I remember when this was all C++

I joined the Starship Titanic crew on 1st January 1997, cheekily choosing a Bank Holiday as my start date and thereby becoming the second software engineer hired to work at The Digital Village. Two years later I co-designed h2g2, the site you're now looking at.

People frequently ask "What was it like working with Douglas Adams?", and in the past few years I've managed to dodge the question, for three reasons:

Firstly, I still miss Douglas like crazy, so any answer would require a restaurant staffed with those exceptionally rare waiters who can spot a situation in need of an intense interruptive flurry of waiter-ish activity, perfectly timed to defuse an anticipated emotional scene. (Such restaurants exist. Douglas took us to them all the time).

Secondly, I miss the work we did at The Digital Village. Not just the particular projects, but the energy that surrounded them - topping up our supplies of midnight oil and providing a net for our dawn-defying feats. Having a comedy genius and childhood hero whisk you out to lunch and laugh at your crap jokes and demand your opinions and argue with you about music and books and bits and atoms has an inspirational force above and beyond even the psychotic axe-wielding fantasies of game-publishing company executives.

Thirdly, for a number of years, this article began with "You're like a character in a soap opera for which only you have the script ..." which was Douglas's response to one of my notoriously overly-detailed explanations of something. While the topic of my original conversation escapes me, the irony that it has, doesn't - and so rather neatly answers what working with Douglas was like.

After TDV finished, I knew I'd never find another job that came remotely close, so I started my own business. I have a lot of fun, a bunch of really great clients, and no projects that require me to sleep on the office floor.


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Sean D Solle

Researcher U7


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