I'm a die-hard techie that started in hardware and eventually tackled software programming and systems architecture.
Didn't finish school, but I was always hands-on and coded before it was cool. Worked my way through systems analysis, programming, database design, architecture, project management, and all the way to CIO / CTO.
Started Aftersoft to develop a digital platform for older vehicles. I basically wanted to replicate new car systems like BMW iDrive for classic cars.
I spent a lot of time and money and had a working prototype, but it really didn't pan out and most people thought I was crazy
(they were probably right).
ITA (now Google) did advanced search for airline flights and wanted to break into hotels. I developed their first hotel platform in a year. No good deed goes unpunished, so they had me take over their Airline group, which was spiraling out of control. I ran it for a few years and achieved some success, but eventually left when I realized the hotel project was never going to see the light of day.
Sabre is a big guerrilla in travel technology and I worked for them as CIO and VP of Product for their hospitality division. They bought the company I was working for at the time (SynXis),which had acquired my company hubX. At Sabre, I led the design and development of the RedX central reservation system, which is the biggest reservation and distribution platform in hospitality.
My first startup back in the dot.com days. We were a scrappy little outfit that didn't know what we didn't know. We started building websites for hotels when the WWW was young and things just took off. Raised some VC money, got spanked by the VCs, and eventually had a successful exit to SynXis who wanted to get their hands on our people and technology.