I enjoy writing and enjoy narrative. So, rather than the traditional dry list of experiences and accomplishments, I thought I would tell my story. It's a bit long winded, I suppose, but all the facts are there.
I graduated high school in 1967, a long time ago. I graduated first in my class and was the school valedictorian. That autumn I began college at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), on a scholarship, and majored in mathematics. Along the way I took a number of computer courses.
As an aside, computing back then was a far cry from what it is today. I remember the first computer course I took, 6.47 (implying an electrical engineering course), which was titled Introduction to Automatic Computation. This consisted mainly of Fortran IV and IBM System 360 assembly language programming.
Following MIT I was sidetracked for about 8 years, as I pursued a career as a professional classical guitarist. I was pretty successful at it, but it's a tough way to make a living. In 1980 I obtained a job with a Fortune 500 firm as a programmer-analyst, and my software career was born.
I have been fairly successful in this field. In the late 1980s I started my own software development firm, Autumn Hill Software. Back then the personal computer began to proliferate, and most such systems ran DOS. I developed a number of developer tool products-- a printer driver toolkit (named Baby Driver, after a Paul Simon song), a GUI toolkit (named Menuet), and many others.
Then along came Windows, and our market dried up. It was fun while it lasted.
While I was active as Autumn Hill Software I took to writing, and wrote many magazine articles for industry journals: The C Gazette, Dr. Dobbs Journal, and others. I also wrote a couple of books (one as co-author) that were published by Addison-Wesley. One was titled Bitmapped Graphics Programming in C++ (see left).
Autumn Hill lasted about 6 years, but eventually we folded. I then took an extended "vacation" for about a year, but doing nothing can get boring at times. In 1996 I joined a small tech startup in Longmont, Colorado named Sitera. The founders were a couple of high level low drag entrepreneurs who had served in the upper management of other companies. Over 4 years time we developed an ASIC that was a programmable packet processing chip for networking and internet hardware applications. The core of the chip was based on the MIPS processor architecture. Since it was programmable, there needed to be a way to program it, and I was tasked with developing an assembler for the chip. I wrote this in C++.
The late 1990s were a heady time in the tech sector. Tech stocks were trading for many times their reasonable value, and otherwise dubious tech companies were enjoying market capitalizations in the billions of dollars. We got in on the fun when our startup was purchased by Vitesse Semiconductor for $750,000,000 in a stock swap deal. Vitesse was then traded on the NASDAQ, and my stock options in the startup suddenly made me modestly wealthy.
I soon discovered that making money is not difficult, but that keeping it requires a great deal of savvy that I did not possess. The market went through its inevitable correction, the bubble burst, and I watched my stock holding plummet from a high of $80 per share to down in the neighborhood of a dollar and change a share. I got out on the way down, but still lost a great deal of money. Interestingly, I found out a few years later that Vitesse had been bought outright by another company for the bargain basement price of $384,000,000, about half of what they originally paid to acquire us. They no longer exist.
In 2002 my wife and I moved to the mountains of northern Colorado, and at that time I started working as a freelance website developer. I've been doing it ever since, except for one year when I took a job with a large format printing company in Denver, Colorado as their website "guru." I had to leave that job in 2014 when my wife's progressing Alzheimer's forced me to quit and stay home to care for her. Sadly, she passed away in May of 2015, and I relocated to Gainesville, Georgia, as I have family here.
So, there's my story. If you are in need of a professional quality website, give me a call or shoot me an email. I do a bang-up job, and enjoy helping people move their dreams forward.