Tagged by DaveW

A little while ago, I was tagged by davew over at Dave's Bit Bucket. First, I would likke to apologize to Dave for taking so long to accept his challenge. I have no excuses and so will make none.

It is especially interesting for one with a security and privacy bent (read: healthy paranoia) to respond to something like this. I am supposed to talk about five things that you may not otherwise know about me from both a personal and professional angle, but as I consider this further - it becomes all the more challenging. Is there a reason you don't know some things about me? Of course, the reasons are many. What is the risk of disclosing some personal information? Could that information be combined with some other seemingly innocuous tidbit to glean something really interesting about me? Possibly.

So, after intentionally little "internal" debate, throwing caution to the wind (again something quite interesting in and of itself for those of us healthy paranoids), here is my list:

1. I have always been interested in languages. Throughout school, I had the pleasure of studying French (8 years), Latin (2 years), Spanish (2 years) and Japanese (1 year). That interest eagerly transitioned to computer languages as well where over the course of school I picked up 8088 Assembly, BASIC, Pascal, COBOL, ForTran, C, along with various scripting languages available at the time. One of these days, I would love to take a swing at Italian.

2. My first programming job was actually in high school where I developed software for the school in return for credits that would be applied toward my Honor Society requirements. Most of those programs were statistical programs for the athletic department. Later, in college, I would actually get my first paid gig where I developed incident management software for our campus security department.

3. My first exposure to Sun was when I was given a Sun 2/50 which at the time was running SunOS 3.5. It was love at first sight. I have worked with every single public release since that time in one way or another (as a software developer [external to Sun], an systems and network administrator, etc.). That said, my experience has not been homogenous. I have also worked in a similar fashion with various releases of AIX, HP-UX, IRIX, Mach, OSF/1, Ultrix, Mac OS X, as well as various Linux variants and to a lesser extent RSTS/E, RT11 and even (check this out) Dell Unix. It is interesting to see things come full circle.

4. One of my first experiences with information security was around my sophomore year in college. By that time, I was working as an assistant system's administrator and helping with between classes and after hours issues since I lived on campus. I recall hardening systems (although back then it was as much to save memory as security), patching SunOS systems (and you may think that patchadd is a pain, man have I got stories), and doing things like system monitoring. The thrill of this game went into high gear the time I was able to track and monitor an attack coming in from one of our Xylogics Annex terminal servers (dialin pool). That was the day the "security" bug really took hold.

5. Although I rarely have time for them anymore, I do have a number of hobbies and interests (it's true really). Since I was about 13 I have played guitar (sometimes better than others). I actually still have three and my most interesting one (from those heavy metal days) is a Kramer Striker 500ST. What is really crazy is that this was my first guitar. I will always remember my instructor's face when I walked in for lessons what that guitar. It still plays great although it could use some new frets. The only upgrade I had ever made to it was to sub-out the lead stock pickup with a Seymour Duncan Distortion Humbucker.

Whew! With this now behind me, I would like to turn my gaze to the next set of victims targets ... tag-ees. Glenn, Wyllys, Valerie, Wences, and last but certainly not least - Alfred - tag you're it!


Thanks Dave! Assignment complete!


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