George Carlin, RIP

I started working on OpenNMS on September 10th, 2001. Needless to say, my second day on the job is easy to remember.

Since then I start my day by hitting my RSS feeds to see what is in the news. Today I awoke to find out that George Carlin had died.

The news services are starting to pick up the story.

I am a big fan of Carlin. Part of it is due to his brilliance, but another has to deal with my admiration for people who are willing to take a chance and do something different, even if it is met with scorn, and in Carlin’s case, lawsuits.

My first date with my wife was to see Carlin from the second row at Memorial Auditorium in Raleigh. I am such a romantic.

So may we all hum the Seven Words today, and I hope that George is watching it all on Heavenly CNN.

Europe 2008: Geneva, Andilly, and Menthonnex-en-Bornes

Okay, due to the strike in Bergen, after spending about 24 hours there I had to take an eight hour train ride back across the country to Oslo. I arrived at just before midnight (it was still pretty light outside), got about four hours of sleep and then headed back onto the plane.

I had to change planes in Copenhagen, but since I didn’t leave the airport I can’t say I’ve “been” to Denmark, but I did buy breakfast there which resulted in change in Danish kroners (vs. Norwegian kroners vs. Euros vs. British pounds) which brings me across four currencies since leaving the US.

I arrived in Geneva right on time and met up with David (who came from Holland) and we were met by another Alex, Alex Finger.

Alex was born in Germany, works in Switzerland and lives in France, so he is one of the more culturally aware people I’ve ever met. I always tend to learn things around him (as he is also amazingly smart as well).

He took us into France and asked if we wanted food. He suggested a “festival”, and I wasn’t quite sure what that was. I mean, I understand the normal use of the term, but Newton Circus in Singapore is a food court (there are no elephants even) so I didn’t know.

Well, it turns out that it was a festival in the traditional sense, le petit pays performed by Grandes Médiévales d’Andilly. It was a full fledged Mediaeval festival that would have done Mike Huot proud. It had musicians, costumes, food and sword fighting.

Of course, the French came out on top (well, except for the Battle of Agincourt and struggles in that period).

We ate roasted pig (it was okay, but being from North Carolina I take roasted pork seriously) but the scenery was just amazing.

Even though I’m more exhausted than I can remember, I love my job. As a country boy from North Carolina it was amazing to find myself sitting against to a replica of a catapult on the edge of the French Alps on a beautiful day – all due to a little thing called OpenNMS.

More tomorrow.

LugRadio Live USA

The rather irreverent British podcast LugRadio is coming to the USA.

Go to LugRadio Live USA 2008, 12-13 April, San Francisco! Watch this, then spread the word!

I like these guys. While I take the OpenNMS project seriously, I don’t take myself very seriously and I think that is the necessary and right attitude to have when it comes to open source. We don’t plan to hit many shows or conferences this year, but this sounded just like the twisted joint we like.

We have been invited to have a booth in their Exhibition so we plan to pack up and head out west next weekend. I’d love to meet some more OpenNMS users out in the Bay area, so please feel free to stop by, say “hi”, tell us you love us or tell us we suck (well, be tactful about the latter). Many thanks to Gareth and Ilan over at SCaLE for hooking us up with the LugRadio guys.

Safe Travels, Dr. Love

In my life I’ve had the pleasure to meet so many amazing people that I like to think I am well above average in this regard. Before I got kicked out of Harvey Mudd College I lived in West dorm, two doors down from Mike Stark and Stan Love. Stan was your stereotypical geek: skinny, super-smart, and very nice.

Stan grew up into studly astronaut-guy, and a short while ago he took off on the shuttle flight STS-122. I can’t imagine how he must feel now.

Godspeed Stan, and I can’t wait to hear all about it.