First, I need to recognize the excellent posts on this subject that one of the North Dallas .NET User Group members, Anderson Imes, did a while back. Here and Here.

Here’s the thing. Anderson and I are in pretty different boats. He’s starting off his career, I have a well established development background with some of the largest companies in the world. That being said, the principals of “job hunting” are the same. When you are being interviewed – it is just as important for you to also interview the potential company.

One of the best parts about leaving Microsoft is that I have Microsoft on my resume. It’s amazing how many doors that opens. Any company that I have wanted to look at… the door has been wide open. I pretty much get the interview… and in most cases I’ve been ushered past the tech screen as well. One of the other benefits of the last year and a half is that I know most of the consulting partners and enterprises shops in the DFW area, and most of them know me as well.

This has created an interesting phenomenon that I haven’t really had in my life before. I’m *really* able to evaluate different companies and make some serious decisions about the type of work that I want to do… and the type of company that I want to do that with..

After I left Microsoft, I met with several companies… most of them were really good companies with interesting projects. During that process I learned a lot about what I *don’t* want to do – which is sometimes, just as important as knowing what you do want to do. Mostly I realized that I am so used to working with and impacting multiple teams at a time that staying on one project with one team wasn’t very appealing. At the same time, I actually *want* to complete projects… help teams of people implement best practices, leverage Microsoft technologies and move from inception to deployment.

I also realized that I like being involved in the community. I wasn’t sure how I was going to continue my involvement… hookup with a specific user group or what? That was when Giovanni convinced me to follow through on the idea. That is something that I am very excited about., and I’ll blog more later. The important community aspect is that not all companies value community involvement. If I had the opportunity to go to the Mix07 conference, or the MVP summit… not everyone would support opportunities like those.

So, after two weeks of meeting with different people and companies… the company that I am going to work at is actually the first company that a spoke with after leaving Microsoft. I’ve known them since before joining Microsoft and worked with them frequently while I was there. Giovanni keeps trying to get me to spill the beans on my new endeavor… but I think that I’ll have a contest and give out a *really cool prize* instead. 🙂 More on that to come!

Interactive Projection Video

January 9, 2007    Category: Blog, Thoughts   No Comments »


Yesterday I saw a podcast where Scoble interviewed Bill Gates and asked when we will see some of the technologies that Bill demoed at last year’s CES  (300kbps – skip ahead about 16 minutes for the interesting stuff in the video) – reactive video and stuff like that; then today I saw this at the mall… it’s pretty cool – The video is projected on the floor in the mall. When you walk over it (or wave our hand) the video responds to your movements.

Reactrix Online



Colours that work

November 23, 2006    Category: Blog, Thoughts   No Comments »


Are you visually challenged like I am? What colors really work together? I just found this nice web page on Adobe that really helps. Enjoy!



Compare .NET and J2EE

November 3, 2006    Category: Blog, Thoughts   No Comments »

Over the last year a couple of people have asked me to compare .NET and J2EE. Up until now, I had to walk through some of the differences and trade off’s… now I can just send them here. Great job MSDN team!


Doing Webservices? Need to Interop? Care about the standards that Microsoft is committed to? Check out Microsoft’s Open Specification Promise.


Then go look at the latest on Windows Communication Foundation! 😉


10 Worst Presentation Moments

August 31, 2006    Category: Blog, Thoughts   No Comments »

This is classic. If you ever get the chance to hear a presentation from Scott Guthrie, take it. He is absolutely one of the best presenters within Microsoft. He also has a great blog with a ton of information. This made me think of the first time that I presented for Microsoft. Anyways, go read about one of Scott’s presentation moments.

Reg Cheramy is one of the coolest people that I have met since joining Microsoft. We were introduced by my friend Rob Zelt at the Microsoft Mix’06 conference. Reg owns a web 2.0 company and famous blog; he is also building a Web 2.0 startup called ZigTag. At the Mix’06 conference, Reg was a stand out with his power point .05 demo (Luggage “Tag” shaped flash cards) and his luggage “tag” shaped business cards. Reg is not a Microsoft developer and he would not normally have attended a Microsoft event like Mix or the Microsoft Technology Summit that I was able to get him invited to later. These two events were pretty much a “first look” at the Microsoft Stack. I thought that his comments and observations were insightful and worth noting. It’s amazing how many J2EE and PHP developers that I run in to that have no idea how well the Microsoft platform fits there needs. (time to market, security, stability, scalability, cost savings, etc) Check out Reg’s comments.

My worst career decision ever!

September 1, 2005    Category: Blog, Thoughts   No Comments »


It looks like Brian is going to go work for Microsoft now, congratulations Brian! (I work with Brian on the INETA marketing committee)

Last month, my “absolute dream job” became available at Microsoft. More than that, the person who has that position now, emailed me 2 months ago and asked if he could submit my name as a candidate to replace him.

His words, “I wanted to make you aware of this potential opportunity as I feel you would be a strong candidate… If you are interested in having a conversation with my manager… I would be pleased to pass your contact information along to him

Wow! How cool is that! Now, don’t get me wrong, I love working for the company that I work for. They are great, but let’s face it, there’s nothing like working for the mother ship. I’ve known this person for 3 years, and have often thought what a cool job he had… Wow, I can’t begin to tell you what a huge opportunity this was… my dream job, for Microsoft, working with some of the best user group in Oklahoma, Arkansas and Texas… I love working with user groups. Did I say Texas? Ah, yeah, the job would require that I move to Dallas, no problem…. we’ve only lived in Tulsa for 3 years, ready to move, let’s go…

Except… that our children are here, they have 9 cousins that are in a 2 mile radius of our house, Rachel’s dad lives 2 miles away and we have a great church. Yeah, we love Tulsa, at least the people that are here 😉 So I didn’t even take the interview… I guess some things are more important careers. Still, it was nice to be considered.


<![CDATA[A new fictional book from Syngress Publishing asks that questions and they go a step farther… the let you try. “The Mezonic Agenda, Hacking the Presidency” is a good book, and even cooler contest. Here’s the story: In six days Chad Davis will testify before Congress on the security, stability, and safety of Advice Software Inc.’s e-vote software. He is a world-renowned expert on software security, and his testimony will determine if the software will be implemented for use during the 2004 United States Presidential Elections.

After his speech at an RSA conference in Amsterdam, he is handed a cryptic CD with information on the software from notorious hacker Baff Lexicon. Davis and his friend from the FBI must use their knowledge of buffer overflows, format string vulnerabilities and zero-day exploits to penetrate physical and cyber defenses, ultimately uncovering Advice’s plot to fix the US presidential elections.

Here’s the cool part: The book comes with the CD (neat!). Everything that he does in the book with the CD, you can do with it on your own! Even better, if you successfully Hack the Presidency, and vote for yourself as President, you could win a trip to Black Hat 2005 (Security Conference in Las Vegas)

I enjoyed this book for a number of reasons. (1) I’ve always wanted to know about hex editors, active debuggers, buffer overflows and stack overruns… I’m just not the sort of person to study them if I don’t have to. By presenting these concepts in a adventure story, learning was easy. (2) The opportunity to win a contest.

Let downs: The web site has a nice “warm up“ contest. They say that “every few weeks we will post new challenges so check back often“. So far, no new contests. I’m guessing that not enough people entered the first “warm up“. Also, in the solution of the first warm up, you get a “secret“ email address. When I sent an email to it, I never got a response. I simple “thanks for playing” would have been nice. Better still would have been the next step to another contest, only for those who finished the first… but that didn’t happen either. Related to this first let down is that you don’t get a response from the publisher when you send in your vote file either. That would have been nice too. Better still, they should have a graphic set up that you could post on your site “I hacked the presidency, and all I got was this lousy web art..“ But that didn’t happen either.

On a positive note, the authors’ email addresses are posted on their web site. When I sent them an email directly, I got a response the next day… that’s pretty cool if you ask me.

Go to the Official Site for details:

Update: In the spirit of the Mezonic Agenda, I have create a DNN module so that you can give your self a vote with about 15,000 votes on it (the one that I submitted has over 2 billion). Go here for more details.



This just in: Free E-Book

January 15, 2005    Category: Blog, Thoughts   No Comments »

For those of you learning .Net, C#… even if you already know everything that their is about .Net… or want to. A Press is offering a free E-Book download:  The book is “Dissecting a C# Application: Inside SharpDevelop” If you have never heard of SharpDevelop… let me tell you about it. This is one of the coolest open source projects out there. Built with C#, this is a free and usefull C# IDE (Integrated Developement Environment). It’s perfect if you are learning .net and don’t want to spring for the $600 bucks or so for Visual Studio… Of cource if you come to the next DNUG meeting, you might win a! 🙂



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