Hi! I’m Dan Schaefer. Engineer. Programmer. Writer. Marketing Specialist. Trainer. I wear a lot of hats, but my favorites are programming and writing.
I’ve worked full-time since graduating from college with a BSEE back in 1982. Many years, I know. But it seemed to go by in a rush. I’ve worked on many exciting projects, everything from testing fuel level sensors in military fighter jets to tracking multiple marketing campaigns. The technical work ranged from analog circuit board design to programmable digital logic to assembly level programming to web application design. I’ve held many positions, including engineer, field application engineer, engineering manager, product manager, trainer, marketing specialist.
And then, one day in October 2013, I found myself heading for the door. I was let go. I actually saw it coming for quite some time. The company continued to acquire more and more other companies. On a business level, it’s a good sign when your company can acquire other companies, but on an employee level, it’s generally perceived as a threat, due to redundancy. I’d survived a number of acquisitions, but alas, the Redundancy God finally caught up with me, and I was shown the door. Fortunately, my landing was cushioned by an extremely generous severance package. No complaints there.
It felt great to be out after 14 years of hard work; helping to grow the company from a startup to a huge public entity. It was a time to kick back for a few months, relax my mind for a bit, play some serious Halo on my Xbox, and ponder where my career was headed. During all this pondering, I found my mind continually drifting back to my two main professional passions: Programming and Writing.
So I got busy again. I started working with some startups, offering my services in exchange for equity, and not being paid a single dime. Cash started to become a problem, so I picked up some contract programming jobs. I started contributing articles to places like SitePoint and Business2Community. I also took on ghost-writing gigs. It didn’t take long before I found myself more busy than I’ve been in many years. No more time for Halo! Things got real busy in a hurry. So busy in fact, that I look forward to getting a regular full-time job so I can take a vacation!
So that’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.
Welcome to CodeAnimal!