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Overview

Xymantix Online is the website that I created over a decade ago to showcase some of my artwork.  I started to get heavily into skinning around 2000 and created dozens of skins for several applications including Operating System enhancement applications like WinStep, WindowBlinds, and LiteStep, as well as media players such as Sonique, WINAMP, CoolPlayer, and QCD.

LiteStep, the Windows Shell replacement, was innovative as it supported modules to extend the product even further.  I used the SysMETER program a lot, as I've always been fascinated in statistics - especially when they give me more information and control over my computer!  I soon became frustrated with the slow pace of the its development cycle - especially when I ran into a bug that wasn't getting fixed!  Since I'm a type-A personality and have occasionally been accused of liking to be in control, I began to look for alternatives.  Unfortunately, I wasn't able to find a suitable replacement.

About the same time, I began to experiment with a clock program to use with LiteStep.  It began life as 'Clockulator' (I know, kind of a crappy name) and it soon became mature enough for me to start using it with my LiteStep themes.  It was skinnable, of course, and while you had a lot of options to create a nice clock there wasn't much more to it than that.  After showing it to a couple of skinning buddies, I got some pretty positive feedback on it.  From there the project exploded, as I started to add more and more features to it.  Soon it could report on a variety of aspects of the operating system, and the skinning engine advanced along with it.  At that point I renamed the product to SysMetrix and released it as freeware.

This website became valuable after the release of SysMetrix, as it was the primary download source for the program.  SysMetrix skins and themes, on the other hand, are hosted by third party sites.

Even though I primarily wrote SysMetrix for myself, I've always been open to feedback from the community.  With all of the high-quality input, SysMetrix grew by leaps and bounds.  As the versions when by it became more and more feature-laden - it could report on the weather, integrate with the MotherBoard Monitor, report on and manipulate your media player, and so on.

After version 3.41, my development of SysMetrix began to slow down.  Partly because life got in the way (having kids drains your free time like you wouldn't believe!), and partly because it could already do so much.  That said, it's not completely dead and I've had to do a quick-fix release of 3.43 on January of 2010 to fix my version of a 'Y2K' bug parsing out the METAR data for weather.  However, now that I've 'switched' to a Mac I spend less and less time in Windows.  That's a bit of a drawback for SysMetrix, but on the other hand it's opening up new opportunities.  I'm learning Objective C and am working on iPhone apps now...

More information about me

ALIAS: Xymantix is the online name that I came up with years ago. It's based off of the word mantic which means prophetic.
EDUCATION: I have a Bachelors of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of New Mexico.  As part of the curriculum I spent time with computers and learned Fortran77, BASIC, and assembler for the Motorola 68000 .  I also designed computer systems and worked on noise cancellation systems as senior projects.  Although the hardware-based material was interesting, it couldn't compare to my new-found love for software.  After graduation, I began working at a software development company as that's where my true interests lie.
PROGRAMMING: I have varying degrees of knowledge and experience with Visual Basic, Perl, PHP, JavaScript, SQL, HTML, CSS, BBx, Java, and most recently developed an iPhone app in Objective C.  As I'm an avid reader and quick-learner, I am self-taught in most of these languages and own an unbelievable number of books.
GRAPHICS: I have spent literally thousands of hours in Adobe PhotoShop designing graphics for websites, program skins, and publications.  In addition to skinning, I have also spent a lot of time doing raytracing work with POVRay.
MUSIC: I'm actively learning the piano and have been taking lessons since 2008.  I originally took lessons for a few years as a child, and it's amazing how permanent early education like that can be.  I am also self-taught on the electric guitar and specialize in 80's rock and metal.
EMPLOYMENT: I've been employed at BASIS International Ltd., an international computer language software development company, since 1990.  I currently serve as the Engineering Supervisor for the company, but am responsible for a variety of aspects of the company including writing magazine articles, technical editing, customer support and training, local and international presentation, co-writing the installation, writing demonstration programs, the implementation and deployment of the bug tracking software, custom graphic and icon work, as well as other general day-to-day responsibilities. 
INTERESTS: I spend a good deal of my leisure time on the computer as well.  In addition to the programming and graphics, I also enjoy playing Real Time Strategy games.  I'm also an accomplished athlete and have been swimming competitively since 1980.  I am a member of US Masters Swimming, belong to a local masters swim team and still compete nationally. I am ranked nationally with several Top 10 times and own the 50m fly USMS National and FINA World Record for the 45-49 age group.  While I still love swimming, I also enjoy lifting weights, and long distance cycling.  I've even experimented with a few triathlons, but my forte is still sprint-distance swimming.

Last Updated on Sunday, 11 November 2012 15:49

 

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