My First Christmas Letter


I really enjoy getting those Christmas letters where people tell us all about their lives, what they did, where they traveled, what their kids did, etc., but we’ve never written one ourselves. It’s probably because we don’t have any kids. People will stand just about any amount of bragging you do on your kids’ behalf because it’s only human to do that, but when you don’t have kids, it’s a challenge not to come across as a pretentious twit, or, worse yet, as an insufferable bore. Getting something akin to a form letter from a friend or relative can be a little ‘off-putting’ because it loses that personalized touch. Of course, it can always be signed by hand, offering at least a modicum of personal attention to the recipient. Regardless, I can’t wait to dive in and read them whenever they arrive.

So I’ll offer something like an end-of-year posting for those who might care enough to read my blog, a no doubt small and, with the lack of recent updates, dwindling audience. I’m afraid it won’t have the personalized flair of my signature.

We started the 2006 year with a trip to Las Vegas for the Consumer Electronics Show. It had been about 8 years since Terri and I had been there when we did a few stints at the since-discontinued Comdex computer show. CES is a lot more fun than Comdex because it’s easier to personally identify with the products being showcased. Terri came down for a few days and we got to see Jay Leno perform at the Mirage and had a few nice dinners at the local restaurants. The rest of the time was spent performing obligatory booth duty at the Blu-ray and HD-DVD displays. A highlight of the show was running into a high school friend, Bob Wanat, who I hadn’t seen in nearly 20 years. I was almost interviewed by Andy McCaskey of SDR News, but declined because I didn’t want to contribute in any way to the controversy surrounding a format war about to commence between two competing HD formats. I wish I was going this coming year, because I’d be able to wax lyrical about my new product, the HP Media Vault, and would welcome the opportunity to get it on SDR News.

In June we took a trip to Europe for two and a half weeks. I wrote about it quite a bit in this blog although I never did finish the complete write-up. I’ll have to make it a New Year’s resolution to get all the writing finished. In short it was a wonderful trip with visits to Ireland, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium, and Amsterdam.

In July I traveled to Suzhou, China for the production start up of HP’s Media Vault, which is a a new product category for HP (Networked Storage for the home), and spent a week making sure everything was going OK and the product was ready to ship. I started a new FAQ and user group for the product. Shortly after arriving back in the U.S., I traveled to Oshkosh for my 15th Airventure and had a great time. There’s a blog entry about it here and here, describing my little side adventure on the way home.

In September, we went to Long Beach, CA to update firmware and software on the first two containers of HP Media Vaults prior to having them shipped to retailers. Terri came out for that visit too because it extended over the weekend. That part of the trip also got its own blog entry.

In December, we spent a week up in Steamboat Springs to do a little early season skiing and just enjoy the sights in and around Steamboat, which is one of our favorite places in all of Colorado.

This past week, we had what was by far the biggest blizzard Terri and I have ever experienced in Colorado with most places shut down for at least 2 days and a White Christmas is now guaranteed…a white New Year’s too. Judging by the mountains of snow piled up everywhere, the evidence of this storm will take weeks to melt even if we get warm weather. Five days after the storm and it still requires 4WD to get out of our neighborhood!

Terri shoveling snow
Merry Christmas,