I grew up in Scotland, lived for some years in Cambridge in England, and now live with my wife in Christchurch, New Zealand.
A child of the 1980s, I’ve been a heavy computer (and later Internet) user since my first home micro at the age of 8. I think of myself as a generalist, capable of deep understanding of systems and subjects, yet also capable of turning my hand to new challenges, new workflows, new environments. I’m not too proud to be told when I’m wrong, and I believe in finding the right solution.
My first career was as a software engineer, teaching machines to communicate. From 2000 to 2011 – after my first degree – I lived in Cambridge, working mostly as a software engineer with a focus on embedded and embedded-adjacent systems.
In software, my professional interests include cryptography, reliability, and leading teams to greater performance through careful application of DevOps principles.
My wife and I moved to Christchurch in 2011, several months after the devastating earthquake that struck the region.
In 2013 I realised that it was time for a new challenge and enrolled at the New Zealand Broadcasting School, to study Digital Film and TV Production for the Bachelor of Broadcasting Communications degree. I graduated in early 2017. I particularly enjoy camera operation, vision switching and editing and I love the buzz of the team environment, both on the set and in the studio.
For a few years I was a freelance videographer and video technician, but as of 2019 my primary focus is back on software. (I keep my hand in with the occasional freelance job. In 2023 I was part of a team covering NZ domestic basketball, which was broadcast live-to-air in NZ and available across the world via ESPN.)
I’m a fencer; I’ve been fencing on and off for most of my life. As of 2022 I am the president of United Fencing Club. I have served as both secretary and treasurer of Fencing Mid South, the regional body, and have advised the regional and the national body about video refereeing reply systems. I used to say that the épée was my preferred weapon but in 2023 I was tempted to try the dark side that is sabre …
Contact information & GPG key
If you’re not already in contact with me,
webcontact at crazyscot.com is a good place to email in the first instance.
I have a GPG key. (You might find a more up-to-date version on the standard keyservers.) If you know what to do with one of those, you’ll find other email addresses in it. The address which starts with the digit zero does not have any spam filtering, so is a good one to try if you have problems reaching me on other addresses.