Joe Kleinschmidt

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My interest in Computer Programming dates back to the mid 1980's, teaching myself Basic Programming around the age of 15, typing in programs I found in magazines and then modifying them experimentally to get them to do what I wanted. Upon entering high school, there was only 1 computer class available, and it was only available to seniors as resources were limited. After showing the teacher that I already had many of the basic skills needed for programming, he agreed to let me join the school's computer team which went to programming competitions. The team had only one other person my age on it, and the others were a few years older. They were very impressed with what I had taught myself. Being disappointed that I could not take any high school programming classes, I decided to take some college level programming classes at the local community college to expand my knowledge.

 

I then expanded my interests into the manual mechanical drafting, illustration, and architecture arena in the late 1980's, winning 1st place in the Michigan industrial arts competition 2 years in a row.  From there I learned FCad, a computer drafting program that originated in the late 1980's on the original IBM XT computer.

 

From there I learned how to use AutoCAD and worked in the electrical contracting business laying out lighting plans and other electrical layouts for newly constructed buildings. After seeing the redundancies in a lot of the electrical design process, I taught myself AutoLISP to automate some of the calculations and processes in the early 1990's. I then also used this skill to help develop a program called PatternWorks, which was an AutoCAD extension written in AutoLISP to help clothing designers automatically design and resize their clothing patterns.

 

I then started using Visual Basic 3 (yes, that was a long time ago) and learned about GUI design for Windows based programs. Naturally, that lead to Visual Basic 6 which made it possible to connect to databases and organize information more easily. I then became very interested in databases and designing them. Using this knowledge, I worked as a database programmer for many years, creating commercial programs with a team of programmers.

 

There were a wide variety of these programs, including one which allowed for a caterers for Gordon Food Service to create a menu and have it calculate nutritional information, and one called Therascribe that allowed therapists to track and diagnose DSM-IV disorders for their patients.

 

I then started working for small companies that needed some of these skills. These companies were mainly companies that designed and installed electrical control systems for factories like Planters/Lifesavers and Yoplait. I worked with the engineers to keep all of the drawings up to date in the design process and worked as the sole employee of the AutoCAD department, having no trouble keeping up with all of the design changes by myself. There was a need for many different types of drawings like schematic layouts, block wiring diagrams, equipment location diagrams, and P&ID diagrams, all of which showed the same information in a different way, and had to all be kept up to date when changes were made, so naturally I saw this as an opportunity for automation. I designed a database program that interfaced with AutoCAD that the engineers would red-line/update, and then I could use that data to create and update the drawings that had that information, including custom symbols with attributes, some of which were hidden for reference to other drawings. At times entire sheets in the set would need to be shifted in the set and completely redrawn which would have been a lot of work to do manually, but my program would do it all automatically. This saved a tremendous amount of time in keeping the drawings up-to-date. I also designed life-like equipment interface screens for the factory operators to control the lines using AutoDesk 3DS Max. Years later I would learn to very much enjoy working with AutoDesk Inventor to create 3D models, which is much easier to use.

 

I was then hired as a software developer using Microsoft products, mostly MS-Office and AutoCAD related. I designed a custom time tracking program using VB.NET and MS-Access to be used in the USA and the UK for a company which was unable to find a pre-made program that would handle the amount of detailed information they wanted to track. I was able to use that data to eventually track information outside of their department including the financial analysis for each internal project they were working on in order to determine the overall profitability of each project. This program is still used by them today. It includes a collection of custom reports they use to get an idea of where any waste is coming from. In addition, I developed many tools that were used within AutoCAD to help keep up with the volume of information they needed to process on a daily basis. One of the programs overlayed special symbols overtop of existing symbols to make it compliant with a new symbol library. The process took about 6 hours per drawing to overlay hundreds of symbols, and using a database to match the new symbols to the old, including placement and rotation, my program would do 90% of the process flawlessly in about 5 minutes.

 

Recently, I have been working with various small companies as a contractor. Many of them need help streamlining their processes and rethinking how they do things as their company expands and grows in the modern technological environment. I recently designed a program that would use an Excel spreadsheet exported from their order website to automatically create AutoCAD drawings using information provided by their customers, making a process that would normally take a full day take about 5 minutes.

 

1985 - 1987

Education and Professional History

 

I can help your company automate many different processes and track internal projects using Microsoft programs inlcuding SQL Server and Azure.

I am also quite proficiant in AutoCAD as a technician and manager.

 

AutoCAD Technician
Visual Basic .NET Programmer
Access/SQL Database Designer

1987 - 1991

1991 - 1997

1997 - 2011

2012 - 2018

2019 - Present

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Current Location:

Tucson, AZ