Greg's diary
September 1993
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In September 1993 I travelled with my family to the USA, partially to use up free tickets that I had accumulated during my Frequent Flyer days, and partially to celebrate a “hundredth birthday party”: my 45th birthday was on 28 September 1993, and my friend Roberto Tomasi (also known as Robersi Tomato) celebrated his 55th birthday on 26 September 1993.

Friday, 24 September 1993 Sunnyvale
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Today was the hundredth birthday party! On Sunday Roberto will be 55, and I'll be 45 on Tuesday, so of course we celebrated on the wrong day.

Who came? I recall Maddi Hausmann, Kevin Coughlin and a number of other old Tandemites. And then there was this unsavoury looking bloke across the road, looking at the school. Drug dealer? Paedophile? While I was discussing it with Roberto, he came across the road to us and said “I see there's a party going on here. Do you have a drink for me?”. I left Roberto wondering what to do about the bloke, but eventually let him in. It seems that he didn't recognize my father, who had flown in specially from Surabaya to be at the party.

In typical Silicon Valley style we had ordered Chinese food from a place that delivered—eventually. The driver got lost looking for 1023 Mango, Sunnyvale, and was an hour late.

Monday, 27 September 1993 Sunnyvale → Walnut Creek → Berkeley → Sebastopol → Sunnyvale
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Up early and off with Dad to Walnut Creek, where I met Jack Velte and Bob Bruce, respectively vice-president and president of Walnut Creek CDROM. Jack had published my CD-ROM of ported software for UnixWare, and we spent a bit of time talking about what else we could do together. They had just started hosting a new free software project called FreeBSD, and I saw a particularly pale individual come out of a darkened room with a monitor spewing forth what looked like build output. It seems that he, probably Rod Grimes, was just building the system.

From there we went off via a very circuitous route to Berkeley, where we found Kirk McKusick's house and briefly exchanged one of my CDs for the famous tee shirt with the BSD daemon spearing the AT&T logo. He didn't invite us in. I noted an RG-58 cable coming out above the front door and going to the unit next door (a distance of only a metre or so), where his partner Eric Allman lives.

Then on to Sebastopol to meet with Tim O'Reilly, who had invited me to lunch. He wasn't there: it seems that he had forgotten the appointment and taken the day off. He came in quite quickly and we had lunch nearby, talking mainly about his Icelandic horses.

Back in the office, he showed me his latest toy, some graphical tool that could access things across the Internet. I recall it running on Sun workstations with monochrome displays, and I didn't share anything like his enthusiasm. I think it must have been my first acquaintance with the World Wide Web. Clearly Tim had more vision than I did.

I had then intended to visit Rich Morin somewhere near Palo Alto, but it had been a surprisingly tiring day, and we just returned to Roberto's in Sunnyvale.

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