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65 posts

Master Geek
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Topic # 57009 31-Jan-2010 12:37
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G'day everyone,

I'm currently a student at AUT University in Auckland, studying towards a Bachelor of Computing and Information Systems. Once I graduate, I intend to come back and take the Master of Forensic IT as well. I've been a geek all my life, but have been a jack-of-all-trades geek until now, so I am going to specialize with my uni study. I hope to get into computer forensic psychology, that is, using cyberpsychology to trace hackers, cyberstalkers, and other computer criminals through the Internet.

DataGeneral MicroNovaAs I mentioned, I've been a geek for a long time. One of the first computers I got to play with was a DataGeneral MicroNova system like the one shown here. I also had many Atari and Amstrad machines back in the day, and was really a latecomer to the IBM PC compatible world. I learned Atari BASIC, some 6502 machine language, and did some hardware hacking back in the 80's, including installing a US Doubler chip in my Atari 1050 floppy disk drive, and ripping the wires out of old joysticks to turn them into hardware interfaces, built on veroboards, that could control 240v electrical applicances using microcontroller chips and relays. At one stage I had the electric kettle, the heater, and the toaster at home all being controlled by a timer program that I wrote in Atari BASIC. I also had a simple home alarm system wired in to an Atari machine.

My early days of using IBM-compatible machines included connecting to, and eventually running a FIDOnet connected BBS. I had a point system off the Pumphouse BBS, in Waihi, which was run by Matthew Purvis. We were in Zone 3, Net 774, where the net coordinator was Barry Blackford. I was right into door games back then, especially one called TradeWars. I've always liked strategy games rather than FPS games, but a bit of mindless fragging with a BFG or rocketlauncher is a nice way to relax sometimes. Laughing

I started turning my hobby into a career in the computer industry with a DTP course at the Tauranga District Education Trust, and soon after I began working in a computer sales and repair store in Waihi, doing the desktop publishing there. Watching over the shoulder of the technician, I quickly learned how to build and repair IBM compatible PCs, and built my first machine there, a 486DX4-100, which I nicknamed Quazimodo. It was the ugliest thing you ever did see, and was basically just a motherboard mounted on a piece of plywood, with the metal expansion card support, the hard drive bay, the PSU and power switch all screwed into place on the plywood base. It was a great little machine for tinkering with, and I learned a lot from it. I also started learning about networking while I worked at Computer Solutions Waihi, at first using LapLink / FastLynx parallel and serial cables, then advancing to 802.3 10Base2 ethernet over coax, and eventually 10baseT networking, including hubs and routers.

Having decided to further my studies in networking, I came up to Auckland, and took an MCSE course at AMES Training. I came away with an MCP qualification (I was the first to gain a Microsoft qualification through AMES) and was then employed at AMES as a network technician, hardware support engineer, and eventually also as a Comptia A+ computer hardware lecturer. I wore all three hats there for a while, and I quickly learned the intracaies of multicasting images using Norton Ghost to install a classroom full of computers overnight using an automated script, and then I took this a step further, using Microsoft IntelliMirror services with RIS and WOL to install a networked OS the Microsoft way. It was here also that I started getting in PXE's, including BartPE.

After AMES, I began doing contract networking jobs, and was part of the team that installed the Artena student management system at BCNZ (now known as Laidlaw College). I set up two Windows 2000 servers for them, including creating the AD domain and all user accounts, installed PostgreSQL server and Artena, then set up the MOLP licenses so that they could access the student management database from anywhere in NZ via Terminal Services. I also installed a Tandberg backup system, and helped Mark Sutton (their in-house IT guy) to integrate the new Windows domain with their existing Novell network.

Another highlight of my computer career was when I set up my own computer repair shop in Henderson. It only lasted two years (hey, I'm a geek, not a businessman!) but I was able to solve a lot of computer and networking problems for my customers during that time. Much of my time here was spent removing spyware and viruses from customer's computers, and I became very familiar with such tools as HijackThis, SyBot S&D, AdAware, and remote windows registry editing using PXE disks. I used to say that I surfed the Windows Registry like other people surf the 'Net. Laughing

After closing my computer repair shop, I took a dramatic change in career direction, and got into security. This eventually gave me the opening that I wanted, and I began working for Chubb security, a large multinational company which had an Intranet, VOIP telecommunications, Citrix clients, and lots of other nice toys that you only get to play with in a corporate environment. I was there for three years, soaking up the experience of being an end-user instead of a network admin. I now have a much better appreciation of network administration, having been on the receiving end!

I'm now back at University, hoping to develop my career further. As you can see, I've been a jack-of-all-trades geek until now, able to do some programming, some hardware work, some networking. Now it is time for me to specialize. I look forward to meeting other geeks here at GeekZone.


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65 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 294857 31-Jan-2010 13:04
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Hmm, I wonder why my signature didn't attach to that last post. I've tried updating it, but it didn't happen. Very strange. Also, why does the HTML parser on this site always put a <br> tag between every <li> tag? That's kinda annoying!

EDIT: Still no sign of my signature, despite it being configured in my profile, and enabled individually on each post.

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  Reply # 294859 31-Jan-2010 13:06
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You need either 5 or 10 posts before they will show. We have implemented this to help prevent people signing up, having their spam/links in their signature, and never coming back.

Stick around, post, and you will be happy ;)


And welcome to geekzone!

 
 
 
 


BDFL - Memuneh
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Master Geek
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  Reply # 294866 31-Jan-2010 13:13
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rscole86: You need either 5 or 10 posts before they will show. We have implemented this to help prevent people signing up, having their spam/links in their signature, and never coming back.
Ah, thanks rscole86, that makes a lot of sense.

rscole86: And welcome to geekzone!
Thanks for the welcome. I signed up here quite a while ago, as you can see, but haven't made use of my account until now. I'm on several other forums, including TechGuy, but haven't really considered local kiwi support sites until I came here. Looking forward to getting some local knowledge.





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Master Geek
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  Reply # 294868 31-Jan-2010 13:17
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freitasm: Welcome to Geekzone!
Thanks for the welcome, freitasm. Any idea why your HTML parser keeps adding breaks between my list items? I have an unordered list in my signature, but it keeps getting extra lines between each item, and they are being added automatically.

Also, I see it stripped off my <acronym> tags. Do you have a list of acceptable HTML tags here?

PS. I like your username, freitasm. I see it is your name, but it also reminds me of a Turbo Assembler (Free TASM) that I used to use. Hehe.

SCM

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 294872 31-Jan-2010 13:23
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wow thats quite a read, you have been busy ;)
Welkies to GZ!




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Master Geek
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  Reply # 294876 31-Jan-2010 13:30
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Thanks for the welcome, SCM, yeah, I thought I'd lay out my résumé as a geek. I didn't include a geekcode though, thinking that would just be OTT. Wink



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 295202 1-Feb-2010 15:35
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Okay, I see that I now have my signature enabled, after 10 posts. However, as I mentioned above, the HTML parser here is still adding extra lines between each list item. Is there some way to prevent this from happening?

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  Reply # 295204 1-Feb-2010 15:38
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The LI tags add a line feed when rendering - and we add a BR tag on any line feed detected on your sig - so that makes it two. Just remove the line feed and it should do the trick. Here, done for you.




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Master Geek


  Reply # 295206 1-Feb-2010 15:54
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Hi and welcome - I remember loosing days to tradewars... need to find... must play...
http://www.oregonsouth.com/ice.../
Have fun studying... it was never my cup of tea.



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 295246 1-Feb-2010 18:52
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Thanks for that Mauricio. I guess I'm more used to BBCode these days, and having to consider the effect of HTML rules along with the forum autoformatting threw me. And thanks for the link BartManGeek, nice to see that people still remember the old games. Unfortunately, I don't have as much time for gaming as I once did though, what with getting into the books and all. Thanks for the welcome, BTW.

EDIT: Sorry Mauricio, every time you edit my sig nicely, it adds an 'A' before the © symbol, and whenever I go to fix just that, I end up getting those extra lines between the list items again, even if I remove the <br> tags manually by editing the HTML source of my sig. This is very strange. Is there an optiion that I can select to just use BBCode on your forums, as I cannot work out why it keeps adding extra lines.

EDIT: It's okay, I found out how to disable the WYSIWYG HTML editor. That's much better.

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Master Geek


  Reply # 295409 2-Feb-2010 14:59
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I remember gaming all night long - Myst, Monkey Island... aaaah the memories, but now sleep is a precious commodity with 3 boys in the house :-)
Have you tried www.ziwi.co.nz... for books?

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