Well, I had a little surprise waiting for me today when I checked my statistics. I’ve only been a blogger here on WordPress for a couple of weeks, and am still getting the hang of things. I guess I’m starting out ok, as Tina from Travels and Trifles nominated me for the “Very Inspiring Blogger Award!” Travels and Trifles is one of the first blogs I started following here on WordPress…Tina has a very natural, honest, and inspiring approach to nature photography. I really love her photographs of the redwoods of California.
Well, as part of this award, there are a few rules that must be followed.
- Link back to the blogger who nominated you. See Travels and Trifles! http://travelsandtrifles.wordpress.com/
- Post the award image to your page. See above.
- Share 7 facts about yourself.
- I truly love photography, and feel I don’t get nearly enough time to immerse myself in it.
- Of all the types of photography that interest me, bird photography is my true passion. Birds are such intriguing subjects, come in thousands of varieties, and exhibit a very broad range of behaviors. There is never an end to the scenes you might witness when photographing, or simply observing, birds.
- I live and breath technology on a daily basis. I started playing with computers and writing programs at the age of eight, and am largely self-taught. I’ve been designing and developing software professionally for about a decade. I am currently a software engineer at a large, multinational education company, developing technology that will fuel a new age with new ways of learning via the online classroom. In particular, I work on key aspects of technology that aims to learn about students habits, their strengths and weaknesses, automatically identify areas for improvement, and potentially even determine how best to turn those students weaknesses into strengths based on “outcomes”, the results of tests, quizzes, assignments, and other forms of assessment.
- I hope to travel some of the worlds great nature reserves in the coming years, to photograph the amazing landscapes, wildlife, and birds present at each one. Some of the key locations I hope to visit:
- The Columbia River Gorge – Stunning, lush green landscape, a great bear haven, the home of the Pacific Salmon Run, and home to some of the most majestic birds: Bald Eagles.
- Barrow Alaska Bird Haven – Thousands of species of birds fly north to Barrow, AK to breed and raise their young each summer…many unique species can only really be seen here in great numbers.
- The Arctic Circle – I’ve always loved icy worlds, and I’d like a chance to photograph Polar Bears.
- The Antarctic and South Georgia Island – One of my favorite birds are Penguins…such curious, communal, and funny birds. South Georgia is another great bird haven I’d really love to see.
- New Guinea – Another bird haven, this jungle is devoid of any major bird predators, and has allowed a host of Bird of Paradise species to develop unfettered.
- Madagascar – The rainforests of Madagascar are rapidly dwindling, and have some of the more unique habitats and wildlife to be found.
- The Serengeti – This one is pretty self explanatory!
- I enjoy trading stocks, commodities, and watching the stock markets. The depth and complexity of human economies, the ebb and flow of emotion and how it affects markets, the unexpected human responses to various degrees of news, from minor news evoking extreme response and major news evoking no response at all, makes the stock market a very intriguing place. For all the rationality humanity is capable of, I think were capable of a far greater degree of irrational behavior. 😉
- I love astronomy and astrophotography, and again feel I don’t get enough time with the night sky to fully explore our universe.
- Now for a more personal fact. I am currently suffering from hyper acute hearing and very severe, long-term, chronic insomnia. There are times, such as now, when I go for days…complete, entire days, without any sleep whatsoever. If I remember correctly, the last time I actually got any sleep, which for me is 2-4 hours, was last Sunday. Part of my problem is that I hear everything, and have no way of really filtering sound out. My worst nemesis are high frequencies of high pitch, and low frequencies of high pitch (such as the slightly distant rumble of an idling motor). Chronic insomnia has stripped me to my bare essence, leaving me with little more than my life, my job, and my photography. For years I’ve been unable to resolve the issue, and to date I have been unable to find a physician capable of diagnosing the root of my problem. Thanks to a friend recently, I believe I may have Cushing’s Syndrome. Cushing’s is the result of high Cortisol levels, caused either by a pituitary adenoma, tumors on the adrenal glands, tumors elsewhere in the body, or potentially just constant, high levels of stress (which, once you get into a self-inciting cycle like mine, is probably the most likely cause of my issue). Prolonged exposure to Cortisol has some severe side effects, such as rapid weight gain (I very quickly went from 185lb to 235lb around 2005), diabetes (I was diagnosed with pre-diabetes several years ago, although I believe a radical change in my diet has largely corrected that), along with hypertension, insomnia, and a host of other symptoms I’ve exhibited for some time. I hope, with this newfound knowledge, that I’ll be able to fix my sleep-deprived brain, restore my energy levels, and actually go visit those places I listed in #4!
- Nominate 15 other blogs and inform them about it.
As I have only been here on WordPress for a couple of weeks, and am still in the learning and exploration phase, I only know of a few bloggers. I’ll start with the few I know, and try to fill in the rest as soon as possible (as I continue to explore WordPress and find new inspiring blogs!)