My family has long been involved in the aviation industry in Canada. My father, Cedric Barker, was Chief of Powerplant Design at deHavilland Aircraft in Downsview, Ontario when he retired, in 1982. He was one of the designers on the Avro Arrow and Sparrow missile programs in the 50s, and the Arrow affected us all in many ways. I worked at deHavilland for more than 7 years, in a number of capacities, and last worked on the Dash-7, the predecessor to the Dash-8, writing avionics and mechanical servicing procedures. I was also involved with the Twin Otter, Turbo Beaver, and Buffalo programs during that time. (deHavilland is now part of the Bombardier Aerospace Group.) It was here that I also got a chance to perform some interesting work that had been subcontracted to deHavilland from places like SPAR Aerospace (doing non-destructive testing of material samples and planetary gears for use on the Space Shuttle's CanadArm when it was still in the design and early prototype phases), and for the Royal Ontario Museum (doing X-rays of ancient Egyptian cast statuary.
The picture of the Arrow on my home page is a tribute to that moment of glory in Canadian aviation history. It is actually a picture taken of the model used in the CBC production about the Arrow, and I took it at the Abbotsford Air Show, in Abbotsford, BC, August 1997. (For quite excellent information on the building of the model for the miniseries, read Bill Zuk's article. Also check out his link to his article on the Arrow's roll-out.)
I also spent many years at MITEL Corporation, in Kanata, Ontario, where I did Technical Publications work on most MITEL products, including their switching products, telephone sets, and call management packages. This is where I first became involved in software design, in 1986. Over the years I became responsible for a good number of process automation technologies related to electronic document management and production, and it was through this work that Interleaf came to know of me, and eventually hired me away.
I left Interleaf in 1995 to partner in an independent consulting firm, CTL-X Information Consultants Inc., during which time I worked on applications related to specifications management and requirements tracking through Hughes Aircraft of Canada, Ltd. Then, in September of 1997, I began working for Open Text Corporation, as a Senior Project Manager.
I left Open Text in 1999 when I started up Metaformix Information Systems Inc.. Metaformix provides database architecture and development services, as well as a broad range of documentation-related services using SGML and XML technology.