Friday, December 30, 2011

Battle over Barsoom

by Phil Gardocki

This is a fictionalization of a game that was played at Cold Wars. The encounter is about a two dozen steam powered space ships fighting it out in the skies of Mars. The rules set used was “Fleet Battles by Gaslight”, written and run by Christopher Palmer. The game takes place in the Victorian era and assumes mankind has discovered space travel, but little else, about 80 years early. I enjoyed the game very much, and wrote this story to describe the events, throwing Burroughs Martians and as many historical peers as possible into the mix.

Battle over Barsoom

“This is intolerable,” thought Tars Tarkos, Prince Heir of Thark, as he shifted his position from left to right to compensate for the rolling deck of ship beneath his feet. The yacht, Mi’Mosa rolled in the gentle Barsoomian breeze. “We could have been there in half the time it takes for the Pink Skins to make this trip.” Tars stopped his musings to observe the short Pink Skins that were attempting to interact with their counterparts in the royal staff. Translators, both Thark, and Pink Skin, were desperately trying to keep up with the conversations. But apparently there was an addition complication, that these Pink Skins, spoke Deutsche, not the English that some Tharks had grown accustom to. When we get to the conference, there will be more discussions, concessions, and then a treaty that would turn some of the Pink Skins against the others, and thus preserve Barsoom for Thark, and so avoid a slow death by exploitation.

“I must stop thinking of them as Pink Skins, I am a Prince, and must set the proper example. They are our allies, these Deutsche, I must not forget that.”
The chancellor, Kal Kardos, was very firm on this. Allies are not subordinates, but equals. Tars, of course, did not accept this. Equals? Ha! He derided the chancellor for his obvious stupidity. But this attitude made his father, the King, livid, and in his royal chambers, corrected Tars for a very long time.

He looked at the trailing ships out the right hand window. They were crude, with their seams were bolted together, and parts of them were made out of some kind of plant material grown on Earth. He counted six ships out this window, and knew there were three more escorting him on the other side. They were ugly, with thick smoke belching from their interior, and they were prone to break downs. It seems we get started just in time to stop again.


His father and the chancellor were right though. While our ships are superior in every way, they are few in number. Each one is now precious. The Earthling ships were stinking, slow, and unreliable. But each year there are more of them. While we have forgotten how to make ours. How could we have forgot?  The answer, of course was that our ancestors built too many and too well. The ships didn’t need maintenance, and rarely required replacement. And after several generations, we only knew how to operate them.



He observed some frantic activity on the Earth cruiser he now knew as the Koln. His eyes then darted to the two nearby Deutsche boats and noted what could only be sudden preparations.


He took two steps forward, to the front viewing ports, and started to read the flashing lights emanating from the Thark Destroyer Ja’ Kal. It had been years since his ship training, and his skills at reading the signal lights were not as fast as the ship’s crew, but he wouldn’t need to wait to be told that something was very wrong.

“This is intolerable,” thought Admiral von Tirpitz as he was piped on deck of his flagship, the Dreadnought Blucher, “Every ship has had some kind of breakdown on this short trip, except for those damnable Martians.” He did not even have the luxury to exempt the Blucher from the list.

For the Blucher was the latest in German engineering, and the pride of the German Fleet. Even though the Blucher was newly arrived on Mars, it had spent a year working up and training before that point, and the crew was acting competently. But despite that workup period and the relative rest of the transit to Mars, minor problems built up and even the Blucher had an engineering casualty that slowed this fleet to a crawl for a short period of time.

Allied with the natives. Everywhere we go it is the same. The English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, even the Italians, wherever the Germans went to set up legitimate business interests, the other European powers were there first, sometimes by centuries. And so, our interests get relegated to back water operations. The English get Hong Kong, and we get Koto Baru. They get the horn of Africa, and we get east Africa. They get the control points, and we have to make deals with disenfranchised natives.



But on Mars, at least, the English only have a short lead. Space travel is only ten years old. But finding out that even the Americans were already here was a surprise that von Bismarck had not warned him about before departure.

He had to admit, that despite the ugly yellow paint they used, the Martian ships were beautiful. How they were formed was beyond his comprehension. It was almost as if they were welded out of prefabricated parts instead of riveted metal and nailed wood. And whatever they fed their boilers, it made no smoke whatsoever, even their transports could take off at high speed from a standing stop. By the time von Tirpitz had a presence of mind to order the fire control optics to track the speed of the ship, it had already stopped, turned broadside, as if to say, “Are you coming, or what?”

He could hardly wait to get a tour of that warship. Given the seven-foot height of the natives, he won’t be banging his head in the corridors.


“Incoming message on semaphore Kaptain,” said the deck officer. “It’s from the Liepzeg.”


“Read it when it’s ready Lieutenant.” respond Kaptain Ludendorf.


Von Tirpitz, however, wasn’t dependent on the transcribed message, and he spelled out the message flags in his head.



9*S*M*O*K*E*P*L*U*M*E*S*S*I*G*H*T*E*D*STOP. V*E*C*T*O*R*2*0*DEGREES*STARBOARD*STOP

Admiral von Tirpitz was issuing orders to the communications officer, before the dreadnought’s Kaptain had the message. “Order the fleet to turn 20 degrees port. Send the cruisers forward. Kaptain Ludendorf, turn broadside and unmask our batteries. If this is a fight, I would prefer to take advantage of our superior gunnery at long range.”

There was only a pause before Ludendorf responded. “Petty Officer of the watch, pass the announcement for battle stations to all compartments.” And to the helmsman, “Helmsman, turn twenty degrees port, half flank speed. Stoke up the boilers.”


With basic orders given, there was little else to do. The noise of the bells rang through the ship. But his thought was of the Martians. There was an understanding, that they would run at best speed. But, they had a nobility problem. To run was not in their nature. And with translators working first from Martian, to English, and then German, who knows what the Martians would do.

“This is intolerable,” thought Commodore Dewey. He was on the outer Flag Bridge of the USS Texas, and staring through his telescope at the approaching Martian and German task forces. I do not believe that President Harrison sent me here to bushwhack some German task force and their native followers. His orders were clear though, to cooperate with our British cousins, and to further American commerce into space. This was beginning to look like furthering British commerce, and the only reason he was here was because some of the green natives raided and massacred an American gold mining outpost.

Even that was a little fishy. He saw the Martian bodies at the outpost, but the wounds of the bodies of the miners looked more like bayonet wounds, rather than sword cuts.


If all this gets to the press, President Harrison won’t have a second term. But, it wasn’t like he got a majority of the votes the first time either.

“Well, now it is a tactical problem,” He thought, “All the Anglo American squadrons had the high sky advantage of about a mile, and, hello there, we have just been spotted.”

Message from the Ja’Kal, my Prince, said the Growl, while handing the foil to Tars. The Growl then backed away, and awaited whatever orders the Prince would have. Tars scanned the message, and picked up the nuances that he missed while trying to read the lights himself. It was short and to the point. At least 12 ships were spotted, converging from many vectors. He was going to go hunting, and recommends the Prince be right behind him.


“Ship Commander,” Tars said with a calmness he didn’t feel, “Go for maximum altitude, signal the other yacht also. We probably will be going at high speed.” And in a voice of authority for the immediate crew, “Lets show our Pink Skinned friends what we can do.” There was a pause and small cheer, which was a kind of a disappointment, but then, this ship was not full of warriors, but of all the functionaries necessary to make a government work.


Within seconds, the Destroyer Ja’Kal, began its ascent, but it took almost a minute for the Yacht La Tar and even longer for the Dora Dor to follow. Feeling his weight almost double was a bit of a strain. He definitely needed to go hunting more, he was far past getting soft, he was soft. Tars found himself wishing he could take the place of his Cousin, Tal Tejak, who, as Ship Commander of the destroyer he must now follow, was about to earn a lot of glory this day.

“The Martian Ships are rising at a rate of .6 G, Herr Admiral, and last tracked moving at 36 knots (M),” reported Kaptain Ludendorf to von Tirpitz.

“So precise! Are we still tracking them with the fire control rangefinder?”

“Yes, Mein Herr, as per your previous orders.”


Mentally sighing, but giving no outward expression, von Tirpitz ordered, “Kaptain, target your rangefinder one of the incoming ships per your own tactical judgment. We will need all the advantages that rangefinder will give to our guns.”



“At once, Admiral.”

Rising at point 6 G and 36 knots normalized for Martian planetary curvature. We have ships that can almost meet those specs, point 4 G, and 28 knots, but none of them are near the size of the Martian Warship. Was it the fuel, or the aerodynamics? Well, it was unimportant at this time. They were gaining altitude and running, and so he can concentrate on the fleet action at hand.
“The Zeppelin is responding sir,” reported a port side sailor. And the Koln is following the Martians.

“Very good,” responded the Admiral. Now we are in a bad situation. I have three ships escorting the Martians and six ships to take on twelve or more enemy ships. Of my two heavy ships, one is a Zeppelin, or rather, THE Zeppelin, which would be of limited use on Earth, but has much greater lift capacity and reliability here on Mars. As long as the enemy doesn’t have any of the new percussion shells, she should be nearly invulnerable, able to take many hits before deflating gently.
“Admiral, we can see flashes from the nearby incoming ships,” reported Kaptain Ludendorf.

“Fire at will, Kaptain.”

“Well, we surprised them all right, their formation is breaking up,” mused Commodore Dewey. “Half the Germans are going for altitude and speed, and the other half stopped and turned for battle. We have altitude, their forces are split, and have crossed their T as well.”
“Captain, target that strange looking ship heading for us.”

“Yes Commodore.”

Tars Tarkos could hear the heavy guns of the Destroyer, and was surprised to actually see the incoming shells from the enemy ships. They were that big. The Barsoom guns were small caliber, but high velocity, and were not visible to the eye. And, like so many things, have the secrets of their manufacture lost in antiquity. But these Earth weapons were huge, and loud, but slow, and the Pink Skins can make more of them. And they would get better.

“Dora Dor has lost vector!” shouted a lower level Growl.

And it was true. The yacht had all the signs of a power disruption, for without power, the ship’s stabilization was also compromised and began a random swaying that was visible to all the world.

“Order our ships to halt,” demanded Tars Tarkos. Warriors or no, this order was accepted by the crew immediately. This was a code of honor, you do not leave comrades behind.

As the communications were being sent to the Ja’ Kal, there was a sudden explosion forward of the yacht. Tars Tarkos’s nictitating membrane automatically covered his eyes, and for a moment, his only image, was that of a purple ship, with black flames emanating from all angles

It was an explosion unlike any, von Tirpitz, or any human, had ever seen. Instead of a fireball, debris, and smoke, it was multicolor shimmer, then lightning, then iridescent sparks descending to the ground.

“Mein Gott, that was awful.” murmured Kaptain Ludendorf, “Not even a chance to parachute.”Everyone was shocked at the first casualty. It was expected to be one of the first contact cruisers or destroyers, but not a capital ship like the Martian appeared to be.

“Kaptain, can anyone see the Prince’s Yacht? And where is the Koln, and her escorts?”
“There!” pointed a seamen.

And indeed there they were. The two yachts were up very high, with the Koln and the two patrol boats nearby. But, they were not moving.

“Scheis, why are they just sitting there?” said Kaptain Ludendorf.

Von Tirpitz thought on this for a few seconds. And remembered his correspondence with von Clauswitz. “It doesn’t matter why, Kaptain. The only way we can help them now is to draw attention away from them by shooting down enemy ships.”

“Waa HOO,” shouted Commodore Dewey, “It was big, it was bad, and now it’s GONE!!!”

Captain Springer chimed in, “If I had a gun I’d notch it, but how do you notch an 8 inch howitzer?”

Dewey replied, “You get a can of ugly yellow paint and paint that ship on the side of your turret, and if anyone gives you a problem, I’ll back you all the way to the Admiralty!”

Shells were flying fast all around. Several ships were emanating smoke from every porthole and others were sinking slowly from engineering casualties. But no shells touched the yachts. Tars had to wonder at his allies, they were as good as their bond. Two tiny boats were between his motionless ship and the huge one that destroyed the Ja’Kal. One had taken a hit and was not in control anymore. The larger one was pummeling a small English ship into scrap.



“We have message from Dora Dor, she is ready to move.”
“Good, make ready to leave, signal the Dora Dor to keep up as best she can.” Ordered the Prince. It may be gauling, but that was his mission. When he is gone, his allies should no longer be in jeopardy.

“Ship Commander, What is the fastest speed this yacht has ever gone?”
The Ship Commander actually smiled, “Without royalty on board, or belching Pink Skin contraptions about, 65 statii.”


Tars struck a casual pose with three of his arms, but the fourth, was behind his back, and grabbed a convenient metal handle, very tightly.

“I would like to see this ship do 65 statii, Ship Commander.”

Commodore Dewey was beginning to get frustrated. It seemed that the explosion of the Martian Battleship was more accident than good shooting. Two German boats were screening the transports with surprising efficiency, and while one was hit a few times, it was still in play, and firing back. His squadron, and the British squadron had all the advantages, but nothing was being accomplished.


“Explosion, Starboard bow,” reported a lookout.“Ours, or theirs?” demanded the Commodore.
“I think it was British, Commodore, but I don’t know which one.”

Dewey shifted is telescope back onto the transports. “It doesn’t matter.” Keep firing on the transports.”  Wait a minute. That transport was moving, and diving.  “Captain, Springer, did we hit it?”

But even before the Captain answered, the Commodore had his answer, as the second transport adopted a nearly identical movement profile.

“Congratulations Kaptain, that was a British Capital ship,” announced von Tirpitz. And to the cheering crew he ordered, “There are more enemy ships out there, and they are all trying to kill us. Let’s kill them first, before we celebrate.”

In the turrets of the Texas, the effort of retraining the guns was exhausting. This ship was originally designed to fight at sea, which was relatively flat, and a relatively unmoving surface. Sky ships were much faster and harder to hit. At sea, you pointed the gun, and waited until the ship rolled to the correct angle and you fired. There was no waiting here, the turrets constantly needed to be adjusted. Finally, with the German patrol boats out of the way and the guns finally had a clean shot on the transports, when, they just dropped out of the sky.
The turret commander was yelling into the voice tube. “You need to roll the ship more. No they are diving. I need 20 degrees of roll. Now! Well then, tell the Captain I can’t hit those targets!”The barbette gunners had no better time of it. Lighter and smaller, they covered the traverse range rate of the transports quite well, but had even less ability to adjust for the sudden drop in altitude.

“WeeeeHAYDHLOLLDLSLDKJ,” shouted the Prince at the top of his lungs. And if this was a break in decorum, he wasn’t alone. What Barsoomians that were still standing were shouting as well. There were no Pink Skins on their feet. They were a tangled mass of parts splayed and intermixed with Tharks that were also caught off guard at the sudden zero gravity and the acceleration that the Mi’Mosa was developing. The orange surface of Barsoom was growing at an alarming speed, but it was the ride of a lifetime.
The Ship Commander pulled back on the controls, and gravity was at first heavier, and then returned to normal, but the speed was only slightly changed. He turned with a loopy grin and lisped, “My Prince, I have failed you. We only achieved 63 statii in our descent.
“Perhaps it was a failure in the measurement equipment, I am sure it was 65,” replied Tars.

“Very well my Prince,” and the Ship Captain turned to guide his vessel through the Barsoomian wildlands.

Then an explosion rocked the yacht, almost throwing it into a red sand dune.

“Turn those guns around, fire the port barbette guns, drop altitude, they’re getting away!” shouted Commodore Dewey. It was the last order he ever shouted.
For the Zeppelin, was more than an experimental propulsion and lift system, but also had some of the new percussion explosive rounds that would be instant death to her gasbags. And one of them just hit the Texas’s number 4 barbette gunpowder magazine.

“Kaptain, you may secure from battle stations,” ordered von Tirpitz, “I do not think they are coming back. It was quite a day. Three British Capital ships destroyed, and at least 1 cruiser. Several ships were disabled, but recoverable on both sides. The only real loss was the Martian Dreadnought. Between the alliance with the Thark, and this skirmish, we have almost reached parity in forces. Chancellor von Bismarck was correct in his actions to deploy von Tirpitz’s squadron to Mars. Pity about the Martian ship though, he really wanted a tour of that ship.

Tars Tarkos, Prince of Thark, looked out upon the task force that again surrounded his yacht. “Allies,” He thought, “We may have made a good choice here. They were short, ugly, and slow, but had warrior spirit. They may have unreliable ships, but they can make more of them.”

Things that are counter-intuitive

On Databases          
                Databases are used to store information for computerized systems.  Their primary function is to not lose any data.  If you happen to get useful data from a database, that is considered a bonus.

On Gas Cans
                The primary function of a Gas Can is to store gasoline and its vapor.  If you happen to refuel something up after getting around the child proof caps and vapor control systems, that is considered a bonus.  Double points if you avoid spilling gas on you, your clothing, or the floor.

On Odds of Success
                It is often easier to calculate the Odds of Success by subtracting the odds of failure from one.    For instance, the Odds of Success on the first roll of the dice in craps could be calculated as the odds of rolling a 2 plus the odds of rolling a 3 plus the odds of rolling a 4 plus the odds of rolling a 5 plus the odds of rolling a 6 plus the odds of rolling a 8 plus the odds of rolling a 9 plus the odds of rolling a 10 plus the odds of rolling a 12. 

Or you can say it is 1 minus plus the odds of rolling a 7, plus the odds of rolling a 11.

On Traffic,
                Ever wonder why the guy in front of you is always moving slower than you?  It is an aberration of observation.  If he was moving faster than you, he wouldn’t be there for you to observe, therefore, the car in front of you will always be moving slower than you.

On the Staples Easy Button

                Has anyone ever tried to remove the Staples "easy button" from the package? Because the bottom is flanged outward, and the packaging is formed to it, and the packaging is GLUED to the box, you have to totally rip the box apart to get the "Easy" button.

On Recycled Materials
               According to "green" guidelines, wool is not considered a recycled material.  To my mind, wool is the ultimate recycled material.  Originally it was dirt, and given enough time it will be dirt again.
               My office once went "green" with their printers.  Everything was printed double sided.  Paper usage went up about 25%, as many people getting their documents in an inconvient reading format, reprinted their documents.

Anglo Irish Longbowmen (this one only makes sense if you play Warrior Ancients)

                The primary function of Anglo Irish Longbowmen to be shot at, not to shoot.  Shooting means you drop your shields and are vulnerable to morale failure to incoming fire.  Not shooting means you are a higher priority shooting target than the troops you are next to, which can rip their opponents face off.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Finding a Job in the Internet Age.

This is a list of tips on how to optimize your job search using the tools available online.  This is all based on my experience of numerous searches I have done over the last 9 years as a contractor.  I do not claim to be the final authority on this and if something here does not seem right, then follow your own best practices. 

This document is broken into many parts.  Most of the parts can be executed independently, but having an understanding on how they interconnect can only improve your chances.  These parts are:
  • How the position placement process works
  • Tweaks on your resume
  • How to use the job boards
  • Recruiter calls
  • Interview tips
  • FAQ
Preamble:
Looking for work is work.  It requires dedication, time, strategy, and energy.  You may be spending 4-8 hours every day in an effort to find that next position.  Consider the research an investment. 

Disclaimer.  There are other methods to job placement than what I have listed here.  If you are the type of person that is really good with people, I can recommend “What Color Is Your Parachute 2010” This doesn’t mean the principles listed below won’t work for you, but use all of your talents to your own best advantage.

How the Position Placement Process Really Works.

In an ideal world, companies would create databases of all the resumes submitted to them, and have a program that can find people with skills required with a simple keyword search.  Workers would get called up, and both worker and company would be happy.

In the real world, large corporations do create databases of employee talent and resumes.  But they are not used to any degree.  The resumes submitted from outside of the company become stale, as those people have long since found a job, while in house talent cannot be acquired because that would be interdepartmental poaching, and the employee usually has no incentive to transfer as they would lose any seniority and favors accrued in their present department.  Most companies also have policies that forbid offering raises to transferred employees.  This lack of reward keeps the payroll in check, but also leads to stratification of talent, which in turn gets raises only by “transferring” to another company. 

So, almost all new positions invariability lead to recruitment from outside.  This task is outsourced to Job Placement Agencies for a fee.  Some of these placement agencies maintain a stable of candidates to offer, but the vast majority use the internet to recruit candidates.  The process works something like this:
  • A manager identifies a need for more help and submits requirements to Human Resources.
  • HR rewrites requirements, often adding many other skills.
  • HR submits requirements to the Recruiters.
  • Recruiters search for candidates using sophisticated keyword search software.
  • Recruiters contact candidates and vet them for availability, skills, and salary.
  • Some Recruiters test candidates and interview them personally.
  • Recruiters submit resumes of candidates to employers.
  • Employers “Phone Screen” accepted candidates.
  • Employers interview candidates.
  • Offers made.
Or:
  • A manager identifies a need for more help and submits requirements to Human Resources.
  • HR rewrites requirements, often adding many other skills.
  • HR submits requirements to the Recruiters.
  • Recruiters submit job postings to various job boards.
  • Candidates contact Recruiters on job postings.
  • Recruiters vet candidates for availability, skills, and salary.
  • Some Recruiters test candidates and interview them personally.
  • Recruiters submit resumes of candidates to employers.
  • Employers “Phone Screen” accepted candidates.
  • Employers interview candidates.
  • Offers made.

This missive primarily deals with the first half of these lists.  The rest of the process is to demonstrate how dynamic the process really is.  At any point in this process a break can occur that keeps a candidate from becoming an employee.

The main problem with this process is the sheer information overload that is now occurring on all levels.  In the past, Companies in bad economic times might expect thousands of resumes the day after a job posting, now receive hundreds of thousands today.  The subcontracting to the Recruiters is one way of managing the load. This is the environment we are living in.  We must adapt our tactics to it.

The Resume

In one respect, the resume has not changed, it still has only one purpose, and that is to get an interview.  Your resume is still the main tool to advertise yourself to the Recruiters, HR, and the Hiring Manager.  However, as each of these entities have different motivations, a well-crafted resume that would be successful to all of them may be impossible.  There are many articles on writing a resume.  Read several of them!

In the header of your resume, include an email address.  If your email address does not reflect a professional attitude, then create a new one using gmail.  Go to http://www.google.com/, select gmail in the upper middle of the page.  Select a name that would have a positive bearing on you.  For an example, if you are an auto mechanic, you could use iFixFords@gmail.com.  As a .NET Programmer, mine is PGardockiDotNet@gmail.com.  A Pastry Chef could have ThreeTierCakes@gmail.com.  If you are using Microsoft’s Outlook program, you can then set up your email retrieval to go get your email and set up a rule to place it in specific Job Search folder.

You will find there are many patterns to writing a resume.  The main types of resumes that come to mind are what I refer to as “hard” and “soft”.

A hard resume is extremely detailed, and leaves nothing to the imagination of the reader about your abilities.  For example; “I hit nails with a hammer.”  The problem with this style is that any skill not defined in the resume is assumed to be not available. A soft resume may read; “Performed attachments of fibrous materials”.  The second description implies knowledge of range of glues and connecting techniques.  The problem with this style of resume is that the audience has changed.  If it were read by the hiring manager, it could intrigue the mind and secure an interview.  The problem is HR and the Recruiter look at the resume first.  And if the Recruiter is looking for the resume on the internet using keywords “nail” and “hammer” he will never see that soft styled resume.

No matter how well your resume is written, there will be those that hate it, and those that like it.  Everyone is different, your resume is not going to be static, and it will be rewritten often.  Some resume writing articles will have you rewrite a resume for every position you post to.  In this day of information overload, you cannot afford the time to do this for any but the most desirable positions.  Your time is limited, and you must make an assessment.  Do you want to take an hour to rewrite for a single position, or submit to 10 more positions? 

The most important part of your resume is keywords.  A keyword is a word used by a search engine in its search for relevant Web pages.  This is applied by Recruiters to search the mass of resumes on the various job sites.  They can be one or two word descriptors of your skill sets.  Your resume must be littered with the keywords that someone would use to find your resume.  But they must be inserted in such a way as to look natural to the naked eye.  The method I use is to provide a list of skills on my front page.  Then, in the main body of the resume, each keyword is repeated in the position where it is appropriate.  This validates the keyword to both the eye of the reader, and to the more sophisticated search programs.  This is probably the most important advice I can offer you.  This technique is derived from Search Engine Optimization principles.  Search the internet for SEO and you will find several articles on this.  The main point of SEO is to get Google and Yahoo to present a web page first.  The same principles can get your resume on top of a keyword search by Recruiters. 

For example, part of my skill list reads :
Known Computer Languages
.NET 1.1, 2.0, 3.5
Ajax
ASP.NET
C, C++ and C#

Later in the resume these are validated:
XYZ Corp 1/2007-7/2007: Senior Developer, QA Tester, Data Masking Specialist.  Using C#, developed a Windows Service for the PARS to PIIN interface.  PARS, or Police Arraignment System, is an Sybase based Client Server System, and PIIN, Police Integrated Information Network, is an Oracle based ASP.NET System.  Using Use-Cases provided by XYZ Software Architect, created both batch processing and event driven data transfer modules interfacing these modules.  Tasks included troubleshooting the Oracle and Sybase stored procedures supporting the interface and the generation of consistent and coherent masked test data for proper testing of dataflow using a Winform C#, application. 

Technical skills required: .NET 1.1, ASP.NET, Ajax, C#, and XML.

The Bolded text is provided for emphasis of this document, and is not actually on the resume.

Keyword placement is important for not just the Internet Keyword search, but also by the Recruiter who has a list of requirements from HR.  Neither the Recruiter, nor HR, really knows what the hiring manager needs, and have only the keywords to relate to.  The more keywords that match, the more likely your resume will be selected.

So, where do you get your keywords?  You will have to pick a dozen or so from your mind and apply them.  Then later I’ll introduce you to some of the internet tools that will help.  The third method involves talking with Recruiters.  When they ask you what skills you have, they will go down a list of keywords they use.  Add the new relevant words to your resume.

The Internet
On the internet, there are a number of job sites.  Some of them are www.dice.com, www.monster.com, www.phillyjobs.com, www.careerbuilder.com, www.theladders.com to name a few.

Each site allows you to set up a profile, or skills list, and upload your resume.  In this era of information overload, open as many accounts as you can manage. 

Each site also allows you to set up “Search Agents”.  A Search Agent is an automated search that will step through every job posting on the board, and present all postings that have matches with your keyword list.  This is one of your tools to derive keywords and refine your resume.  On each site, set up a search agent, place your keywords and search.  Job postings should be presented.  Read each posting presented and derive the keywords that the Recruiters and HR personnel placed.  Add the relevant words to your list and update your Search Agent.  Repeat this process.  When you think you have derived all the keywords that apply to you, set up the Search Agent to send you daily emails.  These emails are lists of all job postings and will save you the effort of going to the site and running the Search Agent manually.

Now go to the next job site and repeat this process.

Once you have an expanded list of keywords, add them to your resume.  Post the resumes onto the job sites, and update any skill lists.  Each site has an Active and Inactive, or Public/Private settings for the resumes.  Make your resume Active/Public.

Keep your online documents fresh.  There are time stamps on all documents on the web.  So while you are on an active job search be sure to update all your on line resumes about once a week.  When Recruiters do searches, they will check on how old the resume is.

Applying to a position.

The Search Agents will return a list of job postings, which will contain a variety of information.  They may include title, rates offered, list of responsibilities, list of skills, education requirements, and contact information.  Some can be applied to by simply pressing a button “Apply”.  Others may mention an email address.  Others will send you to a link to another site to place information.  Others may have several methods.  If there is a contact email, and an “Apply” button, use the email.

Because there are many hands involved with writing the postings, there are often far more skills listed than are really required.  It will take a practiced eye to divine the original intent of the Hiring Manager from the additions that HR and the Recruiters may have added.  I work on the assumption that what is posted on top left is most important, and descending in importance the further down, or to the right of that skill.

Example:
Wanted, Actor to play the Son of God
Rate: DOE (Depends on Experience)
Required Skills:
  •  Walks on water
  •  Conversion of fluids
  •  Healing sick
  •  Reattachment of Limbs
  •  Beard
Education Level
  •  Masters Chemistry/Alchemy degree
  •  Bachelors Physics
  •  Knowledge of Biology, Pharmaceutical, Medical a plus.
  •  Carpentry

From this you can assume the special effects budget is limited, and so Walking on Water is a requirement, but having a Beard, and knowledge of Carpentry is just “Nice to Have.”

This of course makes assumptions about the personnel that wrote the requirements, and may not apply in every case.  If the title says Toyoda Automotive Technician, and the top skills listed are manage the supply system and understand thermo coupling characteristics of 0/30 oil, you may have to look deeper than top to bottom.

Always send a Cover Letter when allowed.  There are many articles about Cover Letters on the web, written by people better at it than I,  research them and read a few.  The only thing I will add is make sure whatever keywords describe the major requirements in the job posting, use those keywords in the cover letter.  Don’t go overboard on this.  So far, Cover Letters are read by humans only.  If you are using a template letter, read the letter twice before sending.  Make sure you do not have anything hanging from the previous letter.

Once applied for, write down this position on a list.  You may not know with whom you just applied for, but you might have applied to “Senior Bottle Washer”, Exton, PA.  This position will probably appear in a number of agents, and calls from Recruiters.  It is important not to apply twice for the same position.  Most double entries are dismissed out of hand by Hiring Managers.

Recruiters, General Concepts

Recruiters provide the connection between the Hiring Companies and the Candidates.   Candidates and Recruiters are bound by a bond of “Enlightened Self Interest.”  If the position is a permanent one, then the Recruiter gets a one time percentage of your yearly salary.  This is normally a sliding scale, which could be from 10-30%, lower salaries also have the lower percentage.  So a $10,000 yearly salary could be 10% or a $1,000 fee to the recruiting firm.  But a $100,000 salary would be in the upper percentage and could be $30,000.  So it is in the Recruiters best interest to get the best yearly salary for you.

Recruiters for hourly rates work differently.  The Recruiter will get an hourly rate, and pay you something less, and keeps the difference.  So for hourly rates, the Recruiter does not have all your best interest in mind.

But in either case it is in the Recruiters best interest to get you interviewed and hired.  And he has a lot of competition.  There are thousands of recruiting firms.

Recruiter Calls.

If all is well with your resume, and your skills/keywords are in demand, Recruiters will start calling and emailing you.  This is time to put your best face forward.  Not that you need to impress them all that much, but consider it practice for when you have that interview with a hiring manager.

When I am in the hiring cycle, and the phone rings, I do three things. 
  •  Check the caller ID. 
  •  Take a deep breath.
  •  Smile.
  •  Then answer as if I am answering a call in the office, and have no idea who is on the line.
  •   “Good Morning”, this is XXXX, “How can I help you?”

I try to keep the conversation upbeat, and focus on what I can do for them.  After all, they are calling you, they have a “need” that you might be able to fill.  Forget that you are unemployed and need a job, the fact they are calling you says that you are in demand. 

Always have a pen and paper handy, to take notes, in addition to the job particulars, who  called, salary, and the prospect they have.  Note any keywords you may use, unfamiliar or not.

During the conversation the Recruiters will ask you many questions. 

On salary expectations.  Contrary to a lot of articles I've read, I tend to be up front with the numbers with the Recruiters.  But then, negotiation is not one of my strong points.  I will say, the Recruiter is not going to place your resume in front of a hiring manager without both of them having an idea of the salary range.  I rely in the Recruiters for this because negotiation is not one of my strong skill sets, but negotiation is part of the Recruiters skill set.  They are probably better at it than I.   But the most important part of this line of questioning is it gives you a feel on how the market is valuing your skills.  If you throw a number out there, and they say OK, then maybe you are going too low.  Raise your price on the next call.  If the Recruiter thinks you are too high, they will let you know. 

On your qualifications.  Tell them what they want to know.  Do not get too technical, as most Recruiters are not technical.  If they were, they would be doing your job.  Do correct them when some skill set is presented incorrectly, or mispronounced.  It will not do either of you any good if they look stupid in front of the Hiring Manager.

Personal information.  I stop short at presenting my SSN until the interview process is further along.  They will ask for your SSN if they have to do a prescreen.   You may have to give it to them to proceed.  I usually wait until I have definite two way communication set up in the form of phone numbers and return email address I can reach the Recruiter with. 

If you are in front of your computer, establish two way communications while on the phone.  Have them send you an email, and flip a return.  Attach a “Word” copy of your resume to the email.

Testing.  Some hiring managers will require you to take online tests to verify your competency.  These tests are presented over the internet by third party companies like “Proveit”, and “Brainbench”.  When taking them, make arrangements with the family for quiet time.  My tests tend to run 1.5 hours each.
  
Fraud.  The internet is fraught with fraudulent offers.  You will get them.  They range from vultures, who will help you with your placement for a fee.  They will claim to have an inside track with the hiring managers, but then so do the free recruiters.  Then there are job prospects that are totally unrelated to your postings.  Sometimes these will involve buy-ins to pyramid schemes.    One position I wound up attending involved them wanting me to set up an office (at my expense), to process Real Estate claims (or some such crap), and collect a sliding percentage on the revenues.  In my experience is about 2% of the prospects I have received have been fraudulent.

After your conversation with the Recruiter, add a record to a job search list.  Include the Recruiters name, email, phone, company name, job prospect title, job prospect company, current date, agreed too salary.  This will help when multiple calls for the same job comes in.

The Interview
There are plenty of interview tip pages on line.  These are written by people that are better at interviewing than I.  Read several of them.  And definitely read a couple “do’s and don'ts” pages, if only for the humor value.  Surely you won’t be bringing your lunch into the interview room.

Couple of interview tips I have not seen posted:
         Bring your own pen.
       Bring a portfolio of previous work.  Mine is in a top of the line leather binder with plastic inserts. 
       The purpose of the portfolio is to provide substantiation of whatever information you are currently providing.  If you mention awards, inventions, or accomplishments that you have earned, there should be pictures that can be shown.  What a portfolio is not, is a pseudo Power Point presentation; do not go through the whole thing page by page.  The fact that you have it, and you show a few items in it is enough.  The interviewer will note that there is more in there.  It shows preparedness and fore thought.  Both of which are desirable traits.

Digital Presence
If you were to Google yourself, what will the search engine reveal?  What is on your Facebook page?  This is your “Digital Presence,” and it is fair game for employers to find out what they can about you through your postings.  Privacy went out the window a long time ago, and we have to adapt to the new information environment.  Clean up your Facebook page.  The company is not hiring a party animal.  I know nothing is truly gone when you remove things, but the employers are not likely to dig that deep.  Do you have articles, or blogs? What do they say about you?  You can’t control what others say about you, but you can control what you say about yourself.  Write a couple of blog articles about what you do.  Tech tips, recipes, your resume, book reviews on Amazon.  Work your digital presence so you are controlling your message.

FAQ’s
How many keywords do you use?
I have over 60 major keywords that have validation within the body my resume.  There are more keywords in the main body of the resume of lesser importance. 

Is it possible to have too many keywords? 
The short answer is yes.  How many is too many, is a hard question.  If your resume is nothing but lists of keywords, you will be dismissed by the first human eyeball that views it.  My resume does not seem to be overloaded at with a keyword to total word ratio of 1 to 40.  The trick is to have resume with enough keywords for the automated search agents, but must be also presentable to the human eye.

Do I need to respond to all the voice mails and emails I get?
No.  The recruiters are dealing with information overload as best they can, and boiler-room tactics of calling as many candidates as possible is just one tactic.  A “thanks but no thanks” for positions that don’t fit only takes time from both of your days.

.NET Resume of Phil Gardocki


Philip Gardocki
Royersford, Pa.
NET Software Engineer
(610) 495-7923
PGardockiDotNet@gmail.com


Objective
            A challenging position with software development and implementation, bringing to bear my expertise in database and network administration, and using my skills in systems analysis, troubleshooting, data obfuscation, and statistical analysis.   I am comfortable with new technology and capable of learning new ones.  I have a .NET accreditation from Penn State.  


Skills and Training

Computer Languages
Software Packages
Electronics








.NET 1.1, 2.0, 3.5
Business Intelligence
Computer Controlled Circuitry

Ajax
CUTE FTP
Computers

ASP.NET
Data Masker      
Digital Camera

C, C++ and C#
eCTD      
Digital Electronics

CSS

Digital Imaging

Enterprise Level Software Engineering
ISIS
High Voltage
High Energy Sensors (Gamma, Neutron, X-Ray)

Fortran
LLBLGEN


HTML
Lotus Enterprise for Integration
Microsoft Office
Networks

Javascript
Photoshop
Printers, From Offset Press to Laser

Object Oriented Programming
Search Engine Optimization
Radars

PL-SQL (Oracle)
SmartComm
Robotics

RDL, RDLC
SourceSafe
Servo

T-SQL (SQL Server)
SQLServer 2005/2008/2012
Spectroscopy

VBA,  VB.NET
Toad
Programmable Controllers

Winforms, Webforms
Visio
Ultrasound

WPF
Visual Studio 2012, Team and Test editions

XAML, XML, XSL

















               
Professional Experience
Senior Software Contracting Consultant
10/2005 to Present
Clients included CMC Energy Services, Constellation Energy, DST, GlaxoSmithKline, IBM, Liberty Mutual Assurance, Lithium Battery, Lockheed Martin, Lost Battalion Games, TNS Media Intelligence, and Wyeth.
Projects include:




DST Systems (Data-Sys-Tance) 1/12-Present:  Current role is as both an Oracle and SQLServer DBA, Primary duties involved supporting Market Prominence for with Oracle, and CareConnect with SQL Server.  Both are  'N' tier enterprise wide client server systems.  Created documentation  DQ’s, IQ’s, OQ’s, for software implementation, as well as establishing benchmarks, testing and implementation. Performed data maintenance tasks based on current business needs.  Architected code changes in .NET 2.0, 3.5, 4.5 supported by T-SQL, based on business and system requirements.  Created reports using RDL and RDLC.   Used the SQL Server Profiler tool to monitor the performance of the SQL Server Database.  Troubleshoot production performance issues on an enterprise wide system as needed.  Technical skills required: .NET 2.0, 3.5, 4.5 ASP.NET, C#, GUI, Oracle’s PL/SQL, RDL, RDLC, SQL Compare, SQL Server Management Studio 2012, SQL Server Profiler, SSIS, SSRS, Talend, T-SQL, VBA, VB.NET 9.0, Visual Studio 2008, 2010, 2013 and XML.

Liberty Mutual Assurance 11/10-12/11:  DBA, Senior Developer.  Created documentation and SQL scripts supporting data conversion tasks.  Created one off code to convert data from legacy systems to current platform. Performed Data Maintenance tasks based on current business needs.  Architected code changes in .NET 2.0, 3.5, and T-SQL, based on business and system requirements.  Created reports using RDL and RDLC.   Used the SQL Server Profiler tool to monitor the performance of the SQL Server Database.  Technical skills required: .NET 2.0, 3.5, ASP.NET, C#, RDL, RDLC, SQL Server Management Studio 2005, SQL Server Profiler, SQL Server, T-SQL, VBA, VB.NET 9.0, Visual Studio 2005, Visual Studio 2008, and XML.

CMC Energy Services 1/10-10/10:  Senior Developer, DBA.  Developed LITS, an N-Tier View Model architected client entry and data importer to day to day applications.  This project involved taking on an unfinished product to bring it to completion.  This involved batch processed main frame data updates from outside sources, user updates, writing Stored Procedures, monitoring the performance of the SQL Server Database, User Interface Updates, and establishing View Model WPF Data binding connections. Technical skills required: .NET 3.5, C#, Infragistics, the Object Relational Mapping (ORM) package LLBLGEN, SQL Server Management Studio 2008, SQL Server Profiler, SQL Server, T-SQL, VBA, Visual Studio 2008, WebServices, Winforms, WPF, and XAML.

Constellation Energy 5/09–11/09:  Senior Developer, Data Validation Quality Assurance Tester.  Project melded 4 databases into a unified database.  This involved the creation of a C# Winform application that downloaded and compared data blocks, outputting both to corresponding success and failure logs, as well as creating on the fly SQL commands to assist in troubleshooting missing data.

Technical skills required: .NET 3.5, C#, GUI, Oracle’s PL/SQL, SQL Server Management Studio 2005, SQL Server, T-SQL, Toad, VBA, Visual Studio 2005 and Winforms.

Lockheed Martin 7/08-12/08: Senior Software Engineer.  Projects were Foresight and EAIT.  Both projects were browser based, Thin Client Server Systems for providing management reports on various projects within the company.  My role was to implement, test, data mask, and test data compliance, performance, and troubleshoot updates in the Webform based presentation layer and C# based business layers.  My duties extended to troubleshooting stored procedures within the database.  Using Visual Studio Team System 2008, I created performance tests and established benchmarks for the EAIT project. I was also the sole implementer of a datamasking project to maintain project security.  This first involved testing a third party, Configurable off the Shelf product, Data Masker™, but lead to the independent creation of a C# based Winform application.   This application data masked the QA and Test databases.   Code development involved identification of data to be masked; creating rules for different data types; developing maintenance processes and supporting documentation with emphasis on maintaining referential integrity and consistency of the masked data.   Performed monthly implementation and reporting of the data masked. 

Technical skills required: .NET 3.5, ASP.NET, C#, Data Masker™, SQL Server, T-SQL, VBA, Visual Studio Team System 2008, WebServices, WebForms, and Winforms.

Wyeth (Now Pfizer) 10/07-5/08:  Senior Software Engineer.  My role was as primarily staff augmentation, providing manpower where needed.  Primary task was integration of “Configurable off the Shelf” third party software packages into a mainframe/network environment.  This included installation of an international secure FTP system to reduce transit time of time sensitive eCTD documentation.  Cost savings of this installation was estimated at 1.5 million dollars on the first day of operation.  I also wrote the GMP documentation, including DQ’s, IQ’s, OQ’s, for software implementation, as well as establishing benchmarks, testing and implementation.

Other tasks included installation of “Black Box” testing of new systems.  Code review of newly developed C# applications.  The creation of C# modules and Oracle SQL Stored Procedures to support new applications.  Provided code commenting and system analysis, of the upgraded the P2P system.

Technical skills required: .NET 2.0, Classic ASP, CSS, C#, Oracle’s PL/SQL, Toad, and XML.

IBM 1/07-7/07: Senior Developer, QA Tester, Data Masking Specialist.  Using VB.NET, developed a Windows Service for the PARS to PIIN interface.  PARS, or Police Arraignment System, is an Sybase based Client Server System, and PIIN, Police Integrated Information Network, is an Oracle based Web Service System.  Using Use-Cases provided by IBM Software Architect, created both batch processing and event driven data transfer modules interfacing these modules.  Tasks included troubleshooting the Oracle and Sybase stored procedures supporting the interface and the generation of consistent and coherent masked test data for proper testing of dataflow using a VB.NET application.  The VB.NET application scrambled numbers based on a seed based random number generator for consistent results and a lookup table referenced system for personal, town and street names.

Technical skills required: SOAP, SQL Server Management Studio 2005, Oracle’s PL/SQL, SQL Server, T-SQL, Toad, VBA, VB.Net, WebServices and XML.

GlaxoSmithKline 8/06-12/06: Developer.  Working in the Small Projects Department, gathered
requirements from Scientists, designed, tested and implemented various programs to assist in the quantifying of data and pivot tables for pharmaceutical studies. I was nominated for GSK’s “Beyond the Boundaries” award on the first month of the job.  Began work architecting and data modeling the Specimen Transition program to update location and space availability of test animals.

Technical skills required: .NET 2.0, SOAP, Oracle’s PL/SQL, Toad, Winforms, VBA and XML.

For TNS Media Intelligence 10/05-7/06:  Developer, Project Manager, QA Tester.  Using NUnit, performed “White Box” testing of upcoming projects MediaWatch™ and Branded Products™.  Created multithreaded test harness to test these products.  Gathered requirements from customers, monitored system role out, and served as first level support.

Technical skills required: .NET 1.1, SOAP, C#, MSSQL, and Winforms.

Lost Battalion Games 8/04-5/09:  Part Time Position.  Web Master, Search Engine Optimization Specialist.  Supported the eCommerce site www.lostbattalion.com.  This involved rolling out the eCommerce package and updates, maintaining the SQLServer database, providing customer communications, creation of new HTML and ASP pages as required. 

Technical skills required: .NET 1.1, ASP.NET, C#, Google Adwords, HTML, VBA, VB.NET, Visual Studio, and Webforms.

Basic Contractor duties included:
Architecting                                      Gathering requirements
Customer Service                             Quality Assurance
Customization                                              Performance Testing
Data Masking and Obfuscation       Software implementation.
Data Analyst                                                Systems Analysis
Development.                                               Troubleshooting         

Accomplishments and Techniques:
Saved Wyeth an estimated $1.5 million with the first project completed.
Was nominated for GSK’s “Beyond the Boundaries” award on the first month of the job.
Languages and packages used: ASP.NET, Business Objects, C#, CSS, CuteFTP, Data Masker, eCTD, Frontpage, GlobalScape, Global Submit, HTML, LEI, .NET 2.0, NUnit, Photoshop,  SQLServer 2008, Sybase SQL, Toad, Oracle SQL, SmartComm, SmartSolve, SourceSafe, VBA, VB.NET, Visio, Visual Studio 2005, including Visual Studio Test Edition 2008, and XML.

Development methods include both QMS and Agile Methodology including Scrum, and Extreme.

eHealth, (now Siemens Health Systems) 4/2002 to 9/2005  
            Quality Assurance Software Engineer
Received 3 cash awards for innovation and excellence.
Using .NET, designed, and implemented a Quality Assurance Program that melded mainframe applications into a Windows environment.
Using VB6, developed Statement Confirmation via Web System. Project saved company $2.1 million over the next 4 years.
Using .NET, developed a number of applications, automating manual processes, and saved over a 2,000 man hours in the first year.
Using .NET developed a text-mining program.
Using .NET, created a HIPAA compliant databases, maintenance processes, and documentation for both the QA and Test environments.  Databases were fully data masked with consistent obfuscated data produced from my code written in VB.NET.  The task involved identification of data to be obfuscated, creating subroutines for the different data types, and logging masked data.  Numbers were obfuscated using a seed based random number generator for consistency.  Names were transformed via lookup tables. 
Served as customer support.
Completed Visual Studio NET certification, including C#, VB.NET, and Rational Rose UML.

Languages and packages used: .NET 1.1, C#, ISIS, JCL, MS Access, NT 2000, MS SQL7, VBA, VB6, VB.NET, and Winforms.

Shared Medical Systems, (now Siemens Health Systems) 2/1998 – 4/2002
           Software Consultant
Earned two merit raises and awards for individual achievement and effort
Served on a SWAT team for process improvement with Medicare billing software.
Using VBA, C++, SYBASE SQL, was a developer for the Novius™ laboratory automation software.
Created troubleshooting, automation, and customer interfaces.
Using SYBASE SQL and C++, served as an applications programmer for OPENLab™, a two tier client server system that automated hospital laboratory functions from registration to billing.
Provided mentoring and training for an expanded department.
Served on QA team.
Languages and packages used, C++, VBA, VB6, OS/2, Rexx, SQL7 , SYBASE SQL, SQLServer, Winforms, and Crystal Reports.
Battlefield Design Group 11/1995 – 2/1999
            DBA, Programmer, Game Designer, Historian
Part Time Position.  DBA and Game Designer for computer strategy game “Road to Moscow.”
Created player interfaces. COM and ActiveX calls were used for graphics, sound, and network play. 
Received training in ActiveX. C++, Network and modem “Head to Head” play, and “Fit and Form” functionality.
Skills required were front-end functionality, Installshield™, COM, C++, VBA, DBA, artificial intelligence, WinForms, and QA testing.
Siemens Medical Systems 8/1986 – 12/1997

Field Service Engineer

Maintained Computed Axial Tomography scanners (CAT Scan), Magnetic Resonance Imagining (MRI), as well as a variety of supporting peripherals, including digital cameras and ultrasound units.
Was team leader, mentor, and trainer of area FSE’s
Served in Siemen’s TAC Center.  This position was reserved for only the best system troubleshooters.
Electronic Arts 3/1986 – 8/1986

Programmer, Game Designer

Revised and published “Road to Moscow.”  Over 4,000 units were sold.
Languages used, Basic and Assembler.
AJ LaCourse 9/1985 – 8/1986
            Robotics Programmer, Industrial Electronics FSE
Using Hewlett Packard programmable controllers, programmed industrial controllers and created robots to automate manufacturing
Plant functions.
Provided Electronics Field Service for a variety of industrial equipment.
NL McCullough Corporation 7/1984 – 7/1985

Electronics Field Service Engineer

Beta tester for NL Industries computerized sensor truck.  This was the first digital data integration of Neutron/Gamma Ray/Magnetic/Sonic sensor arrays with computerized recording and laser camera readouts.
Responsible for maintenance and repair of all high energy sensors, and electronic explosive controls used in the Ark-La-Tex district.
Ba’rac  2/1983 – 7/1985        

Programmer, Game Designer

Using Commodore Basic, and Assembler, created published the computer game “Road to Moscow” for the Commodore 64.  This was a computer strategy game pitting the German Army against the Red Army in World War 2.
Using Forth, was support programmer for the computer game “Star Crystal.”
Technicare 6/1982 – 2/1984 
            Installations, Digital Graphics
Installed Digital Subtraction Angiography Machines.  This involved adapting a digital video front end to 3rd party X-ray systems.  It required initiative as installations were often working alone on these projects in different cities every other week.
Received training in high-tension electronics, VMS, DEC PDP-11 series computers, Matrix cameras and customer relations.
Skills required were System and component level troubleshooting; microprocessor based controllers, X-Ray adjustments and customer relations.
United States Navy 11/1975 – 5/1982          
            Missile Fire Control Technician
Member of the Personnel Reliability Program, and held a secret security clearance.
Serviced missile battery radars on the USS Oklahoma City, CG-5 and the USS King
DDG-41.
Served as work center supervisor on USS King.  Received battle efficiency E.
Was trained in parts procurement and leadership, high-tension electronics, radio frequency principles, hydraulics, digital and analog electronics, synchro and servo systems.
Skills required were system and component level troubleshooting in all manner of electronic systems.








Commercial Products  


Road to Moscow (Windows 98)
Designed and developed of all levels of the program and tools.
Programmed in C++ and COM. Supported with Excel, and VBA.
Road to Moscow (Commodore)
Copyright 1984, Ba’rac Software Limited and later, Electronic Arts.
Approximately 4,000 sold.
Star Crystal (Apple)
Copyright 1985, Ba’rac Software Limited
Approximately 500 sold.
Text-Mining
Architected, developed, and implemented a text-mining program that can sort through very large files for specific data based on coordinates and search functions.  Patent submitted.