Praises to the people

December 29, 2009

I am aiming to use this blog only for technical matters. No opinions, politics, activism. However, I would like to create some posts regarding people, such as this one. These posts will still revolve around technical aspects, but will rather focus on people, motivation, collaboration.

This particular post is a way of showing my appreciation to people who have had (and still have) a positive influence on me, mostly on a professional level, but not only that.

As an active member of the Computer Science Department, the Automatic Control and Computers Faculty, I’m being able to meet a lot of interesting and highly capable people. These interactions have positive results: new things learned, new ways of thinking, new opinions etc. These changes of ideas and opinions have a positive impact on myself as well as on them.

Out of the people I’ve met and interacted during these years, there is a subset of truly remarkable people who I’m proud to know and to hang around with. Their views, skills, opinions, energy, effort, involvement are motivating and helping me to achieve higher and higher goals. It is in this effervescent environment that I am continuously developing new skills, polishing and upgrading old ones, finding and learning new things, resulting in my always being jolly and ready for action.

The list below is not exhaustive. There are other people which I am proud to know and whose actions have a profound influence on me. The people below are, however, “creme de la creme”. So, without further ado, here are my “praises to the people”.

Mircea Bardac is what I would call “the perfect technologist”. If I were to write a piece code regarding Mircea that would be mircea_bardac == technology. While some other people, including me, are technically proficient, Mircea is one of the most equidistant people when forming a technological opinion. Some people are open-source fans, web fans, CLI fans etc., but Mircea is bound to give an reasoned opinion on a technical matter. He is always on par with the new technological advances and solutions and is usually the driving force for implementing a new idea. Whatever the problem, Mircea has one good solution for it (at least).

Andrei Buhaiu is a self-proclaimed gamer, lazy Moldavian, anti-anything and pro-everything. He is among the funniest people I have ever met and he’s the person you can’t feel sad around. His funny faces, lines, quotes and general movement make him the one person you want to have around. He is as able to make fun of others as he is to make fun of himself (_very_ able). Add to this his imaginative nature and technical proficiency and you’ve got a perfect combination of the Mad Hatter, Mark Twain, Larry Wall, J. R. R. Tolkien and George Carlin.

Vlad Dogaru is one the smartest people I’ve known. Smart as in intelligent – his tastes for clothes are even worse than mine. His intelligence is only surpassed by his heavy cursing and drinking abilities. He is what I would call a “cult” computers’ person: hacker, geek, engineer, scientist, advanced user. He is the Vim expert to turn to and one of the people who spend the most amount of time browsing the “technical Internet”: blogs, IRC, technical sites etc. He possesses an astonishing speed of learning new things (which is funny because he is one of the most conservative people I have ever seen when dealing with certain subjects). He is the one I would choose as a partner if I were to take part in a technical competition.

Bogdan Doinea is the happy-camper, go-getter, make it happen, let’s do this kind of person. His enthusiasm, passion and optimism are a driving force for any project or activity. He is one of the few people I know who can actually sing, and this is a big plus. He is very quote-friendly and he’s a wonderful presence in any discussion (be it live or online). And, despite being caring about his looks, Bogdan is very caring about his professional level: his presentation and training skills are some of the best around. With good technical background and a solid desire to learn more and teach more, he is a team must-have.

Alex Eftimie (or 3ftimie), the self-styled “Lord Ubuntu”, is an ardent support of FOSS, open standards and localization/internationalization (l10n, i18n), the latter of which is the cause of funny frictions within the ROSEdu community. Quite the opposite of Andrei Buhaiu’s “might-oriented” approach (do things first, ask questions later), Alex uses a cool, rational, “let’s think it through” approach. He does, however, possess an incredible amount of enthusiasm and will power and is a major contributor in many projects (maybe more than me, which is not necessarily a good thing). Resourceful, passionate, intelligent, hardworking, Alex is the most reliable person I know.

Lucian Grijincu is challenging both Alex Eftimie as FOSS supporter and Tavi’s sleeping habits. His life style is somewhat similar to that of a vampire: he sleeps during the day, works during the night; as of this point there is no confirmation of him drinking blood, though I haven’t yet seen him eat garlic. Lucian is simply put a hacker, in the original meaning of the word: a person who likes tweaking stuff, learning new things, solving problems, using a non-conventional/hackish approach whenever the opportunity arises. He is amongst one of the most technically proficient people I know and possesses an almost unquenchable thirst to learn new things. He does have his ups and downs during his involvement, but once he gets started he’s like hurricane: an unstoppable, full throttle, goal oriented “beast”.

Alex Juncu, better known as AJ, is, jokingly “the person who does the most things and finishes none of them”. Admittedly, the main problem when working with AJ is not persuading him to do something, but rather persuading him _not to_. He can easily be compared to a flip-flop due to his two states of spirit: overly depressed and overly excited. In his overly excited state, AJ is like the newest model of Ferrari: high speed, intense sensations and rapid reach of the destination. So, as long as you keep him in the overly excited state, his energy level is similar to that of a supernova; this roughly translates to having access to the human resources of a multi-national company. AJ is the person mostly likely to respond with “For how many days?” to the request “Please don’t fall asleep.”

Mihai Maruseac, better known as MM, is easily identified by his “infinite blog”. His blog is an infinite set of sets. Each set is, in its turn, infinite. So, you’ve got the master of infinity right here. MM, is like AJ, a do-everything-you-can kind of person; the only difference being that he also blogs about it :-) . I think MM has one of the highest productivity when thinking of end-result with respect to time consumption. He is highly intelligent and possesses the widest array of technical skills and knowledge, ranging from physics, mathematics, logic, computer science and philosophy. He is well reasoned in his debates and his analytical approach is perfect for feedback, advices and suggestions.

George Milescu is a model of involvement and “political consideration”. He’s always careful about not stepping on other people’s toes (unlike me) and he’ll take all opinions and constrains into consideration before making a decision (again, unlike me). He does have some conservative views, but he is nevertheless a major contributor to the success of new ideas, approaches and projects. His high effort sustainability, involvement, reliability make him an invaluable member in a team. He’s got great teaching skills (he’s fun and energetic) and he’s my partner of choice in a teaching/training activity. On the fun side, he has a remarkable talent of being serious when making a joke and its fun to see people (myself included) reacting as if he really meant what he said.

Andrei Pitiș is the most no-nonsense, straight to the point, make it happen people I’ve met. While I usually aim for a no-nonsense approach on things, Andrei’s “let’s not waste time on this, let’s get to the other thing” attitude is unparalleled and refreshing. He’s the perfect example of a commercial environment getting things done properly and in time. He’s always striving to make things better and, while this does imply pressure, stress and effort, the end results are worth it. He’s a “cult” technical person, due to his vast experience, knowledge and human connections; his overall view, opinions and suggestions on a given subject are very useful and beneficial.

Vlad Posea is a cool approach kind of person. Vlad is highly analytical and rational and his actions are always centered on making a certain activity or context work better. A perfect example of cultural creative, Vlad is concerned about society, the environment, education and many other things. He is highly involved and reliable in his activities and is one of the best people to team up with. While sometimes pessimistic, Vlad is always there to lend a helping hand and his involvement is of great importance. Vlad has done a great job bridging the gap between the commercial and the academic environment with ASPI‘s Stagii pe Bune program. If there were a Public Relations office in our faculty, Vlad would probably be one of its major contributors.

Octavian Purdilă, better known as Tavi, is the most knowledgeable and proficient person when dealing with operating systems, low-level/system programming and software engineering. A “pure” hacker, Tavi is the person with the heaviest impact on my professional/technical skills. When I met him as a teacher for the Operating Systems Design course I was already keen on operating systems and related subjects. It was during that semester, however, that I developed an (almost) obsessive passion for operating systems concepts and system programming that’s lasting until this day. Tavi is all-around knowledgeable and his rational consideration, objective views and technical expertise make him an invaluable partner. Due to his helpful nature, non-patronizing suggestions and to-the-point responses, he’s one of the best people to turn to when facing a technical problem.

Daniel Rosner is a self-proclaimed non-technical person who always uses the word “geeky” for something requiring deep technical skills. He is fond of working with people (mostly to drive them crazy :-P ), taking part in all sorts or projects and organizing events and activities. He’s one of the most active people I know. He barely sleeps (as he admits) and he’s always doing one thing and thinking of at least two others. As someone put it “Does he ever rests? I’ve only seen him walking.”. His huge reservoir of energy had led some to think his body is not carbon-based, but rather kerosene-based. Considering the astonishing number of projects he’s an active contributor to, that may not be far from the truth. His active nature and deep involvement turn him into a valuable, albeit highly unstable asset of a project. As proof of his desire to get involved, I have coined the following phrase: “Daniel is always asking me for help when he’s doing something. He’s always offering me his help when I’m doing something”.

Răzvan Rughiniș is the person I’m having the most similar and different opinions with. We’re always unconditionally agreeing on certain aspects and heavily disagreeing (mostly quarrelling actually) on others. We have similar visions and goals but different approaches to reach them (this turns out to be a good thing as we don’t clash even more). We do, however, make a very good team and manage to get a lot of things done. Mostly through conflict, rather than compromise, we manage to get to an agreement and rally a lot of resources in a given project or activity. As part of the same team, we manage to get a lot of things done and prove that “the whole is more than the sum of its parts”. With his access to a lot of resources, his good motivational skills and goal oriented nature, Răzvan is the one who can provide substantial help for achieving the most in a given amount of time. If there would ever be a “Dynamic Duo” competition, he would my team mate.

Cristian Săndescu is a highly proficient, goal-oriented individual. His professional portfolio is impressive as he earned certifications in networking, security, Windows administration, Linux administration and many others. One of his most impressive characteristics is his all-around knowledge base: networking, security, system administration, programming, marketing, consulting, training, delivering presentations. Just like Tavi, his sympathetic and helpful nature, rational approach, and non-patronizing answers make him one of the person to call upon when facing a problem. Cristi’s vast experience, knowledge, presentation skills and reasoned opinions make him a valuable partner for discussions of any kind. He’s the person I’m always fond of talking to on a variety of serious subjects (for non-serious subjects there’s Andrei Buhaiu).

The above descriptions are still opinions and are thus highly subjective. Yet these descriptions are the way I see those people and are having a positive influence on me.

Who are the people that you are proud to know and have a positive influence on you?

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posted in Collaboration, People by Răzvan Deaconescu

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2 Comments to "Praises to the people"

  1. vlad wrote:

    Thanks for your kind and rather undeserved words. I think this post, among many other of your actions show which is your positive influence on us. You are the best motivational speaker i know. I think after this article Daniel spent the new year working on projects and won’t sleep again for another week:) and AJ will start finishing things. I think i’ll keep this article saved to take a look at it whenever i’m very pessimistic:) Also, you know, a pessimist is an informed optimist.

    Happy new year!


  2. Me wrote:

    Why do you like to believe that Vlad has bad taste for clothes? I think he dresses pretty ok, unlike you … :-P


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