Sometimes it seems as though months can go past without much happening, and then, all of a sudden, lots of things happen in the space of a few days. The past week has been jam packed with notable events.
It all began last Saturday, when Karen and I looked at nine houses in the Forest Lake area. The last house that we saw was the best of the lot. It was perfect for our needs, and we liked it very much. We visited another house on Sunday morning (which was not too bad, but a lot older and therefore in need of some patching up here and there) and then took our parents to see the one that we liked from the previous day. They liked it too. On Tuesday we made an offer and a price was agreed on Thursday. So, unless something disastrous happens in the next thirty days or so, Karen and I will be the proud owners of a three and a half years old house in Ellen Grove.
On Wednesday, I was offered a position as a research scientist at a new lab in the city. On Thursday I had a meeting with my current boss to inform him of the situation. I was due to travel to Newcastle, Rockhampton and Townsville in the space of three days next week to install our new product (deSide version 2) at various clients’ facilities, and then to Melbourne the following week to attend the Energy Users Association of Australia conference at the Grand Hyatt. Part of the reason for these travels was so I could meet our clients and vice-versa. Luckily there was enough time for Paul (my boss) to rethink who to send on these trips. The meeting I had with Paul was long, but he took the news as well as could be expected. I’ll be sorry to leave global-roam after such a short stay because I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time there and learned a great deal about what it takes to develop software that people actually use on a daily basis, but happy to be stepping into a job that allows me to work on problems very similar to those I worked on during my Ph.D. candidature. I’m still to negotiate a finishing date with Paul, though I expect I’ll be staying on until sometime near the end of the year.
As if buying a house and having to tell my boss that I was leaving was not stressful enough, today was also the deadline for deSide development and testing. It’s all finished bar maybe ten percent of the installation file, which I’ll have to do tomorrow morning. Also, this week I’ve been setting up a Linux box to act as a gateway between global-roam’s LAN, Roam Consulting’s LAN (Roam Consulting is a sister company of global-roam whom we share office space with), a Cisco 877 ADSL router/modem, a Netgear ADSL router/modem and one other ADSL router/modem. I wrote a failover script so that the Linux box will switch between our primary Internet link (the Cisco modem) and our secondary link (the Netgear modem). For Roam Consulting, it’s the exact opposite. The script also had to take into account the fact that our SMTP server has to change depending upon which link is in use (we don’t have our own internal mail server). I set up a couple of dummy DNS zones and the failover script adjusts the zone files accordingly (i.e. changes the IP address associated with the hostname ‘smtp’ and increments the serial number for the zone). We’re putting each company (global-roam and Roam Consulting) onto its own subnet, separated by the Linux gateway. This means that we have also had to set up a Windows domain controller for our subnet.
So, that was my week. The weekend will be spent finishing the deSide setup file and then hunting for a reputable building and pest inspector. There are a couple I like the look of, and Karen also has some ideas of who to use, so it shouldn’t be too hard to arrange, assuming they’re not all booked out for the next few weeks. Tomorrow evening Karen’s parents are taking us out to dinner for a belated engagement celebration, which I’m really looking forward to. Also, I hope I find the thirty minutes I’ll need to touch up my responses to my thesis examiners’ reports. (Hmm, I suppose I could have been doing that now instead of writing this long blog entry). Finally, I’m looking forward to sleeping a bit. :-)