By the end of March 1991, my 15-year old software development and technical writing business could not continue. The recession of the early 1990s turned many customers into persistent slow and non-payers. Also I was unable to compete with the high-powered marketing of the new large highly-capitalised companies that were muscling into the arena.
At the start of April 1991, I therefore 'signed on' in order to get some form of income (if that is the right word for it). I searched diligently for paying work of any kind - a permanent job, contract or freelance. I searched right up until my 65th birthday (19 September 2007). However, this proved to be an utterly futile chore.
During this time, in parallel with my job searching, I embarked on an intense upgrade to my technical knowledge. This took the form of small software projects. I did these in parallel with writing this book. Details of all this software are given below. These, plus fully working demonstrations of my applets, are posted on my web site.
My fascination with chaos theory was sparked of by an article in the Scientific American in the 1980's. This interest was intensified in 1991 when I read James Gleick's book Chaos. My interest in chaos theory is rooted in my eternal quest to understand nature. I feel that this is the key to understanding how individuals and businesses must change to survive and prosper in the future global society.
To bring myself up to date in 1996 I changed to programming in Java. The following applets illustrate some of the application areas which I have delved into using Java.
Client-side Keyword Search Engine applet
A simple non-caching, non-proxy Web server (not an applet).
A bar graph applet which displays web site hits statistics.
Moving Map Navigator - automatic guidance for aircraft
Way-point Encounter navigational system development
Personal Link contacts management database
Difference Equation Iterater (Chaos Theory)
Bifurcation Map Generator (Chaos Theory)
Mandelbrot Set Generator (Chaos Theory)
Hénon's Strange Attractor - a mathematical mind bender
Sigmoid Function generator (re neural networks)
Lissajous Figures demonstration
Radio Receiver Pass-band Simulator
An HTML word counter and vocabulary compiler
Some of these applets were developed using Sun Microsystems' Java Developer's Kit 1.0.1 running on IBM OS/2 Warp4. Others were developed after I upgraded to Versions 1.1.4. and 1.1.6 which I installed on both OS/2 Warp 4 and Windows 95. After 2007, all my development has been done on Linux. These applets are posted in full working order on my web site.