In the Family Business

I called my dad on Father’s Day and was rewarded with a few stories.  Apparently he spent a summer working in Toronto in the 1960s (while studying math at University of British Columbia).   His job was with Univac, programming the sort of computers that ran on punch-cards, tape drives, solid state memory, and walk-in CPU rooms.  His supervisor was one of few women in computer programming.

The company’s computers ran Toronto traffic lights and Ontario drivers’ licenses.   And now I get contracts with the City of Toronto and the Ministry of Transportation.  I even helped to modernize the drivers’ licence system, which (for all I know) might still be running the Fortran code from the 1960s.

Computer consulting is not the only skill I learned from my family.  My mother is a public speaker and municipal board-member.  My aunt has spent decades in government information management; she is an archivist at Library and Archives Canada.   This may be why I take a long-term perspective on enterprise information technology.

My art has also been influenced by my dad; this collage is made from one of his old electronics magazines.

EDN, 2013.  Electronics, paper and acrylic on canvas.  11"x14".

EDN, 2013. Electronics, paper and acrylic on canvas. 11″x14″.