I started programming at age 10 with my first computer in 1980 which was a TRS-80 Model 4 that was given to my Dad from the local school because it was broken. Together we worked on it and found something was unplugged inside. Its specs were 4 MHz and had 64KB RAM, with two 5.25″ floppy disk (184 KB each) and ran under TRSDOS 6.0. I taught myself basic from books I found at the library. I then upgraded to a Tandy Color Computer 2, melted keyboard 16k version of which I upgraded immediately from a kit I got off of an ad in Rainbow Magazine.
After graduating high school I went to college for Computer Science, and began programming COBOL and Fortran. I loved COBOL but by then, it wasn’t practical I felt to limit myself to an aging language, so I started to study C.
Around 1989 I started part-time at our local Radio Shack #01-8671. I absolutely loved working there and within a year I started the management program and was the Asst. Manager. Working for RS, taught me so much and to this day I only think of my days there as a great time. Around this time I started to freelance as a custom programmer for a few businesses in the area, using Turbo Pascal, and eventually C and C++. In 1994 I started to program and maintain some Microsoft Access 2.0 databases. One was a developer version using the MS Access runtime engine called DJ assist. It cataloged CD’s by rack location but was able to play .wav files of each song using the OLE functions. It was massive, but the DJ that commissioned it from me loved it.
Around 1996 I started working for the corporate world and supported AS-400, DECUnix, as well as some coding on mainframes. After a couple of years of that, I decided that I hated the corporate scene and went to work for the State of Wyoming as an Oracle DBA and Visual C++ developer. During this time I fell in love with what is now Visual Studio, and Java. Other than minor fixes using Tcl, Perl, and Python, VS, Python, and Java is where I do most of my developing today.
I currently hold the position of Senior Technology Engineer at a power utility full time, operate fourteen websites, custom program for various GIS mapping vendors, and commercially fly inspection drones as a fully licensed UAV pilot.
My free time consists of collecting Star Wars memorabilia, vintage computers and software as well as flying drones, RC Helicopters, and planes as well as playing with my Grandkids.
Some of my CoCo collection includes:
12x CoCos 1, 2, and 3s, 3x TDP-100s, 2x Dragon 32s, 2x MC-10s, 2 VideoTexs, and most of the accessories Radio Shack sold. Additionally, I own at least one each from the TRS-80 Model 1, 2, 3, 4, 4p, 102, and 102 lines as well as each version of the Tandy 1000 series, 1200, 2000, 3000 and the laptops like the 1100, 1400 and so on. I am working on getting my CoCo and TDP cartridge collection completed as well as finding all the PC-# series of pocket computers.
My latest project has been building a community site called TheTandyShack.com. I hope to help other collectors and Tandy enthusiasts share resources and ideas with others that are like-minded. Additionally, I am currently working on a preservation project for the Glenside Color Computer Club scanning, cleaning, and organizing the club’s newsletters.
I have been a regular on CoCoTalk for since episode 99. It is so amazing to communicate with some of the superstars in the CoCo world. I learn something every time we meet and really enjoy the fun way CoCoTalk is presented, not monotone or ridged but instead dynamic, evolving, and entertaining.
I feel very humbled and honored to be a part of CoCoTalk!, thank you to the great community that supports all things CoCo! Reach me at mail@TheTandyShack.com