About Me

Andrew Hughes

I was born on Friday, the 31st of December, 1982. At an early age, I developed a general interest in computing, and cut my programming teeth with programs in BASIC on the Amstrad CPC. Further experience with this language followed, using the BBC Micro's implementation during secondary school.

My first experience of PCs, unfortunately, came with Microsoft's Windows operating system (3.1). To this day, I still think this operating system is far from beneficial to the development of programming skills (amongst other things). The lack of programming resources available with this operating system somewhat stalled my programming career until I encountered Java in about 1997, which first introduced me to object-oriented programming.

In about 1998, I first encountered the GNU/Linux operating system with an early version of SuSE (5.2). At this time, the system would probably be regarded as much more primitive than it is now (text-based installers, only an early version of KDE (1.0) and no GNOME). However, it piqued my interest -- at this stage, because it reminded me of the early experiences that first made me interested in computing (i.e. the ability to actually use a decent command-line interface).

In the autumn of 2001, I began a degree in Computer Science at the University of Sheffield (following an education that basically lead to this point, as far as I can see). However, I was disappointed -- my first semester was spent effectively being taught a language I already knew (Java) and fulfilled little of my desire for progression.

In early 2002, I finally had my fill of the entire Windows system, with its gluttony of blue screens, bad programming and general user ignorance. In a determined effort to relieve stress and restore joy to my computing environment, I decided to adopt a GNU/Linux environment entirely with no Windows installation on my machine at all. Happily for me, ( and probably unhappily for those around me ;-) ), it worked. Henceforth, its a strategy that I recommend to others. With a Windows installation still on your box, you will be forever tempted to take the easy route i.e. you go back to what you know (it applies with most things, as far as I can tell). If you really want to kick the dependency, its probably best to just go cold turkey.

From then on, I have become more involved in the Free Software community and my use of GNU/Linux has changed to a simple desire for Free Software (that's free as in freedom, by the way).

Outside computing, I enjoy literature and an electic range of popular music. As regards books, my main interest is in the fantasy genre, such as The Lord Of The Rings and the Discworld novels by Terry Pratchett.

For more about me, you can grab my curriculum vitae.

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