Hot Plate



Recently I’ve been told that I shift my friends onto different “burners”.  How is that possible?  My friends are, and have been, linear.  They all follow the same linear access we have to each other.  The statement someone shared recently that pushed a pin in my mind related to this, maybe not directly, maybe indirectly, was how linear other friends are to everyone else right now.  Some, or most of it depending on our situations, might have fluctuated, a bit, but it may have.


So now the linear graph has changed and we’re inviting more people to be part of our circle.  Maybe at a deeper level than the folks in our normal circles.  And quite possibly when you reached out, you felt something different when they responded.  Maybe it turned into a conversation.  A long one, one that you’d have hoped would have happened sooner – but it waited until now.  That’s okay.  Reach into them, pull that energy you feel, it will make you feel amazing.  Granted, others are still on the linear queue, but you are worth the wait.  We all are, but it takes time.


I’m a bit complicated, and this linear line works for me.  So my point here is, if they invent a hot plate with 6, 10, or 12 burners in a single line, it might buy one.  But please use any analogy of your choice.  Friends are not plates we keep spinning on a stick – if they are a friend who just feels you and (still) gets your vibe (especially now) they’ve not changed since you last shared a coffee, wine, beer, or whatever you shared with them last time.  And no matter when you reach out, their plate will still be spinning.  They all matter – if you haven’t you should reach out and make sure they are still okay, no matter where they live.


Afternoon Harvest

I had some free time this afternoon so I decided to spend some time walking (and riding) around a popular theme park close to my home town. I snapped a few pictures along the way to capture some of the magic going on.


20140506-185656.jpg  20140506-185713.jpg 20140506-185729.jpg 20140506-185750.jpg

So, how did this blog get here?

There was a time when I knew and spoke with many developers across my region (FL, GA, TN, OH, MI) who weren’t very connected to one another’s efforts and successes – and lessons learned. So, for the Florida-based coders I was thinking how cool it would be to have a Florida Coders United blogging area, or portal.  I started with that idea on Blogspot over a decade ago and ended up here, and took the handle of “onefloridacoder”, that’s where my handle came from.

Blogging about my own lessons learned, tips, tricks, and efforts was just “ok”, but getting up in front of a group of people at a talk, or sitting around a table full of beverages (beer, coffee, water, soda, etc.) was much more powerful.

Still, I find through a lot of conversation over the years that my fellow developers that do blog a bit, do it for the sake of “OH!  I figured it out! Let me leave a trail of bread crumbs so I can find this in the future.”  Some developers blog about other things going on in their lives, not much, but some do here and there.

So, the logo for Florida Coders United would have looked something like “FcU” – yeah, there’s a subtle pun in there but it wasn’t the intent.  At any rate – I migrated from Blogspot, to GeeksWithBlogs, to a Microsoft hosted blog – then finally had that converted it to a WordPress blog as “john@scale”.

This is why, and how, this blog got started in case you were interested.


A Chrome Mass

Usually on Sunday’s some folks head to a brick and mortar  place where they have mass, or some type of church.  Last Sunday I went to a Chrome Mass in Leesburg, Florida for their 18th annual Bike Fest ( ). I’ve visited a similar event Roar On The Shore (  in Erie, Pennsylvania and it was much the same but at a slightly bigger scale.  If someone needed anything for their motorcycles, you’d have no problem finding it – like most events I’d imagine it’s this way as well, this was only my second Chrome Mass to date.

The main idea for visiting this event was to get the dust off my camera and get behind it again.  I didn’t take as many as I had wanted to, but between texting a few pictures to my girlfriend and taking more with my Canon 60D, I did get a few interesting pictures.  I realized very quickly that most folks are “ok” with a picture taken with a smart phone, while have a lens pointed in their direction was a bit unsettling.  I learned from this event of what to take, when to take it, and what to take it with – this isn’t a crowd you’d want to look peculiar in snapping lots of pictures with a camera.  Moving on.

Following are some pictures that I snapped at the event.   Most notable were the red Ford trike and the gold custom-built by West Coast Choppers.  So many bikes to photograph, but I saved my SD card for the ones that stood at to me.   There some pink in here two, I’m always on the lookout for pink stuff that might make my girlfriend say “hmm, that’s kinda cute…”  Sadly she wasn’t there, but hopefully for the next bike fest she will be.

Hopefully you’ll enjoy looking at these as much as I did taking them.



2014-04-27 14.35.58-2 2014-04-27 14.35.55-2 2014-04-27 14.35.23-3 2014-04-27 14.35.13 2014-04-27 14.34.57-2 2014-04-27 14.34.31-1 2014-04-27 14.28.32 2014-04-27 14.28.25-1 2014-04-27 14.13.18-1 2014-04-27 14.10.31 2014-04-27 14.02.16 2014-04-27 14.01.53 2014-04-27 14.01.43-1 2014-04-27 14.00.40 2014-04-27 14.00.29-1 2014-04-27 13.59.49 2014-04-27 13.59.27 2014-04-27 13.59.15 2014-04-27 13.28.03 2014-04-27 13.27.35 2014-04-27 13.27.29 2014-04-27 13.26.47 2014-04-27 13.25.58 2014-04-27 13.25.38 2014-04-27 13.18.06-2 2014-04-27 12.35.11-2 2014-04-27 12.33.25 2014-04-27 12.33.21 2014-04-27 12.33.20 2014-04-27 12.33.19

Say Your Name…


If you watched this series, you know everything starts to unfold and come a bit unglued when Walter (White) asks the person on the other side of this scene to “say my name…”  This blog probably won’t be nearly as exciting at this scene was, but hopefully a few tweaks will help ease the reader’s eyes.

This week in the blogging courses I’m going through we were challenged to change the title and tag lines of our blogs.  I did change my title from “onefloridacoder’s bit bag” to “john@Scale” – however my muse took a break when I started playing around with the tagline.

I read the advice from other bloggers but it didn’t get the muse off his coffee (or whatever he drinks) break.  Still, I think it should change it and I will.  I’m sure one day or evening when I’m riding my bike to or from home – it’ll hit me like a bug on my visor.  Stay tuned.

More Signal. Less Noise.


I’ve been pushing a lot of content to this blog for a while, off and on. And I don’t have a big habit of blogging much but when I do, it’s something that’s jumped out at me while.

That would be the “why” of sharing on a blog. Not a chatty blogger either, I usually try to get the point w/o rambling too much and lose a reader in mesh of “whos-a-whats-it?”

I’ve got a few hobbies: my Harley, photography, cooking, painting, and technology to blog about for the moment. I’m trying to find a way to get food into my blog more – not a approach, but more about why and what food. And not some half-baked (pun intended) post that’s just noise.

So my goal for the year (and blog), and onward is to provide more signal than noise to readers by use of pictures, links, quotes, and how they relate to my interests, but more specifically about the topics I mentioned.

Ok – that’s a wrap!

DevLink 2012 (Chattanooga, TN)

The DevLink organizers did another fantastic job of pulling off another awesome event. Well done! Wow, the tribe in Tennessee is alive and well, tons of passion around the community.  I ran into a lot of community-based guidance from other user group leaders and coders about many topics and ideas to take home and put in motion.

I came up looking for a few things this year, more guidance on Win8 Contracts, and Win8 in general. I got a few different views from different speakers each focusing on different contract aspects.  Something else was to see if any new patterns emerged in how folks used or consumed xDD, OSS, and some of the non-OSS.  Lots to choose from here, and again the speakers delivered.

Vendors were pitching some of the same stuff, and a few new wares I’d not heard of yet like PubNub (think cloud-based RabbitMQ).  I missed their product talk but I’m sure I’ll see more of this in the future – Twilio was two seats down from PubNub, both tables were busy with folks digging in to these messaging technologies in between sessions.

Open Jams – I missed all of them!  I have to work on this. One talk that was given was about leadership presented by Alan Stevenson (Nerd Hive Industries).  “Pretty pretentious talk” was how Alan described it.  It drew out many stories, comments, and reactions from the audience and it was standing room only, and very well received.  One of the underlying premises that he later called out during the talk was there’s always a way around conflict.  He’s right.  He’s admitted he’d done it the hard/wrong way in the past and shared how he manages his employers, peers, and support folks starting the same day he arrives at the gig.  Setting expectations is important, managing them more important, valuing everyone is most important.  It was comforting to hear pieces of this same message two weeks ago at Agile 2012.

I could go on and on and build a giant post, but I’ll stop with an invitation to you to come (back) to this event next year.  You won’t leave empty-handed or empty-headed.  Great stuff – thanks #devlink

Making Art

Recently I’ve been reading LinchPin by Seth Godin. Its a great book and I’m really enjoying it from the perspective of what he recommends to try and, or, apply to a situation has just worked for me. I was intrigued with his idea of making art. It starts early in the book with a quote by Steve Jobs, “Real Artists Ship”.

Shipping can happen in a few minutes, or longer depending on the context of what’s being shipped. Its your server at the table, car mechanic, barista – anybody who moves into your circle throughout the day and delivers something to you.  Everyone can make art, but you just have to watch for it.

If you’re not making art, then you’re pretty much reading “the manual” – you’re doing what the manual says, no more and hopefully no less.  Probably an over-simplification, but it’s close to what I believe Seth was trying to get across to the reader, me.

On a recent trip, I saw art and I saw someone doing “the manual”. The art came at a layover in Atlanta while ordering a coffee. The crew behind the counter made up a song my “Tall Americano” while they were making it, it was so cool. Art is cool, right? Then on the plane a stewardess wasn’t having anything close to a good day that I can see. She did “the manual” with all of the stuff she needed to do before the plane left the ground. That was it. No art, but she gets grace because it’s not an easy job to do, and more demanding than most guest facing jobs I would imagine.

But there it was, both examples in the space of a few hours. Go, make art, it’s a beautiful thing.

Making Art

Making Art

devLink2011::Chatt Town Edition

Success in a BottleI made it back to DevLink this year, my last visit was in 2009 while it was being hosted at Lipscomb in Nashville, this year it was hosted by Chattanooga.  And just like Coca-Cola bottled their first Cokes a long time ago, the devLink organizers have found a way to bottle a successful event, again.

Imagine Tech-Ed and your favorite code camp had a baby, that’s DevLink.  The track offerings were just about anything you could imagine with all of the current tech splashing around in an ocean of technology.

The event kicked off with a Keynote from Ayende Rahien – “NoSQL – A change of perspective for the developer of today”.  Everyone walked about with the benefits and drawback of relational and NoSQL approaches.  This was a great way to kick off the conference, just an awesome talk.

The breadth of track and topic offerings were great to say the least.  There were sessions that discussed technologies we were already doing or using, but someone this time was doing it differently – we learn from things like this.  When their peanut butter and your chocolate collide – BAM; you walk out with a Reese’s cup.

The mixers they offered for attendees were great as well.  There were only three of us from FL that I know and we all made a lot of new connections.  The coders, hosts, and volunteers from the heartland are pretty welcoming and helpful.

The event sponsors really stepped us well.  The Chattanooga Convention Center was the venue for this event and its a really nice venue, with really poor wi-fi unfortunately.  I can only imagine there were was a vast shortage of twitter activity b/c of it, but I don’t think it stopped the momentum of the event in the least.  No event can be perfect, but the I would say this one gets in the high 90% range of perfect.

Ah, then there was the baseball game, this pretty much put the event over the top for me.  The game that night was awesome, don’t take my word for it, here’s the full article:, and here’s a few snapshots from around the stadium…

A view from the back of the ball park

I’ll definitely go back to DevLink next year if at all possible, and I drive through Chattanooga a couple of times a year so I’ll definitely make a stop here, I wasn’t able to make it to the Aquarium or the IMAX, and the local chatter I heard riding the (free electric) shuttle to and from the event they’re pretty cool to see.

Great city, great event, great venue, and a really great developer community! Congratulations devLink on another *really* successful conference!  See y’all next year!


Barcamp Sarasota 2011


My daughter and I went to Sarasota for Barcamp Sarasota this weekend.  The weather was awesome and the event was great.  This part of the community seems to be erupting in a good way, we are definitely going to be keeping our ears and eyes on this community.

My talk was called “Learn Your Customers’ Language”.  If you attended my Barcamp talk, here are the slides.  I hope you enjoyed it and if you have any questions, please shoot an email to me:

** Update **

Put up two github gists from the code samples I didn’t get to during my talk
at #bcsrq on Saturday.  One for SpecFlow and one for StoryQ.