Brian’s Moving!

You have died...

Yes, the rumors are true… Suzan and I are moving to Oregon.

Yes, we’ve heard this joke already.

Let’s get the basics out of the way…

  1. Brian has been working from home for Intel since August 1, 2011.
  2. Intel wants Brian to move to a main office as a setup for a promotion. Staying remote is not an option for long-term employment, and it’s a good fit for our life.
  3. Out of all the Intel US offices, Hillsboro, Oregon (a suburb of Portland) is the best fit personally and professionally.
  4. Our current house (“GeekFarm 2.0”) will be on the market June 4th.
  5. We have a contingent offer on a farm (clever name pending) in Amity, OR. It is move-in ready for all manner of human and beast.
  6. Brian will start working from Oregon on June 24, staying in a corporate apartment. Suzan will follow after the movers have packed up all our crap.
  7. Yes, we’re still coming to Dragon Con and GaFilk. We’re not sure if we can make to other local gatherings like Alchemy.
  8. We have heard all of the Oregon Trail jokes. Please up your comedic game.

This is a big change that’s been pending ever since my team went through a reorganization late last year. When I first started with Intel, my job could be done remotely. There have been some great changes in my career the past few years, but the reality is that I need to be in a main office to grow within Intel. It’s a company and culture I appreciate, and it would be hard for me to find something similar in the area.

You have died...
The risks of going to Oregon are different these days.

Suzna and I have been in Atlanta Metro since June 1996. It’s an amazing place, with great people hiding behind 90% humidity and aggressively pollinating pine trees. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about this change in my life… it’s going to be hard leaving so many people I care about on the other side of the country, but overall I see this as a positive move. As always, I will rely on the transport of magical Delta skybeasts when I want to see friends and family.

I’ll keep everyone posted on various forms of social media, and try to see as many people as possible in the next few weeks. Till then I need to make sure I don’t disturb my carefully staged home as we pack up the farm.

Naughty List

[transcript from Kringle International press conference on December 24, 2018]

Good evening. Thank you all for coming on such short notice. I will be providing information on behalf of Kringle International and the law firm of Donner, Donner, and Blitzen.

Santa Claus is comin' to town
Photo by Maurizio Zanetti (CC BY 2.0)

Kringle International is confirming the recent news of a data breach, which inadvertently released customer records from a database commonly known as “the naughty list.” The breach lasted from Memorial Day through Black Friday. Hackers accessed a variety of personal information including people’s names, birth dates, home addresses and, in some instances, chimney dimensions. Security teams are still investigating how hackers gained access to AWS, our Arctic Web Services. Some media outlets have reported security credentials for a third-party medical provider were used in the attack, but we have not confirmed that Hermey Dental was the source of the breach.

Mr. Nicholas, president and CEO of Kringle International, wants to assure the boys and girls of the world that this isolated incident will not cancel Christmas. However, some of the information released has called into question the methods used to generate an individual’s Kringle Relative Morality Index, or KRMI. Outdated methods of personal surveillance have been retired in favor for more cost effective, and legally defensible, big data algorithms. Kringle works with a variety of third-party providers to correlate data that builds measurable results. For instance, our partnership with fitness tracking device manufacturers efficiently determine when users are sleeping, or when they are awake. Geofencing around a variety of adult establishments can also be cross-correlated with location data to influence specific indices on the bad/good scale. These methods are not only technically efficient, but resolve labor issues raised in union negotiations with The Brotherhood of Elves on Shelves, Local 38. We are also refining the use of publically available data collected from social media keyword scans, Reddit forums, and Tumblr’s new image blocking algorithms.

The discovery of data collected from partners has called Kringle’s use of third-party device data into question. We do provide the opportunity for users to opt-out of KRMI, although few users take advantage of this service, which is best experienced using Internet Explorer. Let me assure you that even though the boys and girls of the world do not directly opt-in to KRMI data collection, our partners are expected disclose these methods via End User License Agreements. Our best elven lawyers have worked on these contracts, commonly known in the office as subordinate clauses.

Kringle employs top data scientists to evaluate how long to retain user data after calculating our patented, and proprietary, KRMI. Since there are no industry standards for data collection at this scale, we look to our partners in the mobile device and credit scoring industries to develop best practices. Some have questioned our broad data gathering policies, but in the modern age we find most users are willing to trade personal data for convenience. In an age where consumers purchase voice assistants for shopping, home automation, and personal communications, using one’s digital footprint to calculate relative morality based on an arbitrary scale is one outcome of current industry trends.

I know we have received questions about petitions for international drone flight clearance, security updates for shelf-based observation devices, animal rights protests against bullying of delivery team members, and reports of undisclosed partnerships with the coal industry. I request that all press inquiries be forwarded to our spokesperson, Mr. Cornelius. Please visit our website for information on free naughty list monitoring. Thank you for your time. Ho, ho, ho.

William Shatner Validated My Career Choices

Originally Presented at the ‘Solve for X’ science variety show (Dragon Con 2017)

This is a smartwatch. The company I work for builds the processor that makes it … smart. This thing is straight out of a Star Trek episode. It feeds me information from a globally connected computer network, uses artificial intelligence to predict my needs, and responds to my voice. I use that last feature more than you might think, given my odd relationship with both science fiction and voice recognition.

Continue reading “William Shatner Validated My Career Choices”