Living it is…
…returning to a town you were in less than two years ago with 10x more momentum than last time you were there.
Retracing my steps is always a reminder of what’s been accomplished since I initially laid the path, and this is a rather potent example. When I got to NYC in 2000, I really didn’t even know what was going to happen. When it didn’t, and Seattle came into the picture (/me smiles at piston), I still didn’t know what was going to happen… But these last (almost) two years have been pretty packed with good things for me. I would have to say that I’ve been successful in some of the goals I hoped to attain when I left Florida. It’s a good feeling :)
The purpose for this trip is to teach a three day QuickTime Streaming Server course for Apple at their training center in mid-town Manhattan. I am fully stoked at this opportunity :) I know the material pretty damn well, and it’s stuff that I was into well before these training opportunities came into play… plus I’ve been practicing lately, doing my own streaming stuff (props to Rob for letting me run DSS on his box in spkz colo :) QTSS is plainly badass, especially now that mpeg4 has finally hit (reasonable quality video + audio at under 10 KB/s, anyone?). I haven’t had a lot of experience with other streaming solutions, but from what I know, QTSS (and the open source Darwin Streaming Server) is far and away the best and cheapest way to deliver streaming media to the masses. In typical Apple fashion, it’s easy to set up (okay, sometimes not so easy for DSS) and use, and you simply don’t need to know all of the underlying details relevant to the actual delivery of the content in order to be successful (although it certainly helps, which is one of the purposes of Apple’s QTSS course). But enough about that :)
I was also to teach this same course in Santa Monica next week, but unfortunately it was canceled due to low enrollment :/ I dunno if they’ll reschedule or what, but I’m thinking that if the student evaluations from this NYC session are good, they’ll be asking me to train for them some more.
My long term plans are still about what they were a few months ago when I started my current job:
-hang in Seattle and enjoy a nice, quiet geek life / culture, while building a good rep with Apple as a contract trainer, and also with the Mac community of Seattle.
-glean whatever sort of strange enjoyment I can out of being able to live quite cheaply. I really expect that my next gig will pay (and seriously, I’m not about chasing the dollar, it’s just a matter of fairness. It’s currently a struggle not to be constantly pissed off with my current compensation… due to the way sales people in my company get paid, I never get commission due to said funds being awarded on a monthly quota basis – since I’m often doing training and am not on the sales floor, I don’t meet said quotas. Not one cent of commission since I started. Haven’t seen any money from the 5 training classes I’ve done either. I make less than every sales person there, yet provide a great deal for the company in terms of knowledge / ability. Something has to give, cause this is bs.
-if things are good when my 1 year is up at csnw, then I might just keep hanging out. (note: things are already pretty good, except the money situation). There is certainly much incentive to stay in seattle… great friends, great neighborhood, sweet apartment / dsl, good job where I can do mac stuff all day every day, and good opportunities for travel with my existing gig. From a security standpoint, I could probably keep this job for a very long time. Realistically, that probably will not happen unless they make it worth my while (which, from what I’ve learned recently, will also probably not happen… it infuriates me when companies treat humans as nothing more than line items on a balance sheet). Opportunities are quite relative, after all… things that are great opportunities now will slowly fade into average opportunities as my chi strengthens. This has been true in the past, and surely will continue to hold. Gotta keep it movin’, etc. :) So, next stop will hopefully be Apple. There’s a lot within that company that I’d like to try my hand at. Incidentally, I realize that I’m pretty naive about business… For a mac geek like myself, Apple seems to be the ultimate destination, but according to many, it’s “just another company”. Frankly, I don’t give a rat’s ass about business. I’m interested in working with enabling technologies and smart people, and I notice a very good representation of both within Apple.
But for now, it’s all about NYC… I’m staying on 51st and lexington, and the training center is just a couple blocks away. I’ll attempt to hook up with some of the NYC folk.. that is, mookie, bnelson, rico, and perhaps even pahn… though time is short. Only two evenings useful for hangout time, and I can’t be doing the mad bar hops like previously :)
It’s currently 7:00 p.m. edt, and I’ve been traveling since about 8:30 a.m. pst, as my flight to NYC is via Atlanta. Left from Atlanta about 6 or so. Pretty unremarkable so far, except for the cab driver this morning who took me to the airport. He said two things. At one point he grunted and mumbled, and I barely heard so asked him what he said, and he replied that he’s “got some heat on his shoulder…. you know, that kind of….” then he waved his hands around a bit as if that would clarify things. A few minutes later, he exclaimed out of the blue “SKATEBOARD DOWN THAT HILL TODAY”. I pretended not to hear, continued propelling myself inside to the smooth and steady beats of Black Coffee.
Also, big ups to blackmagic for the laptop loaner while I send my Bish to Apple for last minute warranty repairs (nothing serious, just a sticky hinge and a wireless antenna that gets pinched when the lid is open > 45 degrees, causing significant degradation of signal strength… I could live with both problems, but since I can get it repaired for free… might as well :)
I think it’s now time for my favorite in-flight passtime: reading documentation :)
More later …
…and now it’s 10:40, and I’m at the Metropolitan in mid-town area. Split a cab from the airport with a guy who’s staying two blocks from here. Took a walk to the CitiCorp Center, which is where the training is tomorrow, and which is also two blocks from here… Got a bit to eat by choosing a random direction and then walking… guess how far I had to go? Two blocks, and a kickass Spinach salad was teh win.
I am quite tired, so I do believe I shall sleep now :)