I've been programming professionally since 1982, but started programming around 1977 on microcomputers. I cut my teeth on an IMSAI 8080, but really got involved with the Radio Shack TRS-80 line of computers, programming in Z-80 assembler, BASIC, COBOL, FORTRAN and PASCAL. At one time I had a part-time home business selling software and peripherals for the TRS-80, owned four of them and even did a bit of consulting on the side. I was one of the first two authorized Epson repair centers in Kansas City.
I started programming professionally on a mainframe with FOCUS, and was a FOCUS programmer on VM/CMS and TSO for 15 years.
In 1997 I made a switch from mainframe to client-server application development with VB and SQL Server (6.5 then 7.0). I've also worked a little with Oracle and some with Clarify (ClearBASIC-yuck!).
In 2002, I was laid off by my employer. It was a terrible time to get laid off and I spent 3-1/2 years completely outside of IT. I got back into programming in January, 2006. It was upon my return to the IT world in 2006 that I discovered and fell in love with EE. They were a lifesaver. I knew enough general information to get me the job, but 3-1/2 years without programming had left me VERY rusty, and EE came to the recue more than once.
I've delved into some JAVA and a little into VB/ASP.NET but in June of 2007, left my last position and took on a contract position as a SQL Server Developer. It has been a real learning experience and started wondering if I made a mistake jumping from application development into full-time database development, but I made a go of it. Over 10 years later, with several jobs under my belt since I first delved into database development, it has treated me well.