Who Is Barry Starling?

I live and breath computers and specialise it getting them to do what you want them to.

Long Bennington School, which is between Newark and Grantham, is where I started programming on a BBC Model B computer. I was 9 years old. My parents, after much nagging, bought me a Sinclair ZX Spectrum in 1983 which I started programming by entering in the code from Sinclair User magazine, a magazine which eventually published my games for others to type in.

I then progressed to a Spectrum +2 and then on to the amazing Atari ST 520STFM before buying my first PC running Microsoft Windows 3.11 for Workgroups. With each new operating system came new programming challenges including games and applications to help me with my school work. Remember, in those days we did not have Google and learning to code was much harder.

In 1988 I started my working career at RHP Bearings in Newark, now called NSK. RHP put me through a comprehensive training programme with ICL which had me writing applications for ICL VME Mainframes using CoBOL and IDMS(X) databases. In 1996 I left RHP and became a contract programmer where I wrote applications and supported systems for British Gas (3 years in Solihull and Leeds) and Axa Insurance (3 years in Kendal).

Whilst at Axa Insurance I started writing applications and games for Personal Digital Assistants (PDA’s) including the Compaq iPaq. These devices were the forerunners of smart phones but without the phone part! These applications were written in C/C++ with inline assembler when processing speed was required.

In 2002 I got my first game programming contract with Mazooma Games (now part of Bell Fruit) in Newark and wrote Jackpot Pool. A multi-player pool game where you could win a £25 jackpot. The game was very successful mainly because of its realism and 2 player option. Jackpot Pool went on to become the highest revenue generating Skill With Prizes (SWP) game of 2003 in the UK.

In 2003 I set up BusiFix Computers to repair and help people with their computers. This was my way of meeting more people as sitting in a dark room coding can get very lonely. Whilst fixing computers I continued to write database applications for Microsoft Windows on a contract basis. Many of those early customers who brought their computer in for repair now run software and databases created by me for their businesses.

Technology has changed and so have the requirements of businesses. I still develop desktop applications but now the databases are hosted in the cloud so that you can access you data wherever and whenever you want to. Mobile phones and tablets are replacing laptops as mobile work stations and Microsoft Windows is no longer the dominant operating system so my application now have to work via a web page and be accessible on mobile devices.

In 2018 I qualified as a “Certified Ethical Hacker” as I wanted to make sure that my application were safe and secure. I wanted to know how a hacker would try and gain access to a computer system so that I could guard against it in my software.

“Creating easy to use solutions to business processes is my passion, I work direct with my clients to help ensure that whatever we create from a simple task scheduler to a comprehensive HR directory, it does exactly what they need in the most user friendly fashion.”

Areas of expertise

Cobol
IDMS(X) Databases
C / C++
Inline Assembly
Certified Ethical Hacker

 

Who Is James MacArthur?

I work all day in code, go to sleep and dream in code, and then implement these solutions to help our clients.

I cut my teeth on an Amstrad PCW 9512, a cutting edge word processor (back in the day), quickly progressing on to the infamous BBC B, this sparked a life long passion for coding and computers in general.

After many years as a B2B sales person, and a failed marriage, I left the UK to pursue the expat life in Cyprus, dreaming off short sleeve suits, air con offices and a much more relaxed approach to business sales, with weekends and evening spent lounging on the beech with an ice cold beer. Oh, how wrong was I! Stress is an even bigger problem when you don’t even speak the lingo. 

After a year or so of this, a friend asked if I could design them a website, I figured I had nothing to lose and by the end of the week I was no longer a salesman, I was a web developer in training, studying wire framework, PHP coding, I soon got lost in my love of programming all over again, wondering how I had ever come to forget this and fall into sales.

Over time I became more and more proficient, tackling sites written in all types of CMS, from bespoke, to Joomla, from Opencart and Magento to the all popular WordPress. I attended many classes to increase my abilities covering Jquery, Javascript, SEO, CSS and many more, and studied alongside some great graphic designers who helped me learn how to create the beauty in all my coding.

Then the day arrived when a new expat arrived in my watering hole, Barry Starling was introduced, and that very evening we launched into deep conversation (and drinking) and by 6am the following morning a company was born, and we have been in partnership ever since. 

When Barry decided to move back to the UK, it was not long before we followed, and our business partnership has grown from strength to strength, each of us contributing and enhancing each others abilities and talents.

Together, we feel that we make a winning team and are able to offer our clients a personal service unlike any other company out there.

“I am passionate in ensuring that Busifixer consistently delivers the highest level of service to our clients no matter how big or small. Together we create bespoke software that is a symphony of design and usability.”

Areas of expertise

UX & UI design
Graphic Design
PHP, MYSQL
Java and Jquery
CRM, LRM
Sales

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