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20 Questions with Warren Allen

20Q-WarrenAllen20 Questions with Warren Allen.

1. What was your first job?
I think the first paid gig I ever had was writing high school sports stories for the local newspaper. But my first real grown-up job was as a Web Developer for Axent Technologies, an information security firm in the D.C. area.

2. If you were to write a personal memoir, what would you name it?
“Look How Extraordinary My Ordinary Life Has Been.” I think everyone’s personal memoir could have the same title.

3. Where did you grow up?
Essex County in England, and the Washington D.C. area.

4. What is your favorite class you’ve taught?
LIS4380: Social Media Management.

5. What is your favorite place to grab dinner in Tallahassee?
Sweet Pea Café. Hands-down. Best food in Tallahassee whether or not you’re vegan.

6. What are your hobbies outside of work?
Hiking and playing with my dog, and the occasional basketball game or round of golf.

7. Have you always wanted to teach?
Teach? No. But since I was about 12 years old building dial-up bulletin board systems I’ve had an interest in how technology brings people together. That’s what I teach now, and I enjoy helping students explore the potential for social technologies, having seen it change so much in the nearly thirty years since I started doing it.

8. What is your favorite place you’ve traveled to or where would you like to go?
The edge of the map. It doesn’t even matter what map it is. What’s at the edge of it? What can you see from there? It’s always exciting to find out.

9. How many football games have you attended?
None. I’m not much of a football fan. But I have been to a bunch of baseball and soccer games.

10. Proudest career/life moment?
Returning to college to finish my undergraduate degree at the University of Delaware. I already had a successful career in information security, but I wasn’t happy. It was a gamble, but it paid off.

11. What’s your favorite band?
It’s a toss-up between Sleater-Kinney and Mogwai.

12. What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Do the best work you can do; the rest is out of your hands.

13. If money were no object, how would you spend your days?
I’d work for a dog rescue and maybe be a animal behaviorist.

14. What is your favorite book and why?
Jean-Paul Sartre’s No Exit.

15. If you could be famous for something, what would it be?
If I had to be famous? Probably singing. I’d rather not be famous. But if had to be famous, it would be for singing, which I cannot do to save my life.

16. What Jeopardy category could you clear, no problem?
Nineties alt-rock.

17. Do you have any pets?
I have a wonderful little dog who I adopted from the Tallahassee Animal Shelter. She’s 100% mixed-breed, and her name is Her Ladyship Pickleback F. Whiskey Dutchess of House Londontown.

18. When did you start working at Florida State University?
Fall of 2013.

19. What was the last movie you saw in theaters?
Star Wars Episode VII, but only three times.

20. What is the best part about your job?
Fridays. Not because it’s the end of the work-week (for faculty, it rarely is) but because it’s the day I dedicate to working in the Social Media Lab, working and talking with students, and catching up with the work of my colleagues.