesting. :-)

Anyway, today I'm off to Calif. again, but this time to San Diego for a wedding. I'll be back on Monday.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Holy crap.

My paper & presentation won an MVP award for my section at the ICU conference.

I got an iPod mini.

Still kind of surprised about the whole thing...

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Is it a bad sign when you've signed so many NDAs (non-disclosure agreements) that you can't remember who you can tell what to and to what it applies?

NDAs are the civilian equivalent of classified information. For the most part, it's all public knowledge; you're just trying to keep others from finding it and tying it all together easily.

Why is the Fry's in Palo Alto look so crappy, both inside and out? It's like the ghetto Fry's. But how the hell can something be ghetto in Palo Alto? East Palo Alto, sure. Oakland, definitely. But Palo Alto? A few blocks from Stanford?

The expressway system here fascinates me. They're like quasi-freeways, usually divided, but with stop lights every few miles or so. I'm undecided on whether they're a good or bad thing -- I don't think I could make such a decision unless I commuted on them daily and/or lived near one.

I especially am intrigued as to how "Montague Expressway" got its name.

Monday, September 13, 2004

Conference started today (well, pre-conference seminars). Very enjoyable, despite having to haul my butt down to Santa Clara from SF at 7am. As usual, it was completely foggy in SF but bright and sunny in Silicon Valley. I'll have to do the same tomorrow, but in normal rush-hour traffic. Oy...

Spoke with someone from IBM's Essex Junction, VT site. Turns out she's actually the moderator for the session my paper is in. And she also oversees their chip design software kits, which we need a few bugs fixed in for our stuff. Heh; and my coworkers told me I'd never get IBM to fix these bugs! But, ah... IBM is a shell of its former self. So sad. Reminder to self: need to drive by the Cottle Rd site (where I interned years ago) so see how they've replaced the IBM logos with Hitachi.

As predicted, US Airways declared bankruptcy today, the second time in as many years. However, despite previous threats, they have agreed to keep flying and honor existing tickets. So I'm not as stranded here as I had thought. Drat-- er, I mean, phew. :-)

Hm... so the conference runs from 8am to 7pm tomorrow; I'm meeting with some folks for an interview/negotiations/dinner at 7:30pm. Ah, it'll be a long day. Better hit the sack.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Just had to remark on some observations at the Pittsburgh airport...

Lots of empty spaces in the AirMall, including (most annoyingly) the space that my bank, National City, used to occupy. Now I must shell out a zillion dollars in surcharges to use the PNC ATM. Grah.

It's almost dead here. There was *zero* line at the security checkpoint, on a Friday evening. While not usual in recent memory, this place used to be constantly packed when I first got to Pittsburgh.

A number of eateries are now sporting "Effective immediately, we will no longer accept US Airways vouchers." Ouch.

So I'm flying out to SFO today, and I'm supposed to return next Thursday. Given that my flights are on US Airways, I may very well be quasi-stranded out there if they file for bankruptcy this weekend and stop flying (as their management has been hinting). Doh!
They're just now saying that the recently revealed National Guard records on Bush might be forgeries.

That was my initial reaction upon seeing the documents (which was disappointing to me from a political standpoint, but I'm playing armchair forensic scientist here, not spin doctor). While they look fine for, say, anything produced in the 90's onward, the typesetting is all wrong for something supposedly written in the 70's. The key bit is that it uses a proportional-spaced font. This is impossible to produce on a 70's era typewriter or teletype.

Also, since when does a military squadron have a PO box?

Here are pictures of the document and what I think it should look like:

Thursday, September 9, 2004

The joy I share with you today is .

Also, as a bit of a compromise (inspired, in part, by my manager's apology for his ranting outburst at me last week), I agreed to stay on at Cadence for a few extra weeks to help wrap up a project. In the meantime, however, I am permitted to search for new and better jobs.

I like to think of it as being paid to look for another job.

Sunday, September 5, 2004