The beginning

Hi, I am Fernando. Here is a brief (or not so brief) summary the events that formed the shape of my life as it is today.

Once upon a time…​ I was born. And my mom thought I was cute. My girlfriend Catiane would later support and help to confirm my mom’s assessment of my cuteness.

The early days - the construction worker

I worked with a bunch of different things during my life. My first job was as a construction worker. It was hard, but I liked it anyway and loved to seek perfection in every thing I did. It was always fun and rewarding to see the final work.

Music and the guitar

At that time got fascinated with music and the guitar. I started learning, buying books, video lessons and learning with anyone who was better than me and practicing non-stopping all the free time I possibly had. In no time I was a very good musician indeed, and started playing in musical groups giving music lessons to beginners and experienced musicians alike. I even recorded some instrumental pieces. Life was fun and things started going well for me!

My beloved wife and sons

When I was 17 I met Catiane, I beautiful lady, and we both fell in love. After three months, we decided to live together. She is no doubt the best thing that happened in my life. We have two sons, Lucas and Mateus. Against all odds (at least according to my relatives at the time) we are together to this day, and I am very grateful for having her on my side all these years.

Learning and teaching English

Because many of my music books and video lessons were in English, I decided that I needed to learn that language. I then, as it was always my approach (and still is), started getting books. I made some progress (mostly with grammar), but only when I was in a better-paying musical group did I have enough money to pay for an English course, which I eventually did.

I started studying English at CCAA, and again, studied as hard as I possibly could. The course was no kid stuff. It would take 6.5 years to complete (if you never failed a semester) and was very demanding. By the end of the 5th year, I talked to my boss (who apparently had me in his highest esteem) and he hired me to work as an English teacher.

By then I was working in two different fields: music and teaching English.

The Computer

But let me back up a little…​

It so happens that some years after I became a musician I got a computer. A friend installed Windows XP for me. It helped me a lot with my music stuff, I could play some games, study, and it was a lot of fun. On the first blue screen of the death I decided that I should learn to install and configure things myself. Again, I got some books and computer magazines and was no more afraid of those dreaded blue monsters. At this time another important thing happened that would help to define my future: I got internet installed at home :).

And then, it happened…​

Linux

I was at the gym minding my own health. A guy saw I had a book on hardware and we started talking about computers. We became friends (very good friends indeed), and he gave me an original Ubuntu 6.06 CD (from the time Canonical used to send CDs all over the world). I managed to install it myself (even though I had never heard of Linux before). You know, with Linux you can run the operating system from the live CD, access the internet and research and read tutorials about the installation process. I remember that what most troubled me was the difference on how the partitions worked on Linux. Still, everything went well. At the end, I had a dual-boot computer.

I was dazzled! I started reading tutorials on how to use the command line. It felt like I was a hacker. I discovered IRC. I discovered HTML, CSS, JavaScript, C. I learned that IE was not the only browser. I discovered so many cool things that my life was never the same again. I was hooked. It helped me shape a brand new and fascinating direction for my life!

Programming

So, yeah, discovering Linux was what ended up leading me to programming.

I started once again studying as much as I could about those things (for the sole reason that they fascinated me, only later would I consider making it my main profession). I gradually felt my skills were improving and it was a thrilling experience (I now understand it was the same feeling I had when I was improving on the guitar or in English). This “I am getting better” thing motivates me to keep moving forward. It is fun, rewarding, and carries the promise of a better future for me and my family. It also puts me in a better position to help others who may be less fortunate.

I ended up getting a degree on (roughly translated) Internet Systems at IFSUL (a federal university around here). I gradually stopped playing and teaching guitar professionally, and later also quit teaching English (not because I disliked them, but rather because my heart was forever changed) and finally my focus and energy were 100% directed to programming, open source and similar things. I cannot stress enough how happy I am nowadays working with these things.

And that is it!

In short, things always happened in parallel in my life (yes, I am multithreaded). Some of my decisions were based on reason and planing. Yet, others were influenced by chance and passion. This combination has been working fine so far. :)