aka David Evans
I am a British National currently living in Geneva, Switzerland with my wife. I have a 2:2 joint honours degree in Computer Science with Multimedia. I first started programming on the ZX-Spectrum 81 at age 8 and have been involved in computer science ever since. I also have a passion for Biology and Chemistry and before choosing Computer Science at degree level, attempted to change course and apply for Biochemistry. However, despite my best attempts, I was lured back to Computer Science and have strived to be the best I can be ever since.
Interest in Ubuntu/*nix
My interest in *nix systems were spawned as a child, when my father brought back an ultra modern 386 processor with the new EGA graphics and a dual boot OS. Win 3.11/Unix (I have no idea what)...
Even at that young age, my fathers respect (and fear) for Unix and it's inherently different way of working with computers got me interested. The whole concept of servers, admins and network terminals with TCP access was an alien language, but something inside gripped me.
Over the years, I've had a passing interest in trying new versions of Red Hat, or Suse as they appeared on cover disks of magazines. I always had interest but found the learning curve too steep to even install the most basic of software. A few years ago I tried the Ubuntu distro and spent 4 days trying to install skype. I admitted defeat and wiped the partition. This experience is representative of all of my *nix experiences until that point.
About a year ago, I tried the latest version of Ubuntu and found the synaptic package manager had made life easier, back to Windows MSI levels of simplicity. This was it, this was the leap forward that allowed me to configure and run a linux distro as a regular work terminal, whilst also being able to investigate linux as a real alternative to Windows. I found the performance to be better than Windows for load times, and application startup and have been involved in my own personal struggle to terminate my relationship with Microsoft and start anew with Linux.
My specific interest in the Ubuntu systems is that I believe that this is the culmination of a good project effort and that this is the system that could enable many 3rd world countries access to the internet age. I was talking to internet coffee shop owners in India when I was there for my honeymoon, advertising the advantages of linux over windows. For these guys using 8 year old PC's, the benefits of the free OS and open source software, that performs better than windows, was simply beyond comparison. We started discussing money, and it became apparent that a significant amount of sales had to be achieved before they could consider buying a new computer, and a large percentage of that was the OS and supporting software such as the anti-virus.
Software Development Experience
I am currently a Consultant for the financial industry. I started at Canary Wharf in London, and have now moved to the Private Banking centre, Geneva. My last job was designing Front & Back office credit trading systems, managing the entire trade process, risk, settlement, corporate actions and data feeds with market makers to start the list...
My software experience covers core user security, encryption & mainframe emulation at the low end of the scale, leading to credit derivative trading systems, global custodian duties, tax & legal ownership. Some of the systems I have been involved in cover more than 10% of the London Stock Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange trades on a daily basis. I have been involved in projects working with systems utilising different languages and OS at either end of the communications protocols and have had large experience in writing systems critical code. I am now turning to Linux/Java as I come to the end of my tether with Microsoft Windows. I have specialised throughout my 9 year career so far to become a Microsoft specialist. Given the amount of abuse that the last comment is probably going to induce, I would like to defend that whilst I regard .NET as a development language to be a good product, that does not automatically layover as to my opinion of Windows!
Where I want to go with this...
I want to apply myself to Ubuntu and to get in to the systems developments teams so that I can help contribute to the project and bring Ubuntu further in to the limelight, and to really start making an impact on Microsoft's hold on the home-user desktop market.
Email: <dave AT SPAMFREE theASPguy DOT com>