Jon seems to be doing well. He moved to miami and where he has leased a place for a year on Ocean Drive (street along the beach). Come november, between that, his condo in east village, and his office, he'll be paying nearly $8000 in housing expenses alone. Hopefully he'll be in a position to do that. He's started a new recruiting company off the back of his rentacert idea and if he succeeds, it'll be quite amazing and I suppose fitting as he always gets what he wants.
My plan is to pay down the credit cards, pump up my credit score, save some money, and pay off a lot of my student loan while also living well. That will put me in a much better situation to habe stabilty to start a new venture later.
I know I'm destined for greatness and happiness. Pehaps this past week was just a trial to make me stronger and more knowledgible for the future. I hope it is.
Daniel Delphin, CCNP, MCSE
Finished the FB application last friday. There are about 50 people using it so far and a whole bunch of tweaks still have to be made for speed and usability purposes.
Also, I've been working on my own thing and not for another company for about 5 weeks now and I'm ready to go back to work I think. Jon has been consulting at this company called Artnet which I interviewed for and am waiting to hear about. The pay is around $130K/year and the job has almost nothing to do at all. I would get in at 10am everyday in jeans and a t-shirt and jeans, sit there and work on my own projects for a while and then go home at 5 or or 3:30 on Fridays after taking an hour lunch each day. Sounds nice to me... Just waiting to hear back.
Something I've noticed is that I seem to be hedging my life on this job... I keep telling myself that I'll do x,y, and z once i get it which seems to have just been a way for me to put things off. I realized this today and started making changes... Worked out hard, ate right, did some work and I feel great. I literally went from being a nervous wreck about this job earlier today to being extreamly relaxed. How's that for a state change Tony Robbins??!? Anyway, I'm gonna see what Kenny is up to and maybe hang out with him. I'll update again soon.
Daniel Delphin, CCNP, MCSE
Last weekend I went to Mystic Aqarium with Joe for his Bday. We got there really late and only had time to do the Beluga experience. It was fun and perhaps I'll post pics later.
The week went by pretty quickly. I bought rollerblades in an attempt to get in better shape, save money, and most importantly, have more fun. I have since been rollerblading all around the city and though I'm not the best, esp at stopping, I'm good enough to deal with city traffic and pedestrians with minimal problems (so far). During the day, I've been working on my fbMP application which is about 93% done. I have a few major glitches to fix but I'll be releasing it within the week on a new dedicated server.
I have been in a not so great mood recently because I have pinned sooo much on the success of this fb project even though I shouldn't and don't have to. I have thought of it as my way to ensure my continued freedom from work, telling myself that I'd make $100k in 3 months. I recently discovered some competiton to the app, which is no where near as good as mine but the user count is low causing me to worry about my apps success. This has been stressing me out the last day or so, dashing my dreams of success to pieces... Until about an hour ago when I finished The 4 Hour Work Week and reread the quote by Steve Jobs from an earlier post. I have now come to realize that this project is not the be all and end all of my life and it has taken enough of the pressure off to make me feel happy about the project again and look forward to getting it done just for the sake of doing it.
Anyway, I'm on my way to Joe's parents house for the weekend to celebrate his birthday there and we've just about arrived, so I'll end this post here.
Daniel Delphin, CCNP, MCSE
I've come to the belief that there are levels of enlightenment, not because I have read it somewhere but rather because I feel I have gotten to the level at which my mind is clear enough to recognize their existence. When I speak of enlightenment, I mean clarity of understanding. Each of the levels represents a conceptual aspect of life and attaining enlightenment at that level seems to bring many benefits through its understanding. Progressing through the levels requires an understanding of many of the concepts relating to that level and the clarity of thought needed to recognize the level's existence. This recognition is the threshold after which you can start pursuing the next level. Further progress can also be made to gain an increased understanding of the concepts that make up a previously attained level.
At this point I feel as though I have recognized 3 levels. I will call them "Normal Life", "The Business World", and "3D conceptualizations", not because these are the best names for them but because they describe the pieces of information I've learned at each level. As I go on through life, I will probably end up renaming them to encompass new findings, though I doubt I'll ever have the perfect name for them because each level has just too much to understand to be able to sum it all up in one title.
This level is the one that most people in the world seem to live in. It is composed of day to day activities and the "demands and requirements" life makes on us. Examples would include everything from paying the bills, to going out, to a club, to having to work, to going on vacation for fun. It represents the here and now of everything as well as future plans for things that we wish to become part of the "here and now" in the future. This is the level that I was at while working for Citadel and most of my life previous. I was always on call, overworked, continuously stressed, focused on the trivial things, and generally unhappy. My only way to get away from this was to go out to a club and drink and dance on a weekly basis and I often referred to this time as my "mini vacation" because when I was drunk my mind was free of everything. Unfortunately, the same things about drunkenness that would create clarity also put restrictions on any further thinking, so while my mind was clear, I couldn't recognize my mind was clear and therefore couldn't progress forward. A little while after leaving Citadel, moving out of Chelsea and my apartment with Dane, and starting a job that was far less stressful, things seemed to drastically change. I stopped worrying about where my next job was going to come from and how I was going to pay the bills, because they didn't seem to matter and also because I was in a much better state to be able to deal with these things as I had more spare money and savings. I thus had more freedom both in life and thought. The time I had previously spent worry about how I looked when I went out or where money was going to come from began to be spent on the next level, though I had didn't know it at the time (I've only recognized the levels today).
"The Business World":
This is probably not the best name for this level but I chose it because as I had more spare time, I began coming up with great business ideas from seemly nowhere. The freedom of my mind from the "Normal Life" level allowed me to let my mind wander and this wandering produced more ideas in a short period of time than I have ever had. I began to see how some of these ideas were feasible and how to get going on them, which I did. I stopped thinking about what already existed in "Normal Life" (previously thought of and used business ideas) and started to think about the what ifs.
Continuous wandering allowed me to start to conceptualize the next level. I was playing a very interesting PSP game called "CRUSH" which essentially makes you a character in the game world. The object is to navigate through each level, collect all the marbles, and escape through a portal that had to be enabled first. Now this sounds like a everyday video game except for one thing... when you first started the game, you were in a 3D world and could move in any direction. You could also change camera angles so you could look at the things behind your character (whether looking from the front, side, or top). At any moment, you could "Crush" the current camera angle into a 2D world where you could only move left and right. Check out the YouTube Video that shows this 3D to 2D conversion. This would allow you to reach other parts of the level that you previously couldn't get to. You could then uncrush putting you back in the 3D world.
This got me thinking about demensions in general and it became apparent to me that current computers are very limited and based on seemingly silly 2D concepts. They rely on 0s and 1s, representing the on and off states of electricity. Becuase of this limitiation in states, you can only store one piece of information, the state, which can only be one of two things. This concept is extended to computer memory and harddrives. If you think about it, a harddrive is representative of a piece of paper and pen, the magnetic platters being the piece of paper and the head that writes the 0s and 1s is the pen. So here we are, basing this seemingly advanced machine on 2 dimensions and yet the world isn't 2D!. Enter the quantum computer, which stores information based on the 4 quantum numbers that make up the properties of an atom. Essentaily, such a computer would be able to read and set the properties of an atom which each combination of settings meaing something different and thus making many possible states. Because more information can be stored, fewer operations would be necissary to do something than in a current binary computer and by running a computer at the same speed (GHZ) as current computers, a quantum computer would be able to complete a vast amount more operations. Unfortunatly, we don't have the technology to read and write atoms at our whim yet but its coming, and as a business it would be worth $billions if not more while solving many of the problems that trouble humans today. Anyway, this whole 2D to 3D thing got me thinking about the next level.
This level is less about the whole 3D thing and more about moving from looking at business ideas from the busines standpoint and more the conceptual standpoint of how the pieces of things work. This is where acedemic instituations seem to thrive and term it "Research". It became less of "what is a good business idea" and more of "what makes a good business idea". Through freedom of thought, idle time, and clarity, I was able to apply this "reasearch" idea to life as well and now have began understanding things at the more fundemental level nature rather than man made institutions. This is also the level at which I recognized the existance of the levels.
After writing all this, I guess I might modify the level names in the following way, with each level being composed of the next:
Everyday Life --> Man Made Institutions --> Physics and the nature of the universe
I imagine the next level will be something along the lines of the ideas and concepts behind the physics and nature of the universe... I guess including things such as the "Why" things are the way they are... which gets into the area of religion. Though I am working on this level, I am still very focused on learning other concepts at the lower levels, as I believe that the understanding will benefit and enrich my life. Its taken me 23 years to get through these 3 levels. It may take me quite a bit longer to break the next.
In the meantime however, I'm happier then I have ever been. I have a clearer mind, more free time, and a general excitement about each day and its possibilities. In the future, I plan to start living more and stop putting things off until the time is perfect for them because the time will never be perfect. I'm looking into things such as taking stunt driving courses, learning to sail, traveling, and much more. My focus is on enjoying and making the best of each day because what's the point of living if you don't live?
Sidenote: The grammer of this post may not be perfect as I am tired and trying to get everything out very quickly.
This week I kept myself extreamly busy on the various projects that I have going. NeNoob and backexams.com have taken a bit of a backseat to the fbMP project (no I won't tell you what that stands for) that I'm currently working on. That should be done within a week or two and released. I've been tracking its competition daily and they don't seem to be doing well... Mostly I believe because their product is overly simplifed and has a horribly nerdy name. Anyway, when its complete, I'm actually going to release it through my sister, Becca. The product targets her crowd and I think she'd be a great asset to get the whole thing going.
I also met with Chris Ryan and Jon this week to discuss future parties and gained a new client for DS410 through Craiglist. I actually may end up making quite a bit of money from them and if I could get a couple more clients like that, I'd be all set.
Anyway, I better get back to my project.
I need to get the hell out of being employed by others and I believe the quick way to do this is through this app!
UPDATE: Turns out the $3 Million thing was just rumor. The $30K/Month thing isn't though and that kinda money ain't bad either!
On another note, on Tuesday I went to the Web 2.0 meetup in NYC with Shawn Gregg, one of the people who I partner with on projects. We watched presentations about Snooth.com (a user-based wine review site), upnext.com (a 3d map web app), and Heycosmo.com (a video and voice based gaming site). Shawn and I also paid particular attention to a venture capitalist that was there, though we never made it to talk to him. We both felt it would be better to have something to show first (a b-plan, a beta) before we approached. He and I then went to dinner at Cafeteria where I told him about another idea I had. He promptly recommended we implement it using facebook so we are currently working on that. A working beta should be up by the end of September and news can be found at http://www.backexams.com. We haven't stopped work on NeNoob, which I am currently writing a business plan for. Once we have the plan done, I hope to start shopping it to investors shortly after... maybe around the time the BackExam beta is released. We're hoping to use BackExam as a springboard and proof of knowledge and experience for our meetings with VCs and angels. We both believe that through FaceBook, back exam will actually become quite popular and that we might be able to monetize it a bit through advertisements. He and I still have to work out the site features, but by collaborating through the BaseCamp webapp (made by 37Signals) we should have no problem getting things done.
I guess that's all for now... Matt Lapovsky did cancel on me for lunch tomorrow so hopefully we'll be able to reschedule. I would have liked to get him onboard some of these ideas and apps but I guess that may not happen. Oh well, at least there dinner and Splash tonight with Marc, Joey, and maybe Mark.
Anyway, currently researching jobs. Finished all the specified work at NYL and just sitting around doing nothing now.
Will write more later.
What it does is syncs your calendar, contacts, notes, etc from all the different sources that you may access them. So for me, it syncs my laptop and desktop MS Outlooks with itself, Gmail, and my Blackberry (via Outlook). It also allows me access from anywhere via http://m.plaxo.com. Either way, I think its pretty cool and am making good use of it. They also have a new social network called Pulse, but I haven't checked that out yet. I'll let you know what I think!
you can only connect them looking backwards;
So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future;
you have to trust in something: your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever, because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart,
even when it leads you off the well worn path and that will make all the difference.
- Steve Jobs, Stamford Commencement Speech 2005
I found it while watching speech which I downloaded from ITunesU. It is one of the most well spoken things I've ever heard and believe that has held true of my past and will continue holding true in my future.
Either way, things are going ok except for last Wednesday at the Ramblers Batchelor Auction, which I left very drunk. I ended up hitting my head on something and now I believe I have a concussion, so I'm going to attempt to shy away from drinking and playing soccer for a week or two.
In other news, bought www.myentreprenet.com and had intentions of setting up a social networking site there for entrepreneurs but decided that this would distract me from NeNoob so I am going back to that. Maybe I'll get back to that later. Next step for NeNoob is a database diagram, which I'm going to try to get done today.
Ok, back to work.
Daniel Delphin, CCNP, MCSE
Anyway, just wanted to share that. Back to work now.
Also, I found out tonight that Jon is going forward with the idea I termed "AirPulse". Kinda pisses me off a bit considering I did most of the work initially and motivated him forward but eitherway, I don't expect that he'll have the motivation to get it really going especially considering the fact that he's taking his cross country drive starting next week (I think).
And lastly, the reason for this post... I was just thinking about giving it all up and being young for a bit longer. My job at NYL will be coming to an end in a week and I'll have about $8,000. I know I have commitments here in the US such as bills, boyfriend, rent, etc... however wouldn't it just be nice to just go away for a couple months and explore the world? I think I could pay $1000 worth of credit card bills, put the student loans on hold, and just fly off and stay in hostels around Europe. I imagine it would be quite the experience... but alas, I am far too stability seeking a person to do that.... it is nice to dream though. I feel a bit like The Little Mermaid, trapped in my under sea world (New York City) by my father (my bills, my bf, my apt). This would delay my plan for world domination (muhahahah) but at the same time it would probably open my mind and I'd learn a lot. Anyway, its really just a dream... and probably will never happen... at least I don't think it will. Goodnight!
Now that that's done...
Its amazing. I had a conversation with a guy named David from the Ramblers Soccer Team who is starting his own company and all of a sudden it seems as if my world changed. We discussed many things over a short period of time but I found myself enamored by the whole start up thing. He recommended several startup news sites including Tech Crunch and since then I haven't been able to stop... stop thinking, stop reading (now using Google Reader, stop coming up with ideas (using Google Notebook to store them and clip things that I like). Its as if the internet suddenly appeared before me as something I had never used before. I keep finding all these new things to learn about and read, from startups to new technologies. Here I am, an IT professional thinking that he knew what it was all about because it was his job to be in technology, and all along I've been missing the train. Yeah, I knew about Myspace and facebook and many of Googles apps (used to be very against Google and everything they did actually), but I never really let any of it in. I never really got involved. Now I can't stop... I can't sleep (Stayed up all night 2 days ago)... and to make matter worse (well better actually) I've come up with a Web 2.0 idea of my own... actually a couple but one in particular that I'm focusing on. Its like my whole life and focus has changed but in a good way. Now I have a purpose and even if this idea fails (as it may), it will just be one on my path to success. I can feel myself heading for it and know that I will eventually make it... its just a matter of time. So watch out world... I'm Dan Delphin!
Other notes... something needs to tie all the Google stuff together. They have a lot of products and features but no real tie ins across everything. Their desktop search work with their search engine, email, and the file system, but it doesn't work with their other products like Google Reader, Blogger, and Google Notebooks. If I'm going to start storing much of my info using the apps that Google provides, I'd like to have it all integrated somehow. I'd like to be able to easily switch between apps and have direct integration between them. Also, features that are clearly useful in one app don't get integrated in other apps. An example, something as "simple" as rich text editing which can be seen in Google's email interface, isn't even provided in Blogger. Google may be making billions of dollars and be buying company after company, but they aren't truely integrating them together or not nearly as much as they could/should. They seem to just buy, use and improve for a short time and then move on to something else. Someone needs to be in charge of integrating it all together. They have the platform and the API to do so... they should just do it!
This leaves me with many ideas on how to improve Google's services but no real way to do it because I'd have to be working at Google and involved with the actual apps design. Oh well, I have tons of ideas and finite amounts of time. I'm sure they'll get it right eventually.
Anyway, back to actually doing what I'm supposed to be doing here at NYL. Watch for posts about my new company... still trying to come up with a good name!
My job is another issue. I go back and forth about how I feel about my job. Sometimes I'm really happy while other times, I'm pissed and stressed. For this issue, its really about the money and how quickly I can make more. We're about to do a $250,000 deal and yet I don't feel like my cut will really be that much. To make as much as I could start at with another job would probably take me well over a year.
... (continued the next day) ...
So I don't know what to do about that (the job). And these are the things I need to think about and make decisions about. Which bring me to a Warrior of the Light quote:
"The Warrior of the Light is terrified when making imporant decisions. 'This is too much for you,' says a friend. 'Go on, be brave,' says another. And so his doubts grow. After some days of anxiety, he withdraws to the corner of his tent where he usually sits to meditate and pray. He sees himself in the future. He sees the people who will benefit or be harmed by his attitude. He does not want to cause pointless suffering, but nor does he want to abondon the path.
The Warrior of the Light allows the decision to reveal itself. If he has to say 'yes', he will say it bravely. If he has to say 'no', he will say it without a trace of cowardice."
After talking with Ben Leibig, I have also come to like some poems about love and marriage in a book called "The Prophet" by Kahlil Gibran. One phrase in particular caught my attention when it was discussing relationships:
"Give your hearts, but not into each other's keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together, yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other's shadow"
I think this would be good advice to follow with joe and for him to understand as well. I think I'll recommend he read that poem.
I also found a list of 11 rule about life that Bill Gates supposedly tried to teach a graduating High School class through a speech:
Life is not fair - get used to it.
The world won't care about your self-esteem. The world
will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel
good about yourself.
You will NOT make 40 thousand dollars a year right out
of high school. You won't be a vice president with
car phone, until you earn both.
If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a
boss. He doesn't have tenure.
Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your
grandparents had a different word for burger flipping
called it Opportunity.
If you mess up,it's not your parents' fault, so don't
whine about your mistakes, learn from them.
Before you were born, your parents weren't as boring as
they are now. They got that way from paying your bills,
cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about
how cool you are. So before you save the rain forest
from the parasites of your parent's generation, try
delousing the closet in your own room.
Your school may have done away with winners and losers,
but life has not. In some schools they have abolished
failing grades and they'll give you as many times as
you want to get the right answer. This doesn't bear the
slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in real life.
Life is not divided into semesters. You don't get
summers off and very few employers are interested in
helping you find yourself. Do that on your own time.
Television is NOT real life. In real life people
actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.
Be nice to nerds. Chances are you'll end up working for
I'm going to make an effor with things again. Dave (from Citadel... my current company) made a point today which stuck in my head. He suggested that everyday that I give my all builds up my own personal integrety and allows me to feel good knowing that I am doing the best that I can. I am going to start trying to do this and looking for patterns and methods of performing at the best of my abilities.
Anyway, that's all for now.
Daniel Delphin, CCNP, MCSE
I'm back together with Joe and we're moving in. I honestly don't know that I feel good about this choice. We haven't really been getting along that well but I feel that to tell him I'm not ready after I made all these promises to get him back would surely end the relationship, something that I don't want. To make matters worse, when he move's in, I have to pay for everything. He's gonna stop working completely. I am NOT comfortable with this, but its either that or live in the Bronx or the upper westside. I don't think I want to nor do I think I can afford a $2500 apartment. I feel like that's a lot of money to ask me to spend and I don't feel its an equal share (even if he does provide the debt of his student loans). I want to be happy, but I feel he's going to put restrictions on my life, and if I ever tell him how I feel, he'l surely respond with, "Well that's not what you said when you asked me back." I'm trapped in this manner. I do love him, but I'm not ready for this with him yet. I'm sure he'll end up reading this.. And if you are Joe, don't get mad. Please try to be understanding. I just don't know how to handle it correctly.
Around the same time as moving in with joe, I'm going to lose my health insurance from my father, and my big student loans will start coming due (yet another reason I'm afraid of lack of money). On top of that...
Had to stop last night cause my BB died.
Eitherway I think the end of that message was, "I'm unhappy with my job".
Will continue later.
Daniel Delphin, CCNP, MCSE
I'm currently reading The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho and there are some interesting ideas presented in the story. I thought I'd post a quote that I like:
"If you start out promising what you don't have yet, you'll lose your desire to work toward getting it"
- Wise old man
To me, this quote makes me think about times that I have new business ideas. I tell many people about them and about how much money I'll make and how successful I'll be, but then it never ends up happening. I often times don't even begin the process of working on the idea so there's no outcome one way or the other. It seems as if internally, I am so afraid of failing in others eyes and my own that I'd rather not try (and be able to say that I didn't) then have to deal with the possibility of truly failing. The more people that I tell, the more of a build up that I have against my actually working on the idea because I've increased the number of people I'll fail in front of.
I've recently realized that it is better to try and fail than to not try at all. If I try at something, there is a chance that it'll succeed and even if it doesn't, I'll have learned something in the process. If I never try, than there's no chance of succeeding.
One of my other issues, even once I get past the point of making the decision to try is how to choose what ideas to truly go after and what ideas of not worth any time. Also, along the same lines, how do I know when to give up on an idea? Should this be something that I set before I start or should I just play it by ear? This is a very difficult question for me and I suppose it is really part of a broader issue of mine... I'm afraid to make mistakes. I don't care about stupid little mistakes, but the big ones... the life altering ones. I dread those. Often, I'm so afraid to make a decision one way or the other that I'll just not make one and whatever is the "no action" decision wins out and I can once again put a disclaimer up that it what happened wasn't my fault if it goes badly.
I need to take more control of my life. I need to make mistakes on a path that I've chosen so I can learn from them. I need to fail so I can succeed.
Another passage that I liked from the book was the following:
" 'What's the world's greatest lie?', the boy asked, completely surprised. 'It's this: that at some certain point in our lives, we lose control of what's happening to us, and our lives become controlled by fate. That's the world's greatest lie.'"
I was read another book a little while ago that said something similar. It was something like...
"Most people let life carry them like a river, allowing it to take them wherever it wants them to go. These are the people that believe in fate, and blame things on life when things that they want don't happen for them. These people will never succeed."
I used to believe that I was definitely not one of those people but as I look at things more and more, I see that I am. It is, however, a good thing because the first step to fixing a problem is realizing that you have one... and that is what I've done today.