I enjoy understanding how things work. I have learned, mostly through self-education, programming, computer graphics, organic chemistry, orchid growing, culinary skills, financial market models, measure theory, …. Some of my knowledge is useful for getting or doing a job, but that’s not why I learn. My degree is in computer engineering. I never intend to get a job building chips or computers, but the knowledge has been helpful when writing software for non-standard hardware. Sometimes of course I must learn something to do a given job. I don’t have the time, or the neurons, to learn all that I want to learn.
I had to get a new passport because I ran out of pages. I find myself repeating that to people not to brag but because it still amazes me. I prefer to be a traveler and not a tourist. I’m happier wandering aimlessly through Istanbul than on a set tour of the sites. And I’ve never been disappointed with a UNESCO World Heritage site. I don’t have the time, or the money, to see everything I want to see on this planet.
Life is clearly too short for my desires.
From here down is more of a resume format of some of my life. I feel obliged to include it.
Playdom makes games on social network platforms such as Facebook. I started by working on many Playdom games to learn about all of the tasks of making games as Playdom and to learn all of the codebases in use. My focus was on building better process and documentation for all of the shared service and technologies teams within the company. I also acted as architect and engineering manager for some remote game studios.
Serious Business makes games on social network platforms such as Facebook. My focus was on business intelligence for data related to our servers, our users, users’ actions, and our revenue sources. I worked on an in-house, greenfield, Ruby-based OLAP system, evaluated potential OLAP solutions, chose an existing system rather than continuing to build one in-house (classic Build vs. Buy), and implemented basic OLAP processing of user action data on that OLAP system.
I worked in three very different groups at Microsoft.
The last team I worked on had spent a few years creating online services for games. They created the car auctioning systems for Forza Motorsport 2, screenshot uploading for Project Gotham Racing 4, pinata trading for Viva Pinata, and more. I took care of things like the threat model, the health monitoring events, and the usage reporting systems. Our system is behind the car, photo, and video sharing of Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts; the screenshot uploading of Gears of War 2; and some aspects of the catalog in Lips.
This is a collection of game-related code libraries ranging from physics and particle systems to core content pipeline and instant preview technologies. The biggest piece is a set of components to take content from an artist’s 3D tool and process it into an equivalent form that can be quickly rendered. My main responsibility was to build the 3ds Max support, though I worked on any code that needed fixing or features, drove code quality, and got us new internal customers. While we were shipping Forza Motorsport 2, I helped Hexic 2 ship by using our technologies in my "spare time ".
Information Bridge Framework was an incubation to surface LOB data in Office. I handled the developer side of releasing samples, documentation, and utilities to MSDN. I filled a variety of roles from stepping up to run a developer webcast when the presenter was sick (and no one else would step up) to making a keynote PDC demo that thousands watched live to showing developer love for our early adopters in the form of hands-on technical support (sometimes that was ‘writing their code for them’).
Similar to my R1 role at Microsoft, I made tools for artists. This mostly involved processing the 3ds Max scenes to use all of the artist-defined data that the WildTangent 3D engine could render.
I had a Fulbright Scholarship to Vienna, Austria where I did open source bioinformatics work at the University of Vienna‘s. It was a fun year and very educational to be immersed in another culture, even one so similar to the culture I grew up in.