Hola, I'm Duane

A few interesting things about me:

I've developed software used by over 40 million people, including the previous media engine in Yahoo! Messenger.

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I co-wrote the previous #1 plugin for WordPress (out of 20,000), WPtouch, and eventually sold it.

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I've visited 44 countries in the last seven years and currently live in Valencia on the eastern coast of Spain.

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I do part time research on the gut microbiota, insulin resistance, and metabolic diseases.

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I am a published concert, travel, portrait, and landscape photographer; I currently shoot Fuji XT lenses.

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Next Adventure: Walking the West Highland Way in Scotland

Written on January 2nd, 2018

People keep asking me what my next travel plans are, so I thought I would give a little update. While I used to only come back to Canada for a month or two at a time, now that I have my own cottage in Canada I tend to spend longer periods here. Plus, while last year I dabbled in renting my cottage out while I was gone, it’s really only the summer months that seem to appeal to most renters; so it makes more sense for me to travel then so I can rent my cottage out and at least […]

Walking The 800km Camino de Santiago Between France and Spain

Written on December 23rd, 2017

It’s 7am in the morning, and the trail in front of me is barely lit by the LED headlamp I’m wearing on my head. I’m up earlier than I have been over the last few days, mainly due to the orchestra of snoring in my albergue room throughout the night. Yesterday I limped my way into town, hobbling in pain due to sore knees and a pair of star-crossed blisters on my feet. I had been chewing ibuprofin for the last 12 hours, hoping it would take away some of the pain in my knees and allow me to continue […]

Building an Outdoor Farmhouse Patio Table

Written on September 15th, 2017

I’ve been in the market for a new outdoor patio table for quite some time. Unfortunately for me, I didn’t really want to spend a huge amount of money on one, which is why I originally was looking at buying a used one. As I live in a cottage, I really wanted a wood table for my outdoor patio as opposed to a metal one. I spent the last few weeks looking at used offerings in the area, but everything looked pretty beat up or just in an older style that wouldn’t really fit in with my decor. I started […]

Two Weeks Until The Camino De Santiago

Written on March 21st, 2017

In less than two weeks from today, I’ll be leaving St. Jean Pied de Port, France and starting my 800 kilometre journey to Santiago de Compostela. People keep asking me if I’m excited, and a small part of me at this point definitely is. But I typically don’t start feeling real excitement or butterflies until I’m on the airplane heading to my destination. I have most of the logistics for my trip figured out, including a late night shuttle from Biarritz, France to St. Jean, and a nice bed and breakfast in St. Jean Pied de Port, France, for my […]

Packing for the Camino de Santiago

Written on January 30th, 2017

While I still have roughly two months before I head to St. Jean Pied de Port, France to start the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage, I have been focusing a lot of time recently with packing. I’d like to start being able to do some practice walks with a full pack shortly, which means I need to get my pack to roughly the same weight as it will be when I arrive. Of course, I could just fill it with rocks for now, but since I already have many of the items with me at home, I thought I’d just finish […]

Camino de Santiago

Written on January 9th, 2017

In about 90 days, I’m heading to London, England, to spend my birthday. As you get older, birthdays become less and less important I find, certainly not enough to warrant a huge drunk at the bar. So I thought this year I would spend my birthday in another country, hopefully meeting a few new people and maybe exploring the countryside. A few days after my birthday, I’m heading to Spain to start the Camino de Santiago, a famous Christian pilgrimage that ends in the city of Santiago, Spain. Historically many people attempted the long walk as penance for their sins, […]

My Return To Malta

Written on December 10th, 2016

Earlier this year, I got a Facebook invite for a surprise birthday party in Malta. I’m sure when it was sent out nobody thought anyone from Canada would show up, since it’s a really long way to go for a birthday. But as soon as I received the invite, I decided it would be really fun to show up, and also a chance to see a little more of Europe. I left at the end of May and stopped briefly in London for a few days. I met up with my friend Barry, someone I recently met in Argentina back […]

Rebooting The Gut With A FMT

Written on December 9th, 2016

Back in roughly 2007, I managed to acquire a clostridium difficile infection. It’s a really serious infection, usually preceded by antibiotic exposure, and it can often can lead to death if not treated. In my case, it mostly started out with flu symptoms, but gradually led to me being hospitalized for a few days due to loss of fluids. Once being discharged from the hospital, I was prescribed flagyl to combat the c. diff infection. I did one or two rounds of that over a month or two, but unfortunately still tested positive for c. diff. at the end of […]

New Beginnings

Written on May 23rd, 2016

I realized recently that it’s been almost a full year since I wrote anything on this website. I have tried at various times over the last year to sit down and write, but the words just wouldn’t come. But tonight I thought it was probably best to blow the layer of dust off and finally write an update. And the main update is this: last year my heart broke. As many people know I was in a pretty serious relationship; it unfortunately ended almost a year ago today. As an engineer, I’m trained to solve problems, often difficult ones. But […]

Moving Across The Country

Written on June 16th, 2015

In about ten days I’ll be jumping in the vehicle with my girlfriend and driving across North America, yet again. We moved out to Ontario last year from the British Columbia-area to spend a year in Hamilton, and were forced to do the drive in four days due to commitments that were waiting for us. Thankfully we are going to do the drive back in about nine days, which should be a lot more enjoyable. This is actually my fourth time moving across the country, and I’ve done this song and dance enough times that I thought I would give […]