It seems I’m falling into a pattern where at least one day a week, I will end up posting for two days worth of material. This is one of those days. At least I have a good excuse for not posting. It was Veracode’s Hackathon IX this week, and that means craziness.
Monday’s activity? Live-action Pac-Man. What you can’t see from the photos is that there is actually a player. Pac-Man was wearing an iPhone on his chest, connected to Webex, with the camera turned on and headphones in his ears. Someone connected to a WebEx gave instructions to Pac-Man on how to move through the maze.
The ghosts all had simple rules of how to move just like in a real video game. So the whole effect was very much like feeding quarters to Pac-Man machines as a 12-year-old. But it gave me a new appreciation for the life of the ghost—all left turns and no free will. It got, frankly, boring after a while… until random turns brought me in contact with Pac-Man.
I added a line to my Twitter bio recently that probably bears some explanation. Here’s my current bio:
Grammy Award winning product guy for Veracode, building the most powerful application security platform in the world. Has a Bacon Number of 3.
Most of this is self explanatory, as I’ve written about the Grammy and my employer before. But what the heck is a Bacon number?
Turns out, it’s an established measurement of celebrity that even has a (portion of) a Wikipedia article about it. The “Bacon number” of an individual is the number of degrees of separation he or she has from Kevin Bacon, where a degree of separation is usually understood as “has worked with.” You can use the Oracle of Bacon, online at the University of Virginia since the mid-1990s, to determine an individual’s Bacon number.
As for mine: I can justify it two ways. One is via former Boston Symphony Orchestra music director James Levine, with whom I share a few recording credits (including the Grammy), and who has a Bacon number of 2.
The second, and funnier, one is via the Soup Nazi, the Seinfeld character created by Larry Thomas. Larry Thomas has a Bacon number of 2, also, and he and I shared billing in Veracode’s trade show booth at RSA in 2013, when I spoke in the booth about application security. So there you go.