how i got here
Here are some of the things I've worked on over the years - some at work, some for fun. They are in no particular order. My level of involvement varied from project to project.
I first learned how to make a web site while working at Media@Work, a small start-up started by my friend Craig Homenko. As I recall, the job interview went something like this:
Craig: Come work for me. I can't pay you much, but then again you don't know anything.
Me: Okay, sounds good.
I had just left graduate school and was delivering pizza and playing ultimate frisbee and not much else. This was much more interesting than delivering pizza. It ended up being a great learning experience with a fun, hard-working crew. I left for reasons which are not entirely clear to me any more. I think the root cause was bitterness and self-loathing due to being forced to wear a suit and tie to work.
Eddie Bo was a legendary piano player from New Orleans, LA. He passed away in March of 2009, after a career of over 50 years. His importance and influence would be difficult to overstate. How I came to do his web site is a long story, but I don't think he ever fully grasped the Internet. He once asked me "how did you get all that stuff together way over in Baton Rouge?" [I live in Boston]. He was a very nice and generous man, and full of stories. One of them, about an incident when he hustled some sailors at pool, was in heavy rotation as a bed time story for my kids for several months. His tag line was just right: "The legendary piano giant of New Orleans, Louisiana USA".
Along with dozens of other people, I've been working on Fidelity's web sites for their institutional lines of business for over fourrteen years now. Over those years I've worked on many aspects of their electronic marketing functions. I've been a front-end developer, managed a web production team, been a project manager representing the business in an Agile development environment, worked with vendors, worked with internal Legal/Risk/Compliance groups to ensure that we're compliant, worked on process re-engineering teams, and so on. Now I've been assigned to be a subject matter expert on video.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, I helped the New Orleans Museum of Art with a temporary web site. Their regular site was down because the place where they hosted it was in New Orleans as well. There wasn't much to the site that I made for them. It had a bit of text and photos showing that the museum was in good shape, temporary contact information for museum staff, and instructions on how to donate money. I wish I could have done more.
While I was a graduate student, starting in the late 1980's, I volunteered at [and occasionally received a pay check from] the New England Aquarium in Boston. I worked on several different projects over the years, including a Boston Harbor eel grass project, a project to rescue orphaned baby harbor seals, and a bridle shiner project. However, what brought me to the Aquarium in the first place was the plight of the endangered haplochromine cichlids of Lake Victoria in central East Africa. I helped start a captive breeding program [a "Species Survival Plan"] for the cichlids under the auspices of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Eventually we handed off many of the responsibilities, but in the early days of the program Les Kaufman and I handled every aspect of it, including several trips to Africa to conduct research and to collect broodstock. Later, I developed a web site with photographs, research results, maps, a copy of the studbook, and so on. In retrospect, it looks dated, obviously, but there was a ton of good content.
Schooner Asset Management
This is the first web site I ever worked on, c. 1996. It was built with Microsoft FrontPage 1.0! I learned a lot from just laying something out in FrontPage, and then viewing the source code that it generated. I think it was a pretty good site for its time. It was named as one of the top three financial services web sites by financial guru Dean LeBaron in the Journal of the Association of Investment Managers and Researchers (AIMR). It included secure, password-protected financial holdings which were updated daily, streaming video and audio market commentary by management, and an on-line discussion group.
I worked on several intranet sites for Sanders Corporation, a defense contractor in Nashua NH. It wasn't exactly my proudest moment, but I needed the job. To say that I really didn't fit in there is an understatement, but the people were friendly enough, and looking back on it, it gave me some good experience working in a corporate environment. I commuted about an hour and a half each way, from Cambridge MA, in a 1968 Fiat convertible with a great stereo, so that made it a bit better. Great car. It ended up needing a bunch of transmission work that I couldn't afford, so I talked my friend Jamie into letting me keep it in her driveway. Eventually she sold her house, so I gave the car to my friend Chris as a wedding present. This site was for their "Single-Process Initiative", their attempt to standardize all processes across their firm. Interestingly, that initiative did not extend to their intranet, as this site was one in a long series of one-off designs.
This is a resort on the island of Santorini, Greece. It used to be owned by my mother. It was one of the first sites I ever worked on, although the site that's up there now isn't the one I worked on.
As seen in Buck's County Country Living magazine. This is an amazing place that belongs to my in-laws. They sometimes let people have weddings there. My wife and I were married there.