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GirlGeek of the Week
March 2000

Melissa Bousfield

Melissa Bousfield

As a kid, Melissa used an XT (with a 20MB hard card and EGA graphics) to surf the BBSs, At the time geeks were playing bleeding-edge games on new 486 machines. Unfortunately, Melissa's XT wasn't up to spec. Instead of shelling out the extra dough for a faster processor, she learned to program in Pascal and began writing her own games and applications. After high school Melissa went to York University to study math. But she could not ignore her geeky calling for long, later adding Computer Science as a double major. She also worked as a sysadmin for York's Computer Club, learning Linux and becoming a vociferous proponent of the open source OS.

When did you first discover your love and/or obsession with computers and technology?

I always liked electronics as a kid, and have always had a general appreciation of logic and mathematics. In high school, I became interested in programming when I realised that it's like a big logic puzzle.

How do you earn a living?

Since graduation, I've worked full time at the IBM Lab in Toronto, in the Database Technology function.

Do you consider yourself a Geek?

Absolutely. And I overcome the negative stereotype by having many other interests as well.

What is your favorite Website?

Currently, and The Anarchist Archives at dwardmac -- not for flashy graphics or Javascript gadgets (hey, I'm a systems programmer, I don't care too much about that stuff), but for the great information they offer.

What do you do when you are not working?

Long-distance running, reading, music, socializing in Toronto's bisexual community, watching good movies.


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