“Outstanding”? (Or, The Delicate Act of Writing a Sequel)


It’s true.  For years, it’s been my dream to be a full-time creative writer, earning a living solely through the art of storytelling.  I guess every writer wishes for this.  But for most of us, we have day jobs that help us to pay our bills, forcing us to pursue our true literary passions in the early-morning hours, late at night, or on weekends–or simply whenever a moment arises where we can spare an hour or two and just write.


My day job is as a technical writer for a computer software company.  The material I produce in this capacity is, admittedly, drier than day-old toast, but it’s a comfortable environment, and the act of writing technical documents doesn’t drain any of my creativity, leaving me fresh and ready to explore the imaginary byways of my mind after hours.


I got started in the technical writing field just as the…

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More Facts on “This Day in New York Central History”

Pictured above is the Chicago Union Stockyard Gate.

May 18, 1922 The New York Central Railroad gains control of the Chicago Stockyards District by the purchase of the Chicago River & Indiana Railroad and the Lease of the Chicago Junction Railway. Read more on the Chicago River & Indiana Railroad

May 20, 1926 The Railway Labor Act becomes law.

May 20, 1964 The presidents of the Pennsylvania and New York Central Railroads sign an agreement in anticipation of the Penn Central merger that will provide job protection in the new company for Union employees. In turn the unions drop their opposition to the merger. Penn Central will be saddled with unnecessary employees throughout its life. Read more on the Penn Central Railroad

May 12, 1846 The Hudson River Railroad is incorporated with the goal of building a line from New York City to Albany. Read more about the West Side Freight Line where the Hudson River Rail started its journey to Albany. Read a great story about train travel between New York City and Albany.

May 11, 1932 The New York Central announces it will not pay a dividend in 1932. NYC will not pay a dividend again until 1942.

May 11, 1951 Due to dieselization, the New York Central lays off 1,230 workers at its West Albany Shops.

WestAlbany1909West Albany in 1909


Thank you very much to Mark Tomlonson for publishing this report every day.

WMATA unveils final ‘SafeTrack’ plan

Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) General Manager and Chief Executive Officer Paul Wiedefeld yesterday released a final version of his “SafeTrack” comprehensive maintenance plan for the agency’s subway system.

A combination of 15 long-duration track outages for key system segments and significantly expanded maintenance time on weekends, weeknights and weekdays, the plan crams three years worth of work into one year.

SafeTrack is aimed at addressing the Federal Transit Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board’s safety recommendations, along with tackling the transit agency’s deferred maintenance backlogs, WMATA officials said in a press release.

Plan implementation began following review and collaboration with the FTA, and consideration of traffic mitigation and alternative travel options by departments of transportation in D.C., Maryland and Virginia; regional law enforcement; the Office of Personnel Management; the Department of Homeland Security; and the General Services Administration.

In addition to the 15 “safety surges” that will require long-duration track outages, SafeTrack also calls for closing the Metrorail system at midnight every night rather than at 3 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights, and beginning certain repair projects at 8 p.m. instead of 10 p.m.

Each safety surge project will result in around-the-clock single tracking or shutdowns of selected track segments; they’ll also have a “significant impact” on rush-hour commutes, WMATA officials said. Many of the projects also will severely reduce train frequency, resulting in crowding and extended wait times.

The surges will begin in June and run through mid-March 2017, with the first project scheduled to run June 4 through June 16. That surge will involve continuous single tracking on a portion of the Orange and Silver lines.

Montreal transit agency plans improvements at Honore-Beaugrand station

The Societe de transport de Montreal (STM) on May 2 will launch a major refurbishment of its Honore-Beaugrand subway station in northeastern Montreal.

A rendering of the refurbished Honore-Beaugrand station.
Source: Societe de transport de Montreal

The work includes adding three elevators to improve accessibility, waterproofing the station’s underground roof, replacing the station’s ambient lighting, and demolishing and rebuilding slabs and staircases, STM officials said in a press release.

The agency’s board has awarded a $19 million contract to Groupe Decarel Inc. for the project, which is expected to wrap up in December 2017, STM officials said.

The station, which is the eastern terminus of STM’s Green Line, was opened in 1976 and currently serves 5.3 million customers annually.

STM is advancing a plan to improve accessibility at 12 stations, including Honore-Beaugrand, by 2017.

Michael Bartlett Joins TraceLink as Chief Revenue Officer to Further Accelerate Company’s Global Growth

NORTH READING, MA–(Marketwired – Apr 14, 2016) – TraceLink Inc., the world’s largest track and trace network for connecting the life sciences supply chain and eliminating counterfeit prescription drugs from the global marketplace, today announced that Michael Bartlett has joined the company as Chief Revenue Officer.

In this newly created role, Bartlett will drive revenue generation and the development of the worldwide sales organization, helping TraceLink to further widen its lead as the preferred provider of enterprise track and trace software for the life sciences supply chain. He will also lead the company’s partnership strategy in response to the rapidly increasing number of line management vendors, EDGE systems developers and track and trace consultants seeking to work alongside TraceLink wherever the company’s Life Sciences Cloud platform is sold.

“Mike has a stellar record of success at all stages of company growth and through a variety of sales channels, partnerships and markets,” said Shabbir Dahod, president and CEO of TraceLink. “His expertise selling SaaS offerings in regulatory-driven markets and leading highly motivated sales teams will propel our ability to achieve the aggressive growth plans we’ve established for 2016 and beyond. He knows how to leverage multiple go-to-market channels to build multi-hundred million dollar businesses — and his customer-first approach will create lasting value for all of the pharmaceutical companies, distributors and dispensers that we serve.”

Bartlett joins TraceLink from TrustWave Holdings, Inc., where he served as Executive Vice President of Global Sales and led a 225-person sales team that increased the Managed Security Service (MSS) business by 800%, tripled the size of the company’s international business, and grew the overall business from $100M to $250M over a 5-year period. These efforts contributed to the successful sale of TrustWave to Singtel in September 2015. Prior to TrustWave, Bartlett held the position of Vice President of Worldwide Sales for the Cascade business unit of Riverbed Technology, following Riverbed’s successful acquisition of Mazu Networks, where he was also Vice President of Worldwide Sales. Bartlett has also held sales leadership roles at HP Software, Mercury Interactive (acquired by HP in 2006), and Silicon Graphics, Inc.

“Within the past few years, TraceLink has become the undisputed leader in the newly emerging sector of track and trace for pharmaceuticals, making it an exciting time to join the company,” added Bartlett. “Life science companies are drawn to the company’s truly differentiated vision, technology platform and value proposition, which puts TraceLink in an excellent position to acquire market share faster than the competition. I’m eager to engage with TraceLink customers and partners across the globe, and to position the global sales organization to achieve the company’s growth goals for the future.”

To learn more about TraceLink, and how to meet global pharmaceutical compliance deadlines with a flexible serialization, track and trace, and reporting platform for the US, the EU, China, Brazil, Germany, South Korea, India, Turkey, Argentina and other countries, please visit www.tracelink.com.

About TraceLink
TraceLink is the world’s largest track and trace network for connecting the Life Sciences supply chain and eliminating counterfeit prescription drugs from the global marketplace. Leading businesses, including 16 of the top-20 global pharmaceutical companies, trust the TraceLink Life Sciences Cloud to deliver complete global connectivity, visibility and traceability of pharmaceuticals from ingredient to patient. A single point and click connection to the Life Sciences Cloud creates a supply chain control tower that delivers the information, insight and collaboration needed to improve performance and reduce risk across global supply, manufacturing and distribution operations. A winner of numerous industry awards including Deloitte’s Technology Fast 500 (ranked number 293 in 2015), the Amazon AWS Global Start-Up Challenge Grand Prize, and the Edison Award for Innovation in Health Management, the Life Sciences Cloud is used by businesses across the globe to meet strategic goals in ensuring global compliance, fighting drug counterfeiting, improving on-time and in-full delivery, protecting product quality and reducing operational cost. For more information on TraceLink and our solutions, visit www.tracelink.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.

TraceLink is funded by FirstMark Capital, Volition Capital and F-Prime Capital.