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Software Creation

My introduction to computer programming was in the early 1970's at Exeter University, were a fellow lodger and friend was working with the university computer. He was responsible for feeding the punch-cards in, and I was fascinated by the whole concept of programming this huge machine!

I started writing serious software and creating computer programs in the mid 1980s using Fortran on a PDP-11. Then I moved on to a Future computer which ran CPM as the operating system, and I programmed all my Financial Commodities trading systems on it using Pascal, which was the first language I really got to know in depth. I still think Pascal is a great language, and I am often grateful that I learned computer programming with Pascal rather than Basic or C, which are the computer languages that most programmers cut their teeth on.

When I worked for UCM (later MediaForum) in Hove, Sussex, England I learnt and used a number of computer languages on the Windows platform: in decreasing order of importance, these were Visual Basic, C++, Assembly and Prolog. I remember when Delphi first came out, which I was very excited about because it was a sort of Visual Pascal, but unfortunately version 1 was so bug-ridden that we could not use it, and the company stayed with Visual Basic.

Since then, most of the software I have created has been using Visual Basic for the user interface, with C++ dlls for the inner workings of the program. Currently I use Microsoft's .NET and I program in C#, which is probably the best computer language there is now, which it should be since it is the latest in the C, C++, Java line.

I have to say in ending, that I am not part of the religious software wars - Microsoft versus everyone else. The company I work for targets users who run Windows, and so I create software to run on the Windows environment. Whatever you think of Microsoft and .NET, as a programming environment it is very good.

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