Monday, July 30, 2007

City to City Ride 07 - Update

My wife and kids and I went down to Campus Martius to cheer on Emily and Kevin as they kicked off their journey. They are taking Michigan avenue all the way from Campus Martius to Grant Park in Chicago.

Kevin and Emily have made it to Coldwater, MI as of last night. Emily has posted some great photos and pictures on her blog. It sounds as though folks along the way have been enthusiastic and supportive of their efforts to raise awareness and money for Cystic Fibrosis.

The weather will be hot (high 80's and 90's) and sunny for the rest of the Ride. It sounds as though they've been pacing themselves and resting when needed, so hopefully the heat won't be too big an issue.

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Monday, July 9, 2007

City to City Ride 07

A freind of mine asked me if Geeks and Gurus would be willing to sponsor a bike ride in which he'd be participating to raise awareness. Kevin's request was low-key and he said he'd welcome any amount of support. In his request he attached an image of the flyer promoting the event. As I read through this flyer, I realized that not only was he planning to ride from Detroit to Chicago, but he was organizing the event.

In its inaugural year, this event will be a two-person ride. The second person is Emily Schaller who was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis (CF) when she was 18 months old. Emily, 25, has started the Rock CF Foundation to raise awareness of this disease. She has organized an annual concert called Just Let Me Breathe, which raised over 15,000 in its 4th year. She has released a compilation album called Detroit Rocks CF and is working on a second. She has garnered the attention of local and national media including SPIN magazine.

The ride starts July 28th in Campus Martius and will follow Michigan Avenue all the way into Chicago.

If you're interesting in more about the ride or about how to donate to the Rock CF Foundation, look for details at the website.

Also, each evening during the ride, Emily plans to blog about the day's events here.

I wish Kevin and Emily all the best.

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Friday, July 6, 2007

Visiting Louisville

I was in Louisville, KY a couple weeks ago (we were providing cyber cafes, training machines and other support to an educational conference)

My wife and kids were able to come down for the leading weekend of the conference which allowed us to spend at least part of Father's Day together. I'm really glad they came - and more glad that the kids were good for my wife on the 6 hour ride back home!

On the way down, we stopped in Cincinnati to see my brother and his house that is very much in the middle of a complete renovation. The inside is all 2x4's, but the outside looks great. While there, he took us to an excellent local pizzeria. If you're ever in the area, make sure to check out Dewey's. They make "gourmet" pizza and have several very good choices on the menu. They also let you create your own and everything was excellent.

On Saturday, my family and I went to the Louisville Slugger Museum and factory which was a surprisingly worthwhile visit. The tour of the factory takes just the right amount of time to keep a 5-year-old and 8-year-old entertained throughout. What really amazed me is that for the whole length of the factory tour, you're within inches of the production lines - very cool.

As soon as the boys found out that we were going to Kentucky they started talking about how we're likely to see a lot of Kentucky Fried Chicken stores. I told them I didn't think we'd see any more or less than we do in Detroit, but they were certain we'd see more. As it turned out, we didn't see any. For some reason, though, this was really on their mind. As we were walking around after the factory tour, they started talking about it again. It was to the point where I said to them that KFC probably wasn't even from Kentucky. Not more than 10 minutes later we walked past a visitor's center that had a life-sized statue of The Colonel himself. The boys were thrilled to have their picture taken with him. A few minutes later I saw my 8-year-old earnestly listening to one of the workers at the information counter. He'd walked up and asked what the story was about KFC and Kentucky. He was all-too-happy to come give us the details. Colonel Sanders was born in Indiana, but did indeed open his first store in Kentucky.

On the opening night of the conference, they had an off-site reception at the Muhammad Ali Center. I'm no fan of boxing, but this place was incredible. The curators did an excellent job of capturing my attention from the minute I walked in the door. I only saw one of several floors of the exhibits, and only part of that floor. The video clips they put together painted an excellent picture of this man, his attitude and his boxing career. If you're ever in Louisville, you should check this place out, even if you have no interest in boxing.

The reception was catered and had excellent food. I didn't get to try the shrimp, but I hear it was incomparable. I did have the best slices of beef tenderloin I've ever had in my life - really.

The next day our friends (and customers) mentioned that the caterer, Emily Fultz, insisted they come to her restaurant before leaving town and we were invited to tag along. We walked a few blocks to Jarfi's Bistro. The restaurant is attached to a performing arts center where The Lion King was currently running. The show started at 8:00 and our reservations were for 8:00 and we pretty much had the place to ourselves. The chef, Jeff Jarfi, prepared the most wonderful meal I've had in quite some time. I'm not going to pretend a food critic so I won't try to describe how these things tasted or how they were prepared. (You can look at the menu to get all the details) Chef Jarfi prepared a 5 course meal that was out of this world. We had Baby Lamb Chops, Awesome Sea Bass, Tomato Mozzarella Salad, Filet Mignon and a Raspberry Sorbet with fresh fruit. I'd like to thank Amy and Sarah from Organizational Services, Inc for inviting us to tag along. I'd also like thank Emily and Jeff for such a wonderful meal and evening.

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Thursday, July 5, 2007

Someone is interested in VFP developers

I just got a letter from Servoy USA in Thousand Oaks, CA. This letter is specifically aimed at VFP developers and starts out like this:
Microsoft recently announced that they are discontinuing Visual FoxPro. To make things more confusing they are not offering you any serious alternatives; Microsoft would like you to move your products to their Dynamics platform: that way you will push more Microsoft licenses to your customers.

Their other platform .Net is great but will reduce the productivity of your developers so maybe it's time for you to have a serious look at your alternatives.

I find this letter interesting and not just for the poor grammar.

First: This is the first time I've seen the assertion that Microsoft wants us to move to Dynamics. The letter dismisses .NET which is what I think most VFP developers consider as Microsoft's "upgrade path."

Second: At least one company in California thinks of VFP developers as an untapped market for their product even though they seem to be fairly unfamiliar with what is going on in the VFP world.

I'm not trying to get into the whole future of VFP issue. I just thought that it was interesting to get this letter. I don't think the fact that I'm a VFP developer has put me on any one's mailing list in quite some time.


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