Rachel Pildis

2015 Warrenville Firecracker 5k Getting ready to run one of our monthly 5k races - we've done one a month since January 2013. The not so speedy results can be viewed at Athlinks.

I'm a (one-time) Jeopardy! champ. If you want to see exactly how I did, visit my entry in the Jeopardy archive, which includes my winner's blog. And, of course, I did get my picture taken with Alex Trebek!

Welcome to my home page, now over 30 years old! Back then, I was an academic, but I have been a software developer since the late 90s (not that astronomers are not software developers by default!). Most recently, I went from being a jill-of-all-Microsoft-trades at high-end design/furniture firm to working as a developer in the reporting services group at Morningstar.

When I'm not at work, I fiddle with a variety of web pages in my spare time (including one for the trip I took with some of my extended family to Lithuania, where both my paternal grandparents emigrated from) and live the DTOP condo life in the funky village of Oak Park. As always, my partner in crime is my my wonderful spouse (a.k.a. Don Anderson), who makes everything in life sweeter.

I am originally from Des Moines, Iowa. I then did the physics geek thing up north at Carleton College and spent 5 years becoming Dr. Pildis out east at the University of Michigan. Two years of being an astronomy postdoc convinced me that the time had come to move on and do something else with my life.

Des Moines, through the eyes of suck.com

ESCAPE FROM ACADEMIA -- Believe it or not, even astronomers have useful skills. For some reason academics have been brainwashed into thinking that the only non-university job they are qualified for is McDonald's. Not so! Here's why I left and what my resume looks like these days.

If you're ready to slow down your browser, I have a selection of self-indulgent, bandwidth-sucking pictures that I haven't been updating much now that there's Facebook and other social media:
2012: our November trip to San Juan A very few pictures from 2003
2011: early July and mid-September garden pics on Flickr, plus our fall trip to the Pacific Northwest 2002 pictures: part 1, part 2, and the family trip to Lithuania
2008: a wintertime trip to old Mexico and more miscellany Pictures from 2001: analog and digital
2007: our apparently annual pilgrimage to New Mexico, a Google map of our summer vacation, a few MORE pictures of our rehabbed bedroom, and more miscellany Pictures from 2000
2006: White Sox Spring Training plus another trip to southwestern NM, my surprise birthday party (plus a flashback to the 80s), garden photos from April, May and June, July, and August and other Soxy (and catty) stuff Scenes from Summer 1999 and Halloween 1999
2005: our trip to southwestern New Mexico, garden stuff, our new pond, and everything else Winter fun and old stuff
2004: winter cross quarter, spring equinox (and trip to St. Louis), spring cross-quarter (and SLC visitors), summer solstice with the new Miata Some pictures of Beaune, France, by popular demand

Last update: 17 May 2016