August 6th, 2003

photogeek

Thursday Evening

We arrived in Seattle on Thursday, July 24th. We navigated, via GPS, to the place where Melissa Della and Karl Koscher, our hosts, live. Eventually, with the help of some creative cell phone calling, we were able to find the proper apartment building and make our way up.

The first thing that happened was Karl pointing me out to my phone. I had had that shipped to Seattle. I played with that for a while, and then we finally decided that bringing computers up and getting some internet set up would be a good idea. Mark had brought his extra desktop along for me to use, so we would all be able to be online. We brought up the two backpacks containing the laptops - Janine's "markjanine", a nifty compaq that I'm typing on. Quite small, and fairly speedy, it's a slim machine that's quite portable. Not a great desktop replacement, but a very good travel companion if you need one.

Dern, Mark's laptop, is a beast. Only able to live for an hour without power, it's not exactly meant as a travel machine. Instead, it's a full powered AlienWare laptop. 3+ghz, half a gig of RAM, Radeon 9000 Graphics Card. A full powered gaming machine appopriate to Mark's way of doing things. Combined with the $300 TouchStream keyboard or a seperate ergo keyboard (Both of which mark brought with) it's a powerful machine for almost any use.

Legion is a 2.4 ghz machine that's great for a variety of things, including gaming and normal browsing. I spent many hours playing GTA3 on that machine, and they were hours well spent on such a gorgeous machine. Featuring such extras as a pressure sensitive light, clear case, and DVD-ROM drive, legion is a decent machine for anyone. Combined with an ergo keyboard, optical mouse and 17" flat screen, it was a joy to use.

Karl remembered after we arrived that although we had 5 machines, we only had 4 IP addresses for the 5 of us. This required some finagaling. In the end, Mark and Janine connected to the internet via the wireless connection, each with public IP addresses. Karl also connected, and provided NAT access for me, so we were both "addict.nexgengaming.com", while Mark took homer and Janine took Mask's IP (I believe).

After we all got online, did a bit of friends page checking, and checked our mail, we decided it was time for food. Karl had been waiting for weeks to have a valid excuse to go to Red Robin, so that was my first food experience in Seattle - a burger joint at NorthGate Mall. The food was good, although after so many hours in the car, my stomach wasn't really up to eating all that much. Howevfer, we went, and it was enjoyable. We got in a friendly discussion about how exactly Melissa planned on getting a Bi-Plane hanging from the ceiling of the place to fit into her apartment.

This was my welcome to Seattle: NorthBound Traffic on I-5, meeting Melissa and Karl, setting up computers, and eating some good old fashioned Red Robin burger food. Next was the trip around downtown, part one.
photogeek

Thursday Night

After Red Robin, we decided to drive down to downtown Seattle to see what it was all about. We explored many streets of Seattle - driving beneath the Space Needle, Rainer Tower (sp?), the monorail, and much more. We also passed by Fisher Plaza, the building where Internap and LiveJournal are kept, several times. We saw the Pink Elephant Car Wash, drove the road underneath the Seattle Convention Center, and saw Gameworks. We passed places like Cinerama, Pike Place Market, and the harbor steps. In short, we saw the whirlwind tour of downtown Seattle. It was neat and interesting. It was very strange to not see homeless people on every corner.
photogeek

Friday Morning

The next day, we planned to meet Brad, Brad and Evan, so we came home before midnight. We hung out on IRC together until about 3am, when we all crashed. We got up the next day around 10 or 11 and got on aim with Whitaker and Evan to make decisions for dinner plans. Brad had emailed Mark with information on what he wanted to do for dinner: Rock Bottom Brewery and Restaurant in Portland. After some deciding, we settled on 7:00 as a time to meet, and made reservations for 9 people: Myself, Janine, Mark, Karl, Melissa, and Tenshi, plus Brad, Brad, and Evan. (The first time we counted, we decided that it was everyone in the AIM chat plus one, so I said 8. Turned out I had forgotten Brad, who "went to town" the night before and had not yet come back. Oops.)
photogeek

Friday Afternoon

We left for portland around 3 with hopes to Make it out to Tenshi's and pick her up to bring her back to dinner. Sadly, the traffic from Seattle was the worst it had been in over a year - Record traffic spreading to South of Olympia, making that plan moot. Eventually, we worked out with her to take the train to dinner, and we would pick her up afterwards. We moved the reservation time back to 7:30, and we were standing outside at that time when Evan rode up his skateboard. Having never seen any pics of him, I was a bit surprised - he was taller than I expected him to be, although he did have the lanky look to him that I have come to expect of programmers. Soon after that, Brad and Brad met up with us. Brad's first comment was "Did you really have to wear the shirts?"

Karl, Janine, Mark and I were all wearing our LiveJournal shirts, Mark and I polos, the other two t-shirts. Our reply was that we didn't have to wear them, we chose to.
photogeek

Friday Night

Since most of our party had arrived, we all walked in and took a table. Although Rock Bottom was a great place for food, it wasn't exactly the best place for business discussion - a bit too noisy. I picked up some knowledge that Brad really isn't as evil as he sometimes seems. I maintain earlier statements that I really think Brad is a great guy - he is. He's nice, friendly, helpful, and informative. You get him talking about something that he enjoys, and he just goes off on it. I've always been impressed by him as a guy, it's just that I've never been really impressed with the way he runs LiveJournal. However, it is his business, and until he screws something up that really upsets me, I'll continue to use the service, and pay for it. It's really a neat site, with a neat community I never expect any other journalling site to mirror.

We discussed a few things, including Memcache, its benefits, and some plans Brad has for LiveJournal. (However, we were only allowed to hear level 2 secrets: Level 3 secrets, like what the hell is going on with user blob stuff, is still secret to us). We worked out a deal with them: if we update docbook to include detailed information on how to maintain and set up a "livejournal" site, they'll provide us with any assistance we need with expanding in the future. By this point, we had moved out of Rock Bottom and down to the waterfront. Brad had already had a bit to drink with dinner, so it was more shooting the shit than a real business like discussion. This wasn't really a big deal though, and I've already started looking into documenting more aspects of the site and how to set things up. For example, Maintenance tasks are currently almost completely undocumented, so I'm working on describing what the included code does and how to use or improve it. Another exmaple of something that isn't really documented is how to get User account types displaying correctly.

In any case, we finished up talking to Brad, got back to Tenshi's following Karl and Melissa and Tenshi, and picked up her stuff. We then made our way back to Karl and Melissa's, set her up with the internet (also NATed through Karl and Melissa) and hung out on IRC for a while. That was the end of Friday/Monday morning. Since it was a 4 hour drive down to Portland and a 3 hour drive back, we all just kind of crashed.
photogeek

Saturday Day

Doug came over on Saturday, getting there around 11. I had finally gotten service on my phone, so we spent some time playing with that - sending contact info to each other via bluetooth, having him get online via bluetooth, etc. He also got online via my phone - something I was never able to get to work properly in my efforts, sadly. We didn't really do much, just hanging out around the house. We eventually went out to CostCo to get some stuff, including pizza for dinner. Costco is good food. It's kind of like Sam's Club - membership needed, etc. They had the best Berry Smoothies there. After that, we took a picture with all of us and the "Jack" sign we made, and Doug took off. We came back, and just bummed around. It was a very dull day - we were going to go downtown, but Sea Fair was having a huge parade, which made it hugely impossible to even think about doing anything downtown. Instead, we just bummed around, then went out to Issaquah for food.

After that, Mark and Janine went to hang out with friends of theirs. We met up with Sherm, Mark, Janine and their friends, plus Tenshi and Melissa and Karl and I, at Red Robin around midnight-ish for desert. I consumed an entire Chocolate Shake in the time it took everyone to get served. Melissa created Onion Man - the walking stand of Onion Rings, who later aquired a battle knife, and had to be dressed in a napkin once his onion rings were taken away.
photogeek

Seattle

It's been a Hard Day's Night, I should be sleeping like a "this"

Chinese Whore!

This isn't quite celebrity jeopardy, but it is just as interesting.

So, I went to Seattle. My last deluge of entries detailed that trip, as I'm sure you all noticed. However, that was just the trip TO seattle. There was, of course, much more interesting occurances in the town itself.

I've split this up into a bunch of entries, each one linked from this post. I'll be adding more links as time goes by, and creating new entries with those links so people don't miss out. All the additional entries are backdated so that I don't flood your friends page with them.

Feel free to read or not read.

Thursday Evening

Thursday Night

Friday Morning

Friday Afternoon

Friday Night

Satuday Day