A Walk Through the Past – Google Style

This post has little to do with Leading Software. It was inspired by an idea I had while going for a run this evening. I remembered a time that I searched Google for my name and found a load of interesting old items from my computing past. Since my name, Cliff McCollum, is reasonably unique, sorting out my Google links isn’t that hard to do, and I thought I’d give it another go to see what I could find.

What emerged what an interesting tale of my computing past, going back to before the web itself. I apologize that this is a rather narcissistic post, but I found it pretty interesting. I’d like to fill in some of the gaps, but the real experiment was to see what Google could find without any special guidance. Frankly, I had forgotten many of these things.

July 1993: AliasZoo 2.0.2 released. The announcement went out on the InfoMac mailing list and was posted at ftp.cdrom.com. I actually posted my CompuServe ID (76170,601) as my contact information. I know that version 1.0 was released almost two years earlier, but I can’t find any record of it in Google.

March 1994: Voted in favor of the newsgroup rec.skiing reorganizing itself to create rec.skiing.snowboard (back when it was still called “snowboard skiing” for insurance reasons).

August 1994: Voted yes to help create the newsgroup comp.sys.mac.programmer.codewarrior

October 1994: Released MacPPP 2.0.1cm4, the first PPP driver for MacOS that could make a network connection in the background, allowing other applications to be used while the network connected.

September 1995: Released PortScan – a TCP/IP based port-scanning tool for Windows 95. Announced it in the comp.archives.msdos.announce newsgroup. Much to my surprise, Port Scanner is cited as a security tool in US Patent #7216157 “Method and system for discovering managed devices in a data network”.

November 1995: Posted a multi-threaded networked Whiteboard application (basically a networked drawing application) as open-source to the macos_files mailing list. Required MacOS 7.5 and MacTCP or OpenTransport. I actually listed “a connection to the internet” as an explicit requirement.

December 1995: An article in the online TidBits magazine describes a modification I made to MacPPP (the first PPP driver for MacOS) that added multi-tasking support to the driver (so you could do something else while your computer while dialing the modem and connecting).

November 1996: Listed as a graduate in Computer Science from the University of Victoria.

May 1997: My shareware program Keys Off 1.2.1 was released at http://www.blueglobe.com. Required MacOS 7.

August 1997: Posted a question to the mklinux mailing list asking for help installing mkLinux on an Apple 7100/66AV with 40MB of RAM.

May 1998: Acknowledged for some help I provided to the authors of a paper entitled “Appleseed: A Parallel Macintosh Cluster for Numerically Intensive Computing” written by UCLA’s department of Physics and Astronomy

Jan 2002: Posted a question to the macosx-dev mailing list asking how I could convert characters from an NSText field back to their NSKeyCode equivalents. Andrew Platzer from Apple’s Applications Frameworks group told me it was too much work to bother.

March 2002: posted a question to the comp.sys.mac.oop.powerplant newsgroup. I was having problems printing from the PowerPlant application framework under Apple’s Carbon APIs.

September 2002: Posted a question to Apple’s Quicktime_API mailing list. I was having trouble with matrix-based rotations.

November 2004: Wikipedia article created about FreePPP, an updated version of MacPPP that I helped develop.

December 2004: Posted a message to the linux.redhat.install newsgroup asking for help with audio drivers under RedHat Enterprise 3 update 4.

Feb 2005: Posted a comment to the sipping@ietf.org mailing list commenting on a proposed extension to the SIP protocol. (It was about the document draft-elwell-sipping-redirection-reason-01).

April 2005: My bio is listed as part of the speakers list for VON Canada 2005. I spoke as part of a panel on the future of instant messaging.

August 2006: Released a Google Home Page module to display and play voice and fax messages from a VoiceMobility UCN 250 messaging system.

September 2007: May name is listed as a member of the CIRA (administrators of .CA) board of directors nomination committee.

Everything newer than this lost my interest. You should try this with your own name – I bet you’ll find it just as fascinating as I did.


5 thoughts on “A Walk Through the Past – Google Style

  1. Neat Cliff. I note that “meeting Erin at UVic” wasn’t listed. Google didn’t think it was important, eh?

    • Ya, I wondered about that too but I couldn’t find a record of it anywhere in Google.

      As funny as that comment sounds to us, with Facebook, our kids actually could Google that stuff. That’s either very cool or very freaky.

  2. Unfortunately, this never worked well for me. Tyler Black is an American professional wrestler, who gets far more hits than I do – both literally and figuratively.

    Get it? Hits? Wrestler? Search engine? Hmmmmm?

    Neat post, Cliff. What were you doing between 1998 and 2002?

    • I guess there’s one advantage to having a first name that should only belong to someone born in the early 1900’s (or whose parents were huge fans of the 80’s TV series Cheers).

      I’m not sure where Google thought I was in all those gaps. I wonder if they align with the toddler-age for each of our children?

  3. Pingback: 2010 Blog-Stats in review « Leading Software

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