Forgotten Voice

Doug Buttimer
Graphics Advanced Development
Mid 80s
Date Joined:
Date Left:
How to be competitive

It was common practice for the corporation to have more than one site developing hardware for the same potential product. (Most times, neither site knew that the other was developing a ‘competitor’ offering) Whilst this was a very expensive approach, it did allow senior management to ‘hedge their bets’ ! During the development of Valiant, we were told that some vice-president or other was coming for a demonstration. Now in order to ensure our survival, we had to do some fast thinking ! The demo was supposed to show the hardware drawing a complex graphical image, but the hardware had a problem at that stage of the project, and couldn’t complete the task. The ”solution” was that when the operator hit the enter key, someone at the door to the room would wave to another bloke up the corridor. When this signal was received, another guy would load a “potted” version of the complex image into the storage of the demo machine down the corridor !! The vice-president was well impressed with the performance and went away singing our praises ! (We did solve the problems not long after, but unfortunately the project was ultimately cancelled) All (underhand tactics) are fair in love, war ……………. and product development !!