Miles O'Neal - Working Hard
or Hardly Working?
Work & Related Stuff
2009 brought another layoff as Intrinsity prepared to be bought by Apple.
A year later I landed at
as a CAD systems engineer- sort of
a Linux/Unix systems administrator on steroids. The motto is "Cirrus rocks!"
and it really does. This is definitely one of the two best employers I have
worked for; they really understand the importance of happy, good employees.
The job has morphed more than once so far; from generalist to Linux/Unix
infrastructure operations to managing the SCM systems (mainly Perforce
and Subversion) with Samba thrown in just for grins. I also blog from time
to time, document like crazy, and help with training in related areas.
2002 brought about a slight career change. I've always
had my finger in the system administration pie, but became
a full time manager of a sysadmin group at Intrinsity in
the summer of 2002. It's primarily a Linux shop, with a
few Solaris systems, and a handful of Mac and Windows systems.
The entire network, plus the phone system, is mine to
command. Or command me, depending on your point of view.
I finally got the chance to work F/T for Vignette!
I was with the Enterprise Application Portal (EAP) division,
formerly Advanced Solutions Team (AST),
which was a part of Vignette Global Marketplace (VGM), which
was the fastest growing software
company inside the fastest growing software company in the history
of the known universe. Until the IT economy collapsed, anyway.
I was the architect for the E-Support diagonal
group (not exactly horizontal apps, not exactly vertical apps).
I got hit during the third major round of layoffs, and
started seriously considering whether to stay within
this industry or not.
For a year I was a Senior Web Guru (yes, that was on my business
card) at Hire.com, the
best way to find a job or employees using the Internet. The
Product Services Group, of which I was a part, does everything
related to the product that isn't core development. Among
other things, I handled customer modeling, web server enhancement,
optimization and maintenance, some QA, the odd system and network
admin assist, and ping pong.
For a year and a half before that, I worked for I.T. Masters,
in product development, and briefly, allegedly as the US IT Master,
although I was stymied at that by Those Who Nod Meaninglessly.
For the previous six years I worked at
Pencom Web Works and Pencom Software (later PSW Technologies),
both divisions of Pencom Systems .
There I worked on a variety of projects, including co-Xist (X for NeXtsTeP),
and co-authoring Awt Programming
for Java with Tom Stewart (possibly available from
Also during that time, I contracted at Vignette twice;
the first time I wrote the first GUI for the first StoryServer
release, and the second time helping out the fledgeling Professional
Services grup. I really wanted to go to work at Vignette, but
was trying to work less hours, not more, and Vignette was in
serious startup mode.
I've been playing with X ever since it escaped the
labs at MIT. I wrote one of the first commercial
apps for X, which my (then) employer decided was too good
to market, and kept for Internal Use Only, so
they could continue selling services. They were
bought by a giant USA conglomerate, and barely
survive today. I, on the other hand, am doing fine.
At PSW Technologies I also worked for a couple of years on
product for NeXTSTEP,
co-Xist, which is
now defunct. This was where I also
got started with the web (early on, on my own time, after reading
about the Web in ORA's
The Whole Internet User's Guide & Catalog.
I've been working with web technology in some capacity ever since.
(arch-nemesis of the
County Community Cow College)
where, studying EE, I found computers.
I started out in FORTRAN on mainframes and minis, but
managed to get a solid software engineering background
At my first full-time software job I got more experience than
I ever counted on, including learning all about
And here are some valuable resume tips!
A Limited Edition Career
(Many 80 hour weeks to do all this!)
- FORTRAN, Basic, & assembly on mainframes, minis & micros
- CDOS, CP/M, MP/M, DR:DOS, MS:DOS, CTOS
- MAX II/III (MODCOMP), OS32 (PE), RTM (SEL) VMS (VAX)
- C on proprietary systems & most versions of unix
- hardware design, debugging
- surface vehicular traffic control
- factory floor control (PLCs)
- modem & controller hardware design
- lightweight AI
- designing OO languages
- compilers & interpreters
- hardware interface
- user interface
- database (yuk)
- statistical analysis
- system administration
- COBOL on DOS
- building user interface builders
- X: end user products,
freeware, server, Xt, & Xlib
- other graphics 
- C++, Objective C, perl, TCL, Tk, python, Ruby
- sh, csh, bash, tcsh, ksh
- World Wide Web (HTML, HTTP, servers, CGI, etc.)
- co-authored the first available book on Java's AWT
(Pencom has removed its page from the web).
- Productized various pieces of software
- ported parts of Tivoli
- created, staffed and managed a Tivoli testing and certification center
- NFS, Samba,
- afs, extfs, xfs, zfs
- DNS, NIS, NTP, SMTP
- license managers
- various Cadence, Mentor Graphics, and other hardware design tools
- Perforce, subversion
Where did I do all that?
- Service Engineering Associates (Atlanta, GA)
- JHK & Associates (Norcross, GA) (still my favorite work I have done aside from writing)
- Solid State Systems (Kennesaw, GA)
- Process & Instrumentation Design (defunct)
- Systems & Software Solutions, Inc. (Marietta, GA) *
- Sales Technologies, Inc. (Atlanta, GA) (bought out)
- SecureWare, Inc. (Atlanta, GA) (Now a division of Hewlett-Packard)
- PSW Technologies (Austin, TX) (includes contracting to other companies such as
IBM, now defunct)
- Net Ads (Austin, TX)
- Pencom Web Works (Austin, TX) (includes contracting to other companies such as
Vignette Corporation, now defunct)
- IT Masters (Austin, TX) (bought out)
- Hire.com (Austin, TX)
- Vignette (Austin, TX) (bought out)
- Intrinsity (Austin, TX) (bought by Apple)
- Cirrus Logic
Other career-related things:
- developed & taught an X & System Admin course (with
Dinah McNutt )
- writing a book on curses 
- writing for journals & magazines
- writing & helping with net.freeware
- co-founder & President of
Schober O'Neal, Inc,
a world-class World Wide Web provider, and its now independent child,
Life is sometimes, as Eric of the Troubles loves to say, fair.
Designed & co-developed a portable, graphics-device-independent
system in FORTRAN for minis & micros, before X was even a gleam in Bob
Scheifler's eye. Alas, it was proprietary, and never went anywhere.
 a.k.a., Sysadmazon.
 Working title: Foiled! Curses Again!
provided by Susan Liebeskind of the
Graphics, Visualization & Usability Center.
Kids, there's a big, wide world out there, and
I tasted a bit of it when I dropped out of school
for a while. What was life like, that it drove me
into software as a profession?
Read all about it.
In my spare time, I run
a company existing only in Cyberspace, dedicated to recycling as high up
the food chain as possible.
All material is the sole responsibility of the author.
The provider endorses nothing here.
[remove the "XYZZY." to make things work!]
c/o RNN / 1705 Oak Forest Dr / Round Rock, TX / 78681-1514