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New website and The Future

First off, I bought http://opensourceplayground.org last night.  Not really anything there yet.  Not really sure what I am going to do with it.  I have unlimited bandwidth and storage, so hosting Linux distros seems like a reasonable idea.  At some point, I’ll post my other ideas.  I’ve never managed a domain before.  My websites have always been university hosted and after I left school I lost access.  I actually could renew my ONYEN (Only Name You’ll Ever Need) but that’s low on my miles long to-do list.

The website ties into ‘the future’, because I need to keep my web development skills up.  Anyway, the future…

Things tanking with women in The Triangle and in Boston has lessened my desire to get out of Madison in the short term.  Two years at work comes up in July, after which I’ll have three weeks of vacation.  That sounds pretty good.  Christmas has been very short the last couple of years and World Cup trip is sadly short (and ridiculously expensive!).  Sweden was shortened by my travel partner, but had it been longer, Christmas would have been even shorter.  After five years, I’d get a sabbatical, which I’d like to take to World Cup 2014.

I’ve discussed going back to school here and potentially some other things.  I’m beginning to think there are only three reasons to move.

  1. Job in open source.  My days as a Windows support tech have really made me hate Windows.  Linux isn’t perfect, but at least I know I could bend it to my will if need be and if resources were available to make it happen.
  2. Moving back to NC (maybe KY). I’d really like to go back to UNC, but I need to reestablish residency to do that.  Spending a couple years in Lexington could be nice, but I’d need to become a Cincinnati fan…which is already the case in baseball.  With at least partial allegiances to 6 NCAA universities, two NBA teams, two MLB teams (Reds, obviously), two NFL teams (although, I’m not sure I cheer for the Packers. They are kinda annoying. Bucks and Brewers are solid though), Landon Donovan’s team, Ibrahimović’s team, Malmö FF, the Svenska Ishockeyförbundet and Fotbollförbundet, US national teams, The Hurricanes (mildly the Blackhawks), two MLS teams and Manchester United, there’s really no love to go around.  Alone, that’s not a good reason not to go to Lexington, but the broader point is that most everything I know is in NC at this point.  Time in AL, WI and KY, of course, but once moving to WI, it became apparent NC is home, even if my basketball loyalty resides in Lexington and my American football loyalty resides in Tuscaloosa.  The rail from Raleigh to Charlotte is really appealing after being stuck in the island that is Madison.  Also, there is a lot more going on in NC in open source than there is in Wisconsin, despite Ubuntu Wisconsin‘s attempts to change that.
  3. Move to Sverige or England. Getting an EU work permit is going to be the challenge here with the current economy. My limited Svenska language skills will also probably hold me back.

So, in long term planning, the question is, how badly do I want to go across the pond.  Is it worth the time to focus my energy on learning Svenska rather than developing my open source skills?  I’m really struggling with that question and lack focus.  Either way, I think I need to put in some time.  I need to learn Python or just do more for the community that run MadLUG.  I felt like COSI got somewhere in physical space, but I just feel like the culture isn’t right in Madison.  Madison is very conservative when it comes to changing things, whereas The Triangle seems rooted in constant change.  When you have an agenda, the place that *wants* to change, seems the place to be.  Maybe it’s just moving into the ‘real world’ rather than the university, where I’ve been rooted my entire life through my father being a professor.  I think I just need to get out more into the real world and see.  Maybe I’ll come back thinking Madison is a fantastic place.

I’ve been all over the place for a long time – a Biology and Communications undergrad degree, paid for coaching football, a master’s in Information Science and have lead a couple different music organizations.  The experimentation needs to come to an end.  I’m not happy, but I don’t think it’s really Madison or my employee.  I think it’s definitely the snow of Madison in part, but I think it’s really that I don’t see my particular job as moving the world further.  I feel like if I was in a position to promote FOSS more, I’d be happier, but clearly I have other goals and interest.  One note about Madison vs. Sverige.  I’ve been following the weather in Malmö and in Madison and it’s *almost always* warmed in Malmö.  It’s on the coast, so it’s temp is better regulated. It’s also not as hot in the summer.  Malmö is not the only place in which I’d be interested in Sverige, but it is the place I am most interested.

Please let me know your thoughts.  I’d really like your perspective on this based on what you know about living in other countries and also based on the economy.

Bucket List

Having been to Europe and thinking about what I want to do with my life, I decided to put it in writing.

<h2>The original list</h2>

  • Go to all 50 states (I only have Vermont and Louisiana left)
  • Go to all 7 continents (Europe and North America are off the list)
  • Go to an MLS (Major League Soccer) game
  • Go to a US MNT (Men’s National Team) game
  • Go above the arctic circle
  • Contribute code to an Open Source project (I’m not a programmer, but I’d like to help out, of course)
  • eat bear (although, I am a vegetarian…so I better do this while my stomach can still digest meat…)
  • go to Siberia (I guess this would count as Asia)

I felt like that was going to be too easy, so I might as well add some more now.

<h2>Additional Items</h2>

  • Go to a World Cup
  • Go to The Olympics
  • Write and Record a song
  • See the Swedish MNT play (I’ve only seen the U-21 team)
  • See a professional Swedish fotboll side play

I have some additional goals, like learning Swedish, but that’s not really a one-time thing like I feel like the rest of these are.  I’d also like six-pack abs, but if I get them it’s not over, I want to keep them.  It’ll likely be years before I get all of that, so don’t expect an update any time soon.  Although, I might be heading to an MLS game in Chicago this season!