It’s been one of my goals (for a long time now) to start a blog, and actually keep it up to date! So, here goes…
This was all during the dot com boom, and after seeing a collegue switch jobs and make a huge pay jump, I quickly followed suit. I moved to a company that developed supply chain software (written in C++) for large oil companies. They were looking to web-enable their product, and I was one of the first people on the web team. I spent 3 years there, and saw the web team grow to 6 or 7 people. After September 11th, like everyone else, the product struggled, and we had round after round of layoffs. I saw the web team shrink after each round, until they finally let the entire web team (including me) go. This layoff was tough, I was newly married, and I knew that I was in the career that I wanted, but the combination of the dot com bust and September 11th made it REALLY hard to find another job.
Regardless of my unemployed status, I worked everyday from home. I spent at least 8 hours a day job hunting, and taking small consulting jobs building websites. Finally, after 6 long months, I landed a temp job as the lead developer for an ASP.NET website with the company I’m with now. I had played with ASP.NET up until this time, but this was my first project where I actually used it… and I loved it. My manager and I wrote a Photo Lineup application for the NYPD Internal Affairs Bureau that would search the NYPD database for employees who matched a physical description provided in a complaint. We did it all in about 6 months. After our success, I was sent to Virginia to see if I could help with another NYPD project that was having major problems. What was supposed to be a week-long trip, turned into a month-long trip where I worked about 18 hours a day, 7 days a week with about 2 or 3 other people. It was the hardest, most stressful month of my life, but… I was still a temp - which meant I got paid hourly. Nice! That helped a lot… I was even able to fly my wife out towards the end, and we ended up making the best out of it, by staying another few days in Washington D.C.
That month ended up being a turning point, and is one of the reasons I have the job I have today. I didn’t know it at the time, but one of the guys who I worked that month with was a guy from the corporate office. He was one of those guys who gets sent to oversee projects that are in as much trouble as this one was. The thing is, almost nobody knew who he was except management. Long story short… we were successful in turning the project around in that month, and I had a number of full-time opportunities available to me after that.
For close to 8 or so years, I’ve also done consulting work on the side… and have developed a number of ASP.NET websites over the years for a bunch of different clients. I guess you could say that this is the technology I choose to use when given the choice. I’m not especially opinionated on the Mac vs. PC (I have both), or .NET vs. J2EE debates (I use both) - but I just find that I enjoy programming more when I’m using the .NET Framework. So, while you may see some posts that talk about Java ocassionally, I suspect that about 95% will be .NET related posts. Some other topics will be on ASP.NET, ASP.NET MVC, jQuery and any tips and tricks that I find along the way.
Well, that about wraps it up. I apologize for the length, I’m not usually this verbose…