Alex spends much time trying to have an interesting life but the level of success achieved in this task is debatable.   Sure, he has excuses since being in graduate school forces one to live a relatively sedentary life style for want of economic fortitude and temporal freedom, but his passion of traveling is somewhat aided by the tiny discounts afforded to him due to that very status: student.

Photo of Alex circa 1990Alex loves music but has musical tastes that are not always compatable with those around him.  He has a large digitized collection of music in various genres and a bunch of near-obsolete media.  He began listening to what is often referred to as "world music" around his 11th birthday because his uncle gave him an Enya CD.  He believes this fostered both an affinity for unconventional melodies and a mild indifference to the lyrical content of music.  These days, he is content listening to anything that surprises him, particularly if it has an unconventional melody and is played in anything but 4/4 time.

His favorite pastime is reading books and he does it fairly frequently.   He will read all kinds of junk if he finds the time, though his favorite genre is character driven sci-fi (like 'Red Mars').  This interest was planted by his first reading of the Ender's game series and then later nurtured by his encounters with Philip Dick and Kim Stanley Robinson.  Most recently, he has loved the Neal Stephenson's Baroque Cycle.

Movies play a big role in Alex's life.  When he first moved to the US, the aunt and uncle he lived with owned a video store.  He learned English by watching VHS versions of films such as Batman, Back to the Future, Who Framed Roger Rabit, Willow, and Howard the Duck.  Alex could totally relate to these films.

Alex has wasted a bit too much of his life "surfing" the web.  Google Reader has made this task much quciker and smoother.  On occasion he likes to share what he's found.  Google Reader has made this much quicker and smoother too: