Starbucks-fueled Developer

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Chasing the Dream

Sadly, that's not a song title, but it should be.

This weekend, my younger brother left for Florida to start attending Full Sail where he'll be a student of Computer Art and Animation. He has a "blawg" (don't be fearful of the URL...I don't know, you'd have to ask his comrades) and his latest post talks about coming to terms with pursuing your dreams and the journeys they lead you on. Or, in the historical case of our family, not. While this doesn't correlate directly (that I see) to the principles of Agile development, I feel that, at some level, there may be...So I expound...

I can, in some way, feel Sean's pain. James Newkirk recently disclosed the availability of a position at Microsoft in their Community/Collaborative development group; you know,, etc. The position responsibilities/skill set includes familiarity with Agile Development and Test-Driven development. And while I have absolutely no formal experience in either of those two areas, I have taught myself a lot about them both. Enough to feel that if there was any development-related position at Microsoft that I had a remote chance at, this would be it.

I applied not. Why? Because it meant too much. Too much to give up. Moving to Redmond. Knowing I'd most likely be asked to commit too much time for work and "abandoning" my bride. It meant asking her to abandon all she was familiar with and risk, ultimately, our marriage, on this dream. It meant too much to risk. "Living to work".

While he said that everyone says they're proud of him, and as clecha as it sounds, I am. How can anyone not be proud and confident in someone who's chasing their dreams? I have so much respect for him in just the fact that he has the balls to risk, practically everything, for his dreams. I'd die to be able to learn and be good what he does. He's so immensely creative that I know, based on that alone, he will succeed and achieve his dream.

And bro, if you read this, Easter won't come soon enough. Be well, be safe, be smart! And have fun doing it.


  • Y'know, I know it sounded bad, the whole "our family doesn't do what they really want to do" thing, but I guess that's just me being a little too... self-important. Or maybe self-centered is a better word.

    You and Dad did actually wind up doing what you wanted to do. Dad had to do it when no one thought it was a viable field, and you're trying to excel in it now that it is a viable field. The difference would be like George Lucas trying to make Star Wars work, and then it did. A few years later, he had to make Empire Strikes Back even better, it had to ratchet up the "holy crap"-o-meter by like, forty points.

    You and dad are much like that. I guess... I guess I just felt a little too self-important because I'm scared, and very much alone (physically). When the time is right though, I can't believe that you'll pass up the opprotunity. It will exist for you one day, just like my narrow window exists now.

    Hopefully I wake up on time.

    By Anonymous Sean, at Tuesday, March 21, 2006 7:26:00 PM  

  • Not everyone at Microsoft works 80+ hour weeks. I average 45 hours/week and only have to put in more hours every 3 or 4 months.

    In fact, I would say that as the average age of the employees has risen over the years the percent working those infamous 80+ hour weeks has dropped significantly. We've moved from a company hiring 20-something's that live and breath their work to a company hiring 20/30/40/50/60-somethings that have a family and life outside of work. There are still some groups that work the 'old school' way, but I think they're less and less prominent each year.

    By Anonymous tod, at Monday, April 10, 2006 3:49:00 PM  

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