As someone who started working with computers in the days when ‘memory’ consisted of punched cards and who actually soldered the individual resistors, capacitors, integrated circuits and other components onto a board to create his first home computer, Don Johnson has watched the development of the ‘PC’ with great interest. As a programmer and an I.T. Manager he was involved with the use of a variety of computer types and systems, and learned a number of the languages needed to get them to perform their business and personal functions for users. In the early days, when enthusiastically trying to explain the technical workings of a PC to his wife, he reduced her to a state of eye-glazed brain spasms, and killed her interest in the topic stone-dead! His – first – published book takes an entirely different approach, using a simple story about characters living inside a PC to provide an insight into its workings in a painless, but interesting and amusing manner. Children may concentrate on the story, teenagers and non-technical adults will also discover how their PC actually works, and experts can compare his visualisation of the technicalities with their own – truly, something for everyone!
Don retires in January 2005, having had many and varied interests in his life. These range from dancing on roller-skates at Alexandra Palace and the early days of scuba diving in his youth, through Round Table, skiing, photography and creating electronic gadgets, to his involvement in Rotary, veterans cricket, shooting and making a street-busker’s organ – complete with monkey! Before retiring herself, his wife, Avril, created enamel jewellery which they sold at Craft fairs, and Don built a computer-controlled milling machine to cut some of the more exotic copper shapes that she used. Don hopes to write more books, but his other interests, such as publishing a village newsletter, woodworking joinery, and a number of grandchildren may distract him from this aim.