Jun 27, 2003

Well, I chickened out. I didn't buy this, I bought this instead. Instead of leasing a car for three years, I'm buying it over three years. I'm also saving myself hundreds of dollars a month in payments and insurance. I guess I'm happy with this responsible decision.

Jun 24, 2003

Mmm mmm, nothing like a good one month hiatus to get the not-so-creative juices flowing. Where to start...

Well, obviously, I started working at Microsoft! The move out was emotional, if not uneventful. The flight went fine, I got my month-long rental car just fine and I got into my new (temporary) apartment just fine. Jenn so gratiously gave me a Gamecube just before I left. That worked out perfectly because all of my stuff had already been packed to be shipped to the Seattle area so I had to take the GC on the plane. If it wasn't for the TV and the GC, I probably would have died of boredom those first four days. Imagine being in apartment without 99% of your belongings in a new city where you don't know anyone. It was worse than I can describe. Yeah, I cried off and on those first few days. There are so many people back in the SE-MI area that I miss!

Once I got through those first few days, life improved. I got into a routine of waking up early and going to bed early to prepare myself for work. I drove around town getting myself used to the area. One big thing I've noticed is the marked difference in driving patterns. Five over the speed limit is the most I've seen someone without a radar detector do. Most people drive slower than the speed limit! This could be because everyone is used to the traffic... I swear to god it has to be some of the worst in the US. The area is surrounded by water and mountains so the highways are not as plentiful as possible. It's also difficult to widen any of the existing highways. There are simply too many people and cars for the area. They do have HOV (carpool) lanes, but it seems that very few people can take advantage of them. I think I might start carpooling just because no one else is. Some of the on-ramps are metered (meaning that there is a light that will allow only one car through every few seconds) but allow open access to the HOV lane. I've also decided to change my car choice because of the traffic. What's the fun in a sports car if you can't take advantage of it? It's also possible that I will have a substantial commute, so gas mileage might be a big concern. I also haven't chosen a city to live in, let alone an apartment. Lots to do in the next couple of weeks!

As for the job itself, I'm really not sure how much I can say. I have a much better understanding of what I will actually be doing though! From what I can tell, I will be a bug wrangler. Basically, I will help the developers and testers eliminate bugs from already-released products. Hotfix, updates, service packs, stuff like that. Also, my title has changed in the past two weeks: Program Manager on the Critical Response Team in the Mobile Devices Product Group. They changed from MDD (Mobile Devices Division) to MDPG (Mobile Devices Product Group). I was told this is a common occurance and not to stock up on business cards since they will be out of date before I get them. I can't tell anyone my phone number or office number since they are supposed to change in the next two weeks. The entire group (MDPG) is being shuffled around to better coordinate the smaller groups (like CRT).

If there is one thing I don't like about the job (yeah, already!) is that there are no set hours. Basically, if you are in the office in time for meetings and you get all of your work done, you can work whatever hours you want. Because of this, everyone has the mentality that they need to work 12 hours a day to look productive! The first day (Monday), I simply told my boss that I was leaving when I had finished all of my day-one work. He said that was okay. Today (the second day), I ended up staying for 11 hours. I got in around 7:30 AM, which is about 2.5 hours before most of the office gets in. When 4:30 PM rolled around, I didn't think it would look right to leave. The office was still packed! I need to go to a car dealership tomorrow around 5 PM and the dealership is 30 minutes away. I'm going to have to leave before 4:30 PM. I don't care what it looks like, I'm working hard. I was given a simple to-do list for the next two days and I've already finished it. I'm doing well, so far!

Anyway, that is all I have time for right now. I still don't have my company-issued laptop and my two computers from home haven't shipped yet, so I have resorted to checking my Umich mail from the local library. Hopefully this all gets rectified soon. I miss you all!