Sara Ford's Weblog

My adventures embracing open source on CodePlex and at Microsoft

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  • Blog Post: Just when I thought I was out…

    They pull me back in . But in all fairness, I was the one who asked to be pulled back in. My game plan for my post-Microsoft/Seattle life was to attend graduate school full-time for a Masters in Human Factors (User Experience) at San Jose State while I trained for my 3 rd degree black belt with my grand...
  • Blog Post: Coding is not Kata

    I promised on Twitter to write a blog post explaining why “kata” was the wrong word for the “coding kata” problems presented at CodeMash this past week in Ohio. First and foremost, I absolutely loved the idea of these coding problems. The problems were very similar to those found in computer science...
  • Blog Post: Training for Nidan (2nd degree black belt)

    I’ve been wanting to write this post for a while. On Nov 6, I’ll test for my second-degree black belt in Shotokan Karate . Karate is a significant part of my life, so this belt exam means the world to me (especially after my leg injury 2 years ago). I’ve been doing Shotokan since I was 15, with the exception...
  • Blog Post: Karate and injuries - hard to get back into training

    Last year, I “broke” my leg due to stupidity . Stress fracture + sprained IT Band + quad muscle atrophy = 1 year of physical therapy, and some insults to injury . Most people relax by watching TV, playing video games, reading a book, or whatever it is that normal people do. I relax by either going to...
  • Blog Post: Walking through the dojo door is the hardest part

    That’s why our Sensei and many other high-ranking black belts said to me last night.  I torn my shoulder in Jan 07, then broke my leg in May 07, spending the entire summer on crutches.  The irony is that we won a world karate tournament back in Oct 2006, but there’s no way you would have known...
  • Blog Post: Team Kata Karate Tournament Video

    well, at least i got it posted to youtube in the same year as the tournament. This is the event that we trained for every Saturday morning at 7am for 9 months. Enjoy! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cVeHdvRBiLc
  • Blog Post: My Karate Kata Video finally Posted

    Here's the link to my individual kata video. Note that this isn't the event we had been training the 9 months for. That's another video, which i hope to post, well, um, yeah, as soon as i can, considering this only took me 2 months to post =) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FD_nhXbktyc Nothing like feeling...
  • Blog Post: Karate Tournament Results

    View Photos – I hope to have the video of our team kata and my individual kata posted this weekend. We took 1st place in the Women’s Team Kata .  It was really close, as the second place team did a fantastic job of Jion perfectly synch’ed.  We did Gojushiho Sho, which is a more difficult kata...
  • Blog Post: FSKA VIII World Karate Tournament this weekend!

    I’m competing in the FSKA World Karate Tournament in Las Vegas this weekend in Individual Kata and Team Kata.  We (the team) have been training every Saturday morning at 7am since March 25th.  I am so excited that this date has finally come.  Team kata is where three people do the kata...
  • Blog Post: Officially a Black Belt

    Black is an awesome color to wear! Here are some pictures from tonight’s ceremony. This blog post has moved to http://saraford.net/2006/01/19/officially-a-black-belt/
  • Blog Post: My First Karate Practice as a Black Belt

    Found out over the weekend that we had passed.  Everyone going for shodan (1st degree black belt) had passed.  Sweet. Technically, I’m not a black belt until the ceremony in mid-Jan when we have our belts and certificates handed to us.  However, last night when I got to practice, several...
  • Blog Post: How the black belt exam went

    I won’t know the results of the exam until our head teacher is ready to give them to us.  I’m guessing they are waiting for our checks to clear before we can go to the bank and pay the 20 buck to stop the check.  =) Wow, I’ve received several mails from blog readers asking me how it went. ...
  • Blog Post: The 13 days of training for my black belt exam on Nov 11th

    Here I am, 13 days away from my black belt exam.  I’m mostly concerned about having to do the 4 kicks each leg.  This is where you do front snap, side snap, roundhouse, and back kick without setting your foot down.  And of course they make you do it right at the end of the exam when you...
  • Blog Post: But Sensei, the dog ate my karate exam results

    Coming home today to see my karate exam results in 3 dozen pieces gave a whole new meaning to “the dog ate my homework.” What Kyle was able to find 2 hours later What Graham must have eaten
  • Blog Post: Passed my PreShodan exam... now off to the final black belt test

    I think they were just being nice to me and passed me.  =)  The results weren’t nearly as bad as i thought they were going to be.  It was kinda tough to focus just two weeks after Katrina hit.  I definitely had an off night, but apparently it wasn’t that bad. I even thought of quitting...
  • Blog Post: Finally, after 15 years, I’m going for black belt!

    It’s the pre-black belt exam, or what’s called the “pre-shodan” exam, that’s coming up in three weeks. <faints>  The pre-shodan exam is when the head sensei of the dojo grades the students, and those that pass go onto the real black belt exam.  And at that exam, the great, great, great...
  • Blog Post: Taught my first karate class all by myself

    I’m getting ready to test for 1st kyu, again, for the third attempt (first two attempts failed due to injury).  Yep, the rib has healed, and I’m back to running 3 miles 2-3 times a week.  I started going back to karate last month, only attending once a week, and this past month has been twice...
  • Blog Post: Apparently, it is possible to break a rib by coughing too much

    I’ve had a really bad cold since my birthday when I hiked Tiger Mountain. 5 weeks later, I’m still coughing. A week ago, I noticed some pain at a specific point in my ribs, like a side-stitch when you run too hard. Saturday, I went to the doctor for more cough suppressants. And last night, I called the...
  • Blog Post: What's new at Karate

    Since I got 15 minutes to spare waiting to leave for karate practice, I might as well blog about how things are going there.  I was supposed to test last Wednesday, but unfortunately the cough suppressant I was prescribed contained a drug I’m allergic too (technically it isn’t a drug allergy, but...
  • Blog Post: Passed my Karate Exam

    Just got back the results tonight from my 2nd Kyu exam. The only comments were about my back fist strike not having enough snap, but this is something I’ve been aware of. And there was a comment to make the motions of my kata a little bigger. The head sensei and I are going to watch the exam video the...
  • Blog Post: First Karate Rank test in 10 years tomorrow night

    Update 12/13/2004:   I won’t know whether i passed or not for another month.  The head sensei wasn’t there, so they videotaped the exam for him.  Not sure if that’s a good thing, since he’ll be able to rewind and watch everyone individually.  =)  I felt that i gave an good representation...
  • Blog Post: BusinessWeek Article Featuring My Blog

    The June 28 th edition of BusinessWeek has an article called Blogging with the Boss’s Blessing which features me and my blog. BusinessWeek interviewed me last week to discuss why I mix personal information (how I want an autographed photo of Richard Dean Anderson) with technical information (Accessibility...
  • Blog Post: My Dojo’s Youth Karate Tournament

    My dojo hosted an annual youth karate tournament at a local high school gym a couple of weeks ago. I volunteered to work the concession stand. I figured my superior Walt Disney World Popcorn Vendor cash handling skills weren’t all that rusted. Anyways, I like watching karate competitions. There were...
  • Blog Post: 3 Days in the Life of a SDET

    Zoe’s post Are you a good enough developer to be a Microsoft SDET got me thinking about what I do during a typical day. However, a 3 day period gives a much better impression of an average day in a SDET’s life than just some random day… Wednesday, May 26 th 9am – Arrive at work. I love my Gortex jacket...
  • Blog Post: Shotokan Kata Videos

    I found these videos a couple nights ago. These vidoes are pretty cool, especially considering i haven't seen many of the higher-ranking black belt katas before. Thanks to the Karate Union of Australia for publishing these videos on their website! http://www.ozwebart.com.au/kua/kata.htm
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