It’s a Wednesday morning and I have a few minutes to post. My work life has completely inundated me recently, I miss this place! Hopefully it will all wash over sooner than later.

M is one hard working Mod here at PCP. It took considerable wrassling to hold him down long enough to answer a few questions. I’m bushed, so here ya go, number 20 in the series: Meridian

OK, by now you know the drill:
Hi there. Let me take a minute to introduce myself. I’m Uncle Bob, a Mod here at PC Perspective. We will be running a series of articles within the forum that will be called Mod Interviews. I ask revealing, embarrassing, stupid, probing questions of Mods and hopefully you get to laugh with us at ourselves and in the process get to know some of us better. Beware, not all the Mods are as forthcoming as you may like, I do my best to uncover the truth, but haven’t always hit the mark!

1. I realize many of the mods here are in a witness protection program of some sort, but can you give us your real name?

No. But it begins with an M…

2. Why did you join PCPer/ADM?

I can’t remember, it was so long ago! I think I found the place via a link and the locals looked friendly.

3. Which forums do you mod?

I’ve been the mod in Overclocking since there’s been a mod there, and I currently also mod Video, Editing and Displays. In the past I was a mod on Abit, and I was the mod on Shuttle for the whole of that forum’s existence. I might also boast (it stops me from crying) that as far as I know, I’ve been a mod longer than anyone else (apart from Ryan) who is still a mod: I took over O/C 6th May 2001.

4. Why do you keep coming back?

The choke chain around my neck… And the money. Mostly the money actually. And the free hardware. And the dancing girls. And the beer.

5. What was your first experience with a computer?

1979 or so, writing out programs on special paper forms to be put onto punched cards and run on the PDP8 at the local college. I was rubbish at it. In 1981 I learned FORTRAN for use on the PDP11 and PRIME at university. Later I learned BASIC on the old BBC B, and then some UNIX at my third job. The first computer that I actually owned though was an Epson 286/12 (that’s 12MHz) which I was allowed to liberate from work when I was made redundant.

6. Do you prefer to be called a “geek” or a “nerd”?

I prefer to be called “sir”, but I’ll settle for geek. It’s a step up from what they call me at my current job…

7. What exactly do you do here at PC Perspective?

In between banning people for annoying me, I try to help people. I’ll seen some pretty odd computer faults and some even odder way to fix them, so I try to pass the knowledge on. I also like to bore the bejeezus out of people with my stories about overclocking.

8. What do you like most about your ‘job’? I realize it’s actually a rudimentary form of slavery or servitude, but you are still here…can you explain this to our readers?

See above. Sometimes people post in with a problem and something I say helps them fix it. That’s worth the price of admission right there. But It’s also worth it if I can just show them how to find the fault themselves.

9. OK, we all know this is coming…What do you like least about your job?

Trolls, spammers, or anything else that makes me reach for the BanHammer. Especially the sinking feeling I get when I hit the computer first thing in the morning at about 6am (yes, I’m that sad) to find three “Reported Post” e-mails, and I have to spend the next fifteen minutes bashing heads together.

10. How long have you been active in PC Perspective?

Apparently I joined 15th August 2000. I thought it was a couple of months before that, but I can go with that date.

11. Where are most active here? What is it you suppose that draws you to that particular area?

Overclocking. That’s mainly because I like overclocking. I’m not a hard-core overclocker, but I like the experimenting and tweaking that goes with doing the job properly and methodically. I do tend toward the anal though, and actually keep a notebook of all the settings and what effect they have. But the info has been useful in the past. And pushing computers to the ragged edge, and them tipping them over, has taught me a fair amount about hardware, which has stood me in good stead elsewhere.

12. What interests do you have outside of PC Perspective. Don’t be shy, if you don’t have a life outside of here, many readers would like to know!

Apart from the car (see next question), I’m a bit dull: reading, music, computer games, tweaking the cr*p out of computer hardware.

13. OK, it’s hardware time! Let’s start with your most, or current favorite piece of hardware. Tell us about it.

The car. Sorry, overclocking computers is fun, but overclocking cars is more fun… For those who don’t recognise it, it’s a 2002 Subaru Impreza WRX STI Type UK Prodrive. Currently it’s running about 330bhp and 325lbft, but watch this space.

14. Software? Hey, if you are a closet Linux user, now’s the time to come out. (If you are a closet Microsoft user, don’t be afraid, we can keep a secret!)

I keep trying Linux, but I never have the time to really play, and the learning curve is still at the very steep stage. I’ve tried most versions of Mandrake, Fedora and SUSE for the last three years or so. I like the idea of Linux, but until they have a method of installing programs which is as simple as M$’s .EXE files then it will remain a geeks toy, and not a household OS. Sorry guys… I used to enjoy writing programs in FORTRAN and BASIC, but my attempts to learn C were a disaster. Pity, because I’d like to get back into programming. Not to make money, but just because I liked doing it. But my favourite piece of software at the moment is probably Oblivion.

15. OK, let’s get real personal. Witness Protection Program be damned…Can you tell us something about yourself you’d like us to know?

Yes – I’m very good at keeping secrets.

16. What can you tell us about your job? Hey, if you do something illegal, now is a good enough time as any to make a clean start!

I’m a forensic scientist, specialising in the analysis of controlled drugs – hence the secrecy. And the answer to your questions are (in order): no, no, and certainly not. I’ve been doing this job for going on fourteen years now. One day I really must do the website I’ve been promising for years: “Why real forensic science isn’t like CSI (but can I have a signed picture of Jorja Fox anyway please?)”.

17. Where do you live? (Be fearless, your secret is safe with us..)

Cambridgeshire in the UK.

18. What can you tell us about your family??

See answer 15 above.

19. Here’s a delicate one…How old are you and where did you grow up?

I’m 46. I was born in Melbourne, Australia, but left when I was one year old. I’ve lived in about fifteen different places around the UK since then, but I’ve not been back to Oz. I keep thinking about it, then I keep blowing all the money on cars or computers..

20. Well, we are getting to the end of it, it’ll all be over soon, I promise. What would like to say to our forum members, go ahead anything. Get it off your chest. We have all day here….

Keep coming back, keep asking questions, keep passing on your own knowledge. And don’t cause any trouble or you’ll have me to deal with… Interview with Mod Meridian - Editorial 2