About the grey old man
My name is Guss, Generation X software architect. The first programming language I learned was Turbo Pascal 5.5, way back in 1989. Back then it was just a mandatory module part of my Electronic Engineering studies!
Back in the days before Windows, I did not like Turbo Pascal and preferred more data orientated tools / programming languages like BASE III & Clipper.
My first real income was from using Quattro Pro (4, being one better than Lotus 1-2-3), in conjunction with a Roland Plotter, a PC with an X87 math-coprocessor. It involved spatial work creating contour lines from xyz coordinates. In the little town I lived, I think I was the only individual with a plotter. With the help of my land surveyor friend and without “an internet” or a how-to-guide, we figured it out.
Windows arrived and so did Microsoft Access. I can think of several applications (if you can call it that) I have developed using Microsoft Access 2.0. At that stage I also studied B.Comm on the side and Information System was about the only subject I liked.
The days of “in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king” was over and I started my corporate career at a large insurance company as sub-contractor for Microsoft 3rd line support. It soon became complex and I had to support developers writing Excel add-ons in VBA that they used for financial data analysis on live feeds from the JSE. It was never easy, as the 3rd line support was about where the bug always stopped. If not resolved at 3rd line, a Microsoft Select ticket had to be raised to solve the problem.
This was the days every analyst developed their own propriety app in Access, taking the poor thing and desktop hardware to its limits. Web, ASP and Scripting obviously became part of the mixture.
“Thank goodness for the holy grail of TechNet CD’s in the cupboard.”
During the above mixture, there was also PC and part sales and installing networks for SMEs. This also earmark the days when I had to have the newest tech and CPU’s available on the consumer market, each year.
In 2000, when this corporate outsourced all their IT, I joined the global IT outsourcing company that won the bid. Here I started by developing SLA (Service Level Agreement) automation tools. These tools reported on the performance of the IT provider’s performance according to the legal agreement and was a distributed app (components that live all over the show, and pushed data to a central repository) and produced daily and month results (pro-active and historical) without any human intervention.
After that, I worked in Germany (for the same global company) and developed systems to manage large IT refresh and deployment projects. Up to today, I’m still involved in product & service offerings and the systems and tools used to deliver these to the client.
I have a lovely wife, Deniece. We met and got married within 3 weeks (3 weekends). That was 1989, and today we still happy married.
Even though, after my 2 year military service (Infantry), I studied electronic engineering (with a skimpy bursary), this was never a path I wanted to pursue. I dropped out, started to work, and paid back my study loan. I also tried B.Comm, but its such boring BS.
My dad was a talented fitter and turner, and I applied for bursaries in electronic engineering careers because I was “rebeliating” the mechanical route. Today, I like to build things and would prefer physical objects over the software objects. As a kid I have spend a fair share behind a welder, grinder, milling machine and lathe. On hind sight, a career more into a mechanical discipline would have been a better choice.
Information technology was more of a lucky break that came over my path, which I then embraced to build my career.
Below is a list of interests, classified by “Did-It”, “Doing” and “Wanna”.
- Paragliding (Did-It)
- Kite Surfing (Did-It)
- LCHF (Banting) (Doing)
- 3D CAD & CAM (Doing)
- Custom Water Cooled PC Builds (Doing)
- Home CNC (Wanna)
I love the sea, all kinds of music, gadgets and have 4 dogs.
My Political Compass
Economic Left/Right: -1.75
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -0.46
Therefore: So much in the center, that you may call it political-brain-dead or political-“slapgat”.
(Reference back to #Interests)