I’ll put this first since it’s what I mostly write about here.
I am mostly self-taught when it comes to IT skills. I learned networking by building a networking lab using old desktop PCs in my bedroom. In its final iteration, my home lab had two desktop PCs running Citrix XenServer. This setup was fairly low powered, totalling 4 CPU cores and 12GB of RAM in the two machines combined. It was however enough for me to learn how to properly set up and manage virtual servers and to learn some enterprise-grade products such as XenServer itself, PaperCut, Windows Server 2003 – 2016, CUPS, PRTG, Microsoft SQL Server, OSTicket and Squid. I also learned the basics of enterprise networking using a HP thin client installed with pfSense and a managed switch designed for small businesses.
I used the knowledge learned in my home lab to work alongside the network manager at Salisbury 6th Form College whilst studying A-Levels. During my time here I worked on the virtualised server environment running Hyper-V and Windows Server 2012 R2 as well as client machines running Windows 10. I also began to learn the basics of managing enterprise infrastructure such as the HP WLAN controller and HP managed switches. This also gave me my first and so far only experiences of managing Mac server and Mac OSX clients. I also learned how to administrate cloud services such as Microsoft Azure, Microsoft Office 365 and Google G-Suite for Education.
Whilst studying at sixth form I worked on several web design projects, all of which can be found on the projects page.
I am now studying BSc Computer Networks at Sheffield Hallam University. The course mostly follows the Cisco CCNA certifications but adds some elements of network security and professional skills also. As part of this degree, I’m always looking for work placements, If you work for an IT company and think I’d be a good fit for your networking team, please take a look at my contact page. I’m also available to work part-time on small projects.
My interest in motorcycles and especially motorcycle drag racing comes from my dad. From a very early age, I spent time in the garage working on race bikes with him. From the beginnings in a Suzuki Bandit with far too much nitrous has grown our multi-championship winning race team Nitrous Junkie Racing. My dad has won championships in several bike classes including Comp Bike, Funny Bike and Top Fuel Bike. I previously rode in the Junior Drag Bike class and am now taking a few years out of competitive racing (aside from the odd ride on the old Suzuki Bandit) to focus on university. Even if I’m not riding, I can often be found wandering the pits at Santa Pod Raceway or working on someone’s bike. We’re currently working on building a new Top Fuel Bike. If you’ve never heard of a Top Fuel Bike, I strongly urge you to look them up and maybe go to a race track and watch some. Imagine a motorcycle which runs on Nitromethane, makes 1000+ horsepower and reaches speeds in excess of 200mph in 6 seconds on the quarter mile.
My interest in engineering comes mostly from racing, repairing bikes in an awning or the back of a lorry with minimal tools and parts is one of the most rewarding processes to be a part of. I have developed a need to know how things work, I doubt there’s any electrical/mechanical thing I own which I haven’t at some point taken apart to try and figure out how it works. I also enjoy making things whether it be parts for the race bikes and pit bikes or just things for fun. I was taught by my dad the basics of using a lathe/mill as well as metalworking and woodworking. I also tried to braze once – it didn’t end well.
I very occasionally like to play music. I played cello in my school band for several years then moved on to the bass guitar for another few years. I also taught myself to play the keyboard (sort of) during my GCSE Music course which lead to me later building myself a 32 key MIDI controller from an Arduino.