Don’t hit publish on the blog when you just want to save a draft.

Big Builds are Bad. Software should be developed and distributed in small packages. Linux is successful due to things like apt, yum, and yast.

Interface Specifications need to be more specific.  Just saying that something is a string is not really helpful if that something needs to conform to a pattern.

Programming and blogging requires sugar in the brain.

Interviews are tricky…on both sides of the table. Career fairs are worse.

C++ Has a lot of magic in it. Can we make type level programming more transparent?

Microsoft purchasing Yahoo would be good for Google, but bad for just about everyone else.

Being a Dad is really cool. Even when it sucks, it is great. Sometimes kids refuse to go to sleep. This leads to sleep deprivation, but also leads to really wonderful moments in rocking chair in the middle of the night.

Pool is a great Geek game. Lower left-hand English is neat.

Snowshoes are good off the trail. Not so good on the trail. If your going on the trail, take the cross country skis. Snowmobiles smell funny.

New Hampshire winter weather is still as brutal today as it was when I left the area in the early ’90s.

It is hard to sing a Jazzy version of Old MacDonald had a Farm.  It is harder to do after the tenth repetition while trying to get a child to fall asleep.
If you listen to Children’s CDs long enough, you will develop favorite children’s songs. I like the hippo song.

Is there really a difference between the Ethernet and SCSI protocols? I don’t know, but it would be fun to find out.

The compiler is your friend. Let it check your work for you.

Why write code on a white board if you have a computer available? Especially if you have an overhead projector?

Where do the local peregrine falcons sleep? Where would they be sleeping if we hadn’t built up the whole area?

If I could have a redo on which language to take as a Sophomore, I would probably would have liked to take Chinese. Russian and Arabic would also do. German was not a good choice for me.

If Bush Senior had insisted on pushing to Baghdad, it would have been my generation in this mess as opposed to the current set of junior officers. Instead of Haiti, I would have gone to Basra or something.

There are too many interesting topics in the world to pursue them all, or even a small fraction of them.

Every philosopher I’ve read, especially the ones I disagree with, ave said something that is valuable and true.

No matter how old you are, when you get together with your parents, you revert to teenager status.

This list should never see the light of day.

Spotted on the North Bank of the Charles

Yeah, the snow today was gorgeous. I walked to work this morning. As I crossed the BU Bridge I noticed a flock of ducks in the water in the lee of the railroad bridge. On the north side of the bridge is a small clearing where the ducks and geese congregate in the warmer weather. I noticed the snow was well beaten down there, and wondered if that was from people or waterfowl. As I continued to walk and look, I noticed a large, brown bird overlooking the same clearing. I recognized the Brown feather with black horizontal lines of my favorite raptor: The Peregrine Falcon. I had seen one in this area earlier in the year, while on a bike ride with my family. As I stopped and watched it, I noticed it’s white underbelly with brown spots that you would see it the bird were in flight. I stopped a bunch of people on the bridge and pointed it out. Seeing a peregrine falcon in the snow while crossing the Charles River is truly a special experience.

Peregrine Falcons at Russell Crag

Rock Climbing is my major leisure time activity. Given a free weekend, that is what I want to spend my time doing. One thing that excited me about moving back east was the quantity of good, climbable rock in the vicinity of my parents home in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. The house is about halfway between Rumney and Franconia Notch, two of the big three climbing areas in NH. The Third area, North Conway, is at the other end of the Kancamagus Highway. In addition to the numerous established climbing areas, there are vast numbers of smaller, local crags just begging to be climbed. One of these is on Russell Mountain, Just west of Russell Pond Campground, and just North of Exit 31.

Many years ago, after college I was suffering through from EMail. Before internet access was everywhere, most people had to resort to dial-up. I went with AOL. THis was before AL had developed its hard earned reputation for spam, script kiddies, and painful connections. When I was trying to get a screen name, just about every variation on my name had been taken. I setteld on RusselCrag (yes, I missed a letter). Even then I was thinking of home.

I did a little bit of a web search about Russell Crag. Aside from finding a guide service where a guide had claimed to have done first ascents there, there was nothing about climbing. Good. But there was some references to Peregrine falcons. Numerous cliffs in the Sierra’s have part time climbing bans to protect the Raptors that nest on them. The mother birds will often abandon a nest if she feels threatened. If this happens after the eggs are laid, they will not hatch, and another year with no replacement population threatens their already dwindling numbers.

In mid July, a few days after arriving on the East Coast, I took a pair of binoculars and scanned Russell Crag from my folks property. I got lucky. I saw a beautiful brown and white bird of prey launch from the vicinity of the crag, and start riding the rising wind currents west of Russell Mountain. The white band at the neck identified it as a Peregrine. I watched the falcon rise higher, pass after pass, and then disappear behind the mountain.

A few weeks later, I contacted Chris Martin the author of a New Hampshire Audubon study on Peregrin Falcons nesting in New Hampshire. He confirmed that Russell Crag was an active nesting site that year. They had bandded three chicks in June. By July, there was no risk of climbing to threaten the nest. He suspects that the nest will be in use for several years to come. In fact, he invited me along to help with the banding next may if I was interested. I most certainly am.

So if you are in the vicinity of Russell Mountain, search the skies for circling Falcons. If you want to climb Russell Crag, give me a shout and we’ll go up, so long as it isn’t nesting season.