what will be was but will be again


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Or will it happen again. I think the halcyon days of my imagined youth are now lost and gone forever.

In a world of screens which one impacts you the most?

It’s a question I’ve asked myself for a long time. Screens are everywhere now. From our cars to our cellular phones we have screens with us and around us. Some of them are ones we choose to have and others are ones we wish we could ignore. They are in the end there and present in our lives. Which begs the question I suspect what did we do before screens.

When I was a kid growing up in a small Indiana town we were outside all the time. We ran around the neighborhood playing with the other neighborhood kids. Now those were different times, without predators that stalk children and force parents to check in and check on their kids. So in effect I get the change for my kids, my fear.

Still I feel like my kids are missing out on something’s I had as a kid. They have things now that we only dreamed of then. Jaki has decided to start collecting retro gaming consoles. Why? She is wistful for the Sega Dreamcast I suspect. That was the first dedicated game system we had – that I had to wire into our growing mess of wires in the living room. We had over the years Nintendo’s various game systems (the original, 64, Cube and now the Wii), we had the Sega Dreamcast and of course due to employment pressure we had various Xboxes. We didn’t have a PlayStation in the house until the PlayStation 3, which by the way is a darn good Blu-Ray player.

So yesterday we set-up an old Nintendo 64 and the Original Xbox in the basement on the old TV we’ve been lugging around with us since we moved from Indiana. It was the TV in the boys room back in the day so it had DVD and VCR so they could watch their videos. Now it is the vintage game console TV although it does give us a VCR in the basement.

So in the end I guess every generation gets their cross to bear and in the end their joyous event. Ours was being outdoors (and play with erector sets). My kids get video games and computers.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow.

Not of this world but oh such a foundation.


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I know why the caged bird sings thanks to Maya Angelou. You will be missed.

As a writer, with no doubt not of the ilk of Maya Angelou but still a professional writer. I have been paid to write for many years now. I find myself pushed into a corner when a great literary mind leaves this world. Not that in fact they shouldn’t die because with their published works in the world they will never die. Rather that the words take on a meaning now that a voice won’t stop.

Herman Melville wrote Moby Dick. Did he intend as he was writing for all the allegorical level’s that have been found to be found? The book archeologists digging deploy into the very deployment of is and well and to denote deeper layers and hidden thoughts. Melville left us many years ago and since then his book has been dissected, x-rayed and examined from every angle.

Her works like those of other literary greats are now caged birds. There is no voice from the author. Certainly there are recordings and conversations where the words were discussed by the author. Those are the empirical words, the unadulterated words that mean the meaning. Not the literary cage and yesterday’s newspaper that litter that cage. Let us revel in what she said she said.

The time for interpretations will come. Her work was unbelievable. We will find layers unseen and messages hidden and buried in those words but for now let’s just listen to what she had to say. The nuances in the way she said things will come later. The deep lost layers of angst and anger will flow forth I promise.

For now let’s put down the book archeologist bag and tools and simply read the words. Listen to the recordings of Dr. Angelou. Like Mandala let’s celebrate a light that shines now in the firmament. Not of this world but oh such a foundation. A gentle soul speaks of love when treated with violence. A great soul finds the voice of peace within that violence and shares it with all of us.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow.

The passing of the great American poet…


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"I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." Dr. Maya Angelou.

As a struggling want-to-be poet I read her works. She left me knowing that I would never be the poet she was. I decided to pursue other fields of interest and pursue poetry as my hobby. I added her line above to my personal ethics. It is the what and how by which I live. Never forget they never forget how you made them feel. It comes in many forms, give them a way out with dignity is my second favorite.

The world is a dimmer place today because one star left earth and ascended to the heavens.

The giant shoes she leaves behind can be heard now forever in the sound of thunder and the crashing of lightening.

Her works inspired me. I listened and learned why the caged bird sang. Not always of anticipation but sometimes from spirit. That the birds spirit could not be broken by a mere cage. Spirit rises above the situation and presents you with options. The bird sang because it knew there were options. Like the great Russian Writer Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn who once said: “It is time in the West to defend not so much human rights as human obligations.” A line from a man who spent his life in prison yet like the caged bird sang his entire life.

She lived a life of struggle and found a voice that spoke not just to all of us but to each of us. She lifted us from our day to day oppression and gave voice to the feelings we had inside.

RIP Dr. Maya Angelou my journey is lighter for the path you blazed.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow.

Dogs don’t like thunderstorms…


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Fran never complained about a thunderstorm as long as her people were around. Gwen used to hide in the closet until the storm was over. Dylan and Raven are interesting, Dylan likes to be in the room with people but he is clearly uncomfortable. Raven wants to be inside the people in the room. Literally. Tries to crawl inside the people when the storm starts.

Still I couldn’t imagine two better dogs and if they are nervous about storms we will take care of them.

I listened to the book The Divinity of Dogs. The stories in the book are amazing. When you consider the impact dogs have on your life they are truly a great gift. Our lives are greatly enriched by the dogs we share those lives with. I can’t imagine what my life would be like without the many dogs that have graced my time. MacGregor, Anna (although I only have one memory of her), Phoebe, Frosty, Duo, Roscoe, Nessie, Fred and Jessie (my parents dogs long after I had moved out), Gwen, Fran, Dylan and lovely Raven. It’s a long list that stretches back into my childhood.

When I got an inner ear infection a year and a half ago Dylan didn’t leave my side for three full days (except for when I threw up – Dylan does not like people throwing up). He checked in on me constantly and although it impacted his walk schedule he was more worried about me.

Dylan likes to lie on our bed and pretend he is a viscous dog. He nibbles on my fingers and loves more than anything to nibble on my feet. It honestly never hurts but when he nibbles my feet is tickles – he loves to make me laugh.

Raven is a little more needy, but we think she had been on her own for awhile. She is slowly learning to be part of the family and of course we are adopting some of Raven’s rules.

They are wonderful additions to the family.

lazy days

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow..

Flashing Cursor be gone…


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There are days sitting early in the morning when nothing comes out. I stare at that blinking cursor wondering if my connection is shattered. Connection to the keyboard, the keyboard to the computer or worse my brain to my fingers. I started blogging every day more than 7 years ago now. Originally it was to help me cope with a tough work situation. Stratification will do that to you when you are in the newly formed metamorphic rock section of the company. Pressure and heat continuing to build until in the end you are either gone, or granite.

My original blog was a windows live blog. That blog became this blog when the live blog service shut down. I have since then added other blogs to my posting collection, SafeGov, CloudTweaks and IASA as well as my other WordPress blog Docandersen. I average between 1200 and 1300 readers a day across all of those blogs some months more than 50,000 unique viewers. I have a friend who said to me “your influence reaches further than you realize.” I am still trying to wrap my head around that.

To me blogging is about exploration. Here on this blog I explore like today things that interest me personally. On the other blogs I maintain I explore topics of my profession “software architecture.” I have some rules for my blogs that I’ve built up over the years. I will mention company names in three distinct formats.

  • Exceptional customer service
  • A shameless review
  • Horrible customer service

I got an email about five years ago saying “but your shameless reviews are always positive.” That is true. I pay for everything I review so I make sure it is something I need/want before I put down my money. If I got the items for free from various companies then I would have the opportunity to find products that waste my time and energy. (which is why I haven’t posted my review of Windows 8.1 yet). Since I pay for the items I only review things that I like. I did many years ago do a review column of restaurants in a paper that went out of business. Then I did reviews that were not always positive. I also did reviews in the magazine myself and Martin Dow used to publish called “Kindle the Flame.” Kindle went out to members of the Society of Dead teachers. At one point we had over 500 subscribers to the journal. Sadly the cost of production over time drove us out of business.

In the end that cursor doesn’t always elude me. Today I wandered down memory lane. Other days I escape that cursor by posting a picture or talking about dogs or my children. In the end I find something to say. 2030 times on this very blog. Plus nearly 2000 on my other blog. Overall more than 4000 posts on blogs.

Funny thing – even after all those posts that cursor still flashes on a blank page every day.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow.

Remembering those who gave their lives–and congrats to the IU Baseball team!!!!!


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To those who have given their lives in the name of freedom thank you. On this day we remember those who have served and died. I also remember those who were not serving but gave their lives in the name of freedom. I cherish the gift you gave me.

lazy daysThis morning the world’s laziest dogs decided that they wanted to watch Netflix. Oh yeah and they also wanted a bed. Sadly evil Luke spoiled their plans. To say the least this was not the planned memorial day they were seeking.

The walls in Luke’s room are black (on the base at least). And yes he did in fact pick them. We had them painted that way before we moved in.

Printed one 3d napkin holder yesterday. Going to do another one today. I have to say it is really cool to be able to hit a web site, download a computer image and then print it in your house. I suspect as these printers get better you won’t have the level of troubleshooting to print that you do today. Of course, if you don’t learn how to do the troubleshooting you won’t know when it is easier.

(There is something to be said for Brittle Computing –)

Ran into a nozzle one issue this morning. I do so love troubleshooting.

Congrats to the IU Baseball team winning both the regular season and big ten tournament. Its nice to see them in the college world series for the second year in a row. Plus, now that Maryland is in the big ten I have a chance to go see my Hoosiers on occasion in the next couple of years. I already have the Cream and Crimson deck.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow.

A day, a night and in the end a long weekend…


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IMG_0242From the C&O canal along the Potomac River. It’s a wonderful place to on on a Sunday afternoon for a family walk. Not where we are heading today, but a great place none-the-less.

I spent a lifetime in the air ending up over a million miles flown. I would like to in the end think wow – what a cool thing but I can’t. I’ve spent over 1000 nights in Marriott hotels. Again, I would like to say cool but fewer than 80 of those were with my family so again not cool.

It is, by the way, not that I resent the time. I’ve more than made it up in the past three years. My partner and I have built a strong family unit. I do regret however many of the events I missed being far away. I regret all the days I could only call home once (Europe) or twice (Asia). I do not regret all the friends I have made and kept although I do regret the few that slipped away because I was no longer there.

Today I am playing with the 3d scanner. 

Perhaps we will print some napkin holders.

Smile

Imagine a world where you never run out of the things you need. (well maybe food still). Its coming.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow.