Beginning Linux Programming, 3rd Edition
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In terms of UNIX experience, Neil has used almost every flavor since the late 1970s, including BSD UNIX, AT&T System V, Sun Solaris, IBM AIX, many others, and of course Linux.
Neil can claim to have been using Linux since August 1993 when he acquired a floppy disk distribution of Soft Landing (SLS) from Canada, with kernel version 0.99.11. He’s used Linux-based computers for hacking C, C++, Icon, Prolog, Tcl, and Java at home and at work.
Most of Neil’s “home” projects were originally developed using SCO UNIX, but they’ve all ported to Linux with little or no trouble. He says Linux is much easier because it supports quite a lot of features from other systems, so that both BSD- and System V–targeted programs will generally compile with little or no change.
As the head of software and principal engineer at Camtec Electronics in the 1980s, Neil programmed in C and C++ for real-time embedded systems. Since then he’s worked on software development techniques and quality assurance. After a spell as a consultant with Scientific Generics he is currently working as a systems architect with Celesio AG.
Neil is married to Christine and has two children, Alexandra and Adrian. He lives in a converted barn in Northamptonshire, England. His interests include solving puzzles by computer, music, science fiction, squash, mountain biking, and not doing it yourself.
Rick Stones programming at school, more years ago than he cares to remember, on a 6502-powered BBC micro, which with the help of a few spare parts continued to function for the next 15 years. He graduated from Nottingham University with a degree in Electronic Engineering, but decided software was more fun.
Over the years he has worked for a variety of companies, from the very small with just a dozen employees, to the very large, including the IT services giant EDS. Along the way he has worked on a range of projects, from real-time communications to accounting systems, very large help desk systems, and more recently as the technical authority on a large EPoS and retail central systems program.
A bit of a programming linguist, he has programmed in various assemblers, a rather neat proprietary telecommunications language called SL-1, some FORTRAN, Pascal, Perl, SQL, and smidgeons of Python and C++, as well as C. (Under duress he even admits that he was once reasonably proficient in Visual Basic, but tries not to advertise this aberration.)
Rick lives in a village in Leicestershire, England, with his wife Ann, children Jennifer and Andrew, and two cats. Outside work his main interest is classical music, especially early religious music, and he even does his best to find time for some piano practice. He is currently trying to learn to speak German.