Its been a while since my last update, which is part me being lazy, part me being busy, and part me forgetting
Since my pre-DEFCON road trip, I have been to 44CON in London (my first one), which was quite impressive. Hell, I even enjoyed it despite it being in London (I despise traveling to London!). I also used part of my long service award funds to fly over to attend DerbyCon in Louisville, KY. That was a blast. So many great talk and great people. The hotel staff were incredibly friendly, every day. The staff in the restaurant referred to me as “Mr Bacon” after the first day. The reception staff asked me to come down to talk to them if I was bored, just so they could listen to my “wonderful English accent”. The whole event was so friendly, people congregating in the lobby area of the Hyatt hotel or the bar adjacent to the street, drinking to be social rather than drinking to get drunk, hearing people talking loudly, having fun, enjoying the event. I ran taxi service for DualCore and FuizzyNop from the airport back to the hotel. The music events were amazing, with Rance, DualCore + Reme Forbes + FuzzNop kicking it in style. And, as widely reported elsewhere, The Crystal Method brough the house down… literally! The bass was so loud that the ceiling tiles started to snow “dust”, and the metal covers to the air vents fell out due to the vibration. Its a great venue and location, and I will be gutted if I don’t somehow manage to go back again for DerbyCon 4.0 in 2014. Maybe next year I won’t be such an introvert (hey, I did try really hard this year!!), and not go around kicking myself for not talking to people, or for not talking to them for long enough (you know who you are!). Doh! Also, SmashBurger opposite the Hyatt hotel is amazing
I also somehow managed to squeeze in a weekend trip to the Kelling Heath star party, to catch up with friends, old and new. It was reasonably clear for at least 4 hours on the Saturday night, but certainly not good enough for me to set up my entire imaging rig…. so I didn’t! I just left my Canon 650D taking 30 second images of the same bit of the sky, and merged them all into a star trails image, showing the movement of the stars across the sky. You can see that the brightness of the individual star trails varies as the thin clouds rolled through the field of view.
So, that is it for my big trips this year (I think). My DerbyCon trip added 4 extra states to my roadtrip map. That large area of green on the far left, is the states I drove through during my pre-DEFCON road trip this year. I miss that trip, was so relaxing to be on the road and watch the scenery rolling past. Next year may be the last time I get to do a decent roadtrip for a few years, so I really need to start planning that early. Maybe a coast-to-coast trip, from New York to San Diego, via a few of those eastern and southern states I have missed so far, and back across through OK/TX/NM/AZ. Or maybe a northern route from Vegas, and up through WY/MT/ID/WA/OR and down to San Diego. Who knows… it all depends on so many things, starting with being fortunate enough to get sent to DEFCON again.
Oh, and possibly a new job role coming up… or not…. I wont know until after I have had my interview. Less “firewall jockey”, and more hands on security, with some extra training that I need to get up to speed on some things. That would be a big change for me, and until recently, change was something I avoided and hated. Maybe this is a sign I am recovering, and that it is time for me to move onwards and upwards