Monday, February 11, 2008

Accountants Office - ten year anniversary

I've recently had to move my desk at MYOB. After all this time of being 'confined' in my own office, I've now been let loose into the greater MYOB ecosphere. Somewhat in anticipation of the impending outcome, a few weeks ago I started to tidy up my stuff, and came across an original CA-Systems Accountants Office 98 release CD.

So I created a VMWare image, installed Windows 95, installed Accountants Office, and loaded it up to take a look at what was (realistically) the first proper release of the software. First things first though, here are some stats (for the geeks out there). My VMWare image has 64Mb RAM and 2Gb HDD. Actual total disk usage is 170Mb. Windows 95 boots in 8 seconds, and shuts down in 2 seconds. CA-Systems Accountants Office 98 starts faster than I can measure!

Here is the desktop (click on the picture to get a bigger one)

It's sad to admit, but it was me that originally created the icons for each of the modules. They were meant to be placeholders until we got a graphic artist to create new ones. That didn't happen for many years.
I got to thinking about all the people involved in the creation of this masterpiece. My good friend and CA-Systems colleague Daniel was pivotal to keeping consistency across the suite of individual applications. Don, Mark, Russell & Martin provided the coding expertise. Mike tirelessly drove us forward. David, Julian & Mena (university graduates, wanting work over Xmas) found every single fault with Tax. And many others (Chris, Jason, Ian, Doug, Sandi, etc)eagerly contributed to the end result. My involvement was as Project Manager.
It was hard work, and it was great fun. We were breaking new ground, and building something that would forever change the way that Accountants worked in New Zealand. It was exciting and exhausting. Eventually I ran out of steam, and left CA-Systems. MYOB bought them several months later, and CA-Systems Accountants Office became MYOB Accountants Office.
I'm quite proud to have been involved at the inception of this software. And the fact that thousands of Accountants are using MYOB Accountants Office ten years on is (in my opinion) indicative of the hard work originally put in, and the continuing desire of other individuals since that time to provide the best possible Accountants suite.
If you've been a part of this phenomenon, I'd love to hear from you.


david santos said...

Thanks for your posting and have a good day.

Wayne Tough said...

Yeah they were great years...hmm I reckon Iv'e got one of those disks in my stack in my office!...I remember installing it for first time at the Accountants I was working at. A few weeks later i moved to Wellington and started at CA-Systems what a great team we were.

Zedcar said...

Well they may have been great years for you guys delivering the software but as the firm that I believe was first to install (from scratch) the whole suite... well lets just say that the first few builds didn't quite live up to the marketing hype. But that's usually the way isn't it!

But yes it WAS great fun and without getting all soppy, for me it was life-changing... a bit like the guy in the razor ad, I loved the software so much that I ended up running the company. Great to see you on line wayne - hope all is well with you.

- Dlo

CeeBee said...

Hey Dlo - as your Account Manager at the time I'm sure you'll remember I recommended (even begged)you NOT to install it! Your firm was too big to be a beta site. But you just couldn't wait to get your hands on it!

Anonymous said...

As one of the three "dodgy student" testers I take full responsibility for one-third of all the bugs that were released. From memory we found something like 3500 bugs, most that were fixed the following day. That was fast turnaround... Much like D. Lo said a life-changing experience, it set me on my current career path and provided some fantastic opportunities and an "education".

BTW: I remember you, Stuart, firing me within the first hour of starting the job, I must be a slow learner because I didn't leave for another 8 ish years!!

Hope you are all doing well.