Flying My Luddite Freak Flag

| 4/18/2011 9:47:26 AM

 I started selling microcomputers in 1982. In 1984 Michelle and I bought our first Apple Macintosh. In 1987 I started Aztext Electronic Publishing with my cousin David Flett using computers and laser printers for corporate communication. I went through all the great changes in the industry. Lotus beat out Multiplan. Excel beat out Lotus. Word Perfect beat out Word. Microsoft Word beat out Word Perfect. I sold local area networks and installed computers in fancy offices and on the continuous steel casting line at Dofasco. As I drove around Barton Street in Hamilton on my way to Dofasco, torpedo trucks with glowing steel ingots the size of a midsize car often pulled up along side me and I worried about the heat melting the paint off of my car. In about 1985 I started selling and using “Adobe PageMaker” which created the electronic publishing industry. I purchased the upgrades and learned all of the new features from the original PageMaker to PageMaker 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 and then onto Adobe Creative Suite 1, CS2 and I’ve just spent $800 to upgrade to Creative Suite 5 which includes Dreamweaver and Flash Catalyst for “seamless web design” from my PageMaker, Photoshop and Illustrator files.


When we moved off the electricity grid I learned how to install solar panels, and charge controllers and weld solar trackers. I welded the frame for my solar domestic hot water heater and did all the plumbing myself. I installed my own wind turbine, from digging the holes and making rebar frames, to finishing the concrete and doing all the wiring and assembly work to get the tower up. When we moved off-grid I put up a phone pole on a hill and installed a point-to-point phone extender system, which took radio frequencies and converted them into phone protocol so we had a phone here. Oh, and I powered it with a solar panel, charge controller and battery system.


I figured out what was wrong with my satellite internet after it was struck by lightning after spending 10 years of watching the complexity of the internet grow from dial up to dynamic host configuration protocol (DHCP) and realizing that my computer created a unique IP whenever I log in.


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