About (The Long Version)

I was born in Chicago, Illinois in 1955. My family lived in an apartment on the north side of the city. Not surprisingly, I don’t remember much from that time but I do remember a couple of things. One was the bizarre drapes we had on the windows and another was breaking a large green salad bowl. I don’t remember why those things stayed in my memory.

Two years later we moved from the city to the suburbs, unincorporated Glenview Illinois. We moved into one of the very first homes built in the neighborhood. I have many fond and some not-so-fond memories from that time. It was a time before parents worried much about what their kids did during the day so we spent most of our non-school time running around the neighborhood playing while our parents either worked (usually the case with dads) or did things around the house (moms). The only rule was we had to be home by 9:00pm at night or there would be consequences.

High school – art & music

College (part 1) – music

Dropout – factory work

College (part 2) – BS Comp Sci


In October of 1994 I joined Microsoft as a developer support engineer working on the Visual C++ Team. I had never had a job that involved interacting with people before but I found that I really enjoyed it. Product support, to me, is a really easy job as long as you deeply know the product or technology you are supporting. Trying to do that job without that knowledge, though, is about the worst thing that I can imagine trying to do. So during my time in developer support I spent a lot of time reading and learning about the product we were supporting: Visual C++. It was easy back then since I was new to the area, didn’t have very many friends, and didn’t have any family. I can remember many times looking out the window and seeing the sun come up, not having gone home yet.

After a couple of years, I had gained enough experience that I was assigned to be the developer support liaison to the product group for a new release of the product, Visual C++ 4.2 Enterprise edition (codename Galileo). Apparently, I did a good job on that assignment because after we shipped the release I was invited to join the product group as a tester.



Testing (again)

Moving to SQL Server


One thought on “About (The Long Version)

  1. Pingback: Building an “About” Page the Agile Way « Ronald Pihlgren

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