Catholic, Engineer, Widower Father of 5, Geek

 

 

Introduction

"Classical Liberal" and Subsidiarity, Observant Catholic, widower, husband of Michelle for 24yrs, father of 5 kidlets and reluctant owner of 2 cats, Mobile Phone/Tablet ASIC designer, MacOSX, Linux, Android, photo buff, Opus Dei cooperator for ~20 yrs.

My Commuter Car

Background

Air Force: We've lived in southern NH for 22+ years now. We moved up here after I separated as a Captain from the USAF. I was in the Air Force from 1985 to 1994 and they paid for my B.S. in Electrical Engineering and my M.S. in Computer Engineering.

Cancer: Six summers ago (2011) my wife fought against cancer for the second time. Shortly after Easter (2012) we learned it was back as a metastatic cancer starting to form in her lungs. In the next summer (2013) it spread to her bones, her liver, and kidneys. The ironic thing is that she was among the healthiest people I knew in real life. She taught some tough fitness classes at the local YMCA and Golds Gym. Few could keep up with her stamina. Eventually though the years of treatments sapped her turbo-aerobic ability and she hung up her sneakers. It was among the hardest of things she's given up. She passed December 7th, 2013.

Catholic: I can be found most mornings at weekday Mass at Saint Patrick. I started lectoring when I was a freshmen in high school and still do it every Friday morning and every month or so on the weekends. Because of my booming bass voice, I've been called the Man with a Face for Radio. I've been doing work with RCIA since the mid-90's, helping adults who want to become Catholic. I also help with our parish's youth ministry, planning monthly Teen Night Outs and chaperoning at Steubenville Conferences for high schoolers. I've been an Opus Dei cooperator for ~20 years now. I like St. Josemaria's spirituality and have attended regular Opus Dei Circles and Evenings of Recollection. Big shoutouts to Verbum and Catholic Productions' Mass Readings Explained for helping me continue my studies.

Fitness: I've been doing Step aerobics ~3x/week since 1993 and no you don't need to turn in your Man-Card to do it. (Now perhaps if you were doing Zumba...). After Michelle passed and my life got busy, we got memberships at Hampshire Hills. It's a great facility with lots you can do and didn't require the long drives to Merrimack. I love their BodyStep classes there. I also have a "walking desk" (aka a treadmill desk) near my regular desk. So on those days when I do get to work from home, I can usually put in a few miles while doing the initial morning work tasks.

Reading: I enjoy reading and listening to a bunch of books. I keep flip-flopping between classic tomes (ie. Anna Karenina, Wuthering Heights, The Bros Karamozov, The Scarlet Letter, etc.), works on Catholicism, and works of sci-fi (Anathem, Snow Crash, Ubik, The Diamond Age, Reamde, Daemon, The Second Ship, etc.) with occasional books on conservative/libertarian political angles and a lot of tech books.

More...

Energy: Other odd things about me 'n the family: while we have a propane forced hot air furnace, we run a pair of wood pellet stoves during the day in winter. My wife drove a gas powered Odyssey but my daily drive is a diesel Beetle TDI and my oldest drives the diesel Jetta TDI. A few years ago we tossed our aging hot water tank in favor of a Rinnai on-demand tankless water heater. Most of the house's lighting has been CF's for several years and now we're transitioning to the newer white LED bulbs. In 2010 we replaced our dying A/C with a gianormous 16 SEER unit. None of this is an endorsement of anthropogenic global warming. We're just cheap. ;-] I think it also stems from the obsession we have at my job to deliver supercomputing power in the palm of your hand with only a small battery. Nevermind that most use it to take selfies and look at memes on the Internet.

Computers: Our house's study room is primarily full of Apple Macs, but I dabble most often in Linux, especially with my youngest son Timothy. I also like to tinker in Lisp, Perl, and Ruby but do most of my routine coding for work is done in C++. I've lately also become a fan of the Google Chromebook for its simplicity and reliability. I now have a Chromebook Pixel LS. My daughters each have Chromebooks for their college studies. They love how Chromebooks always works with few headaches and no malware. And how Google Docs always saves your work.

Career: I help in the design and verification of Graphics Processing Units (GPUs) in mobile processors. Think smart phones, tablets, etc. GPUs are what make today's devices "swooshy" and also able to play advanced games. To say it's a growing market is an understatement. I straddle between software design and hardware design, often interfacing between guys who write graphics drivers and those who do the hardware implementation. I help in writing and testing the C++ Reference Model of the GPU that both teams build to. Those tests later get used on the hardware model and eventually the silicon itself to confirm functionality of the GPU features.