Tuesday, May 9, 2017

A Near Summer Night's Dream

When you go to a Seattle Shakespeare play, you can always expect that you'll see an excellent production that takes a unique look at a Shakespeare play. They are currently pulling out all the stops with their production of A Midsummer Night's Dream, produced this time as a cross between the Bard and a 1940ish musical production.

It's pitch perfect. The Shakespearean text and context are there but the musical numbers are snappy and the actors also nail the personality types from that era: the big city jaded look is hilarious when it's projected onto Titania and her fairies when they are catering to the whims of bottom.

Everyone in this play is fantastic and very accomplished but I just have to call out a few
favorites:

George Mount as Theseus - I've enjoyed his work ever since I first saw him as Richard II a few years ago.

Terence Kelley, Vanessa Miller and John David Scott were terrific respectively as Oberon, Titania and Puck.

Keiko Green - this lady is a performer to watch. She has terrific comedic timing and is an excellent
Shakespearean performer. My wife and I were also commenting that this year must have been a LOT of hard work for her, as she rehearsed/performed in Upstart Crow's Bring Down The House as the warrior lord Buckingham and then went to rehearsal in a Shakespearean musical/comedy.

MJ Sieber - he has played both a fantastic Bottom (One of my favorite characters in the show) and
Autolycus in The Winter's Tale, this year.

I recommend getting out to see this production highly! You *will* have fun!

Cast (in alphabetical order)

Shanna Allman (Flute)
Maddie Brantz (Fairy)
Mallory Cooney King (Hermia)
Steven Davis (Starveling)
Sarah Dennis (Fairy)
Bob Downing (Snout)
Brandon Felker (Egeus/Quince)
Keiko Green (Helena)
Devyn Grendell (Fairy)
Terence Kelley (Oberon)
Vanessa Miller (Titania)
George Mount (Theseus)
Crystal Dawn Munkers (Hippolyta)
Casey Raiha (Lysander)
John David Scott (Puck)
ZoƩ Tziotis Shields (Fairy)
MJ Sieber (Bottom)
Adam St. John (Demetrius)
Marco Voli (Snug)

Production Team

George Mount (Director)
Crystal Dawn Munkers (Choreographer)
Nir Sadovnik (Composer)
Craig Wollam (Set Designer)
Doris Black (Costume Designer)
Roberta Russell (Lighting Designer)
Robin Macartney (Props Designer)
Terry Gray (Sound Consultant)
Dayton Allemann (Music Director)

Thursday, February 9, 2017

A new direction for this Geek Blog

In my previous post about home database programming projects I have been working on, I alluded to the fact that I am on a "temporary work hiatus" right now. Translation: I was laid off in the course of my previous employer's reduction in force and am busily searching for a job.

Obviously there are some stresses from not having much of a positive cash flow. However, I am endeavoring to use every moment of my time as constructively as possible:
  • Searching for at least a few jobs to apply for a day (more now that a friend referred me internally in Microsoft and I have the assistance of one of their recruiters for a few weeks)
  • Spending a few hours/day playing catch-up on some of the newer technologies
  • Exercising (running, walking the dogs, using the stationary bike in the evening)
  • Rebooting my eating habits: it's far too easy to go into grazing mode under time pressure
  • Reading books I haven't had time to read, in the evening
This still leaves me with enough free time that I have decided to use in rebooting another activity I've always wanted to do: write on a regular basis. Therefore, I will be taking this previously unfocused geek blog and begin adding consistent entries about the state of the tech industry from the point of view of someone who has been a developer for a for quite a while. If this results in enough material (especially if it develops some readership) I may spin it off into a completely separate blog.

Looking back over previous entries dating back to 2010, this current geek blog has been a bit of a catchall:
  • Musings about how the hot computer which launched my development career is now an exhibit at the University of Washington and how much more powerful my Android phone was.
  • Comments about home computer projects, from encryption applications to database tools that I used daily at work
  • Shakespeare and other literary geekery, including tattoos, cool old books and word frequency counts in Shakespeare plays
  • Miscellaneous topics such as work Fitbit challenges and pictures from a trip to England and Wales
But since the topic of what the computer industry is like right now is especially compelling to me personally now, that will be a new consistent focus. I hope that others will find my commentary interesting.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Home programming projects: data browser and differences finder

During this temporary work hiatus, I am spending some time working on enhancing a couple of my "Winter break" projects. These are projects that I worked on for fun during past Winter breaks from work and which have been useful in my day-to-day work.

1) A database "browser", where you search for a record and can then browse forward and backward in the database by following foreign key entries.

2) A database difference finder which allows you to take a snapshot of a database's schema and latest record info and then compare to other such snapshots

The Database Browser

The purpose here is to give a quick and handy browsing ability. This means that you select a record somewhere in the database (schema info loaded when server and database selected) and can then browse back to records in other tables that have a key in that record...and forward to records containing the "current" records key.


Most windows have "Show SQL" buttons that show you the SQL used to generate those records.


The "Get Field Info or SQL Join" button takes you to a popup which serves two functions.

1) It can search for tables, stored procs and triggers that contain a string you want to locate


2) It can generate a basic SQL join between two tables that you name


Database difference finder

The purpose of this program is to find differences between snapshots of two databases or the same database after a change has been made (structural or in terms of saved data).

Here, I am showing the differences detected when a tables has had a column added between two snapshots.


In this case, I am showing the differences resulting when a database row has been added, deleted or changed (based on timestamp differences).