Showing posts from 2009

Lights are turning green!

I was out driving the other night when through the snow-laden clouds came a sudden burst of sunlight that created spectacular lighting effects! For just a brief moment the sky turned every color, from red through orange to yellow with splashes of violet and mauve thrown in as well. I was able to get off a snapshot of the sunset, as I approached Golden, Colorado, and I have included it to the left.
Natural lighting effects always provide us with a treat, and on those occasions when we see something special, it stays with us for many years. On a trip to SATUG, a few years back, there was a reception on a river cruise where we were treated to a colorful evening sunset that I will remember for many years. And on a flight from San Francisco to London, the Sunday evening that the San Francisco 49er’s were playing in their last Superbowl, I was fortunate enough to have a window seat. On the port side!

Leaning back against the airplane fuselage, straining to pick up the commentary on my airl…

Widening my options?

It has been terribly cold in Boulder these past few days. Anyone living in the US will have been hard-pressed to miss the weather reports featuring stories coming out of the Rockies and the nearby plains states. It was a deep freeze that came suddenly and viciously, and much earlier than the locals had predicted. And the usual run down to the coffee shop for my morning constitutional became a challenge in finding enough clothing to wear. The picture to the right is what greeted me the past couple of mornings as I walked out my front doors.
A walk through the garage is a sad journey. The cars of summer tethered to battery charges and the motorcycles serving no other purpose than places to support growing stacks of miscellaneous items that I will get around to putting away some time soon. Where riding jackets, gloves and helmets once hung, there is now just a variety of heavy overcoats. Reluctantly we hunker down indoors and catch up on the football, and on finishing off leftovers from …

I want to see some passion!

It’s been a couple of busy weeks and this has been my first chance to write in some time. I was in Germany for the Connect Germany / GTUG IT Symposium that attracted NonStop users from all over Europe. The picture above was captured during an evening event at GTUG and is clear evidence of the tradition of Tandem continuing even after 35 years, and I was able to enjoy a few down nights with some great German hospitality.

I had the opportunity to participate in the event moderating a short, but well attended session towards the end of the first day on the upcoming 35th anniversary of Tandem. The interest, the enthusiasm, and the passion for Tandem and now, NonStop, platforms has not lessened with the years. Everyone associated with the early days were quick to recall stories and to share amusing anecdotes and the history of the company generates interest no matter the occasion.

Returning to California from GTUG, within hours I was repacking for the weekend drive to Boulder for the Thank…

A good glass of Aussie Shiraz!

Following the last posting where I talked of how I enjoyed riding my motorcycle along the Colorado front ranges in the cool of autumn, I found myself this week relegated to doing chores. One item I had to complete was the smog-testing of our faithful old-world, heavy-weight, gas guzzling Cadillac SUV. It passed without any issues and I then drove to the county offices to renew the tags, and I came across something so completely different from my SUV: a brand new Tesla! And the picture above is of the Cadillac SUV parked behind this rather photogenic battery-powered coupe!
For those not familiar with the Tesla, it pretty much is the polar opposite of the Cadillac – powered by batteries with no emissions, and helped out by the folks at Lotus, wrapped in a very attractive package. But as tempted as I was (after all, it was the season to look at what the auto industry was bringing to market and to think about change), I really have grown fond of the old SUV. It would take a lot of extra m…

Fall, a time to buy?

I just stepped back indoors after taking the motorcycle out for a 75 miles late-Fall jaunt. With the continental divide well covered by early season snow, and plenty of evidence that there had been recent snowfalls along the Colorado front ranges, with loose grit in many of the corner apexes, it was good to catch a break in the weather. Just to enjoy the autumn colors, still present, framing many of the deserted back-roads that I ride, provided a pleasant change from the routines of the past few weeks. And the picture above is of looking back at a new line of "snow clouds" descending. Oh well!

Cutting across some of the main roads to get to my favorite highway, I passed a number of motorcycle and car showrooms. I thought that it may be a good idea to stop by and walk the deserted lots on my way back – after all, there’s nothing better to do on quiet days then to check out the new models.

I subscribe to many car and bike magazines and generally read them from cover to cover. …

Real “stayers”

Suddenly, I was caught up in the fever that surrounds the annual running of the Melbourne Cup. A historic horse race held at the Flemington Racecourse, outside of Melbourne, Australia, it’s a long race of 3,200 meters (trimmed a few feet in recent times after the metric system was introduced). And it’s an ancient race, by Australian standards, having had its first running back in 1861. And it truly lives up to its billing as “the race that stops the nation.”

Visitors to the LinkedIn user group, Real Time View, will know of the discussion “Fast Lane” and of my social blog “Buckle-Up-Travel” where I frequently refer to events involving motor cars. And it was only a few weeks ago that “The Great Race” was held for Super V8s around the Mount Panorama circuit to the west of Sydney. On display on that occasion was an over-abundance of horsepower, but this week, it all came down to just a few horses.

While Melbourne enjoyed a public holiday, and the government of Australia was officially “ad…

There's a pot of gold ...

I am getting ready to make a quick trip down to Sydney. In the last few hours as I pack to leave, however, I just had to comment on the recent NonStop user event I attended in Toronto, Canada (CTUG). The picture I have included above is of a rainbow and it has nothing to do with Toronto as it was taken on a recent trip through Cedar City, Utah, but is more symbolic than anything else I could include in this blog posting.

It was a different experience for me as it was my first outing to any user event as in independent “consultant” working for my own company, Pyalla Technologies, LLC. And I have to admit I was just a little bit nervous, unsure of what to expect. After all, having spent the last twenty years working for companies like Tandem Computers, ACI / InSession, and most recently GoldenGate Software, this time I was participating at a user event without a strong company-supported infrastructure behind me.

My participation, fortunately, came as a result of the generous support fro…

Is there gas in the tank?

Just finished skimming through the October issue of NonStop Connect Now and read the item promoting an upcoming webinar (December 2, ’09) on the subject of 35 years of NonStop evolution. According to the promotion:

“Throughout these decades, NonStop has evolved continuously and has now become a standards-based, modern infrastructure that continues to meet the needs of the most demanding customers and applications … take a look at the evolution of NonStop and hear about its past, present and future.”

It occurred to me that we take so much of what NonStop has achieved over the past 35 years for granted, and often forget just how hard those 35 years have been. Today when we read of how, after 35 years, “NonStop has delivered on the promise of continuous application availability, unparalleled data integrity and industry leading scalability,” as the promotion piece above led with, how often do we simply forget all the hard work and long hours that a tightly-knit group of passionate engineers…

Let's talk ...

I had the very good fortune to spend two weeks back home in Boulder. It gave me the opportunity to revisit favorite spots in and around the town – and to catch up with old friends. Coming from Southern California I wasn’t quite prepared for the weather but then again, being exposed to seasons, has its attractions. And the photo here is of the bike parked beneath a tree in our garden that was putting on quite a show – fall in the Rockies is mostly about the color yellow!
But the coming of fall is not just about the display of colors, but about change. We saw days where the thermometer dropped as much as 30 degrees. One day it was 80+, the next barely 50! And the storms? On two occasions the continental divide glistened white with snow and one early morning, we were treated to one of the best electrical storms I have seen in years – lined up, one behind the other, weather fronts moved across the state with the regularity (and precision) of a metronome!
It was out of necessity that I also…

Loyalty programs - an option for IT?

I have to admit, I am a sucker for dogs. Whenever I’d walk through a mall and see a pet shop, I take time to walk past the rows of puppy cages. My eldest daughter “rescued” a greyhound from a shelter and even in the heart of winter, when she was out of town, with snow piled high along the sidewalk, I still found time to take him for his constitutional walk. As the puppies stare at me through the glass of their cubicles, I find it difficult to just walk away. But these days, with the time I spend on the road, it wouldn’t be fair for any dog.

I had a dog when I was a child. It was a brindle-colored Boxer that we simply called “Loco.” He wasn’t completely normal – he would follow the bread delivery van and retrieve every loaf dropped off. My father quickly tired of compensating the neighbors after each visit from the baker. And when I went to Rugby practice after school, Loco would somehow manage to fix his teeth into the laces of the ball and run away with it. No matter how we all tried,…