Saturday, November 12, 2005
Well my trip was extended 1 extra day, I was scheduled to leave Fri night but that gives me a chance to hopefully find my way over to the museum today before checking out. I have a month of junk to pack though..
I love you all, see you soon!
Sunday, November 06, 2005
Hello everyone. I have a nice batch of photos for you all from Rio uploaded to my flickr section on the right. It rained a bunch but I have some amazing imagery from Corcovado, the famous statue of Christ on the mountaintop.
It's been a nice low-key week preparing for the crunch week that starts at 11:55pm tommorrow.
If all goes as planned ( does it ever? ) I will be leaving this wonderful country on Friday, holding my wife and kids in my arms on Saturday.
Homesick? yeah, a little but it's been an experience I can only compare to being at the Olympics in Salt Lake City.
I've made some new friends and seen some pretty amazing things, most of which I hope you can take the time to peruse. If not I understand, we are all busy people, but you won't regret sipping a cup of coffee or tea while checking them out.
Thanks for coming by.
Friday, October 28, 2005
Wednesday, October 26, 2005
Monday, October 24, 2005
Back to work! Yes, Sunday was an all nighter, starting at 8pm and rolling until 6:40am. Fun times.
Did go out to a neat Cafe named Fran's. Good espresso grande!
Day 6 was amazing! Before I came to this country, I had visions of walking clay lined streets, and checking out different artisans and checking out handmade brazilian crafts.
I was treated many times over. I walked for what seemed like 3 city blocks of all tents that is similar to your garden variety arts and crafts show, but add to it all the people that could possibly fit in the area, bargains everywhere, and live music.
I was treated to a show by the grandfathers of Sala and Bossanova who looked to be in their 80s and still entertaining the crowd. It was a time of cervesas and food and of course, shopping for treats for my family :)
Saturday, October 22, 2005
Day 5 was my first trip to Telefonica corporate in Faria Lima area of Sau Paulo. It was a polar opposite of my current experiences so far and completely impressed me. The areas we drove through were beautiful homes, well-manicured lawns, trees and immaculately clean streets.
The area was very much like Wacker Drive in Chicago only with more traffic.
You really cannot grasp how packed the traffic is. Chicago was the worst I'd experienced in my 40 years...double it, and you have SP.
Their facility was a pretty standard corporate high tech bldg, with various amenities in it, like our old US West Tower. Massage, Manicure, Smoking Terraces, Food, Cappucino machines...much much nicer, than where I'd been thus far.
I had to "create" access to get outlook and skype working but was able to work after that. (wink wink)
Went to lunch with some of the team to a nice German Style restaurant and had a favorite, Beef stroganoff. .... until they served it with rice instead of noodles! Sacrilege! But it was really good anyway, even though I only had a few tablespoons of rice.
I am uploading some of the better shots I have taken so far, and on Day 6, Saturday ( which is really today ) You can see em through the flickr flash applet, just click and view the slideshow or browse the site directly.
Going shopping today, hope to get some things for the kids and look at guitars for Murillo and myself.
Day 4 was pretty rough, not even going to go into it. People who are familiar with the situation down here, don't need to hear it either..bleh.
Dinner with Claudio went really well, we talked about working and working with TCS and what a great experience it is and can be ;) It was a very productive evening. I drank too much coffee and didn't sleep till 1:30am ...
Tuesday, October 18, 2005
It's what all overseas tourists fear most...
I spent a decent workday, we turned over the task of completing the phase 3 project to myself and teams back stateside. Conf calls and log gathering with some new things to work on tommorrow.
For Lunch, we had more engineers meet me in person for the first time, Batata and Murillo.They took me to the famed Brazilian BBQ, Rodizios! Where it is all you can eat meat on skewers, varying from Hump of Bull, to Chicken Heart to Pasta and Quail Eggs. More below...
Murillo being a fellow guitarist, he and I plan on shopping for an Epiphone for him Saturday, and who knows, maybe I will pick up a nylon classical with brazilian woods finally. R$300 is a very common price. Thats about 120 USD! We shall see, I earned it tonight.
As we were leaving the office I felt telltale churning in my stomach as I was heading down the 6 flights of walk-up stairs we have. Nope, no elevator. I stopped off on the third flight to hit u Banheiro. 10 minutes later I was worried. Cramps were setting in. "Corras"
As soon as I made it back to the hotel, I had to go...
I won't go into details, but after conference calls, the cold sweats ( its in the 90s ), bad cramps, muscles hurting everywhere and 14 trips to the john...here at 1:47am I feel like death-warmed-over, only my room and myself ...well you can only imagine the smell.
My wife is rightly worried, but not much I can do except get through, the pressure is all on me now to finish the mission. Thursday is D-Day on this project.
Nope, still no pics, heavy rain, ungodly heat, cooling off in the evening to about 70.
If there is a god, It is holding the Charmin and laughing.
The daytime was nice, I was taken to a downtown shopping area where they had lots of small market stores, it reminded me of a older Las Olas Mall in Ft. Lauderdale, only 100x the area. I regret not having my camera even though it rained a bit.
The quality of the goods was fine however, and I picked up a Sony Duo Pro memory stick for about $10 less than you would pay in the US...but it didn't work, so the guy who brought me will try and swap it out.
So, still no pics, it was rainy all day and about 94F, quite sticky.
Boa Noite Familia!
Monday, October 17, 2005
After leaving my house at 9:05am on Saturday morning, I've arrived in Sao Paulo at 11am on Sunday Morning. WHEW.
No incidents, customs was fine, no horrible lines, all in all a really good trip. I don't think I can ever fly in coach again, after the pampering in Business class all the way here!
First night in the Renaissance was nice. The room is small but well appointed, however the "free" high speed internet is in the club lounge. In room it's R48$ a day! ( thats about 22 bucks a night for slowish DSL!!! )
I paid for a 5 day block only so...
Anyway, first dinner in town was with Greg our WAE and Armando, the customer Telco expert who is my primary interface for all things call flow related. He took us to dinner here.
It's cloudy and misty so no real photos yet. I took a few of the room and view, will see if they are post-worthy later!
Off to work now!
Saturday, October 15, 2005
...for 90 minutes while I breeze through O'hare on my way to Sao Paulo.
Yes, it's finally here, the trip that was supposed to happen in March hehe.
I plan on uploading photos here and staying in touch through the Blog since I will be
Thursday, October 13, 2005
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
- There are three 'acts' to his speech. The best will no doubt come last. Anyway, Act 1 is the iMac - which sold over 1m in last year. The all-new iMac has three new features: it's thinner, it's got an iSight videocamera built in and new app called Photobooth. Finally, there's a new app called Front Row. (see below for more)
- Act Two:the iPod. Apple has shipped over a million Nanos in less than five weeks. Now, it's the NEW white iPod - and yes it does video! The format is similar to the old pod but with a bigger screen - a 2.5in TFT display with 320x240 pixels with realtime decoding of MPEG 4 and H.264 video. It's only got 260,000 colours but it does have video output to connect to TV.
- The video iPod is available in 30 and 60 GB capacities - and both are thinner than the current 20GB Pod. 30GB will be $299, 60GB will be $399. UK prices will be confirmed later. And did we mention it was available in black? Oh yes, and it comes with a case, so don't worry about scratches!
- Steve has demonstrated the quality of the iPod screen playing back vdeo and it really is impressive - although it's a bit of a surprise to see the Pod still has a 4:3 screen. I guess movies are a way off...
- There are two ads for the video iPod being previewed, one featuring U2 and one with Eminem (who's obviously settled his dispute with Apple).
- Act three: iTunes iTunes has an 84% market share in the US. Five weeks after the launch of iTunes 5, here's iTunes 6. Surely video downloads are the order of the day? Hell yes.
- Here are the big changes: firstly, 'gifting' - you can buy music for other people, who get an email telling them to download. Next: customer reviews - Amazon-style peer reviews of music. Third: Just For You (beta) - a recommendation service, again similar to what Amazon offers.
- and finally for iTunes... music videos. Currently there are 2000 available to buy. But they're gonna cost $1.99. And Pixar are offering 6 short films, also for $1.99. The price seems a bit high, and didn't get a cheer from the audience. The videos take the space of six songs (so about 20MB) and have the same rights management as music tracks.
iTunes 6 will be available today for free download.
AND ONE MORE THING...
You'll be able to buy TV shows from the iTunes Music Store
- Front Row - which comes with all new iMacs - gives people a new way to enjoy your music, video and pictures from the sofa - with an iPod style remote control. It still uses the iMac's screen, but text is big and control is simple, so you don't have to be hunched up in front of the screen. He's comparing the simple, small remote for Front Row with the bloated remotes from Microsoft Media Center - Apple's 6 buttons compared to Media Center's 40-plus.
Obviously, Front Row will be the perfect way to enjoy music video bought from the iTunes Music Store 6. But is it too much to ask for a TV link?
- Photobooth uses the iMac's screen as a flash and it's got cool little animation where the photo pops out. It's got wacky photoshop-style effects built in. Fun, but hardly groundbreaking. 'The funnest app we've ever written.'
By Tom Dunmore - Stuff mag
Tuesday, October 11, 2005
What Is Web 2.0 by Tim O'Reilly -- Defining just what Web 2.0 means (the term was first coined at a conference brainstorming session between O'Reilly and MediaLive International, which also spawned the Web 2.0 Conference), still engenders much disagreement. Some decry it as a meaningless marketing buzzword, while others have accepted it as the new conventional wisdom. Tim O'Reilly attempts to clarify just what we meant by Web 2.0, digging into what it means to view the Web as a platform and which applications fall squarely under its purview, and which do not.
Monday, October 10, 2005
Sunday, October 09, 2005
Saturday, October 08, 2005
Tuesday, October 04, 2005
Mark dumped 10 million in personal funds to help grow Ubuntu Linux into one of the better distros around, and the one I personally use full time, posting to this blog.