Woo! Job offer from the pet health insurance people! I have a few days to think about it, so I get to go to my second interview at the router firmware people (with the president and chief engineer of the company, so it would seem silly of them to waste their time unless they were serious).
The insurance place is a much larger organization (300 people) doing similar Java stuff to what I have been doing. The router place is a smaller organization (40 people), but works almost exclusively with Fortune 500 companies and the government, so is quite stable. It is all C++, both desktop and embedded, so is a more “geek-sexy” job and will give me real-world experience in embedded programming (as opposed to the hobbyist stuff I have been doing), which I have been looking for for YEARS.
Assuming I get an offer from the router place, it is just a matter of balancing the stability, size, and ease of hopping in to the one company versus the “where I want to be in 5-10 years, with regard to knowledge and experience” of the other, which might be a bit more shaky start because my experience with embedded stuff has been mainly amateur and hobby.