Unauthorized Autobiography

I'm a computer programmer, primarily using Cocoa on Mac OS X. I've lived in Seattle, Washington since the middle of 1994, but I was born in Alabama in the late sixties, raised mostly in Oxford, Alabama, lived in Scotland when I was 12-13 years old (my mum is British and we tried relocating there for a while), and lived in the Atlanta area for a few years after college, before relocating to Seattle.

I enjoy the outdoors, but don't often find opportunity to go camping; I have managed to go on more day hikes lately. Coming from the south, I long for warmer temperatures (and warmer waters!) than we tend to have around here. I also really enjoy photography, and have been practicing that again more recently.

I like music and have a fairly large collection of CDs, which tends to be slanted towards eighties music. I also enjoy movies, especially science fiction and comedy, but I tend to like the old classics as well. I read a decent bit, mostly science fiction.


In the beginning...

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I spent first grade at a private school that would admit me a year before the public schools would. I spent the rest of my elementary years at Coldwater Elementary (where Jessica always did better than I did), then a year at Oxford Middle School (when the first handheld electronic games were all the rage). Then off to Scotland, with some time in Fort Augustus, at the southern tip of Loch Ness, and the single school there (where we would hear the boom of RAF jets passing over at high speed) and some time at Mackie Academy in Stonehaven, just south of Aberdeen. Back to Alabama and Trinity Christian Academy (where I had to write on my experience of being "saved" — as I recall, I got a "B"), then finished out high school at Oxford High School (playing soccer for Anniston because Oxford didn't have a team).

The college years were at Jacksonville State University, from which I graduated with a degree in computer science and a minor in mathematics (the latter was pretty tough for me).

While in college I volunteered as a DJ at the campus radio station, which was a lot of fun, and which increased the size of my music collection due to begging for some of the stuff that would have been thrown out otherwise. That helped me get a job at WDNG, a small AM station in Anniston (as did the fact that I knew J.J. from Boy Scouts), where I mostly re-transmitted talk shows in the evenings, with occasional air shows filling in for someone.

After college I eventually moved to Norcross, Georgia for a job at JHK & Associates (now TransCore) in the Atlanta area. JHK did traffic consulting and engineering, and I primarily worked on the Series 2000 traffic control system - general maintenance and enhancements (and making the function names longer). I was there for around 3 1/2 years, then snagged a contracting position doing NeXTstep work (a long-time desire) for McCaw Cellular in Kirkland, across Lake Washington from Seattle. My first day there, the big news was the announcement that AT&T was buying McCaw Cellular. Fortunately for me (and for Robert, who started the same day), AT&T Wireless (as McCaw Cellular was ultimately renamed) didn't start dropping all the contractors for another eighteen months.

The first six months there were productive and enjoyable. Then our project was shelved and I spent the next year doing I can not for the life of me remember what. I eventually started looking for alternate work. The Omni Group had some people working at AT&T Wireless at the time, and one of them suggested that I send Omni my resume. I also had a phone interview with NeXT where they asked me for some examples of class names that I had written - and I absolutely could not think of a single one. (ASTabCell!) I ended up getting hired by Omni and told AT&T that I wouldn't be renewing my contract when it expired. A week later they told me I wouldn't even be working out my contract, as they were letting most of the contractors go.

Since then I've been at Omni. Most of that time was working on consulting/contracting project (mostly WebObjects stuff), but after Apple bought NeXT and turned NeXTstep in Mac OS X, Omni slowly transitioned to a consumer products company, and my recent years have been spent mostly on OmniOutliner. I also wrote (and maintain) our online store.

Old acquaintance? Drop me a line. andrew.aawp@andrewabernathy.com.

Updated April, 2006
Andrew Abernathy