Where I’ve Been

Shortly After my daughter was born, I wrote to let you know that life was crazy and I’d be getting back to posting soon enough. I proceeded to complete my series on WPF 4.0 muti-touch and left you shivering and alone for 9 months.

Now, I have returned with the warm blanket of a new layout, some enthusiasm, and a lot of empty promises new stuff to show you!

Adalae is now 10 months old, gigantic, and starting to crawl. She’s certainly been a large reason for the infrequency of posts. Sorry, but she wins. You lose. Every time. Excuse me while I include an obligatory adorable photo:

Work has changed a lot over the past year, which is another reason/excuse why I haven’t been posting. I’ve typically shared things I’ve learned while working, but the projects I had been working on left me a little short on interesting material that I could really share.

Things finally stabilized, and I am currently working over at Palm on the Kindle app for the newly-announced HP TouchPad. Since I’m no longer working primarily with WPF, you likely won’t see much more of it in upcoming posts. However, I’ll be excited to share, in due time, what I’ve learned about Enyo, the latest version of Palm’s mobile development framework.

So, that’s where I’ve been. I would tell you that I plan on posting here more often, but we both know it would just jinx us for another 9 months. Instead, I’ll just stare awkwardly into the distance with a hopeful look on my face.

Delay of Game

Back when I reflected on last year, I shared that I had a daughter on the way. Taking that and my recent inactivity into account, you may have been able to piece together that yes, indeed, I am now a father. Adalae Claire Eichacker was born on April 21st (I know, its been awhile).

Of course she has completely changed my life and I’m now in the shell shock phase of figuring out what the “new normal” is. To make things harder, my grandma passed away just a couple of weeks later.   After taking three weeks off for paternity and bereavement leave, I came back to work just as a big release was being finished up and a new project was beginning.  Now, the World Cup is going and I’ve started a side project (more on that later).

So suffice it to say, I’ve been a bit busy and this blog is getting LONELY.

Do not fear, however!  This has happened before, and will likely happen again.  I have plenty of posts in my drafts to finish or write, and I’m sure I’ll have plenty more as I figure out how to balance being a father, husband, gamer, and programmer.  Oh, and blogger.  Also, superhero.

Ok, ok.  Scratch that last one.

Year’s End: Changes, Changes…

At the end of 2008, I reflected on the many major events that took place within the shortness of summer. I graduated, got married, moved 1700 miles from home, and started my career at HP. After settling into California life, my wife and I began to explore the area, meet new friends, and let life slow down a little. This year looked to be piece of cake.

We then decided that, given that the economy was driving down housing cost, we would look into purchasing our first home.  We quickly learned all that we needed to know about real estate to complete a purchase, as well as just how much more expensive California is, when compared to Kansas.

After moving into our new home, we decided to make it our own by doing some renovations.  Suddenly, our nearest hardware store became a fun place for inspiration and supplies, and we were completely in over our heads in terms of the scope of our projects, some of which still have yet to be completed.

We also decided to throw in a new dog, a golden retriever named Ecco.  He’s turned out to be quite the handful, granting him the nickname “Marley Dog.”  We’re starting to get a handle on him, but I’m still missing a few pairs of socks, and our carpet is quite the worse for wear.

Finally, we decided that a new home, renovations, and a dog weren’t enough and are now expecting our first child – a girl.  We’re preparing our home for a rugrat, and I’m going to have to look into getting a shotgun so that I can practice my shooting before she brings any boys home.

No, things are not slowing down in the least.  Given that a child is on the way, things are likely just ramping up.

Professionally, this year has been just as hectic.  I’ve now been an HP employee for 1.5 years, and have a few shipped products under my belt (more on those in another post).  Being that they coincided with the release of Windows 7, many late nights were involved to ensure that everything made the Windows 7 RTM date.  Of course, this was all done far before Windows 7 hit the shelves in October, and I’ve since been occupied with patches (more late nights for that), as well as some pretty cool new things.  I’m very thankful for a job in this climate and even more thankful that I find mine interesting.

In 2008, I started a blog as a means to slowly build up content for a website primarily focused on presenting employers a place to learn about me.  You might be familiar with this blog, considering that you are reading it right now.  I’ve come to a few realizations in the year that I’ve been writing:

  1. Much to my surprise, I’ve been able to interest some people with some of the information I’ve put out here.
  2. I had forgotten how much I enjoy writing and expressing my thoughts.

Due to these realizations, I’ll be focusing my content to better help those that stumble upon this blog, as well as begin to expand on the topics I write about.  Don’t worry – I’ll stay focused on the two things I know best: software development and video games; however, I’d like to move into a few new aspects of both.  I’ll also try to better encourage my readers to participate in a discussion, rather than digest and move on.

In light of both of those statements, do any of you have topics you’d like me to delve into?  Come on, you quiet bunch, start talking!  I only make you log in to make sure my comments aren’t filled with Viagra commercials.

I hope all of you have had a good year, and wish you a good one to come.  I hope that my writing has been helpful or interesting to you in some way, and appreciate your support!

In addition to topic suggestions, feel free to add the musings of your past year.  I’d love to hear how everyone else is doing.