A tour around my mind. Excuse the mess.

About Me

2012.01.01

I’m Ian Slinger. I live in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne, Australia with my wife Janine, the remnants of our brood who haven’t already struck out into the world for themselves, and a floating contingent of foster children to keep Janine on her toes.

I’m a professional software geek. I first got my hands on a computer in a trainee course around 1975. It was a fridge size monster programmed with mark/sense cards, but it was enough to spark a passion for software that led me to telco development roles in Fortran on Honeywell and Control Data systems.

Then came the “microprocessor” and everything changed. With a modest background in electronics I was able to cobble together a living, breathing computer of my own. In 1979 that was like building your own gene sequencer would be today – really cool but what the hell would you do with such a thing?

Since then I’ve explored:

  • Z80 assembler (There wasn’t much choice anyway in 1979),
  • C, C++ in the hope that it was next logical step from C (…shudder… boy was I wrong),
  • Java, and a motley assortment of side distractions such as Pascal and Visual Basic.

I have now settled for a comfortable mix of dynamic languages such as Perl and Python.

I’m still looking for that elusive, hyper productive language and I keep finding myself drawn to various flavours of Lisp such as Clojure. When I mention that to some software people they go all quiet as if I’m considering joining a cult, so I’m keeping it to myself.

I spent twenty years banging my head against Microsoft Windows. I kept expecting it to get better, but it turns out the solution was to “Stop Doing That”. I’m now ensconced in a comfortable world of Unix (FreeBSD, Linux, MacOS, Raspbian). My only regret is that I didn’t make the obvious leap twenty years ago.