A Season of Change... Student, Father, Commerce Guy

Ryan musing...I recently described myself as a person who is slow and hesitant to make changes. The setting was an open mic feedback time during a members' meeting at church, and the topic was the new timing and nature of our services on Sunday mornings. My feedback was quite positive, but as I sat down I realized that I'm either incredibly wrong about the kind of person I am or have been acting extremely out of character lately!

My life couldn't possibly handle any more changes right now (so I say). I recently went back to school to pursue a Masters of Divinity at SBTS in Louisville, KY. As a "going back to school gift," my wife surprised me with the news that she was six weeks pregnant (now 11 weeks!). I was dense enough to think she was just hinting at wanting to have children at first, but pulling out a onesie with a hand painted "My daddy goes to Southern." on it tipped me off. I still requested a "second opinion", and the weekend test confirmed it... I am indeed going to be a dad come September. Woohoo!

So, grad student, first time father... not very compatible roles to play if you cherish sleep at all. But I couldn't stop there. I also finally decided to leave behind my job of 3.5 years and join Commerce Guys, a young Drupal company specializing in e-commerce sites using, you guessed it, Ubercart. Perfect fit? You bet!

The original Commerce Guys, Mike O'Connor and Tim Hill, have been using Ubercart since the alpha releases of a couple years ago. I hooked up with Mike at Drupalcon Boston and roomed with him during Drupalcon Szeged. Mike and Tim also made it down for last summer's Ubercamp, and we all had a rockin' good time. When the offer came in for a position as a Commerce Guy, it didn't take much deliberation on my part.

I had wanted to move toward full time Drupal work within a web development company for some time. I received some good counsel from Robert Douglass during and following Do It With Drupal and ended up doing a card sorting exercise he recommended with my wife. The goal was to figure out what I was looking for in a job, and I decided that in the short term I wanted opportunities for growth and increased pay, more flexibility (i.e. work remotely), the opportunity to continue working on Ubercart if possible, and continued chances to travel with my wife (and soon family). Don't think you can find exactly what you want doing Drupal full time? Think again.

My family and friends were very supportive and excited about my decision to move, but I was honestly blown away by the unexpected support from the Drupal community. There was a good show of support in the news post on Ubercart.org, some personal cheers via chat, and a host of tweets from Drupallers on Twitter (including one I might frame ). A big thanks to everyone for their support. I'm excited about the move and have been enjoying working from bed and my favorite coffee shop already!

Legitimating the Developer's "Groove"

I'm not the only one who knows about it...

"It is clear that interruptions are a major cause of low productivity among programmers. Why? The problem is not the time needed to handle the interruptions themselves, but the time needed to get back into the programming problem. Everybody, no matter what they do, face a reorientation time when they return to their work after an interruption. When you are reading a magazine article and look up to answer a question, it takes you longer to read the next paragraph than if you had been reading continuously."

From Are developers people? by Jakob Nielsen.

It was quite an enjoyable little read. I recommend it, even if you just wanna know a little more about how I think. Wink