As a kid, I wanted to be an artist when I grew up. As a teenager, I wanted to be a computer programmer when I grew up. As a young adult, I wanted to be a writer when I grew up. Lucky me... I got to be all of these. (And I'm not even 40 yet!)
I studied computer science in college, and put together a nice résumé over the following decade as a computer support specialist. Meanwhile, I wrote news articles, essays, and comicbook reviews, and developed a reputation in various circles as a writer. Then I went back to college, where I'm studying both illustration and visual communication.
You know the old expression: "jack of all trades, master of none"? That's me. (Except that my name isn't Jack.) I'm not the greatest programmer, writer, or illustrator on the planet, because I can't bring myself to do just one of these at the expense of the others. But I'm pretty darn good at all of these things (and several others, as well). Of course, since the Renaissance is over and the Age of Specialisation is in full swing, this hasn't simplified my career much, but I still think it's been good for me as a person.
Date of birth: 11 March 1965
Height: 5'10" (175cm)
Weight: 175lb. (79kg)
Hobbies: writing, computers (duh), comic books (superhero & alternative), bicycling, drawing, a little sci-fi, arm-chair philosophy, men, travel, and a bit of hell-raising here and there.
Residence: in the Eastown neighbourhood of Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Relationship status: It's a bit complicated... see the Andy Bristol page
When I listen to the radio, it's
WYCE 88.1FM (eclectic!),
WVGR 104.1FM (news and info),
or WGRD 97.9FM (modern rock).
The TV shows I currently enjoy watching are:
Deep Space 9,
The X-Files (starring my old schoolmate Gillian Anderson),
Dharma & Greg,
Will & Grace,
News Reader: You can't find a much better Usenet News reader than the bargain-priced (US$29) Agent from Forté. Free Agent is pretty much the same program but without the high-end features... and it's free.
HTML Editor: HomeSite for Windows95 is my favourite. It's far more powerful than, say, Notepad, not overblown and "kewl" like, say, HotDog, and gives you full and direct control over your HTML code without luring you into using proprietary "extensions", unlike, say, MS FrontPage. PC Magazine picked it as "Editor's Choice".
Word Processor: My w.p. of choice is WordPerfect 5.1 for DOS. I'll use the latest and greatest graphic publishing tools when I have a need for them, but WP51 (the 12/31/90 release) does just about everything a person would want... usually faster.
Personal Digital Assistant: I rely on my wonderful Psion Siena to keep my life organised. It's cheaper than a secretary.
Desktop Computer: My main computer is a Gateway 300MHz Celeron. I also have a toy Apple Macintosh SE, which I use for reading Mac disks.
Operating System: When I ordered my latest computer, I had a choice of getting Windows 98 or Windows 95 with it; I deliberately chose Win95. Win98 is basically just a new release of Win95 with a few improvements, support for some new hardware, and a lot of utterly pointless cosmetic changes... many of which are just plain annoying. Don't waste your money buying the upgrade. (And unless you're married to Windows, Linux is a much better choice, regardless.)
Send me mail.