A Short Biography


Colin Woytowich's involvement with computers began in the early 1970's programming mainframe and mini-computers on weekends for fun.

From the late 1970's until the mid-1980's, Colin was employed by the Department of Soil Science (University of Alberta), where he worked on several research projects involving the Departments of Soil Science, Agricultural Engineering, and Civil Engineering. In addition to managing departmental and seasonal staff (up to 18), he collaborated with many graduate students, and helped coordinate their work with on-going field research programs. During this period he authored and coauthored more than 20 technical papers on topics including: simulation modelling of physical processes, snowmelt runoff, soil erosion, snow management, agricultural land drainage, and soil temperature (vitae available on request).

During this employment his computer involvement was primarily in the areas of data management, statistical data analysis (parametric and non-parametric statistics including multivariate, factor and discriminant analyses using SPSSx, SAS, MiniTab), and simulation modelling (CSMP, GPSS, Fortran 66, 77).

In the late 1970's Colin recognized the potential of desktop workstations and turned some of his energies in that direction. He purchased one of the first 128K Apple Macintoshes shipped to Edmonton, Alberta in March, 1984 and began programming the Macintosh. Early projects were in MS Basic (the only Macintosh programming language available in early 1984) and included statistical analysis, Mac to mainframe translators, Mac to mainframe telecommunications software, and games.

In 1986 Colin decided to move away from engineering research and to turn his full energies to the computer field. He moved to Victoria, B.C. and started Black Pearl Computing Ltd. shortly thereafter.

In 1989, while still managing Black Pearl Computing Ltd, Colin returned to university and successfully completed all of the courses required for a Masters Degree in Computer Science from the University of Victoria (including his thesis research). Unforseen personal circumstances prevented him from editing and defending his thesis.

Colin's areas of expertise include Macintosh programming, simulation modelling, statistical data analyses, documentation and technical report preparation, SCSI and serial input/output, graphical user interface design, computer graphics and algorithms for computer-aided design, and more recently database (Filemaker Pro, SQL, mySQL, MS Access) and web programming (C, HTML, Javascript, Java, Perl, php, XML), and home automation systems design and programming (C, Applescript).

His computer skills embody a strong knowledge of Macintosh, Windows, VAX (Unix), Sun and Sparc work stations (Unix, Suntools, NeWS, XWindows) and many computer languages including Assembly Language, Basic, C, CSMP, Fortran (66,77,90), GPSS, HTML, Java, Javascript, Pascal, Perl, PostScript, SQL, and many others.

In 1999 Colin was recruited by the Saanich School District (No. 63) to take over the position of Manager of Information Technology. While there, in addition to overseeing the day to day workings of the school district's technology (23 schools, more than 10,000 students and several hundred staff), he restructured the IT department, oversaw the Year 2000 transition, worked with the schools and Physical Plant to design (or re-design) and document the schools' computer networks for improved reliability and security, aided in the move to a new district accounting system, coded the district web site (and set up the server), coded a database application for schools to provide annual computer inventories, managed and troubleshot the district email system, guided many school-based projects, sat on numerous committees, and attended many meetings with both district staff and parents. In December of 2000 he resigned his position to return to the challenges of his consulting business.

In addition to being a software developer and programmer, Mr. Woytowich is actively involved in the service, retail and distribution sides of the computer industry through his involvement with several computer firms.

Colin enjoys using his strong technical and analytical skills to provide practical solutions to the many complex problems presented to him by his clients.

When he isn't computing for clients Colin likes to spend time with family and friends, improving and automating his home in Cobble Hill, BC (it's getting almost smart), or playing with his latest toy, a Vantage Pro weather station. He's a past associate director for the Keparo Water Society in Mill Bay, BC, and recently on the Board of Directors (Secretary) for the Evergreen Independent School in Cobble Hill, BC, and occasionally he gets to scuba dive, kayak, and sleep.

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©1995-2004 Black Pearl Computing Ltd.
Prepared: 5/25/95 by Colin Woytowich
Last Updated 9/19/05