25 Years and Counting

This week, on August 15th, SAPIEN Technologies celebrated its 25th year in business. Yes, 25 years! It is hard for me to believe sometimes that I have spent pretty close to half my lifetime doing something that I love and working with a group of people that never fails to amaze, educate, inspire and entertain me. What a ride it has been!

I have been involved in this industry since it was a toddler. I still have “fond” memories of editing files with Edlin under DOS. My first computer was an IBM PC with 2 full height 5.25″ floppy drives, 192Kb memory and a monochrome (green) monitor. My second computer was a PC’s Limited (what Dell was called before it was called Dell) 286, with a 5Mb MFM Hard disk (full height) and 2 half height 5.25″ floppy drives with 512Kb memory.

I was working on my doctorate at the time and as part of that, I was writing a bullet trajectory analysis program (for those of you that don’t know me, I have a Ph.D. in Forensic Science). I had already written one in Turbo Pascal but this new Graphical User Interface had recently been introduced by Microsoft called Windows. I used part of my research grant money to buy the Windows 1.0 SDK and taught myself C so that I could rewrite my Turbo Pascal program as a Windows application. (It’s distractions like these that caused me to take 7 years to finish my doctorate…) In the interim, I had met my first business partners and we started Group Telein on August 15, 1986. A more detailed history of SAPIEN can be found at this Wikipedia article.

But even though the technology was ever evolving and mentally stimulating, what has kept me here for so long has been the people that I have had the good fortune of meeting and who have become an important part of my life. So I want to take a moment to single out a few of those people and say “Thank you.”

First a big shout-out to Alex Riedel, my business partner since 1998, creator of PrimalScript and a great friend. It has been a great ride the last 13 years and we have created products and memories that will last beyond us.

To the current staff at SAPIEN, particularly to Margaret Pratt who has been my right (and sometimes my left) hand for many years; Maricela Soria for her amazing artistic talents; and David Corrales for his incredible programming skills as displayed in the creation of PrimalForms. And a welcome to the SAPIEN family to Robert Morey as our new Technical Sales Director.

To all of those that came before and helped form SAPIEN into the company it is today. Too many to list, but my thanks go out to all of you.

And to Paul Lamoreux and David Gaertner. You opened my eyes to a world that spoke to the analytical AND the creative sides of my personality. What can be better than that?

Thank you all for 25 years of magic!

Ferdinand G. Rios, Ph.D.
CEO, SAPIEN Technologies Inc.
August 15th, 2011

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