About

Who are you?

I’m an IBMer and a Senior Cloud Computing Specialist at The Hartford. I graduated from Baker College with a BSc in Computer Science, earned a certificate in UNIX Systems Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and I’m currently a graduate student at Syracuse University studying Information Management and Data Science. I’m also a member of the (IEEE). My professional interests include cluster and cognitive computing, ARM-based single-board microcomputers, space technologies and exploration, and infrastructure hyper-connectivity (IoT).

Software

VSCode is my preferred text editor, I store all my notes in DEVONthink Pro Office, I use Textual for IRC, iTerm for command-line stuff, Firefox to surf the web, OmniFocus to keep myself on task, PS4 Remote Play and Steam for playing the occasional game, Telegram and Tweetbot for messaging, Pixelmator and Pixave for graphics work, iTunes and Cog for listening to music, GPG Tools for maintaining my privacy, 1Password for managing passwords and logins, Carbon Copy Cloner for keeping my system backed up, Marked for previewing Markdown files, and Alfred for launching apps, text expansion, workflows and more.

Hardware

I do all of my work on a 2018 Hex-Core MacBook Pro running the latest version of macOS. My home lab contains a QNAP 563 NAS, Lenovo TS140 ThinkServer, Dell PowerEdge T100, an Apple Mac Mini server, and a six node Raspberry Pi computing cluster. I’m currently using the ThinkServer and PowerEdge (which are running VMWare ESXi) to host multiple Linux and Windows virtual machines. My home network is made up of several Cisco gigabit switches, a beefy EdgeRouter X router, several Eero mesh-points, and a single Eero 5Ghz router. So far we haven’t had any issues switching over to mesh networking.

Development

I blog using Hugo, a super-fast system built with Go. I prefer Python for scripting and quick prototyping, I like to tinker with Elixir and Swift for system and server things, and I occasionally dabble in the arcane arts known as Lisp programming. Web development is done via PHP 7.0 and Vue.js on local virtual machines managed by Vagrant and VMware Fusion. I write Swift (MacOS and iOS) code locally using Xcode and then push it to a local Mac Mini server for compilation. Code is stored in Git and managed with Sourcetree, and sometimes Gogs (an open source self-hosted Git server). For containerization I use the full Mac Docker stack (Docker Engine, Docker Machine, Docker Hub, Kitematic) and I’ve been messing around with CoreOS and rkt. My favorite orchestration tool at the moment is Ansible.

Composing

I use a variety of hardware and software synthesizers to compose with. My primary hardware synthesizer is a Roland SE-02 that can do just about anything that I throw at it. Other, smaller synthesizers like the Korg Volca FM, Korg Volca Keys, Korg kaossilator 2S, and a Teenage Engineering PO-35 round out my hardware instruments. On the software side, I prefer to work with the Korg iDS-10, Moog Animoog, Moog Model D, and the Moog Filtatron. I have a variety of MIDI controllers that I like to use to either control hardware or software synths. My current favorite is the Arturia KeyStep. The Novation LaunchPad Mini is good for creating more complex pieces, and I would never let go of my ROLI Live Block, ROLI LightPad M, and ROLI Seaboard Block. Finally, all of this is connected to a Mackie Mix8 mixer and recordings are done via a Roland R-07 portable studio recorder.

Geeky Stuff

I’m into comic books (along with my son. Batman rules!), retro operating systems (Amiga OS, BeOS, Commodore KERNAL, desktop role-playing games like Dungeons and Dragons and Shadowrun, video games like Diablo 3, Doom, and Overwatch, and hacking on stuff like the Arduino and Raspberry Pi. Some of my current hardware projects include making my old Commodore 64C talk to IBM’s Watson and building a replica of the Apollo Guidance Computer (AGC) used in NASA’s Apollo program using a Raspberry Pi and 3D printing. Eventually, I would like to start my own geek/nerd podcast, create new Doom levels, finish some of the software projects that I’ve been working on, and ultimately take over the world.