Why is your domain name "geowayne"?

My domain name "geowayne" is a combination of my partner's* name and my own: George and Wayne. We've been together 36 years now—yes, even longer than there has been a "Pet Shop Boys"—and I'm still hopelessly in love with him.

George—that's him on the left in both photos—likes the Pet Shop Boys, too. He's just not nearly as fanatical about it as I am. His favorite music falls in the classical realm, with a special fondness for Johann Sebastian Bach.

The photo on the left (one of my favorites of us together) was taken in August 2007 by a friend of ours, professional photographer Mark Gebhardt. The photo on the right was taken at our wedding—once we were finally able to make it "legal"—by George's brother Richard. (And, yes, we do have a fondness for bowties, which, in a famous description by a fashion columnist for The New York Times, signal "an aggressive lack of concern for what other people think.")

*Call us old-fashioned, but even though I'm George's legal husband and he's mine, we still personally prefer the term "partners."

"Geowayne" is also a subtle nod to one of my proudest professional achievements, in which a software program that I designed, World GeoGraph, won the Critic's Choice Award as Best Educational Program at the 1989 Software Publishers Association Awards (aka the "Codies," the software industry's Oscars).

That was one of two Codie award-winners that I designed during the 15 years I was with the late, much-lamented organization known as MECC—the Minnesota Educational Computing Consortium (later Corporation). The second was Oregon Trail II, cited as the Best Adventure/Role Playing Software of 1996. And that one was even a huge best-seller. No, I'm not rich. Companies reap the profits—not the employees. But I've got nothing to complain about: it was a great company, I loved the work, and the pay was decent. And I'm proud of having helped create a couple of the educational software industry's all-time finest programs, if I do say so myself (although I'm hardly alone in that opinion). What more can you ask for?

Had enough of this particular tangent? Yes, I thought so.