Hello, I'm John Fiala.

I started out as a programmer with BASIC on the PCjr - the first computer my parents bought.  My mother's a programmer - she entertained us at dinner with tales of people who didn't back up their data at work.  This, along with piano lessons, prepared me fairly well for my life, as I have never lost anything important to a computer problem and have never had to deal with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

I've mostly been on PCs all my life, except for while at CMU - when I was there they were focused entirely on andrew (their flavor of unix) and Macintoshes.  That's the only time I've owned a mac, and it was at least partially because it was cheap to get internet access in the dorm for a Mac, but you had to spend extra for a Token Ring card for a PC.  Plus, there just weren't many useful PCs available free on campus, but Macs were plentiful.

Programming wise, I was doing Pascal and C at college.  When I graduated I found myself thrown into Access and VB without any real training, but was able to quickly get up to speed.  I followed along with VB and started to learn VB.NET at work until I was told they would use C# - I then started learning C# until I was laid off.

I've studied Java on my own, a little, so C# actually is coming fairly well to me.  I've been studying it since I was laid off and plan to take my first test towards a C# MCSD in a month.  A lot of jobs show up for C# in Denver, but they all require experience.  I'm hoping certification will help me get my foot in the door somewhere, as VB jobs are scarce.  I've also been doing a little studying of perl - at first in an attempt to get a job that required it, but now because I find it so interesting.  I'm also getting into game programming and DirectX, but slowly.

Other major interests are Lego (thus the logo) and rpgs, and have a slim adventure published for the Silver Age Sentinels rpg.

I enjoy Channel 9 a lot, and hope it keeps going strong.

-john