Headed to ClueCon 2018

It’s summer-time, very hot, very humid, and this means… it’s time for ClueCon! I’m losing track, but this year will be my fourth or fifth time attending this conference in “beautiful” Chicago.

ClueCon is a conference for developers by developers: an annual technology conference held every summer hosted by the team behind the FreeSWITCH open-source project.

Continue reading “Headed to ClueCon 2018”

Kamailio World Presentation: Open Source Software Myths

Just returned from an incredible trip to Berlin for Kamailio World 2018, the 6th annual meeting of all things Kamailio.

As expected, I had a wonderful time meeting new Kamailians from across the globe as well as catching up with friends from years past.

I was honored to present at Kamailio World regarding Open Source Software Myths and combatting FUD. Thanks to Pascom, you can catch my presentation on YouTube:

My Way

Paul Anka wrote the words… but once Frank sang it, he owned it forever… although the Sid Vicious version is pretty amazing.

And now, the end is near
And so I face the final curtain
My friend, I’ll say it clear
I’ll state my case, of which I’m certain

I’ve lived a life that’s full
I’ve traveled each and every highway
But more, much more than this
I did it my way

Regrets, I’ve had a few
But then again, too few to mention
I did what I had to do
And saw it through without exemption

I planned each charted course
Each careful step along the byway
And more, much more than this
I did it my way

Yes, there were times, I’m sure you knew
When I bit off more than I could chew
But through it all, when there was doubt
I ate it up and spit it out
I faced it all and I stood tall
And did it my way

I’ve loved, I’ve laughed and cried
I’ve had my fill my share of losing
And now, as tears subside
I find it all so amusing
To think I did all that
And may I say – not in a shy way
Oh no, oh no, not me
I did it my way

For what is a man, what has he got
If not himself, then he has naught
To say the things he truly feels
And not the words of one who kneels
The record shows I took the blows
And did it my way
Yes, it was my way

Honesty is Such a Lonely Word

I’ve spent my adult life building a reputation of honesty— you may not like what I say… but you can trust the source. I also generally work and associate with people whom I can trust (which just kind of makes sense).

In open source VoIP, we tend to be an honest group of people. As with open source itself, we work in a more transparent nature than others may be used to.

I don’t want some pretty face to tell me pretty lies. All I want is someone to believe.

Billy Joel

Of course, every community has it’s exceptions and there are some degrees of honesty as well. Saying you’ll call someone back and then not doing so (for whatever reason legitimate or not) is not something I’d consider dishonest– reliability sure, but I surely wouldn’t call it dishonest.

Maybe it’s from too many Happy Days reruns as a kid, but my reputation means something to me. So, when my honesty or integrity is questioned— well I take it very personally.

The Fonz
The Fonz

Don’t take this the wrong way… I know my shit stinks and it’s important to be called out when mistakes are made. This goes to integrity. I’ve always believed, and hopefully those that know me agree, that when I make a foul, I raise my hand. If there was a screw up I made, there’s no cover up. There is simply an admission.

It’s how we grow and improve.

I’m okay with faults being addressed. I’m not the most patient man in the world (to say the least) and I’m also one to immediately call out when someone is not answering a question, giving a BS answer, or just flat out incompetent.

There are of course many ways you can question someone’s honesty or integrity… omission of details, misrepresentation of facts, taking credit undeservedly, gross exaggeration, and so forth.

When you use these methods to question someone’s honesty and integrity… you better make sure you have the proof to back it up.

The easiest way to lose an honest friend/co-worker is to attack that honesty/integrity. If you need to, make sure (1) you’re right and (2) you can back it up.

Ain’t nothing wrong with Waffle House

I love Waffle House. Not as much as my friend Patrick, but love it nonetheless.

For those not in know, Waffle House is a 24/7 restaurant chain with more than 2,000 locations across the US. Very popular in the South, Chances are if you’re driving on a highway in the South/Midwest/”lower” East, you’ll see their yellow/black signs from the highway.

“If you get there and the Waffle House is closed? That’s really bad. That’s when you go to work.”

Waffle House has built such a strong reputation for staying open during any type of weather/emergency, that FEMA uses a Waffle House Index to measure the severity of a disaster.

Because the menu is more or less a greasy spoon specializing in eggs and hash browns, getting Yeni to visit has been difficult. Luckily, one late night event left us with no alternatives, and she became a fan quickly. (Eric was very excited to walk her through the menu)

When I was driving back and forth to Michigan (often), the Waffle House became a friendly face on an unfriendly road.

Ain’t nothing wrong with Waffle House. Good food, good price, dependable… and there’s even a jukebox if you’re feeling lucky.

 

Going back to Berlin

In just a couple weeks, the Mrs. and I will be headed back to Berlin for Kamailio World. Last year, we visited for the first time and Berlin truly made an amazing impression.

Yeni and I have always shared different views on punctuality, so visiting a city where timeliness actually means something had me in a great mood. Food was great, pricing was amazing, and transportation was easy.

To gear up for the trip last year, we upgraded our credit card to a card with no foreign transaction fees; and then found most places we visited in the city (as well as Germany as a whole) preferred cash.

I asked why people rarely used credit cards and the answer was both simple and representative of a different way of approaching privacy…

Where I spend my money is my business only.answer to why credit cards are rarely used in Germany

As I get ready to head back I’ll need to remember to bring cash.

Incompetence Quote

“Useful men, who do useful things, don’t mind being treated as useless. But the useless always judge themselves as being important and hide all their incompetence behind authority.”

Paulo Coelho

Property Tax Story

So, in my recent Facebook post I teased about a property tax story… here we go.

Fred vs the Property Appraiser

When Yeni and I started dating it was a long distance relationship. She came to the States and lived in Ann Arbor, working for the government on an H1 Visa— this means that if she left her job, she’d have to move back to her (at the time) country. In other words, she could not come live in Gainesville at the time.

Well, as luck would have it, we started dating around the 2008 housing crisis. I tried putting the house up for sale, and after 1 year of no offers, watched my home value drop monthly. Good times.  Continue reading “Property Tax Story”

Deleting Facebook

Mostly due to the recent news regarding Cambridge Analytica and people’s private information, many people have responded to a #DeleteFacebook trend —including the co-founder of WhatsApp. Don’t forget: WhatsApp was sold to Facebook a few years ago for over 15 billion (pause for a second… this is billion, not million here) and now someone who benefitted greatly from that deal also suggests deleting facebook.

Clearly I’m biased. Almost 5 years ago, I followed my friend Michael White‘s example and deleted my facebook account. Of course, this movement has more to do with personal information than oversharing of said personal information.  Continue reading “Deleting Facebook”