Huge thanks to Dave Rael for having me on the Developer on Fire Podcast! I am honored to have been able to talk with Dave on his show. The Developer on Fire Podcast is really unique because it focuses on the people more than on the technology. There is some tech talk of course but he really tries to get at the stories, the personality, what makes you tick, who you are, what motivates you and how you engage with your work. The show has been around for a long time and he has had some real luminaries among his guests including many of my personal tech heroes. I highly recommend adding this podcast to your listening routine if you haven't already.

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The first part of my plan to go into business for myself is coming together. I've got a contract on my house here in TN and moving out this weekend headed for Charlotte, NC.

I'm partly packed but still a lot left, moving is so much work. I'm really excited about getting there and glad things came together roughly on schedule.
Unfortunately due to the timing I won't be able to make it up to the Mono meeting in Boston. I was really hoping to make it this year but I guess I'll have to wait for the next one. I noticed VSLive is up there the same week. I hope a lot of the .NET folk going to that will also checkout the Mono meeting.

My brother and maybe my Dad are driving out from Charlotte to help me move. Its about a 7 or 8 hour drive, should be pretty easy. The only part that won't be fun driving the big U-Haul truck is a curvy stretch through the Smokey Mountains on I-40.

The adventure begins...

After 2 years of working on mojoPortal in my spare time I've decided to follow my dream and form a business around it doing custom feature development and providing support. I've formed a company, Source Tree Solutions, LLC and posted some information about what I'll be offering here. One of the tricky parts is that certain projects I will only take on as sponsored open source work but there are plenty of things specific to a business that I'm happy to build and let the customer own the source code.

Its a big scary leap not knowing if there will really be a market for what I want to do but I'm afraid if I don't try it I'll regret it. So, I'm going to sell my house in Tennessee and move into my younger brother's house in Charlotte, NC. He's got plenty of room and with my equity and living frugally I think I could make it a full year with no revenue if I had too, but I'm pretty sure I'll get at least some work. 

My Dad lives in Charlotte as well so it will be nice to be closer to him and if things really don't work out I can always take some non-mojoPortal related contract work or seek a new job. Lots of banking and other industry in that area.

I really work for a great company now, some of the nicest folks I've ever had the pleasure of working with and they are being very supportive of me. They want to keep me as long as they can and are even interested in having me do some remote contract work for them after I move. Though the work they need is not mojoPortal related its very comforting to be valued and have their support. So the timing of the move will depend mainly on the timing of selling my house but I'm shooting for the middle of October or any time thereafter.

To me its kind of an experiment in open source business models and I guess I'll find out over the coming year if I can make a living on top of the open source project I started. Maybe its just a pie in the sky dream but I'm determined to give it a try and do my best to make it work. I guess I'll be chronicling it here so stay tuned for more...

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Yesterday afternoon and last night was pretty scary in Tennessee. We had major tornadoes passing through. Luckily none came near my house but I did have major wind and hail. It sounded like it was raining rocks.

This was a view out my front door of my car getting hit by hail


and here is a view out my back door


Things were a lot worse north of here in Sumner county where a lot of houses were just blown away by tornadoes and 7 people were killed. I'm still waiting to hear from several people I know who live in the area where it was worst hit.

They are also saying that the weather pattern is in place for more of this in the coming months. Pretty scary stuff. At my house there is really no safe place to take cover from a tornado. Most houses in TN don't have a basement because there is solid rock just a few feet below the top soil.