Employee Spotlight: Sam Weber
Sam Weber, Systems Engineer
What’s your favorite programming language?
I would say C#, but that sounds cliché. I think SQL is fun because you can instantly see the results of your programming. SQL offers multiple ways to do something so it’s interesting to figure out the best and most efficient way to approach different queries.
What has been your favorite project at DMC so far?
We wrote a custom application for Daley Mohan Groble to sync content between their SharePoint Enterprise site and their new SharePoint Online site. The project also involved developing a custom web part that allows users to selectively sync specific folders or document libraries and the application then dynamically generates them and their parent sites on the SharePoint Online site. It was interesting because I got to work with a new API for SharePoint Online as well as a SQL database.
Do you have any engineering hobbies?
In college I worked with a friend in the music school to program an app that played music on a Kindle. We entered a series of chords that then dynamically generated continuous music based on the melodic input. The music matched the scenes in the book, so a dramatic passage in the book would be accompanied by a more angry or dramatic score.
What else do you like to do for fun?
I like watching action movies, although not terrible action movies. B+ rated action movies are pretty much the sweet spot for me. My favorite action star is Nick Cage, and his films Con Air, The Rock, and Gone in 60 Seconds are all definitely A+ rated. The worst action movies also star Nick Cage, for example Ghost Rider or The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call - New Orleans.
Trying new restaurants is a lot of fun. There are always trendy places to try in the West Loop or the Gold Coast. Some of the best meals I’ve had in Chicago have been at MK and Table 52. For sushi I like RA Sushi. My favorite pizza in Chicago is Pequod’s. I like their thin crust better than the deep dish, however, so I don’t know if that makes me a good Chicagoan.
Since you’re from New Jersey, how is Chicago different than the east coast?
Chicago has a slower pace and is not so ridiculously expensive. It has more parks and less bad smells. There are also fewer Jersey Shore guys in Chicago.
Are you referring to the residents of your home state's shore?
Yes, I guess I missed the bandwagon on that because I never made it to the tanning bed. None of my friends at home were anything like the guys depicted on The Jersey Shore, but if I had to be friends with one of the cast members from that show it’d have to be Vinny. He seems like the only one who is actually a decent guy.
What are your favorite things to do in Chicago?
Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park is a nice spot for a Saturday picnic. I also like walking around near the Armitage stop in Lincoln Park. There are a lot of interesting stores to check out and Chicago Bagel Authority has the best breakfast bagels I’ve had in the city.
What do you like best about working at DMC?
I like the variety of projects and challenging level of work. It’s great to come to work and continue learning new programming languages, programming practices, and software environments.
Do you have any hidden talents?
I excelled at Lego building as a kid and as a result can build anything out of Legos. My favorite video game is Mario Kart for Nintendo 64 and I’m proud to say that I can beat Wario Stadium in less than 30 seconds using a series of shortcuts (although some may call them cheats). Also, I can doodle a mean snake maze and I’m a decent cook.
Care to share any recipes with us?
1 boneless, skinless chicken breast
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 medium sized zucchini, cut into ~1/2 inch chunks
3 plum tomatoes cut into ~1/2 inch chunks
Salt & pepper
Season one side of the chicken breast with the basil, oregano, salt & pepper and then put aside.
Pour a couple of tablespoons of olive oil into a skillet or pan (enough to coat the bottom of the pan) and put it over high heat. Allow the pan and oil to heat up and then add the onion and garlic to the pan.
After about a minute put the chicken in the pan, seasoned side down. Now season the side of the chicken facing up and let that go for a couple of minutes. Once there is a good sear on the chicken flip it over and reduce the heat a bit. Add in the zucchini and mix it in with the onion and garlic (The chicken can just be left in the middle of the pan).
After a minute or two add in the tomatoes and a 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar. Stir everything around in the pan and then cover the pan.
After about 7-10 minutes remove the cover and take the chicken out of the pan. Turn the heat up to high and let the sauce in the pan reduce for 1 or 2 minutes. If you like a thicker sauce then you can add in tablespoon of butter at this point.
Once the sauce has thickened up a bit turn off the heat and pour it over the chicken and you're done!
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