Frank Dawson

I wrote my first Basic program in 1983 on a Commodore VIC-20. I was in Standard 9 and a whole new world opened up for me. To this day I am still thrilled by the fact that you can create something from nothing by writing lines of code.

In 1987 I discovered "C" and thought it to be the ultimate programming language. I started part-time contracting while in my second year of studying at Technikon. During my 3rd year of studies I switched to part-time studying to take on permanent employment.

Following six years as a permanent employee, I switched to a consulting career in 1995 and in 2000 started my own consulting company. Although I have been using Microsoft Technologies predominantly throughout my career, the company's focus was on developing custom software making use of Microsoft technologies exclusively.

During the last 14+ years almost all the projects that I was involved in were Intranet or Internet based applications. In the early days I made use of ASP with VB/Java Scripting and VB6 components. Recent projects were almost all developed using C#, ASP.NET and Microsoft SQL Server with the remainder developed as Windows Forms based applications using C#.

I have experience working on small projects developed in only a month or two to projects developed over a number of years. On some projects I was the sole developer while on others I was the development lead for a group of developers. In almost all cases I was the designer / chief architect.

My preference over the years has been to develop projects using iterative development lifecycles. Today, this form of development is better known as Agile Software Development.

Other than my Technikon diploma I have not had any other formal training and relied on self-study to keep up with the world of programming. I follow technology blogs and learn new technologies by experimenting and learning from books at Safari Books Online. I am currently learning about Azure Storage, MVC and C# 4.0. It is always a delicate balancing act when starting a new project to choose between using technologies you already know vs. experimenting with something new that will benefit the project in the long run.

Technologies that I am very interested in and have only just started to explore are Windows Phone and Windows 8 Metro applications development.