Below is a timeline of what I feel are significant points throughout my working life.
Having worked on Saturday and Sunday markets for 2 years whilst at school, in May 1991 the opportunity arose to purchase the stall I was working on selling games. With a £1500 loan and plenty of time on my hands Computa Bitz was born, I was about to solve a huge problem I had 3 years previous when buying games for my Amstrad cpc 464 with colour monitor!
Unreal tournament was released on PC and it came with a level editor, even though it was hugely buggy I don't say this very often due to its stigma but, OMG!
I signed up for evening classes at Smethwich College to learn about image processing and 3D Studio Max as I wanted the ablity to create my own world objects and texture maps in game editors.
With my evening study as a qualifier I enrolled on a BSc (Hons) Computer Science (Games Development) course, I was confident at first but soon realised that there was a huge learning curve ahead.
A good friend asked me to create a game level of his house, by now I understood about scale, BSP objects, static meshes, UV co ordinates and UVW Unwrap so after some thought I gave it a shot.
I had left a previous part time job due to being sent out on late deliveries and this caused me to miss some lectures so I managed to find some great work with a local sign company. This worked well as many of the jobs were repetative so I could think about the lecture notes whilst working, win win!
I was successfull in finding a role with the National Merchant Buying Society to build on an existing content managment website in asp. Here I learnt both procedural and object coding but I also gained real world experience of how projects in a large company were started and seen through to the end when multiple departments are involved.
I Graduated from Wolverhampton University with a first class degree in Computer Science (Games development). I handed my final project in on the Friday 8th May and started work at Pebble Learning on Monday the 11th May. No rest for the wicked!
After an interview that I felt I had blown, I have only had 4 proper interviews so it's not something that I'm skilled at but I was given a Junior software development position, long hours but rewarding when solutions were found. Little did I know I was about to be thown some bait
Originally stated as a C# winforms developer role for poker tournament software with some occasional overtime required, just weeks in alarm bells began to ring, 6 months in and my role is now full time technical support providing 24/7 cover and even more worrying, little or no development time. Always carrying a support phone and receiving 2am support calls was not what I signed up for and I'm grateful to have been offered a position back at Zeel Solutions so worked my notice and moved on.
I returned to Zeel feeling inspired after talking with their new lead developer who loved elegent software patterns, only to find that two weeks later he left. The team were a nice group, however I felt the business development team started writing cheques for the dev team to have to cash just to get a new customer signature. I didn't and don't want to give customers a bad experience, it's simply not a good practice.
Within a team of 5 developers I took on thier webforms Salonlite product which is their entry software to online clients, resolved over 150 feature/bug tickets and released the new version with 3 new payment plans, receipt editing, Dropbox export and a new subscription plan manager. It may be simplistic but it is easy to use which is probably why it's used by over 1000 salons daily. My role then evoled to their new php online booking system which is now going through final testing before release. My contribution was various features via C# web methods for availability, database design and the new payment gateway processing.