Why here, why now, why not?

The short presentation

Ever since I read chapter 37 of the book “My job went to India (And all I got was this lousy book)” I have been thinking of creating my own blog. This particular chapter of the book is titled “Let your voice be heard” and contains information on how and why you should want to share your ideas with your peers online.

However, I read this particular book back in 2006. I have, since then, read many good books worth mentioning, so why now? No one good explanation comes to mind, but remembering some of the good advice given in the chapter, it states that you should get familiar with weblogs and weblog syndication before creating your own. At the time of reading the book I wasn’t totally unfamiliar with the concept of blogs, but since then I decided to take the author seriously and my browser’s start page has been set to DZone ever since. I therefore consider myself an avid reader of other people’s blogs when time permits. I guess I needed the time until now to digest it all.

There is also a growing amount of quality content out there within the “blog sphere” and you have to ask yourself if there is anything you can contribute that may be of interest to others? I guess, in my case, only time will tell.

A bit on myself

So who am I? Generally I think I am considered a quiet person. That statement will probably cause a frown amongst my closer friends and family who, most likely, do not recognize me in that description at all. Professionally I have no problem giving my opinion when asked, but I never really push it publicly. I guess that part of me is about to change somewhat, and I am now taking the more pro-active approach. So what can a reader expect to find here?

Mission objective

I work as a software consultant in the Norwegian computer industry. I started my professional career back in 1998 so I am closing in on my 10 year anniversary this summer. During the past 10 years I have worked with a wide range of technology for different companies and customers. Three of my previous employers were also in the software consulting business.

I am interested in the open source community and hope to one day be in a position to work with open source code and solutions for a living. Unfortunately up to now I have yet to really succeed in combining open source software development with my day job. Today I use a lot of open source software at home and also in the workspace, although I am not associated with any particular open source project or technology. I am simply an end user of the many open source systems and components available.

In my neck of the woods, open source software products have still not managed to gain a substantial foothold in the market place, which is a shame for both developers and customers. Today I find myself behind enemy lines in primarily Microsoft occupied territory. Hopefully that will change sometime in the immediate future, and I am hoping to help lead a legion of troops in a brave outflanking maneuver to gain the upper hand over this evil empire [joke].

Technology dialysis

To cut a long story short, I started my career working with C++ and Lotus Domino servers. I didn’t really care much for Lotus Domino/Notes and could never really take part in, or understand, the unequivocal devotion for the product by it’s “fanatical” community. I guess I wasn’t convinced then and I’m still not today. I later moved on to Java in it’s many variations and forms, my focus being on both back-end integration and web/swing front-end development, sometimes running in parallel with the occasional odd Lotus Domino server or IBM WebSphere Portal server. There have been a few odd things in between, but currently I’m doing some Python development, something I have been longing to do for many years.

With this blog I am hoping to share a bit of the information, thoughts and advice I have consumed during my professional career for others to read and hopefully learn from. Maybe professionals or other interested parties with more experience than I can leave the occasional comment to supplement, support or correct my ramblings. I hope that by putting this information in writing online I can justify that the last 10 years have not been a total waste of my time.

Diagnosis in closing

You may be wondering why I started reading the aforementioned book in the first place. Well, you see, my job did in fact go to India and the advice in the book helped me through that process. At the time I was working for a large oil company, and against all the odds, they one day decided to outsource their IBM WebSphere Application Server environment to a foreign contractor. Anticipating the change I had read the book ahead of the process and felt prepared. I was at the time, working as one of the administrators for this particular environment, although I was starting to get a bit restless and needed a new challenge. I think it’s fair to say that the actual outsourcing decision did not bring me to tears. The market was booming and I knew there would be other, hopefully better, opportunities.

If you are in a similar situation today then maybe this book may serve to offer you some guidance on how to professionally deal with a tricky outsourcing situation or focus your attention on avoiding the scenario in the future. I still consider it a very good book.

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