I created this site so I could have a professional presence on the web to advertise my software development and computer services, document any development projects that I work on during my personal time, and blog about anything that interests me. As many IT professionals can attest to, when people meet you and find out that you work with computers, it can often lead to side jobs. Whether the job is to create a website for a local business or remove a virus from an individual's personal computer, this website enables me to hand anyone I meet a business card that directs them here to find out more about my background and what I can offer. I also hope to expand my network by meeting others who may stumble upon this site.
The front page of MikeRodey.com is where I will post anything concerning software development, technology, my technology services, and the site itself. The blog section will pertain to my other interests, including but not limited to: history, personal finance, the financial markets, geography, astrophysics, bicycling, video games, politics, deal hunting, philosophy, Latin, Spanish, and etymology. If I had not pursued information technology I would have wanted to earn a doctorate in history to become a history professor specializing in medieval Europe, particularly the crusading movement. I do have a bachelor's degree in history (along with computer science). You can expect some related blog entries. I realize that you may find these topics painstakingly boring and inappropriate if you came here looking for software development and technology information, which is why they will be limited to the blog section.
I am a relatively young professional who has worked in the information technology field since high school. I began as an IT intern at a meat processing facility. They ran a pretty small shop which allowed me to work with many different facets of information technology, albeit on a limited scale.
After graduating cum laude from Marquette University with a double major in Computer Science and History, I joined the meat processing facility as their only Windows developer, taking the place of the Windows developer who had fortuitously left the company just after I graduated. I had several responsibilities: programmer, analyst, database administrator, and help desk tier 2/3 support to name a few. This led to some long hours, but I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to learn a lot during those long hours.
That company eventually initiated a corporate restructuring, laying off several employees including myself. Shortly thereafter I found a job with a business software company that operates worldwide. The technology was better, the code was better, and the level of discipline used during development was outstanding. Our team employed techniques such as TDD (test-driven development, where production code is written only to get a previously written piece of test code to pass), continuous integration (the process of using automation to build software, run tests, and ensure that everything is as expected anytime new code is checked into the source code management system), and pair programming (no code was worked on individually, two developers worked together on all production code to help reduce bugs, share knowledge, and maximize maintainability).
Though I was grateful to be in such a professional environment, I nonetheless left that position after being contacted about a promising opportunity with a Fortune 200 manufacturing company. I am currently a programmer/analyst with this company on a team spread out throughout the country, building and maintaining software to support the company's business processes.
MikeRodey.com runs on the Drupal CMS (content management system) and qualifies as using the LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) solution stack. I am sure that anyone familiar with Drupal can determine I am using it just by looking at this site since I am using one of their core themes. Creating this site has been my first exposure to Drupal, and I have found it to be quick and easy to use. Drupal is also flexible enough to extend for custom needs if I ever need to do so.