My name is Nicolas, I'm a French programmer in digital special effects. I was working in Paris before and now I live in London for 5 years. Like many people I find the R-Pi concept amazing. I'm really impatient to get one.
I'm interested in creating learning material about programming and how computers work. I've been taught about programming when I was a kid and now I feel it's my turn to explain. The R-Pi will enable me to use a standardized cheap hardware, because it's really hard to create any course for kids if you have no idea of what computer they use.
I started programming at 9 using a Commodore PET in the garage of my friend. His father was a programmer and taught me BASIC and basics about binary numeral system and how computers work inside. He changed my life.
After I had my own computer : a CPC 6128, followed by an ATARI 520 STF, Amiga 500, PC, PC, PC, PC, too many PCs ...
I was lucky to understand things quickly and school was easy for me. But I was bored at school because of that, until I found something cool to do : to explain to my friends what they did not understand during the lessons.
I studied computer science and engineering in telecommunications in France. I started to work as programmer in a digital effect studio. It was so exciting to work on movies and I was lucky again to work on projects like Fight Club or Matrix 2/3. My first R&D boss was really brilliant and taught me basic principles of professional engineering. He changed my career.
When I started to work I was anxious I would need to improve 200% my engineering skills to avoid to be flooded with all the technologies used in these studios. But the truth is, the bottleneck is the communication difficulties between engineers and artists. And I earned respect by doing my best to create useful tools of course, but also by taking a lot of time to explain how to use the programs I wrote and listening what I should improve.
I also mentored young programmers to fill the gap between programming at school and programming as a daily job. I like to mentor young programmers, you trade your "wisdom and experience" for their knowledge of the last technologies they studied and you don't have time to look at. It's beneficial for both sides.
Now I have my own software company and we develop programs used by visual effects and video game studios to create models from photos or videos. Being father now, I think it's time to think about the next generation. I hope I can teach some stuff about computer using the R-Pi platform.
Thanks again to the R-Pi team for this wonderful concept of having a complete low cost computer kids can use and break. I apologize by advance because I'll probably break some too