I'm A VB: Frank Buchan


Website: http://frankbuchan.blogspot.com/


·        How long have you been using VB?

Since about 1992, I believe, though I recall playing with something even earlier.


·        What industry do you work in?

My company provides highly integrated operational risk management software for enterprises ranging from oil & gas, to manufacturing, to soft services.


·        How big is your development team?

It varies depending on the build cycle, since I tend to hire cowboys when needed.


·        What kind of apps do you most commonly build?

Lately, both Windows client applications and web applications. Our primary product is an ASP.NET one, which has been technically on the cloud since before the industry referred to it by that term.


·        What’s the most interesting app you’ve ever built?

A dynamic organisational flow-charting application, oddly enough, which had to scale to embrace the entire personnel hierarchy and cross-hierarchy of three government ministries in Onatrio, Canada. It worked great, but they never actually bothered to deploy it. The code is still elegant.


·        Please tell us about an app that you’re working on at the moment.

The application is a highly integrated Risk Management product for enterprise deployment, founded on some patent-pending risk management principles and theories developed over the last 8 years. It is sold mostly to oilfield producers right now, but has a broad following in a scattering of other industries where operational risk management is key to maintaining contracts.


·        What other technologies do you most commonly use?

Everything .NET offers has been used at least a few times in our array of technologies, but I lately find myself spending many hours wandering through the guts of ASP.NET interfaces.


·        What are some of your favorite VB features?

I hesitate to admit I like the syntax and constructs. I code in C#, C++, PHP, and a few other dribbles, and I always find the form of VB.NET more appealing. Is enjoying the simplicity a goo dthing?


·        What do you like most about VB as a programming language?

VB remains a language that gets the job done in an efficient way. C# is elegant, C++ is powerful, but for industrial strength simplicity — VB.NET all the way.


For other interviews in this series, please visit http://imavb.net.


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