Friday, March 6, 2009

On Recurring Rage...

It's happening all over again! For the first time ever! Embarcadero is hosting another virtual conference, but this time for the dataheads out there (you know who you are). Dubbed  "DataRage", this  virtual conference is three days of online technical sessions focused on database development and data management issues. And, like its CodeRage predecessors, it's free. Looking at the agenda, it's nice to see that so many sessions are about one of my products, ER/Studio. You ought to check it out.

Speaking of ER/Studio, the last time I blogged (wow, has it really been that long?), I had just arrived in Iaşi for a couple of weeks of planning with my ER/Studio development team. While watching this past Sunday's episode of The Amazing Race (which took place in Romania), I was reminded that I haven't yet posted the pictures I promised to share. So, here goes nothing.

Târgu Secuiesc

We started out on a 1000 km trek across the Romanian countryside early on a Saturday morning. Really early. After a few of hours of driving, we decided to stop for breakfast in a quaint town called Târgu Secuiesc. It had some of the most colorful buildings I saw during my two-week stay in Romania.

This town is in the part of Romania where the majority of the population is of Hungarian descent There was a statue of a famous Hungarian hero, Áron Gábor, in the square near where we parked the car.


Now that our stomachs were full, we set out to do what all good tourists do when in Transylvania - find Dracula. What better place to find Dracula than in what's come to be known as "Dracula's Castle", near Bran?

We were a little disappointed to find out that the castle seemed to be more about Queen Maria than the famous vampire. But, we were happy to have seen it nonetheless, as evidenced by the smiles on our faces, below. Here, you can see some of the key members of the ER/Studio management team - me (Program Manager, Modeling and Design Solutions), Kim Ouye (Vice President, Development), Jim Brodrick (Director, Development), and Jason Hahn (Software Development Manager, ER/Studio).


Our next stop was Braşov, where we planned to spend the night. We took what we were told would be a 20 minute walk (yeah, right) to a cable car from which we could get a vista of the old part of the city.

After getting a bird's eye view, we spent the evening wandering around the cobblestone streets. One of the highlights was the famous "Black Church" (Biserica Neagră) , which ironically (given its age - it dates back to 1477) sported a clock dated 1999.


The next day, we set out to find the birthplace of the inspiration for Dracula, Vlad the Impaler. He was allegedly born in the citadel of Sighişoara.

This medieval city was probably my favorite stop on our adventure. Its landmark is the Clock Tower, which was built in 1360.

Bicaz Canyon

We spent the rest of Sunday returning back to Iaşi through the Bicaz Canyon in the Eastern Carpathian Mountains. Our first stop along the way was at Red Lake (Lacul Roşu) whose name comes from the reddish alluvia deposited in the lake by the Red Creek. Kim (our VP) told us that, on previous visits, he had both walked around the lake and paddled on the lake, and now he wanted to walk on the lake. Before we could stop him he was wandering out on the ice in the middle of the lake.

Our last stop in the mountains was Lake Bicaz, the largest artificial lake in the interior of Romania. Kim mentioned there was restaurant that he was told was located "in the middle of the lake". We found it, but discovered that, while not quite in the middle of the lake, it was in the lake - on a boat. Unfortunately it was closed, so after enjoying the view for a bit, we headed back to Iaşi.


Ed Merks said...

Very cool Kenn. Thanks for sharing the experience.

Zsu said...


great entry. I'm only writing this because I am from Sighisoara - haha ;)

Greetings from Transilvania!

anonymous said...

hi there!

i am dan (well, daniel) a canadian born in romania! and the only romanian national who ever worked for borland (2000-2006) - and in databases too!

happy to hear from you guys, to bad it wasn't to be to work together... :-)

best regards,
dan marinescu