Feeds

Techscape: A Wordwise veteran

Moir of a technologist or an entrepreneur

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Interview The argument has been raging since Thomas Edison started General Electric: Is the technical brain behind a business or product capable or even competent enough to manage the operations and growth of that business?

Some people would say Edison was the “World’s Worst Entrepreneur“ and that without significant outside managerial talent GE would not exist today.

This is probably true.

Charles Moir was a British technology whizz-kid who was a witness if not active contributor and participant in the birth, infancy and early days of British technology. He was a 17-year old schoolboy at Oundle, near Peterborough, when Hermann Hauser and Chris Curry of Acorn fame came down to reconnoitre talent and gather intelligence on what they heard was a robust, early-days computer curriculum exciting the minds of youth.

Meeting these two (eventual) legends was a turning point for Moir. By age 21, he had written a word processing program called Wordwise which sold “many copies making me very wealthy.”

His software was “elegant” he says and perhaps this was the source of its wild popularity. “I’m a bit of a perfectionist and firmly believe in simple design over complexity,” Moir declares vigorously. Hmmm, is he a Mac man then?

“Yes, in some respects, though ironically our current products launch on Windows.”

Moir built his company, then called Computer Concepts by placing small ads on the back of computer magazines and then simply started taking orders for Wordwise and hiring staff, eventually building the company to around 40 people.

By age 23, Moir had enough money from his Wordwise invention to buy Gaddesden Place, a hilltop manor house designed by the notable James Wyatt in the late 1760’s.

To the manor born

That he bought this house in 1983 and still uses it as his home and office is the first sign that we’re not speaking with some tech geek spendthrift who buys a string of big houses and Ferraris until destitute as so many of the Silicon Valley and other tech oases’ moneyed did.

What a level-headed, financially-sensible investment for a young man.

But not all has gone according to plan for Moir. Zy.com was an online, web-based, website builder which at one point was getting more than 14 million hits per month. Moir says, "The 'Dot Com Crash' came and we couldn't get new investors - they backed out at the last minute." El Reg has covered the collapse of this dot-com business here and here.

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Next page: From little acorns

More from The Register

next story
Microsoft on the Threshold of a new name for Windows next week
Rebranded OS reportedly set to be flung open by Redmond
Apple: SO sorry for the iOS 8.0.1 UPDATE BUNGLE HORROR
Apple kills 'upgrade'. Hey, Microsoft. You sure you want to be like these guys?
SMASH the Bash bug! Apple and Red Hat scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Business is back, baby! Hasta la VISTA, Win 8... Oh, yeah, Windows 9
Forget touchscreen millennials, Microsoft goes for mouse crowd
ARM gives Internet of Things a piece of its mind – the Cortex-M7
32-bit core packs some DSP for VIP IoT CPU LOL
Lotus Notes inventor Ozzie invents app to talk to people on your phone
Imagine that. Startup floats with voice collab app for Win iPhone
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.