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johnvasilj


About Me
(The obligatory bio)


Pretty Nifty Dun - Springfield OH, March 2006
Photo by Jeff Kirkbride

I'm married with 3 children.  We also have 4 dogs; 2   Labrador Retrievers a Sheltie and a Cavalier King Charles. I have a BS degree in Computer Science from  UNC Wilmington   and have been an avid  Linux   user since 1994.  Even with my Linux enthusiasm I still find merit with some Microsoft products, I just find their corporate morality severely lacking and their arrogance annoying.  It's amusing to read how Bill Gates is now a huge philanthropist when in past years he was known to boast that he didn't make charitable contributions.  Schmuck.  My technology career has been focused on disruptive technologies - i.e. products that force the marketplace to adapt to a new way of thinking.  At first I was involved with the Linux industry, which forced everyone to think differently about software licensing and the concept of freedom with respect to use and distribution.  (Note - by no means was Linux the first "free" software, but Linux is certainly the most widely-known free software.)  After the collapse of VA Linux Systems (due to a management style that I was certain at the time could never see the light of day again) I found myself involved with another disruptive technology in the form of power line communications (PLC.)  PLC forces you to expand your concept of a data network and abandon many of the traditional limitations while adopting a few new restrictions.  After my most recent experience I can say with 100% certainty that lightning can strike twice, at least in the world of corporate management [sic] teams.  In summary, over the past 10 years I've worked for  Red Hat , started my own company (Linux Hardware Solutions) and then sold that company to  VA Linux Systems   in 1999.  (Update: in an attempt to spin things a bit VA is trying to reinvent themselves and are now known as "VA Software.")  I left VA in March of 2001 in the fallout of the dot-bomb crash.  I'm planning to write a book one day about my experiences at VA, the working title for the moment is "Down and To the Right. - Adventures in Corporate Mismanagement"  That ought to have meaning for any of you in the finance world.  I spent most of 2001 investigating various avenues of pursuit and then my wife and I (mostly my wife...) purchased  a children's clothing boutique, "Peanut Butter & Jelly" located in The Forum near Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina.  I also did some work with various family businesses and generally tried to keep busy.  From January 2003 through November 2004 I worked in various capacities at Telkonet (AMEX: TKO) in Germantown, MD.  My titles ranged from Interim CTO to Executive Technical Advisor and I represented the company at investment seminars and industry events in addition to presenting a paper at the 2004 NMCI Symposium in New Orleans.  In my activities as a founding member of the Telkonet Government Systems (TGS) group I participated in presentations and business development opportunities with John Vasilj for organizations such as EDS, the US Army Corps of Engineers, Northrup-Grumman, U.S. Navy (NMCI and ERP) and DISA.  I was responsible for the initial Telkonet work on FIPS 140-2 certification and made recommendations to senior management for corporate strategies that would manage customer expectations during the tumultuous periods of development inherent in a disruptive technology that is entering the marketplace.  These days I spend my time consulting with a few small businesses and developing real estate.

Things that interest me:

  • SCUBA diving - the area from Cape Hatteras to Cape Fear is known as the Graveyard of the Atlantic.  Wreck dives abound.  My favorite local dive shop is  Aquatic Safaris, good people with nice dive boats.  My favorite place to dive is Grand Cayman.  On previous trips I dove with Treasure Island Divers  but they fell victim to the hurricanes.  I've had a great time diving with the folks at Red Sail Sports, so check them out if you're headed that way.  I finally got around to putting together an online log book and posting some dive photos.
  • Flying - I could legally fly an airplane before I could legally drive a motor vehicle: I soloed 8 days after my 16th birthday but didn't bother with my driver's license for another 6 months.  I have just over 200 hours logged (the last 10 years have been a dry spell for various reasons) and currently hold an Airplane Single Engine Land certificate with an Instrument rating.  When time allows I intend to complete work on my Commercial certificate and add a multiengine rating.
  • Photography - I got my first SLR when I was 12 and other than a couple of years have been a fairly active photographer since then.  In 2000 I made the move into medium format and even purchased a used large format (5x7) camera.  I'm starting to work a lot more with digital, the new SLR bodies behave more like film cameras than the pocket cameras and give more of the look and feel of working with film.  I'm still working on my technique but am quite pleased with some of my results.  I've dabbled in underwater film photography but have yet to enjoy any significant success in that endeavor.  The recent purchase of an underwater housing for one of my older digital pocket cameras has accelerated progress significantly in that area.  The learning curve flattens out quickly when you can get immediate feedback and take dozens of shots per dive without having to worry about running out of film.
  • Hunting - I enjoy duck hunting and upland game hunting as well as an occasional deer hunt. I've been contemplating turkey hunting for a while but the stars haven't aligned on that just yet.
  • Dogs - My Labrador Retrievers are my most avid hunting companions. They are not only trained on waterfowl, they also know how to quarter for upland game, such as quail, grouse or pheasant. I really enjoy working with my dogs and running them in the  AKC Hunt Test program.
  • Fishing - Growing up on the coast in Southeastern N.C. I've always had a love and respect of the ocean (but I'm not terribly fond of the beach...)  I enjoy what I call "medium game" fishing. I like to go after fish like King Mackerel, Tuna and Mahi Mahi. Billfish are wonderful creatures, but I don't have the equipment for them. Smaller fish are considered bait in my book. :-) I've done a little fresh water fishing, but have yet to enjoy much success with that.  I'd like to learn to cast a fly, since that's supposed to be great fun on streams and rivers as well as the ocean.  If you're a sport fisherman, you really ought to join  CCA
  • Horses - Reining Horses in particular. My mother has a phenomenal facility. The 2002 NRHA Futurity Champion was born and raised at her farm, as was his daughter, the 2007 NRHA Futurity Champion.  She works closely with Shawn Flarida  (2002, 2004, 2005 and 2007 NRHA Open Futurity Champion, 2005 NRHA Open Derby Champion and 2006 NRBC Open Champion) and is just down the road from Mike McIntire (Third - 2004 and 2006  NRHA Open Futurity and an NRHA Top Twenty rider for the past four years) - Brian Bell (2006 NRHA Open Futurity Reserve Champion on Collenas Finest Tafy, Bryant Pace and Francois Gauthier (2004 Open Futurity Reserve Champion).  We have a Bloomer horse trailer and haul it to shows all up and down the East Coast.  Mom has horses in training with Shawn, Mike and Brian while I have horses in training with Mike.  Mike has an excellent group of assistants who help him coach us through getting our horses shown.  Reining is a wonderful family sport, providing an opportunity for all ages, interests and skill levels to participate.
  • Astronomy - I'd really like to combine my photography interest with astronomy but, like most things, I haven't had time to do that yet. I've got a pretty nice 'scope but can't even use it to its potential visually at this point, so I'm not about to dive into astrophotography just yet. Anyone who knows me will tell you that's about the most shocking thing they've ever heard, I rarely nibble at anything, I usually bite off big hunks at a time!  I recently purchased an 8" SCT with computerized GOTO mount that's a cinch to set up, so the stargazing time will be increasing significantly.


Photo by Waltenberry