At some point I thought I'd add some useful things I'd written onto this page but have never really kept up to it or added much to it. There are a few pages below which people do arrive at from Google so I've left them on here though they were all written ages ago.
If you want to know more about my history with computers click the link below.
I've been into computers from a young age but grew up at a time when their use in schools was very limited. When I was at infants' school in the late 80s there was a single BBC Micro which lived on a trolley and only came out on special occasions. Once I moved to junior school there was a single Acorn A3020 which also lived on a trolley but again wasn't used all that much (although we were occasionally allowed to play Lemmings on it). My Grandad also had a Commodore Plus/4 which loaded games off a tape and he used to let me play on that if I went there in the school holidays.
When I moved up to comprehensive school instead of a single Acorn A3020 there was a single room full of Acorn A3020s! This was shared by the whole school of 1800 students. At that time it still wasn't common to use computers at all in school. They weren't in the classrooms or built into the curriculum very much; we only used to go to that room now and again. There was no Internet of course so you just used whatever software was on the machine.
One of the teachers did used to run a computer club though where you could go up to the computer room after school to do whatever you wanted, although we weren't allowed to play games because it would “wear the mice out”! He even started to teach some of us programming using BASIC and this is where I really got interested in computers. After a while the teacher stopped going to the club but we were still allowed in the room so we used to explore the systems and teach ourselves.
At home I managed to get a second hand Amstrad PC1512 when I was about 12 which allowed me to learn DOS and also write BASIC programs at home. When I was a bit older I managed to get a 386 Windows 3.1 computer from a car boot sale and then when I was 18 I got a Windows XP machine which was the first modern computer I'd owned.
My school didn't offer any actual courses at either GCSE or A-Level so it wasn't until I left school for University that I could start to learn properly. By that time I was already learning Linux and C++ which had sent me up well for starting my degree. From 2000-2003 I studied Computing at the University of Leeds and have worked in IT since I graduated.
I have certainly been alive through a period of great technological advancement and when I think back to that first BBC Micro that I saw in 1987 compared to where we are today it's amazing really.
Active Directory and C#
How to use C# to both query and update Microsoft Active Directory
MySQL and C#
Querying and updating MySQL databases using C# and the MySQL ODBC driver
Introduction to encryption using GnuPG