I just finished watching the series “Triumph of the Nerds” on DVD. While I have seen parts of the documentary over the years this is the first time I watched all three parts straight through. This series, which is about the invention of the personal computer, the formation of a fledgling computer industry, and the key players in the new age of information, is quite simply amazing. I cannot recommend this documentary enough!

Anyone who has ever wondered how the PC came into being, who invented the Graphical User Interface (hint: Xerox), how Apple and Microsoft got their start, or how IBM was beat by a bunch of teenage nerds should run out and rent this documentary. It was filmed in 1996 so it doesn’t cover the dot com implosion and doesn’t mention Linux. But from the Altair up until Windows 95 it is accurate, intriguing, interesting, and epic. The story is retold in the participant’s own words, including interviews with Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Paul Allen, and every other major player.

I can’t wait for Robert X. Cringely, the author of the series, to shoot another epic covering the rise and fall of the dot com. Maybe he will even cover the Linux Revolution, although that history is still in the process of being written. With almost 10 years passing since this series was filmed, there is a lot of new computer history to document, but “Triumph of the Nerds” will definitely give you a deep understanding of how the computer revolution was started, in an interesting and entertaining way.


Aliciana had her picture in the Bakersfield Californian, the local newspaper, last Saturday. The article was about our church’s preparation for the Hanging Of The Green event that was held last Sunday. She has only lived in Bakersfield for 5 months and she is already famous. 😉

Here is a scan of the newspaper picture:


So, yesterday I became a year older. Well, technically I became 1 day older but custom tells us we should only celebrate once a year, on the day we were born. But, as I grow older, the celebrating seems to become less important.

I don’t feel like I am 26 years old, it seems like I was just turning 20. Paradoxically, I proposed to Aliciana one year ago, on my 25th birthday, but that feels like it took place eons ago. It is funny how specific events feel like they happened long ago and abstract ideas feel like they happened yesterday. I guess it is much easier for the mind to recall abstract feelings than particular points in time. But, I digress.

I had a nice birthday dinner at a restaurant in town called Mexicali. They have beautiful Christmas decorations this time of year so it is always nice to get to eat amongst them. We then came back to the apartment for birthday chocolate and peanut butter brownies, which Aliciana baked for me, and watched a movie. A nice, relaxing, and calm birthday… just like old people are suppose to be. 😉


We have had our Christmas tree for nearly a week and I finally got around to taking some photos and uploading them to this site. It is our first Christmas tree because during all our years in college we were always traveling during Christmas. But, now that we are ‘working adults’, we have to stay put for Christmas.


We had a wonderful Christmas Eve celebration at Grandma and Grandpa Ladd’s house. Unfortunately, Aunt Rochelle, Aramee, Logan, Brianna, Brian, and Damien couldn’t make it. Also, my parents, Nick, Jessie, and Courtney were in Las Vegas so they weren’t there. But, the rest of the Ladd Clan had a fun time although we missed those who couldn’t be with us.

When we got home we opened Christmas presents from my parents and siblings. We decided to open them tonight so we could leave as soon as possible tomorrow morning. The fog may hold us up but hopefully we can get down to San Diego without too much trouble.


We drove to San Diego on Christmas morning to spend the weekend with Aliciana’s family. The little ones managed to wait to open presents until we got there. Of course, as soon as they we let at their presents an eruption of wrapping paper ensued. It was fun to see the little monsters open their presents. It is always good for the soul to spend Christmas around little kids.



On the Debian Linux blog that I read there is a neat “meme” (see definition here) going around which draws a colored map of the states you have visited in the US. I decided to give it a shot and was surprised about how large a part of my beautiful country I have visited.

The one inaccuracy of this map is that it’s resolution is only state level, so parts of states are colored that I have actually never scene. For example, I have never been to eastern Washington but have visited most of western Washington. I have also only visited the bottom half of Wyoming and the western border of Missouri (Kansas City, Missouri to be specific). It would be an interesting project to create a program to color in the counties within the states that have been visited.

Here is my map of visited states: