My Technical Adventures
My first real brush with computers came in 1979 when we moved to Lubbock, Texas and I became friends with an engineer at Texas Instruments. He let me play with his home-brewed S100 computer running CP/M and helped me get my first computer: a TI99/4. It has all been a roller coaster ride since then!
My first brush with what would become the Internet was in 1992, when I did various work with an alternative high school. One of my tasks was to set up a computer on a university UNIX shell account and show students how to use Internet Relay Chat (IRC) and this cool thing called "gopher". This all predated the adoption of WWW (the World-Wide Web) and I still run a gopher server to this day that includes a somewhat random sampling of things I have collected and written over the years. Some of these can now be found nowhere else.
I am an amateur radio operator and my callsign is KE5YGT.
Jason the Computer Hobbyist
I tear apart and rebuild old junk computers for what passes as fun for me. In fact, the server that brings you this web page is one such computer. Sometimes, I actually stop disassembling and reassembling long enough to keep the server running and actually try to do something useful with these computers, but not very often. I have a personal computer collection (every nerdish type does) that I often add to and that welcomes donations.
As a computer hobbyist, I had a long-term longing to create a satisfying Computerized Bulletin Board System (BBS), which I finally realized in December 2007, many years after BBSs had been overtaken by the Internet.
I have actually been employed as a system/application administrator, which means I am a computer hobbyist that gets paid to pursue my hobby!
Of course, as of September 2014, I hold a master's degree in Information Technology Network Management, just to show people that I may not be some hack! It is more a management degree than a technical one, so I don't always work as a technician as I prefer.
Jason the (Very Light) Programmer
I had long ago given up on programming computers, having lost any particular need to do it since teaching school. In 2005, an old employer let me know that she was still using a program that I wrote in 1988 -- a little ditty that helped a child care center figure work time. I know of few programs that have the ability to remain useful and used for twenty years, so I have decided that I really am a computer programmer in the truest sense.