The Importance of Friends

hen I originally sat down to write this editorial, I thought I was going to discuss interfaces and how developers could do a much better job creating them. Then I realized that this issue was coming out in September and that I should discuss issues we faced in the last year.

One of the most historic events in my country’s past was the day that John F. Kennedy was shot. There is a saying that people often quote: “Where were you when Kennedy was shot?” My parents will never forget the shock of seeing a president assassinated. Well, last year, on September 11, 2001, something happened that no one in this country, or the world for that matter, will ever forget.

On September 11, I was at a conference in San Diego. I clearly remember waking up that morning and turning on CNN to see the World Trade Center in New York on fire. I couldn’t figure out how the heck a plane could hit that building. I called a friend in his hotel room and told him to wake up and turn on CNN. We both fell silent as a second plane hit the second tower of the World Trade Center. My stomach sank when both of the towers collapsed and all of those lives were lost. Throughout the day, the shock that this had been intentional found its way around the world.

The days following this event were some of the most somber and stressful ever experienced in this country. Airports were shut down, the stock market was closed, and hundreds of people on the East Coast began rebuilding their lives.

In the ensuing months, this country began the process of rebuilding. The stock market re-opened, money was raised for the people who lost their families, and plans for a new World Trade Center were displayed a few days ago.

What did we learn during this catastrophe? In this editor’s eyes, I think we learned the value of friends, family, and freedom. During the days and weeks after this event, I had the chance to spend some time with friends and family and came to realize how fortunate I am to have such friends.

I also learned how small this world really is. During the ensuing days, I contacted many of my friends who live in this country and abroad. I called my friends from Houston, Texas to Sioux Falls, South Dakota and from Raleigh, North Carolina to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and especially the ones on the East Coast. Each time I contacted a friend, we reminisced about good times and reflected on the times at hand and ahead.

During the short time I have been working on this publication, I have met and worked with some wonderful people. This issue has authors from Switzerland, Italy, Texas, Pennsylvania, Washington and California. It was edited in Seattle and Cape Cod, produced in Italy, managed in Houston and shipped worldwide. I feel lucky to work with some great people from around the world.

So what is the purpose of this editorial? I guess the message I wanted to convey was for you as a developer to remember to spend time doing the things that really matter. Spend time with your parents, husband, wife, kids and friends. Take time off from the computer screen to go to the movies, take a walk on the beach, fly to the desert for some fun, read a book or just hang out. We work in the most fun industry in the world but we need to take time to remember what’s important.



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