I too have been memed, thanks James.

Whether anyone reads this or not I have had a great time walking down memory lane – it was a blast.

How old were you when you started programming?

imageOn my 14th birthday I was given a Casio PB100. Just check that picture out – this baby was a thing of beauty. There was no turning back, a geek gene had been awakened although at the time, and for some time after, a career in IT was the furthest thing from my mind.

While it only had a single line display I created a number of cool ‘games’ (using its own flavour of BASIC) along the lines of the extremely popular (well they were then!) calculator games “space invaders” and “eight attack”.

Soon after I graduated to the Casio PB 1000 which had four lines of text, a touch screen and a massive 8KB of RAM – way ahead of its time. Ah memories.

How did you get started in programming?

See above.

What was your first language?

As above, Casio PB100 BASIC.

What was the first real program you wrote?

All the programs I built were “real” albeit some where “real bad” but at least they worked! In fact, writing this post, I still remember the joy of completing programs on my PB-100. I even started writing the code down in a small note book (which I still have – sad!).

What languages have you used since you started programming?

BASIC, Pascal, S-PLUS, Visual Basic, HTML, ASP Classic, VB Script, CSS, JavaScript, T-SQL, C#

What was your first professional programming gig?

I didn’t start programming for money until I was about 28 and started my own business as a Statistical Consultant. It was a continuation of my studies at Victoria University where my interest in programming was re-ignited through statistical programming languages like, S-PLUS. I then got a call from a guy wanting some Microsoft Access work done and that started a 2 year stint doing Access work for clients in Wellington, NZ.

If you knew then what you know now, would you have started programming?


If there is one thing you learned along the way that you would tell new developers, what would it be?

If you love coding keep doing it – if you’re in it for the money quit now.

What’s the most fun you’ve ever had… programming?

The vast majority of my programming has taken place on the job – I play a bit outside work but not excessively. Coding for a career has its ups and downs – you’re not always going to be working on what you want and you often feel constrained. So for me, the best moments I’ve had are when I have been working on a project with colleagues that are more like friends and where we are all passionately creating software through thick and thin. I love the comradery of this industry, from working with great colleagues to writing about your life to the world on your blog!


So I’ll pass this one on to,

Gabriel Smith

Jian Sun

Chris Auld

Pieter Jansen van Vuuren