the daily dub

October 11th, 2010

SF Fleet Week

Posted by rdub in Life

Here’s some photos from this year’s Fleet Week Air Show. Click on each image for a full-size copy.

See if you can spot the one with the mythical high-speed vapor cloud! Apparently they were going near the speed of sound (but not quite breaking it).


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April 9th, 2010

Wherein a scammer lays the bait

Posted by rdub in Life

I just received this in the email today.  Bask in all it’s scammy glory:

from David Williams <david@XXXX>
date Fri, Apr 9, 2010 at 5:20 AM
subject is For Sale
5:20 AM (7 hours ago)


I would be willing to offer you complete ownership of for only $270 USD. This domain could be used for email purposes, to direct to your current website or even to track specific marketing campaigns.  It could also be extremely helpful in building search engine rankings for this specific keyword.  This would be a powerful marketing tool while also creating valuable type-in traffic to your existing website.

Pretty sure I know what domain names are useful for, thanks…

If you would like to purchase this domain name or have any questions please reply to this message as soon as possible to avoid losing this rare opportunity as it will be sold in the next 48 hours.

Let’s see if this adds up.  First things first, let’s check the DNS system:

rdub@dub-box ~ $ whois
>>> Last update of whois database: Fri, 09 Apr 2010 19:41:16 UTC <<<
Ryan Dubois
122 Main Street Apt 3
Poultney, VT 05764


This domain name is up for auction for a limited time.
To place a bid, visit:

Looks like its up for auction. From Not from whoever this David Williams is.. Popping over to, and looking the domain up yields an opening bid of $69, with 0 bids! So, this guy David here is trying to make a cool $270 on a domain he doesn’t even own.  At least his timeline lines up, as it will be auctioned on the 11th.

However, why don’t I just wait until no one buys it, and register it myself with Dreamhost for $9.95?  Hmm… $69 or $10… Let’s see…

Thanks David, but no thanks.

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January 7th, 2010

2009: A Year in Review

Posted by rdub in Life, Musings

Year in Review

Overall, it’s been a busy year. Quite a few things in my life have changed. First and foremost, you may have noticed a long lapse in writings here. That’s indicative of just how busy things have been for me. There have been 4 major events in my life this year: new job, new wife, honeymoon, and traveling to China.

New Job

Those of you who really know me know that I was not happy in my former job. Things were not going well with the team, I felt a serious lack of respect, and after 2 years of working, there was no end in sight.

The project suffered from a severe form of feature creep. The kind that starts at the beginning and stems from one word: “rewrite.” For experienced engineers, that should send shivers down your spine.

Anyway, as a peer group with no hands-on management presence,  and with no designated tech lead(s), if anyone thought their idea was good, as long as they argued for it long enough, it was acted on. Even moronic ideas.  Such is the nature of Design By Committee.

Long story short, I was hating life for a while, having to implement things I knew were a bad idea, only to prove just how bad they were, and then rip them out. On top of that, my colleagues (with one exception) were hard to deal with.

So I asked my boss for a change.

It came in the form of my team being dissolved, right out form under me.

My boss said I had two weeks to find a new job at The Company, risk being assigned one, or worse, be jobless.

I interviewed with everyone I could, not because I had to, but because I wanted options.  I had an upfront offer from one team, but wanted to explore my potential. I had been stuck for some time already, and wanted to feel wanted. Some teams made me feel that way, some … didn’t. Some didn’t call me back. And for some teams, I could not, with a straight face, tell them “yes, I can do that.” All in all, it was a humbling, exhausting, and exhilarating experience. I loved every second of it.

I had one firm requirement: I mentioned “leadership” to every team I talked with.  If they didn’t respond that it would be an ultimate goal of theirs to get me to that position, beat around the bush, or dodged the question, I kept looking.

One team made me feel more than just wanted — desperately wanted, needed, and just what they had been looking for. They mentioned words like “leadership,” “hardware engineering,” and “travel.” These are words I like.

So, in May of 2009, I made the move and accepted the offer that I negotiated with the [REDACTED] Diagnostic Software team.

Since then, I’ve learned EFI firmware development, hardware failure analysis, project management, team management, and test engineering. Big change, great results.

New Wife

In April of 2008, I proposed to my (now) wife. In January 2009, we set the date: October 24th. Everyday since that one in January had been spent planning, purchasing, arranging, arguing, prioritizing, and executing our wedding.

And it was great. We have the photos to prove it. I played “wedding coordinator” during the ceremony, a mistake that cost me the ability to slow down and enjoy my wedding. I gave that privilege to my (exhausted, yet absolutely beautiful) wife.

[EDITED TO ADD – 1/7]:

That’s not to say that she got to sit around all day, either.  Oh no, she worked her tail off preparing a beautiful wedding video, showing people how to arrange the flowers, getting the band setup.  She worked so hard that she didn’t eat anything between breakfast and about 9pm, when we cut the cake.  She worked so hard, she didn’t have time to put her veil in the right place or button the back of her dress completely (not that I noticed a difference).

And let me say something about that dress.  Holy crap – the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen on the most beautiful woman in the world.  I was a happy man, needless to say.

Weddings are frickin’ hectic.  I highly suggest anyone planning a wedding hires a coordinator for the day-of-the-event – we would have majorly benefitted from that, and I would have payed every penny knowing what I do today.

The ceremony itself was beautiful, performed by our good friend Bryan Follis.  We wrote our own vows on the spot, in addition to some more traditional “I do’s”.  Athena’s mom added her own little ceremony (as a surprise wedding gift to us).  It was PERFECT.  Very much like her, and very special to both of us.

After the ceremony, everything is a blur: the dancing, the people, the garter/bouquet toss, the toasts.  Fireworks!  Someone set off fireworks right at the end of the toasts – how perfect!

Eventually, people started trickling out, and we found time to sit and eat a “proper” meal, and visit with some friends who made the trip out to Arkansas.

The next day we were off to our Honeymoon.

The Honeymoon

This is the first vacation I have had since July 2008. I didn’t take a vacation in Summer of 2009, in order to save up time for an epic, 2 week long honeymoon in the Cook Islands.

On Monday, October 26th, we landed on Rarotonga. The plan was to spend 5 days on that island, then hop over to Aitutaki for 7 days, then return home for a couple days of unpacking and relaxation.

Our stay in Rarotonga was probably the most enjoyable part of the trip. We stayed in a Condo on the south side of the island (which takes only 30 minutes to circumnavigate by car), spending the days snorkeling, working on our tans, tasting the local fare, and enjoying nightlife at the bars. There were only 2 bars. On the entire island.

Our stay in Aitutaki was a fair bit more … remote. With no nightlife to speak of, we were relegated to the entertainment provided by our resort. Which was a little disappointing.

Don’t get me wrong the resort was amazing: beautiful, full service, right on the beach (all requirements on a decent honeymoon), but I learned a very valuable lesson. Never stay at a resort any longer than there are breakfast options. Afterall, theres only so many ways you can serve eggs.

After cabin fever set in, we realized that we had it backwards: 5 days at Aitutaki, 7 on Rarotonga would have been better. But who’s complaining? Where else in the world can you see a 4 foot wide giant clam?

Travel to China

One of the many new responsibilities of my new position includes travel.  As such, I have already taken 2 trips to China.  All expenses paid is not a bad way to travel… ; – )

My trips usually take me to Shenzhen, where I stay at the Intercontinental Hotel – a “six star” establishment, with the life-size pirate ship to prove it. In fact, they have two pirates ships: one houses a bar/nightclub called The Galleon, and the other enjoys a permanent residence in the hotel’s outdoor pool.

The pool has a swim-up bar, a white sand beach, and a waterfall in addition to the galleon.

There are at least 4 different restaurants right in the hotel.  In my two trips, I’ve tried 3 of them: a Brazilian Steak House, a French Restaurant (specializing in 4 course meals), and an Indian Restaurant. All are highly recommended.  Ironically enough, I have not tried the Chinese restaurant in the hotel.

In fact, I generally don’t get much time at the hotel when in China.  Most of my time there is spent eating breakfast and dinner, drinking at the bar/lounge, or sleeping.

Wrapping Up

Basically, everything that could have changed has. I’m happily married now, happily enjoying a new job, and just living everyday as full as I possibly can.

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November 23rd, 2009

ToDo List

Posted by rdub in Life

Now that the wedding and honeymoon are all taken care of, I have some things I’d like to focus on now:’

1. Get back in shape. This involves eating healthy, drinking less, and going to the gym more. I’ve already started on this one.
2. Get my guitar calluses back.
3. Climb Crescent Moon Coulior on Round Top (Carson Pass). I’ll need another Ice Axe for this. And a partner.
4. Spend some time with friends.
5. Relax! =)

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July 12th, 2009

Pub Crawl

Posted by rdub in Life
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I had Farkas, Ryan, and Bryan over for a small pub crawl last night. The ladies went to Bootie, while we had a beer tasting, then walked down to the local pub for some fish’n’chips and darts.

We played a game of Killer, a game of team Crickett, and drank maybe 3 beers each. At which point, we all felt like trying something else. I had a serious hankering for PBR (afterall, I missed Fourth of JuPlaya this year), so we walked the other way to another Irish pub.

To our surprise, it was definitely “club” night: lots of teenage looking girls, club music, and loud. After ordering a shot of Jameson and a PBR for Farkas and myself, I made my way upstairs…

…Where Farkas had just discovered a drunken passed out guy curled up around the table! He was just lying there, drunk as hell, sleeping it off.

Farkas went to tell the bouncer.  The bouncer immediately knew who it was – he must be a regular passer-outer.

“Blonde hair, white shirt?”


“Yea, that’s Greg.  Let’s go get him up…”

Awesome way to close out the night!

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