It's good to be headed back to work this week. I've spent the last four months writing sessions and doing some consulting with various organizations, and it's nice to be headed back to teach some stuff live.
It's been a good year, and although I have some pretty big challenges this year, I think this is going to be an exciting year.
There's lots of good gear these days in the mad scientist's new lair (shown above). I bit the bullet and bought a 1U dual processor server earlier this year, and wired the new office with gigabit ethernet (more on that later). I'm very thankful to be able to teach classes for a living, and I get to work with some really cool technology vendors. Big projects for this year include:
+ I want to improve the document management in my office this year. I've been in touch with Fujitsu and HP about hardware, and hope to try out some of the document management systems out there in my office. I have a lot of hardware sitting around that really just needs to be configured to do the document management thing. While I've been doing electronic content management for some time, it's nice to finally be at the point of having the resources needed to do it right.
+ I'm going to have to rewire my office. Like an idiot, I did it myself, and used the wrong parts (trying to do gigabit ethernet with Cat 5e is just a bad idea). I will probably redo the office myself, but am also going to get someone who does this for a living to certify the cabling with one of those $5k Fluke Networks devices. I am also going to have to see if I need to replace my gigabit switch, as I'm told that its backplane leaves a lot to be desired. Word to the wise: Talk to someone before you put in a lot of cabling- it's an arcane art which can cause you serious pain if you don't pay attention to it.
+ This year is the final year for the Mafia-Mobile, my 1996 Cadillac. While it has served me well, it now has just short of 200k miles on it, and although it still runs, it really needs some dough pumped into it if I am going to continue with it. I'm considering a mid-sized to full-sized SUV or truck (used, of course). I understand that a lot of people are selling these to get out from under the operating costs. Since I usually only drive to my son's school, the UPS Store, and the airport, the fact that it gets crappy mileage really isn't that big of a deal.
+ I'd like to juice-up my servers and website this year, including implementing virtual servers in the office for just about everything. I'm going to have to juice the RAM in everything to make this happen (and it's ECC RAM, so it's going to be pricey), but I think it will be worth it. The stats I'm seeing on virtualization really make me think that it's the way to go. That, plus 4-5 of those cool 320GB HDDs for backup in m
y safety deposit box should really help out with the disaster recovery plan.
+ I also seem to have some PC's which have broken IDE buses which are otherwise workable. I think it would be interesting to run Hyper-V on them from a flash drive, and then do everything from VM's off of USB HDD's on the otherwise good PCs. (First one will most likely be a media center PC for the treadmill.)
On a personal note, I have to get ready for some running later this year. Although I publically declared myself a candidate for the 2008 NYC Marathon earlier this year, I'm going to have to back away from that goal, and head for a more modest one of doing a 5K/10K later this year, followed by Bay to Breakers with K2 CEO Val Steed next May, and a marathon of some kind in 2009. Val is a multiple time Boston Marathon finisher, and I'm a guy well on his way back from weighing 200kg- so I've got my work cut out for me.
I also have a soon to be six year old son who wants to ride his bike with his Daddy- so I have to spend as much time with him as long as he will let me.
Either way, my almost 40 year old body is really hacked off at me for my time as a super-large guy, and has been complaining loudly and prominently over the last few weeks as I try to make the transition back to a more healthy lifestyle.
Finally, I'm hoping to pull my ratings up a little bit and give Mac a real run for his money as the champion speaker at K2. As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. The competition is definitely fierce, but I wouldn't have it any other way.