A Little Bit of History About Me

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I’m a long time developer.  Now approaching 42 years of age, I’ve been writing code since I was 18.  Perhaps earlier if you can count crufty attempts to write my own version of Tron on the Commodore Vic 20.  But less said about that the better!

I started out using a 4GL called ‘TAS’ which was a fine little language and great to get started on.  When I first used it, I was doing a clerical job, ordering food for a retail chain’s central warehouse.  Some programmers who were subcontracting to the company left the manuals around, I picked them up and stayed late, and implemented a system to help do my regular day job.  Turned a 6 day a week job into a 2 day a week job, and improved the performance of the warehouse in terms of stock levels.  When I presented it to my boss, his said ‘so what’, so I asked the programmers if I could have a job, and they were happy to take me on.  I’ve not looked back since.

I quickly then turned to the C language, and that has been my mainstay since.  Most other ‘modern’ languages are syntactically very similar to C, and so I’ve never had much difficulty converting.  I never really for into C++, mainly because one major project that lasted for about 10 years required complete portability across DOS, Windows and Unix systems, and C was really the only standard at the time.  I did all sorts of weird and wondering things though, often implementing object-oriented programming approaches in C where they made sense.

The product was successful enough that it led to the business being acquired by an American company that was expanding into Europe.  I stayed on a for about 3 years until I got thoroughly fed up with corporate life – it was probably the least productive period of my working life.  I don’t regret doing it, but do I had not lost the focus on development.

For the last 12 years I’ve worked for myself, doing whatever I can with computers to make a living.  I’ve done less development, and more IT consultancy in that period, but I still itch to create wonderful things in code.  Maybe iPhone development will be the next chapter in my life as a developer.

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