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Stu's Homepage

I finally have a homepage :(  This is what happens when I overhaul the Generic NQS web site at 1am in the morning, instead of doing something sensible like getting some sleep ...!

(I wonder how much of this will come as a shock to my GNQS users, many of whom hardly know me? ;-)

Anyway, welcome.  I'm Stuart Herbert.  Can I go now?  Please?!?

Erm, a bit about me.  I'm a Yorkshireman, hailing originally from Doncaster, UK.  I moved to Sheffield (about 18 miles down the road ;-) back in 1991 when I began my University degree.  I didn't do much studying, but I wrote some interesting stuff for Novell Netware in Modula-2 (of all things) and at the same time did my bit to drag both the University and the Student's Union kicking and screaming into the world of computers.

Met a lot of interesting people at the time, mainly through getting to know the mad people down in Swansea Uni's Comp Soc.  (Shameless name-dropping time ;-)  They include such fantastic people as Alan Cox, his wife Telsa, her sister Debby Gwynne (who I've had the pleasure to write a song with), Tessa Barnes, Naomi Black-Bilodeau (watch this one - she will be a successful author when her first novel is published), and teddy-bear artist extraordinaire Kristi Jones (who's also quite a lyricist, and a great artist too ;-)

Since graduating in 1994 (yes, I did get my degree, but to this day I don't know how!), I spent two years running the GNQS project for the University.  I've worked in a few places since, but working for the Uni so far remains unbeaten.

These days, I work as a freelance software engineer here in the UK.  The pay is better, you're treated like a real human being (unlike so-called permanent employment in industry over here!), and it allows relative youngsters like me to get at positions and work which I'd never be able to get at as a permie.

Interests?  Too many :(

Let's get the computing ones out of the way first.  Apart from Generic NQS [more], I've contributed the odd piece of code to the Linux community over the years.  In fact, I can honestly say that the vast majority of Linux installations on the planet (and, it appears, quite a few FreeBSD systems too!) have been installed using software I helped develop.

My other computing interests are in the software development process itself, and distributed computing.  It's no secret that I'm very unhappy with the level of software engineering training most students receive these days, and I'm very interested in how to design, engineer, and support a quality system.  GNQS has some of these ideas incorporated - I hope to add many more over the coming years.

Away from computing, I'm a keen (if somewhat poor) musician, which is discussed somewhat more here.  To go with all the hiking I do in Wales (where I eventually want to move to), I've taken up photography; that's discussed here.  I like books - everyone should go out and buy one from a local bookstore right now ;-)

From late Sept 1999, I'll be taking up T'ai Chi Chuan.  Given my catalogue of accidents whenever I try anything involving balance (skiing, snapped a finger; ice-skating, bashed my head somewhat), it'll be interesting to see whether I manage to do myself a serious injury or not!

The question of whether I'm single or not is a good one.  I currently prefer to describe myself as 'chasing', and leave it at that ;-)  Caterina Park, if you ever read this, I'd love to hear from you again.  Mail me! (She's my ex-fiancée, and not the person I'm chasing, before you ask!)

Well, that's about it, really.


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