Technical Difficulties from on Top of the Mountain
  Things are looking up
I've been hunting around for some contract work recently, and things are definitely improved from two years ago (when I was last seriously hunting). While I would like to continue to dedicate myself to the startup full time, my finances do not permit it, so I've been trying to do some freelance on the side.

The projects haven't been very big so far, but there's been some work which is always good. I've been hunting around on which seems to be the insider's job market at the moment, and responses to inquiries there have been far more positive.

Two years ago, I probably sent out > 100 queries, with specific targeted cover letters, to projects that I was qualified for. Out of all that effort, I think I got one or two automated responses along the lines of: "thank you for your submission, we have received your email and it will be processed in the order received ..." After about a month of that, I quit scanning the boards, got out my old phone list, and called absolutely everyone I'd ever worked with before. That got me a five month project, paying pretty well.

This time around its completely different. I get lots of personal emails, thanking me for applying. People that want to keep my resume on file even when they've filled the position. Personal notes from the CEO, saying he's looking at candidates. Callbacks. Even headhunters are calling.

Today was quite unusual, I had the headhunter call me three times. First to confirm I was still interested, then to check on general availability for a phone interview, then to call back with a specific time. Disney is taking months to fill this position, its pretty unbelievable. Mike (the headhunter) was explaining that they're too busy to do any hiring for the next several weeks. Gee, sounds like they need to hire somebody ...

Also did a phone interview with a poker site startup. These guys called me after I sent in a three page cover letter and no resume. It sounded informal and my response turned out to be appropriate. Ended up about 20 minutes me selling them and 30 minutes them trying to sell me. Lets see, no industry ties/experience/contacts, will have to build market share from scratch, business plan doesn't have clear exit strategy so no real VC interest, and no defensible differentiation. And they want me to work for a mix of equity/cash, leaning towards equity. Hmmmm.

Here's to a better 2004 and beyond.

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Paul Graham's Essays
You may not want to write in Lisp, but his advise on software, life and business is always worth listening to.
How to save the world
Dave Pollard working on changing the world .. one partially baked idea at a time.
Eric Snowdeal IV - born 15 weeks too soon, now living a normal baby life.
Land and Hold Short
The life of a pilot.

The best of?
Jan '04
The second best villain of all times.

Feb '04
Oops I dropped by satellite.
New Jets create excitement in the air.
The audience is not listening.

Mar '04
Neat chemicals you don't want to mess with.
The Lack of Practise Effect

Apr '04
Scramjets take to the air
Doing dangerous things in the fire.
The Real Way to get a job

May '04
Checking out cool tools (with the kids)
A master geek (Ink Tank flashback)
How to play with your kids

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