Seeing how I was keen to savvy computer use, someone (my wife namely) started calling me Superlinux from the Latinization of the diminutive of my name that some college friends used to call me. Therefore, from Pasquale to Pasqualino -> Pasqualinus, it was an easy step…
I have no IT certifications nor titles (except a Networking course I cannot find anything about), but I have been fiddling with computers since my early 20s, starting with a Commodore 64, exercising some Basic language and using software for HiFi loudspeaker crossover design and simulations …and some games…
My first real computer was an AT IMB compatible type with an early version of DOS, running text editions of Wordstar, Lotus 1-2-3, dB3 and Autocad. Later I upgraded to Microsoft Windows 3 running Word, Excel and CorelDraw! to work on my thesis in geology using proprietary software for plotting structural geology data and Surfer for generating 3D surfaces. At the INGV (Italian Geophysics and Volcanology Institute) I used software for mapping seismic epicenters and transforming intensity to magnitude on Unix terminals.
My first job was in a computer shop, where I assembled and configured DOS/Windows-based PCs for better performance (mainly fine-tuning the configuration files).
I had the chance to experiment with Windows-based sequencing software, which I used to create backtracks on which to play guitar solos.
While I worked at a musical instruments shop, I familiarized with early Hard Disk Recording equipment, learning how to setup professional digital recording systems on machines based on different systems (Atari, Apple, Windows…).
As a freelance geologist, I used MS Office and proprietary software for plotting structural geology data and graphics software like Macromedia Freehand and Deneba Canvas to draw maps and sections.
As a fellow researcher at the university, I kept using the same software as above, while I switched to GIS software for mapping (Esri ArcGIS, ArcMAP and AutoCAD Map) and Digital Elevation Models generation.
As I became more and more aware of the importance of choosing free and opensource software, I started experimenting with various Linux distributions from Red Hat to Debian, but also Mandrake and Ubuntu, which I installed on both personal notebook and work PC in order to run Linux software for drawing geological sections (2D Move) and 3D geological modeling (3D Move and GoCAD).
I was also responsible for maintenance and setup of the GIS Lab’s computer systems, networking configuration included.
I started experimenting webpage creation using the Macromedia Dreamweaver HTML editor to setup the geology department’s website and the GIS Lab’s webpages and also some personal sites. On Linux-based systems, I used Open Office and managed to run Dreamweaver and MS Office using Wine in Ubuntu.
For the GIS Lab, I also recorded voice-overs for the Master in GIS online courses using Macromedia Flash. The GIS online course was running on the Moodle CMS and that’s when I started to familiarize with Content Manager Systems.
During the Master in GIS course, I taught Technical English classes focusing on the history of computers, from the early mainframe systems, Unix, the first PCs, the Macintosh, Windows, Linux, etc.
As a consultant geologist for a US-based company, I used proprietary software to collect and process data from side scan sonar in order to create a 3D map of the New York Bay along the prospective track of a power cable. I used Surfer to generate the final 3D map.
As exploration geologist for a Rome-based Canadian company, I kept using Esri ArcGIS for mapping purposes and IHS Kingdom for seismic data interpretation and geological modeling. Graphics work were carried out through Deneba Canvas (that also has GIS and seismic interpretation capabilities) and some Photoshop and/or Gimp software (as well as Irfanview, Paint-NET) for geological imagery.
I had been using Joomla for my personal websites, so I created the company’s website based on that CMS. Later I switched to WordPress for my personal websites.
In the meantime, I had abandoned the opensource battle (out of frustration) and switched to Apple Macintosh computers for personal use (OSX-based Macbooks).
Working in a factory after losing my geology job, I returned to CorelDraw! for managing the labels I had to print on professional plotter/cutters.
During leisure times, I had been using some music recording software such as Audacity.
Since early 2019
As application manager for the company I am working with now, I am learning how to use and configure cloud-based business software from the Indian company Zoho (CRM, Creator, Projects, Desk, Sites, Social…). I deploy configuration and automation (using the internal Deluge programming language) according to our customers (and our) needs for managing customer relations, business analysis, project management, help desk, websites, etc.
Finally I decided to switch back to GNU/Linux operating systems on my work PC and my old MacBook Pro installing ArchLinux based distributions (ArcoLinux and Endeavour respectively). I am considering a more stable distro for work, maybe Pop-OS, anyway I am finally back to using open source software as much as possible.