Something I believe all humans seek is the flow state, also known as being “in the zone.” Over the years I’ve found that there are three areas that put me in that state: building software, group fitness, and learning. The purpose of this blog is for me to share my flow-based interests with a broader audience.
Here are some roles I find myself playing on a regular basis:
- Ambassador — representing an individual or team to others
- Clerk — keeping track of things
- Coach — reminding people they can achieve with the right effort
- Custodian — avoiding the tragedy of the commons by doing upkeep
- Librarian — being the go-to person for knowledge (or where to find it)
- Mentor — giving others a path but letting them traverse it themselves
Although the “craftsmanship” metaphor probably isn’t the most apt, I find the principles embodied by the movement to be things that I use to guide my efforts and help me improve as a developer. In general, taking pride in building quality things while being a professional is something I strive to do.
Finding the kernel of things has always fascinated me, which is why I try to learn about things that transcend any one area, company, or group. For example, I’ve found myself gravitating towards understanding processes (e.g., lean manufacturing) rather than the specific tools, technologies, or industries that implement and use those processes.
Although the breadth of my exposure to differing groups and companies is not vast, it seems that most problems stem from issues related to communication and collaboration. I value short feedback cycles paired with open, respectful communication.
The pace of technology and software is breathtaking these days, yet I have a healthy curiosity of how things work. I’ve always loved taking things apart to see their inner workings, and trying to replicate things via mimcry. The frustrating thing is that I find the “engineer hat” difficult to remove when trying to simply enjoy something like a console game or when using a new gadget.
Helping others brings me a great deal of pleasure and fulfillment. Some of my most gratifying experiences involved helping people learn something new or find a way to make things easier or more enjoyable. Three ways I’ve been able to do this include (1) being a graduate teaching assistant, (2) helping retired individuals with technology, and (3) mentoring fellow developers.
I have a BS in computer science and a BA in music from Furman University; additionally, I hold an MS degree in computer science, and was all-but-dissertation for my PhD for computer science from The University of Tennessee (Knoxville).
I hold advanced group fitness instructor certifications for two Les Mills International programs: BODYJAM (dance cardio) and RPM (stationary bike). As a fitness instructor, I also have a basic life support (BLS) certification.
By day, I’m a software team leader for DPRA, Inc., a consultancy that specializes in logistical, technical, environmental, and management problems. I work with a team to develop and support a system that manages military assets around the globe.
On evenings and weekends, I teach group fitness classes at Gold’s Gym. On a related note, I’m also on the Les Mills RPM production team to help them proofread their materials before global distribution.
Things I Do
Usually at any point in time, I have an iron or two in one of these fires:
- Learning about a process (e.g., lean, management)
- Learning about leadership and communication
- Learning about software development (e.g., domain-driven design)
- Learning about design and user experience
- Preparing to teach group fitness classes
You can find me occasionally posting code to Bitbucket.
Although the group has been put on hiatus, for several years I facilitated a local software craftsmanship group.
The views expressed on this site are purely my own and not reflective of any organization with which I am affiliated.