Monthly Archives: May 2008

Job Search Update (I’m nout counting chickens yet)

I hope I don’t frustrate any of the unemployed job seekers here, but things in my replacement search are looking possibly promising.

This afternoon, I got a call from the Staffing person at Qualcomm informing me that the team was impressed with my skills and will probably make an offer after checking my references. Since I’m pretty sure that my references will all give me good recommendations, this offer seems fairly probable.

Yesterday I had a long talk with an engineer at Microsoft, and the technical part of the interview went well. I might be a bit leery of the position since I’m not 100% sure that MS is the most reliable company to be doing what that team is doing. On the other hand, the job sounds like it could be interesting.

Today, I had a shorter talk with Intel. The questions were more behavioral than technical, and I’m not sure how well I did. Should this turn into an offer (an in-person interview would have to happen first) it would have one decent advantage — I have family (8 members to be exact) in Albuquerque and the job would be in Rio Rancho (13 minutes from my parent’s house according to Google Maps — probably longer at rush hour). On the other hand, there is no relocation so we’d have to pay for the move and figure out how to live in Albuquerque while paying for the house here until it sells. (The only thought I’ve had on that last situation would be for me to live with my parents, and Tara and Derrick only follow after the house sells. Not ideal, but it could work)

And, of course, I still have my current job which doesn’t require relocation; just it is getting to be less and less a good match for my skills.

So, by the end of the summer, I could be still here, in San Diego, Seattle or Albuquerque. Time will tell.

Idocy in my home state

As reported here and already parodied by Illiad in today’s (May 28, 2008) User Friendly, a group of Santa Fe residents are suing the city claiming that Wi-Fi in public buildings violates the Americans With Disabilities Act “because they say that they’re allergic to the wireless Internet signal.”

It is amazing that a city that lies midway between two other places that are homes to major national labs would have residents who were so technologically clueless as to think that they could get away with this.

As flaky as Santa Fe government can be, I hope they choose to fight this one and expose these people for what they are.

What a day!

Today has been almost nothing like the day that I expected when I got up.

I’m going to be long, so I’m cutting early

Fun with Java

The DucKon registration program is written in Java. One of its functions is to print the badges, and somehow every year I end up tweaking the badges, at least a bit. This year I did a major tweak. Instead of doing badges that hang in “Portrait” (long way down), with an image located near the center of a white or colored badge, we will have badges that hang in “Landscape” with the image across the entire badge.

One result of this change was that instead of painting colored boarders by drawing a rectangle the size of the whole badge behind the artwork, I have to draw two rectangles of the boarder width down each side of the badge. (I decided early on that having the border on all 4 sides didn’t look good, and made it too easy to cover the artwork). This worked well, except for one little problem, it kept printing (on paper, so far — I haven’t had a chance to try on the PVC badge printer) a box about the size of the badge to the right of any badge that had a border.

Off an on for months as I’ve worked on this, I’ve tried to figure out why this was happening. Finally today — while resolving to solve this problem in case it caused the badge printer to print two badges, one just a solid colored badge — I realized the problem.

I’m now going to get somewhat technical, and will be talking in official programming terms, so be prepared.

To draw the rectangles, I had to instantiate a Rectangle object. The constructor I was using for this takes 4 ints (numbers) as arguments. In all of the previous badges I’d done, these values were the coordinates of one corner, and the coordinates of the other, so I did the same for the new right border.

I finally got a clue when I tried replacing the rectangle with a sequence of lines — themselves rectangles of zero width — and got a series of boxes. The boxes were all the same height as the badge, and the total was the same width as the whole badge. What clued me in was that the vertical lines for the box on top of the artwork were closer together than the ones past the right edge. Looking at this, I finally got the “aha” I needed, which I quickly confirmed by checking the online documentation for Java. The parameters to the constructor for a Rectangle aren’t the coordinates of two corners, but the coordinate of the upper left hand corner, followed by the length and width. I’d been drawing a rectangle the size of the badge a few pixels from the edge. Once I fixed it so that the width was the width of the border, everything worked perfectly.

I did ask my wife, and she confirmed that she would have made the same guess about how 4 numbers are used to define a rectangle as I had, so at least I don’t think I’m too far off in my reasoning.

Protected: Is this inpolitic or just insane?

There is no excerpt because this is a protected post.

Quickly through the airport

On Sunday and Tuesday as I was going through airports, I realized that I, when traveling by myself, would probably be able to use the “Black Diamond” security lanes if I encountered them at an airport. Both days I could tell that I knew better how to get through security quickly.

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Interview update

I got back an hour or so ago from my trip to San Diego for the Qualcomm interview.

Technically, the Qualcomm interview went very well, with only a couple of minor technical glitches — most of which are probably typical of being asked coding and design questions. On the other hand, I thought my Amazon interview in March went similarly well, but no offer came from that one. Qualcomm says I’ll hear within two weeks.

Afterwards I hooked up with my friend who works for Kyocera and we had some drinks (Tea, Coke), but his boss was unable to find anyone I didn’t already know to do an in-person variant phone screen. Afterwards, however, I was able to run up to his place, have dinner with his wife and 2-and-a-half-year-old daughter (who I’d met as a not-quite toddler in 2006).

Today wasn’t quite as good. On my way to the airport, I wanted to stop and get some Cleritin since my allergies had been bothering me the day before. However, when I was trying to find the Grocery/Drug store the GPS had located, I was in a traffic accident — nobody was hurt, but my car wasn’t as drivable as I’d thought. So I had to call the car rental agency and it took their tow driver over an hour to get to me. I only made my flight because the flight back to Chicago was delayed an hour after the morning outbound from Chicago had been delayed over an hour.

Quick Update

I heard back from Microsoft yesterday. It was the “we couldn’t find a fit for you with these groups” response.

I’m flying out on Sunday (RIGHT after church since I cannot sneak out early without leaving the pastor without PowerPoint support) for San Diego. I’ve got a formal interview with Qualcomm, and then an informal meeting with Kyorcea set up by a friend.

I also had a phone screen with a gaming company in Reno on Wednesday. I cannot judge how it went since the questions kept jumping from experience, to how I’d fit, to quick technical questions. If I hear back, I’d put it on my list of possibilities, even though before applying to this company Reno hadn’t been in my list of places to think about moving to.

Superhero Team Meem

Last seen from billroper

To save your friends page space

Quick Update

This afternoon I got the confirmed plans. I will be in San Diego for the interview next Monday, May 19.

This means that, for the second time this year, I have to miss a DucKon meeting to fly west for an interview, on top of one I missed while way east on business (India) and one I missed so I could fly east to Boston on business, I think I’ve missed more meetings this year than any DucKon since DucKon 7 — where, by virtue of living in San Diego, I missed all of them.

I’ve gotten in touch with a friend who still lives there (but wants me to get a job so he can sell me his house and complete a move to Colorado) and we’ll probably grab dinner after the interview someplace.