A French Englishman

I first arrived in France from England in 1975 with a hitchhiker's rucksack. Barely 18, I wanted to get out of my bubble and see the world, and France held my breath. The wide open spaces, the Massif Central, the beaches of Corsica. I realised that I could live differently.

Many years and many lives later, I became a proud French citizen and inhabitant of Brittany.

Computers and stuff

My first computer was a Sinclair ZX81, although I used a Burroughs TC500 terminal in 1974 at Barclays.

In the 80s, I wrote a Morse code decoder in Locomotive basic on an Amstrad CPC464 for my shortwave radio and read clear text messages from the French Navy in Toulon. I also built billing spreadsheets in Multiplan on an IBM PC for a laundry serving regional hospitals.

In the early 90s, I discovered Linux with a copy of MNIS Linux because I didn't want to pay for Windows 95. Then came the discovery of the Internet with a modem! I cobbled together an intranet at work using Minitels and home-made electronics, but Windows/Netware was preferred. Later the cost of Netware led me to replace Netware with Mars-nwe, a Netware clone for Linux with dual boot Windows 3.1/Linux clients. I also wrote a luxury goods label printing application in Applixware 4.1.

I wrote my first website in 1994, and in 1999, I became both system administrator and support technician for the French branch of an American software company, where I encountered Unix AIX, IRIX, Solaris and HP-UX. Two years later, I was appointed sales manager in France, then in Europe. A highly unlikely combination of technician and sales, but one that worked well.

In the meantime, I opened my own computer repair shop, wrote a licence management application, a web CRM application, a number of websites and a few web applications.

And then I retired.

I'd been working in IT for 35 years, so I turned to woodworking for a bit of creativity. The advantage of woodworking over IT is that you obtain a finished object that can last for.. longer than me.

See my page at L'Air du Bois