Hit List

IBM’s Verse email solution has a feature that dynamically displays your most frequently emailed contacts.

I call it my “chain letter hit list.” If I were going to send a chain letter, these are the folks that would receive it:


As you may have guessed from recent posts, my job responsibilities have shifted from a focus on PureApplication to a focus on IBM’s Cloud for VMware solutions. My “hit list” has also shifted to this new group of folks that I’m privileged and excited to work with.

Oh, and I promise not to send anyone a chain letter.

Cookie size in nginx

I find in the age of corporate single sign-on and the multiplication of web applications and services, that more and more frequently I am running into server-side limits on cookie size. All of these servers and services are polluting my browser with their cookie crumbs. This results in web applications returning a 400 error due to header or cookie size limits.

While many web applications are beyond my control, I am taking the time to adjust my own servers so that they can accommodate these growing cookies. For nginx I’ve made the following adjustment to the server clause in my nginx configuration:

server {
  large_client_header_buffers 8 64k;
  client_header_buffer_size 64k;
  . . .

Corporate Service Corps

Corporate Service Corps

I had never heard of IBM’s Corporate Service Corps until my friend David Wierbowski participated in one of IBM’s 2014 corporate service teams.

IBM’s corporate service program is one of the ways that IBM contributes back to the communities where it does business. From what I’ve seen, it is also a fantastic experience for the individuals involved, offering both professional and personal challenges and rewards.

Dave recounted and reflected on his experience before, during, and after his service on his CSC blog. I enjoyed reading about the corporate service program through his eyes.

Over rock and under tree

Well, that was fast. In a matter of a few weeks, I made the jump from Knight Wazer to Royalty Wazer, after having driven a total of 4,665 miles. It is interesting to me that, during this period of two and a half weeks, the point value required to reach royalty did not change. It makes sense to me that this value may be recalculated less frequently, perhaps on a weekly or monthly basis, but I crossed both week and month boundaries without the point value being updated.

This indicates to me that the activity at the 1% mark for Waze members—at least in North Carolina—is stagnant, as the 1% bar is not moving. Thus, in North Carolina less than 1% of the total Waze membership is highly active.

Roads go ever ever on

Last November I joined the Waze traffic and navigation community. I’ve been using Waze since then for my daily commute and also used it for our family’s Thanksgiving trip. My commute time is 35 minutes in one direction compared to the national average of 25 minutes.

It is now mid-February, three months later, and I’m a little surprised at how rapidly I’ve been able to progress in ranking. Just today I received the Waze Knight status, which means that I am in the top 4% of users in my state, North Carolina.

Thus far I have driven only 3,472 miles with Waze. The majority of my Waze points come from driving miles, although I have achieved a fairly normal set of bonus points (for example, using Waze four days out of one week). That is not a lot of activity to reach the top 4%!

If I’d had to guess, I would have expected that somewhere in the neighborhood of 20% of Waze’s user base was fairly active. But from my experience, at least in North Carolina I would say that number must be less than 5% and could be much less than that. Now I’m very curious to see whether and how quickly I’m able to reach the top 1%.


At Christmas the kids caught the Minecraft bug from their cousins. They pooled their birthday and chore money and bought it. They’ve been enjoying tinkering around with it, together with the help of some books we reserved at the library. Today I installed Ubuntu on the old Windows XP laptop, and voila! We have a dedicated Minecraft computer now.