It was 15 years ago today I climbed out of the mechanical design trenches as a customer and grabbed onto a speeding locomotive named Autodesk and transitioned into a world of software. That’s 105 years in dog years and half Autodesk's existence. Time certainly flys when you love what you do, who you work for, and with the most smart, creative, and awesome customers in the world.
To be quite honest I only planned to be with Autodesk about 3 years and change some things with products I used as a customer then go back out into the mechanical design field where I enjoyed building and managing large projects and getting schooled by shop and field foremen. I would have never thought the 3 years max would become 15 years and more. Autodesk is a great place to work with amazing people who really give a damn, ample challenges, benefits, flexibility, beer busts, and more. Believe me when I say we work our tails off except for that one guy, you know who you are Kurt… :-)
I came in as a spring chicken, well almost a spring chicken and am now a nicely seasoned chicken with many more years to go with more exciting challenges. Since I couldn’t predict that I would never leave Autodesk after 3 years I won’t claim to know what's ahead but just keep doing what I am doing and find more adrenaline filled challenging projects.
I have witnessed and played my part in so many products, changes in technology, and industry trends and spoke at hundreds of locations around the world to thousands of customers, students, and technology groups. If I count those I have interacted with over the web, forums, and my blog with 20,000 unique daily readers I may have virtually met millions of you but sadly I don’t remember everyone's name. I have been so very fortunate and thank everyone, even that lazy guy Kurt with the old pickup truck with flames painted on with a spray can.
So now I have graduated from the Autodesk white badge signifying 1-10 years, to the gold at 10 years, to now the silver at 15 and join a select group of old timer deskers. I am a much more mellow bull in a china shop guy and actually get more than 4 hours of sleep unlike my first 10 years where I don’t think I slept more than a few hours at a time.
Does anyone remember me before being an Autodesk employee? I was in the satellite broadcast in theaters announcing AutoCAD R14 as a early adopting customer. I had far more hair, and none gray. I was also active in the Portland Oregon user groups, CompuServe, and IRC channels being an active user/abuser of AutoCAD, 3D Studio DOS, and then just starting AutoCAD Mechanical, Mechanical Desktop and AutoCAD LT.
I uncorked a bottle of Australian red wine named after my blog. “Between the Vines” that was made by a customer & friend a few years ago and given to me at AU with the gentlemen’s agreement I promise to keep blogging a mix of topics from product tips to funny make you spit coffee on your screen stuff. I hope I have lived up to that but I am always open to suggestions and feedback.
Thank you so very much for reading this Between the Lines blog and to those I have worked with, or met over the past 15 years. Feel free to comment when you first met me, I helped you, made you spit coffee on your computer screen or made you upset as I can’t please everyone. Also feel free to post funny photos of me from the years, but only the G-rated ones please. Please note to people reading this, many of the stories by a select few that could be posted are simply myths and imaginations run wild. Also remember that if you post something, all those years you seen me with a camera snapping photos wildly may come back to haunt you.