I'm Jorj Bauer (George F. Bauer, Jr. by birth, but Jorj has been my nickname for so long that I don't even think of myself as "George" any more).
I'm a Philadelphia-area photographic artist.
On December 16, 1995, I married Susan J. Talbutt.
I've been interested in photography most of my life (my uncle was a freelance photographer in New York City, which is probably some of the inspiration), but I never felt comfortable paying for supplies and developing of film while learning the craft. When digital cameras became available in the mid-90s, we bought one. It was an Apple QuickTake 200 which we got for "free" with points from an Apple credit card (on which we charged our entire honeymoon). It was, needless to say, not much more than a toy. With no flash, no zoom, and less than a third of a megapixel, it wasn't really the ideal camera. But it whet my appetite. In 2002 we upgraded to an Olympus D490Z 2.1 megapixel camera. It took marvelous pictures compared to the QuickTake, and I did manage to take some fairly artistic photos with it. In 2003 my wife and I took in a German exchange student for his 11th grade year. He also had a point-and-shoot digital camera, and his creativity inspired me to push my photographic skills. When the Digital Rebel was announced in early 2004, I knew I wanted one. In December of 2004 I started taking my photography seriously and haven't looked back.
My photographic druthers tend toward visual documentation of people and interactions. I enjoy immersing myself in the stories that others put before me, distilling scenes and visually documenting emotions and situations. In particular, I enjoy in photography what I also enjoy in engineering: putting together disparate systems that "shouldn't" or "don't" work together. In the photographic realm, that generally means dichotomous mismashes of digital and film workflows, as well as combining old (1800s) and new printing technologies. If I can find an emerging social trend born from technological advancements, all the better.

Gif of me playing violin

The picture to the right is of my mother, my (late) great uncle Joseph Milekof, and myself (quite a few years ago). Joe played, was concert master, and conducted on Vaudeville in New York and Philadelphia. He was quite a guy. My mom is a librarian for the Montgomery County Public Library, and, well, I gave up the violin after about 10 years.

Gif of my family and Sue
Also pictured is my mother's side of my family: Ruth Miner (my Grandmother), Emanuel Mendelson (my Grandfather), Anne Mendelson (my Aunt), Scott Bauer (my brother), Jane Bauer (my mother), and in front, my wife (Susan J. Talbutt for those of you that haven't been paying attention). My cat is conspicuously absent from this picture; she's probably eating food instead of being photographed (as she usually is).
Ruth was an amazing woman: she was always active in trying to right the wrongs of the government and corporate America wherever they pop up. Emanuel was a wonderful Grandfather, and was the primary reason that I have always been interested in technology; he gave me Edmund Scientific kits for birthday and holiday presents as a child (along with old mechanical alarm clocks that I left in pieces all over my house). Anne is a freelance writer; she's currently writing cookbook reviews for Gourmet magazine, and is the author of Stand Facing the Stove and Milk. Scott still lives with my mother; I don't know how they put up with me when I was living there. ;)
When this picture was taken (November 1994, I believe), Sue and I were living happily (if not somewhat cramped) in our one bedroom apartment in Center City, on the 10th floor of an apartment building. We've since moved on (thankfully) to a great house in Wyncote, PA.

My "day job" is for the University of Pennsylvania. As of September 2008, I'm officially an "IT Senior Project Leader". I manage the Engineering, Research and Development staff for Penn's central computing organization.
I've been at Penn since December of 1993. Before working for ISC, I held positions ranging from Network Technician through IT Director for the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences over a 15-year span.

I'm co-owner of DejaVu Software, Inc., a company that writes software for handheld computers. My business partner (Scott Harker) and I have been programming "on the side" for more than a decade.

I'm also sole owner of Bauer Photography, the professional arm of my artistic bent. It's a low-volume business, but keeps me legal when I do professional gigs. I've done weddings, headshots for books, kids' and adults' parties, and so on. I don't know that I'd want to have to make a living as a photographer but I really enjoy doing the work (in the doses I face presently, at least).

When I'm not feverishly programming, I'm usually shooting pictures, sleeping, commuting on the train or by bike, or eating. Occasionally I'm building a crazy circuit to do something strange.

Before I started working for Penn, I had lots of free time (and did very little programming). I spent a good chunk of this riding a Schwinn 21-speed between Philadelphia and Valley Forge. It started out as a way to kill 6 hours (about 20 miles to my dad's house in Audubon, lounging at his house for a few hours, and then 20 miles back, with a stop for lunch and/or dinner somewhere inbetween). After a few years of doing this once a week, 40 miles in a day clearly wasn't a problem; I literally felt like I could bike any distance as long as I didn't stop and sit down.

Hence the beginning of my bike trips. In October of 1994, my friend Eric and I decided to take a bike trip to meet my best friend from High School (Greg) in Dingman's Ferry, where he worked. The trip would be about 140 miles each way, which seemed daunting. I found a book with a suggested bike route, figured out how to get into the middle of the route, bought a new Trek 850, packed up far too many clothes, a sleeping bag, and a 15-year-old pup tent, and we were off. We took a train from downtown Philadelphia to West Trenton, and biked from there.

Well, I found out rather quickly that my 80-ish pounds of stuff was a real energy waster, and that my cheap saddlebags were a nuisance. My "I can bike anywhere" additude started to fall away as we hit real mountains (which west-coast natives know as "hills"). Eric was also in a hurry, as he wanted to make the entire trip in 4 days; I wanted to take the whole week. At the end of the second day, we copied the directions for Eric so that he could blaze ahead of me. Eventually, we both made it; Eric took a bus back to Philly from East Stroudsburg, and I biked back (while learning that I really needed a topological map, and that a road going straight where I wanted it to would take much longer than the route that goes around the mountain).

So, not having learned my lesson the first time, I decided to do it again. In August of 1995, another friend (Sparks) and I gave it a go. We made excellent time on the first half of the first day, but I injured my knee; we still made about 90 miles. Somehow, we managed to get to Dingman's Ferry on the second day. By this point I was in some serious pain, and my wife (then Fiancee) had to drive up and bring me back.

Determined not to let my knee get the better of me, I decided that a third trip was in order. In August of 1996, I tried again, this time with my friend Scott. In the middle of the first day, I thought that my knee was starting to feel strange, and decided we'd play it safe; we decided to bike to Easton instead (which is a modest 67 miles from our starting point), and then biked back. It must have been the weather, because my knee never really bothered me during the trip.

We repeated the experience to different locations over the next few years. On each trip I built successively more complicated computer navigation systems, some of which took pictures and uploaded them to the Internet over a CDPD modem, others using newer cellular technologies. In 2002 we covered somewhere between 300 and 400 miles on our trip.

My 2003 trip combined another hobby: amateur radio. I've always been interested in wireless communication, and all of my bike computer systems have incorporated some sort of cellular device. In 2003, the primary data relay mechanism was APRS, the Automatic Position Reporting System. It runs over amateur radio.

In 2004 I turned my focus on Photography, a long-time interest of mine which I hadn't devoted any serious time (or money) to. Out of this came my Photoblog and my photography business.