Archive | March 2014

Paul Warnick, Gilford, N.H. — A Rave.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.


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Anura Guruge


Related posts:
>> 20th JTG Memorial preview
>> — Mar. 12, 2014.
>> Paul Warnick:
>> Devanee’s 2012 birthday —

>> Oct. 12, 2012.
++++ Search ‘Warnick’ for other related posts >>>>


Paul Warnick, as he is wont to do, regaled us, last night, at the 20th Annual JTG Music Memorial Extravaganza at Giuseppe’s, Meredith, with a much too short, but brilliant Beatles tribute set. This post is to show our appreciation for that, in particular, but for all the other times where he has entertained us, royally.

Thank YOU, Paul.

We are all blessed to have your talents in the N.H. Lakes Region.

Paul Warnick in Meredith.
Paul Warnick in Meredith.
Paul Warnick in Meredith.
Paul Warnick in Meredith.


Two videos, on YouTube, from last night’s
JTG Music Memorial Extravaganza at Giuseppe’s.

Click to access YouTube video.

Click to access YouTube video.

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Click to access second video on YouTube.

Click to access second video on YouTube.

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Paul Warnick’s Website
with his schedule and e-mail list.

Click to access. YOU owe yourself to do so.

Click to access. YOU owe yourself to do so.


He plays regularly at Patrick’s Pub, Gilford.
Check schedule on his Website.


20th Annual JTG Music Memorial Extravaganza at Giuseppe’s, Meredith, Sunday, March 30, 2014: Convivial, Congenial & Classy.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.


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by
Anura Guruge


Related posts:
>> 20th JTG Memorial preview —
>> Mar. 12, 2014.
>> 19th JTG Memorial was A BLAST! —

>> Mar. 25, 2013.
>> Annual JTG Music Memorial Extravaganza
>> —  Jan. 23, 2013.
++++ Check Category ‘Restaurants‘ for other related posts >>>>


Of course we went, even though Teischan had two performances of ‘Snow White‘ this weekend, the Sunday performance from 2 to 4:30 pm. But, we had it all sorted out. We left as soon as she got home for our 6:30 pm reservation — as ever kindly arranged by Julie Gnerre Bourgeois, the owner of Giuseppe’s (and a friend since c. 1997).

If this was the 20th JTG Music Memorial I have been to at least 10 of them I think. We try not to miss them unless we have a really major conflict. We took Teischan to the 2006 Memorial when she was but 2 weeks old. Her first major outing. Since then we have only missed a couple — I think, and one of them was because Deanna had had back surgery.

Last night was just memorable. Such a wonderful atmosphere. Convivial and Congenial. Wonderful vibes: musical and social. Yes, I knew a number of the people, performers and diners. But, even outside of that, everybody was just so happy to be there and be a part of this amazing Meredith occasion.

The food, as ever, was worth driving 100 miles for. I ordered the Spinach Rolls and Calamari, as soon as we were seated, even without looking at the menu. Deanna and I only got about five pieces of Calamari each. The kids took handfuls. I was going to order another plate but ended up ordering the buffalo chicken — which turned out to be too spicey for all but I. I, as ever, had the lion share of the Spinach Rolls. I can live on those.

Julie, kindness and class epitomized, had left a bottle of delightful red wine for us on the table. Thanks again, Julie. That was much appreciated and enjoyed. Yes, we had a great time.

So, here are some pictures to begin with. I will also include some videos that I am currently uploading to YouTube — plus a separate post for the incomparable, music maestro, Gilford’s own, Paul Warnick. We, as usual, had a long, entertaining chat with Paul about various topics. Though I offered, a number of times, I didn’t get a chance to buy him a drink this time. So, I owe him one or two the next time we see him (which is hopefully soon).

Julie had reserved the table for us from 6:30 to 8:30 — knowing the acts we like to see. So, yes, we got to see her family and Julie perform. That is always fun, and Michael Bourgeois, her husband, is such an accomplished, polished and versatile musician — always around to help others. We have a video of them playing this year. You will enjoy that. So that was Joey & Billy Gnerre, Michael, Paul Luff and Rick Page. We also got to listen to the later part of the ‘Wharf Rats‘. They were good. Very catchy beat. Then we had Paul, accompanied by Michael and Co. The five or six set Beatles tribute that they did was World Class! We have seen the specialist Beatles tribute band “All Together Now“. With no disrespect to them, Paul Warnick is much better. Then Paul told us that he only put that set together the night before and it was the first time he had performed it in public! Talent like that always comes across.

Oh. There was no belly dancing this year! Luckily I knew that beforehand. So unlike some, including one that went to the mike to complain about it, I wasn’t devastated. Julie had told me when I had talked to her abour our reservation. I like belly dancing. Have for decades. Having belly dancing at the last two Memorials was fun. The kids enjoyed it and I am sure it is the ONLY time there has been any public belly dancing in Meredith, N.H. Maybe I should talk to Julie about a monthly belly dancing night at Giuseppe’s.


Click to ENLARGE.

The Wharf Rats

The Wharf Rats.

Thank YOU, Julie. This was delightful. An Italian red at its very best. It went down so easily.

The Pizza Florentine.

My low-carb dinner — after the Spinach rolls, calamari and spicy buffalo chicken. Italian Antipasto. It was good.

Julie watching and taking pictures of husband and other family members doing their thing on the stage.

My friend and fellow author (though he is much, much, much much more successful than I will ever be), Dr. Jack Polidoro (“The Good Dr. Jack”), of Laconia who performed earlier in the day.

Julie & Michael Bourgeois.

Gilford’s music maestro, the amazingly talented, incredibly nice, Paul Warnick. I will do a separate post on Paul. Breaking news that even Paul doesn’t know as yet. There will be a Paul Warnick CD by the end of this year. His first.

Teischan who had a busy weekend with two performances on stage tucking into a hallmark Giuseppe’s dessert — ice cream cookie sandwich.

Anura Guruge, March 30, 2014. Cheers.

Cheers. How I want to be remembered. The books, publications, Websites and blogs, especially “Popes and the Tales of Their Names”, ensure that there will be a legacy — not to mention the kids. But, in the end, I would like to be remembered for what drove me most of my life — the sheer joie de vivre of just being alive.


Video on YouTube.

Click to access YouTube video.

Click to access YouTube video.


Click here for the Paul Warnick videos (coming within minutes).


Today, Sunday, March 30, 2014, Is ‘National Pencil Day’. Happy Pencil Day. Happy ‘Frindle’ Day. (Get It?)

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.nationalpencildayhw

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by Anura Guruge


Click to access coverage at 'pencil.com'

Click to access coverage at ‘pencil.com’

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Click to access coverage at 'Aluratek.com'.

Click to access coverage at ‘Aluratek.com’.


One of the two best books I have written -- to date. Still for sale though obscenely out-of-date.

One of the two best books I have written — to date. Still for sale though obscenely out-of-date.

I guess, till now, though that can change in the future, we have all used pencils, extensively, at some point in our lives. I still use one, albeit a cheap mechanical one, each day, to write 10 words or less in my very minimalistic journal cum diary — mainly chronicling my exercise for the day and what movie we watched.

Growing up in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) pencils were a science. We knew all about the different types, or categories, of pencils — HB, 2B (and not to be) — and what tasks each one was best for. We had pencil boxes with these different types of pencils and we, like golfers, would pick out the right pencil for the task at hand!

I wrote my first book, “SNA: Theory & Practice“, all 551 printed pages of it, in 1983, in nine months (in between a full-time job as the Customer Support Manager for ITT (UK), umpteen seminars and lots of partying), by pencil. As I have chronicled in other places I was too incompetent then (as I still am) to use a typewriter and I didn’t trust computers (probably because I had been involved with computers since 1969). I am glad that I wrote that book in pencil. I would not have got it done in 9 months IF, like now, I used a computer! Writing with a pencil focuses your mind. There are no distractions. No spell or grammar checks. It is just you and a blank sheet of paper waiting to be filled. I still remember the process with a wry smile. I had already started to write in my head. My job at the time, a dream job really, involved a LOT of driving all over the U.K. I averaged 2,000 miles a month — which is quite a bit when you realize that the U.K. is a comparatively compact (but wonderful) country. So I had a lot of time, behind the wheel, to compose text in my head — IF I didn’t have to concentrate too hard on the driving, and sometimes one had to concentrate because high-speed driving was the norm in those days. So I would start each chapter transcribing paras from my head to paper — with a stubby pencil. But words look different when written than they do in your head. So during the first few paragraphs I would, like I do now, tinker with the words — hopefully trying to polish the words. This would involve erasing lines or just screwing up the paper and throwing it away (recycling yet to be invented). But, once I was past the fifth paragraph or 2/3 of the first change this desire to mess with what I was transcribing from brain would magically recede. That was what enabled me to get this done so quickly — given that I only, at best, had a FEW HOURS a week to work on the book!

So here is to pencils, everywhere, today.

Happy National Pencil Day.

I will drink to it, a few times, today. Cheers.


What Will Google Do For April’s Fools Day, April 1, 2014, This Year. Last Year Was The Scratch Doodle & Google Nose

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.Topekagd1

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.by Anura Guruge


2014firstspring1tmbLast Google Doodle post:
>> St. Patrick’s Day
>> 2014
 Mar. 17, 2014.

≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ Check CATEGORY ‘Google Doodle’ for other posts —>>> (sidebar)
++++ Spring Equinox Posts: 2014 & 2013 ++++


I know that many didn’t get to see this. For a start it was ONLY accessible if you were using Chrome. From what I heard a lot of folks just couldn’t figure out how to hold down the left mouse button while swiping. I heard that a few folks damaged their screens by trying to use a coin, as with a scratch ticket, to scratch away the white! Click for details.


April 7, 2014, Golden Jubilee Of The S/360 Mainframe: Gene Amdahl, ‘Father Of IBM Mainframes’, & I.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by Anura Guruge


Related post:
>> IBM Hursley pictures
>>
Mar. 16, 2014.
>> Malaysia flight 370: And ‘Poor’ IBM
>>Mar. 11, 2014.

++++ Search on “MH370” for the near daily posts on Malaysia Airlines Flight 370>>>>
++++
Search on “Hursley”, “IBM” & “mainframes” for other IBM (Hursley) related posts >>>>


Click to ENLARGE.

Click to ENLARGE.

From my ‘guruge.com‘ Website.


Click to access Wikipedia entry for Dr. Gene Amdahl.

Click to access Wikipedia entry for Dr. Gene Amdahl.

As it says in the image above I have been fortunate enough to have had two significant interactions with the brilliant, and incredibly charming, Dr. Gene Amdahl — the chief architect of the IBM S/360, whose name appears on quite a few of the landmark mainframe related patents.

The first was in 1974 — shortly after I had joined IBM, a week prior to my 21st birthday (on what was a Bank Holiday Monday). Not sure why they sent me. I was not into hardware at the time. My passion in those days was Operating Systems and compilers/interpreters. IBM, in those halcyon days, used to have meaningful strategic career development plans for all of its employees — IBM never slow in recognizing that we were their most valuable asset. There were two of us that were sent to this Gene Amdahl seminar from our S.S. (System Support) Group. The other was ‘Dave Hall‘ — who had been in the group for quite a long time, really knew his stuff and was always happy to help clueless rookies like me. It was my first business trip. I drove. I was no stranger to Heathrow — having flown in and out of there, yearly, for the previous seven years.

I was excited. This was THE big league for me. I sat transfixed in the front row. Dave, always cool, sat at the back. I don’t blame him. Gene chain smoked throughout the two days, lighting one cigarette from the other, and hacked a bit off and on. (Yes, he would go onto have complications from his smoking). People in the audience smoked too. Those were the days of smoked filled meeting rooms.

I had no idea that within 9 years doing exactly this type of stand-up multi-day seminars would become my life for the next 25 years. Often during that time, given that I did a ton of presentations at Heathrow Hotels, I would think back to the 1974 Gene Amdahl seminar.

Click for Wikipedia.

Click for Wikipedia.

Over the years I had some dealings with Amdahl Corporation (now a part of Fujitsu) — albeit never with Gene. I don’t think I ever did any paid work for Amdahl, though I do remember some grand meals, in some fancy country hotels in the UK, with Amdahl employees who just wanted to chat with me about the state of networking. To be fair Amdahl Corp. was not in the networking game. They just built ‘plug-compatible’ mainframes — with channels (in those days). Networking was done with other boxes that attached to the channels.  [I did, however, end up doing a fair amount of work, mostly seminars, for ‘plug-compatible’ maker ‘Hitachi Data Systems‘ (HDS), in Europe.]

The Summer 1995 meeting with Gene was at an annual multi-day “mainframe update” training conference done by a Texas consulting firm called ‘ACTS’. It was the second time I had been invited to do the half-day networking portion. I knew that Gene was speaking the day before. I was getting to Hilton Head late in the evening and never expected that I would get to meet Gene. [Around that time I used to be ‘triple-booked’ or at least that is what my billing would indicate. I had so many writing, seminar, training and consulting commitments that every hour was carefully allocated. So there was no possibility that I could have go there early to see Gene.] When I checked in at the hotel there was a message telling me that Dr. Gene Amdahl would like to meet with ME for breakfast, at 8 am, in the hotel restaurant, the next day — prior to my session! I was stunned. Gene Amdahl wanted to meet with ME! I walked on air for the rest of the day and made quite a phone calls to … yes, brag.

I was there nice and early to meet with my hero. He had two assistants with him. He was gracious as could be. Wow. He said that he had not had the time to keep up with IBM networking and wanted me to tell him what was new. I understood. I could relate. His focus was on CPUs. Networking was way, way outside what he had to worry about. So why waste his valuable brain cycles following something that he was not involved in. I was like that too. Totally focused on what I was supposed to be on top of. But, before we got down to doing any serious talking, he asked me, with his hand gently on my arm: ‘Bob Metcalfe, that thing he invented … how is it doing?’  Took me a second, actually maybe five, to work out what he was asking me. Bob Metcalfe = Robert Metcalfe, the voluble, often provocative, but always insightful founder of 3Com. He and I wrote for the same publications. I couldn’t say I knew him per se but I had seen him at various networking shows. Robert Metcalfe, like Gene, was LEGEND. ‘That thing he invented’. My brain used to quite quick in those by gone days. It came to me. Ethernet! Gene was basically asking me how Ethernet was doing. This is no way as incongruous as it may sound today. This was 1995. The IBM world was all ‘Token Ring’ — and I would spend at least another four years raking in money consulting on ‘Token-Ring’ — another of my specialties. I told Gene that Bob had done QUITE WELL with Ethernet. Then I realized. Gene invented mainframes, Bob Metcalfe Ethernet. WOW.

I was then in for a even bigger surprise and honor. Gene told me he was going to attend my session! I was floored. By then already I was used to doing presentations in from of CEOs and industry VIPs. But this was Dr. Gene Amdahl. It was quite a kick. I used to do all those presentations and seminars on autopilot. I was lucky in that from day one. I could stand up and talk about networking, using my (self-prompting) slides, without any notes, for 5 days without missing a beat. I knew my networking inside out and up against the wall. So having Gene in the audience didn’t rattle me. We had one. It was such a trip to see Dr. Amdahl, very calm, collected and serene, seated there listening to me. After the session he thanked me and said he enjoyed it. Then he invited me to join his party for dinner that night.

His wife was there and a number of his entourage of assistants as well as some others from conference — including, of course, the folks from ACTS. It was a lovely evening. Dr. and Mrs. Amdahl were so gracious and charming. 

So that is my Gene Amdahl story.

He is 91 years old now.

[‘ACTS‘ was named after the ‘Acts of the Apostles’. The first year I was invited to speak, the founder of ACTS asked me if I knew what is company was named after. I didn’t. In those days I had no clue about the Bible. I was like Gene. Totally focused on what I was doing. The founder of ACTS looked at me like I had three heads. He was shocked — and I don’t blame him. Then, as now, I have huge gaps in my knowledge base.]


N.H. Maple Sugaring Weekend At Richard Leonard’s ‘Miller Farm’, New Durham, N.H., This Weekend, March 29 – 30, 2014.

A horse happy to see you at ‘Miller Farm’

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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Anura Guruge


Related posts:
>> Maple syrup from ‘Miller Farm’ —
>>
May 11, 2013.
>> NH Maple Weekend At
>> ‘Miller Farm’
 
 Mar. 26, 2013.


This year we have a whole month of Maple Sugaring weekends in New Hampshire. Click for details.

This year we have a whole month of Maple Sugaring weekends in New Hampshire. Click for details.


I happened to see Richard Leonard, the Alton pharmacist at Alton Hannaford, a few days ago. I asked him when his weekend was and he said this coming week — i.e., now!

We went to Richard’s delightful ‘Miller Farm‘, in New Durham, NH, last year for the weekend and had a blast.

Not sure we can make it this year. It is the Durham/Dover N.H. ‘Snow White‘ weekend for us. But, I want to make sure that you get a heads up. Plus I promised Richard that I will do a post.

Call Rich at 603-767-2652
for details & directions.

Miller Farm
51 Miller Rd
New Durham, NH

It is very easy to find and get to. Just take the road that runs by the New Durham library.

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