Home Page



I've used computers since 'early' days of computing, at least, dating back to the very early 1970's. I started by learning to program in 'Fortran'. Firstly, sending punch cards by post (!) and getting the results sent back in the same format some days later. Then slightly later on, tediously putting code manually onto paper tape and feeding it through a phone card reader, having phoned first to get computer time and an upload session, then getting a paper tape output, needing manually un-encoding. But some years on fairly soon home computers became available. The first computer I had (Bought in 1982) was a Dragon 32 (made in Swansea!), with 32Mb of RAM, and no storage media! I learnt a lot about programming on this. It cost as much as a PC nowadays! I moved on to an Atari 800XL, which I still have, but don’t use mostly.  These used a very cumbersome ‘audio’ tape reader to load programs or again manually typing them in and having to run them the same session, or save them to tape!

The BBC computers at work introduced me to programming using Procedures, a big step up from using ‘GoTo’ spaghetti lines of code. I learnt 'DOS' at work in about 1982.

The first home PC was bought in 1994, which brought me much more up to date and we soon had a modem Internet link. The PC had a 256Mb hard drive and ran Windows 3.1 initially! Programming in 'Basic' moved on to complicated 'Pascal' programming, then learning to program using 'Visual Basic' and the 'C' programming language. I also learned to be very adept in data handling using a computer program extracting or putting/replacing data from MS Access databases. I later learned relational databases and advanced spreadsheet operation for ICT. I also learned how to (and taught!) building a webpage using Html and FrontPage. I now use Word, with Dreamweaver for webpage production for my website. Win 3.1 led on to Win 95 and 98, then XP and very recently Win 7. I have tried Linux, though mostly prefer using Windows, as computer games is one of my main interests.

Things moved on a lot over the years and my computing skills with this. I was asked to cover for the head of IT at a local comp in about 1996-7. Later but on from this I had a phone call asking me if I would teach Computing at Crosskeys College, and after a brief interview I started teaching Computing to AS and A level at Crosskeys and slightly later at Ebbw Vale College for evening classes. Both went very successfully, with many students getting high or top grades and a not inconsiderable number going on to take Computing at University. Due to staff changes at Crosskeys and funding cuts at Ebbw Vale the Computing work was replaced with teaching ICT, first to AS and then later to A level. I left Coleg Gwent in 2005 though after ‘political’ differences over the treatment of a ‘favoured’ student.

I have kept interest in computers and use the Internet quite a lot. I’ve a modestly fast PC by today’s standards now running Windows 7.

Computer Games

I've kept a keen interest in computer games since they first came out, learning many aspects of programming initially through these, but nowadays it's just playing them and reviewing some free ones online!

I review some free (freeware) computer games regularly each week to post on the games discussion forum at the Giveawayoftheday site http://www.giveawayoftheday.com/forums/forum/17, where my pseudoname is chazzo125. Typing chazzo125 into their search box then clicking repeat search at Google at the bottom of the page will list all of the (nearly 100) games I have reviewed for the site there so far!