So one of my projects is called Socialply.  We have almost 2000 runners in the 2013 Detroit Marathon fundraising on it.  That’s not the impressive part.

The impressive part is what these amazing people are doing.  They have collectively raised over three quarters of a million dollars, all for charity!

Incredible.

Check it out: https://www.socialply.com/marathon

Phatness.com is the personal blog of Mike Wille

I'm a developer with a passion for building products.

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These days, I often find myself at Step 1 of a very large project. How am I ever going to get it all done?

Let’s think about something different then software for a moment.

Here is my default thought process in the morning:

Alarm goes off. Groggy. I have to exercise. Think about getting up. Must exercise. Ugh, it’s so much work. I’ll just hit snooze one more time. Repeat for an hour.

Here is my new, revised thought process:

Alarm goes off. Don’t hit snooze. Just sit up. Swing feet off the bed. Stand up, put shorts on. Take a piss. Grab a shirt. Put on socks. Put on shoes. Go down stairs. Turn on the treadmill. Start running.

At each step of the process, I’m only thinking about one thing: the next item on my mental list.

Okay, now I’m putting my shoes on. I only have to put my shoes on right now. That is it. That is easy. Okay, time to go down stairs. One foot in front of the other, one step down at a time, that is it.

That process works a whole hell of a lot better than just thinking about everything I have to do. All at once. This isn’t a revelation, I’m sure. But doing it and really clearing your mind of everything except just the next step is something I found took practice.

Now, let’s jump back to software development. This is going to take 6 months and a hundred thousand lines of code. So how are we ever going to get it done?

“File > New Project…”

Seems a sorry thing to type MI for Michigan and see this as the top result in Google suggest:

It isn’t all that surprising though.

Google corporate infrastructure was hacked in mid-December. It looks like not that much information was stolen.

However, it has said that they will no longer be censoring search results for users in China because the attach originated from the Chinese government:

We have decided we are no longer willing to continue censoring our results on Google.cn, and so over the next few weeks we will be discussing with the Chinese government the basis on which we could operate an unfiltered search engine within the law, if at all.

How awesome is that?

What that tells me though is that google.cn will stop operating in the next few months. We all know that there is no way in hell the Chinese government will allow google to provide results, uncensored.

Check it out: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/01/new-approach-to-china.html

On the way to work today, in a foot of snow, I passed a Honda insight that couldn’t make it up a hill.

I stopped at the base of the hill, 50 feet back, waiting for the hybrid to cautiously back down. Then the fart sniffer did something grand. He cut the wheel. Backed into a ditch. Got the whole thing stuck. How long have you been driving, sir?

I laughed as I drove past in my Jeep Wrangler with 33″ tires. If he was in any other non-hybrid vehicle, I would have stopped and pulled him out. But those hybrids don’t come with tow hooks… 😉

I laughed all the way to work.

Then I ran out of gas.

If there is one good thing W did for this country, it is to get people to care about voting.

Record. Fucking. Turnout.

Disclaimer: That is a big IF.

A recent issue of Time goes into the sorry state of affairs in Michigan in the context of the election season:

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1828307,00.html

It is interesting to hear from a national source on how bad things are here in Michigan. You talk to people here about jobs and the economy and its as if the world is ending (or pretty darn close). Outside of this state, people respond as if the economy is just plain fine. It was confusing until you look at the numbers outside… Michigan has the highest unemployment rate and 1 in 20 houses are in or near foreclosure!

Anecdotal evidence… I can’t tell you how many local resumes I have looked at in the past year looking for programmers that are experienced in the tech we use. Not a single one gets a thumbs up. The only candidates we found were outside of the state. So our search has to be centered around “willing to relocate.” We found two perfect matches recently. One from South Carolina and one from Oklahoma. Both were willing to relocate. However, when they asked, “where to?” and found it was Michigan, they suddenly weren’t willing to relocate any more.

Crazy.

Only one choice left…

It goes without argument that marriage is in a sorry state these days. It is said that 50% of all marriages end in divorce. Many of those within their first 5 years. I do not have much of an opinion on divorce as I haven’t been through one yet, either my own marriage, or my parents.

I’m more concerned about marriage now after watching just a few episodes of reality TV. Apparently, our country is filled with a bunch of blundering sex crazed idiots who can’t form a proper sentence and are more obsessed with how someone else “disrespected them” than leading a productive life. While there are many factors in life that contribute to someone’s social development (nature versus nurture) you cannot deny the importance of the core family unit. A huge factor in one’s family is marriage. As I was just married, it is fresh topic for me. I want to offer a few observations I have.

<Read on…>

Let me prefix this next paragraph so that you don’t think I am some right wing religious nut. I do not support “Gay Marriage.” But, more appropriately, I support “Gay Civil Union.” That last part is the important distinction that most people forget to make. If you understand the concept of civil union, and the fact that as far as our country goes, anyone married, is simply participating in a civil union, you will understand why it is No Big Deal(tm).

Big Update, Years Later:

I’ve been meaning to update this post for quite some time.  My views on this have changed because of the realities of the country.  It would never have worked to rename marriage to civil union.  People just aren’t that nuanced, especially the religious right.  I’m fairly pragmatic and would rather see people happy and their rights upheld instead of keeping ownership over the word marriage.  All these people screaming against this are on the wrong side and cherry picking quotes from a book to use as their argument are missing the original point of that book (at least the second half :) ).

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We are in the hospital now over Memorial weekend. Pregnancy related issues, but nothing serious. It has been 1 day now and they say it will be at least 2 more days until they would consider releasing us. However, given that Kelly is due on Friday, releasing us might just as well result in us going out one hospital door, and back in another.

What has surprised me about this trip is a few things. Number one being how dedicated OB/GYN doctors must be to pick this type of a career. There were 4 or 5 calls to our doctor at all hours since we arrived at the hospital. Then he came in to visit today. That is just one patient. I couldn’t begin to imagine his workload.

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