Paul Mc Guire

mailto:ptmcg at austin dot rr dot com homepage:

I am a systems consultant, having worked in various manufacturing-based capacities since 1980, with a strong computer software slant since about 1983. Over time I've worked in various computing languages (FORTRAN, Basic, Pascal, Forth, PL/1, Smalltalk, COBOL, C, C++, Java, VB, Tcl, and lately Python, with which I am becoming greatly enamored - roughly in that order), on different platforms (IBM 360/370, DEC PDP-11, Timex Sinclair ZX81, Commodore 64/128, VAX/VMS, DOS, Windows and its ilk, PalmOS, and lately Linux - again, roughly in that order), mostly with applications oriented to manufacturing control or tracking or information management (production tracking, work instructions, process planning automation, machine program management and download, scheduling, statistical and run-to-run process control).

I feel that manufacturing has both mundane application needs, but also non-trivial challenges in terms of user accessibility, time-criticality, performance, and reliability. When a particular system has been deployed, or bug fixed, or enhancement installed, it is quite a thrill to walk out into the factory and see it running, or to walk into the breakroom and see your graph outputs on the bulletin board (especially if someone has highlighted something on the graph with a note "Great Job!" or "This explains trouble on Machine 12!"). In the larger picture, I feel that our shift in emphasis from a manufacturing-centric economy to a service-centric one is flawed - manufacturing creates wealth, creates tangible goods - services are much more ephemeral, and have a much lower barrier to entry.

As a hobby, I've also pursued/indulged/dabbled in programming with some special areas of interest:

I live in Austin, Texas, with my wife and two children. I completed my Masters degree at UT in '02 (in Digital Control Systems Engineering - I implemented a digital system simulator using VBA in Excel), and am now part of a small manufacturing systems consulting group, specializing in semiconductor manufacturing advanced process control.

One of my friends is SteveMetsker - when we worked together in Maine, we would occasionally pose each other some math problem, or try to take a described solution and generalize it, or otherwise pick it apart. I typically found that I was often on the side of BruteForce, for which I make no apologies.

Lastly, here is a bit of doggerel (with apologies to KurtVonnegut):

	Tiger got to hunt,
	Bird got to fly,
	Man got to sit and wonder "Why? Why? Why?"

Tiger got to sleep, Bird got to land, Man got to draw himself UML diagram.


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