Jim Wise

Millwood, W. Va.

      I was born and raised in Butler County, Pennsylvania. I graduated from high school in 1967 and attended one year at Clarion State College (now Clarion University). My father moved the family to West Virginia to take a new job in 1967. I didn't go back to Clarion State for my second year because I had hired into the aluminum plant where my father worked as electrician. I was making pretty good money and was shortsighted at the time. I was laid off three weeks later so I enrolled in a computer programming school. Two weeks before graduation from this school, and with a good computer department job lined up with a major corporation, I got my draft notice.

      I decided to enlist on the delayed plan so that, not only could I finish my classes, but I could also receive some sort of training in the U. S. Army besides infantry. I chose electronics, Television Equipment Repair. After graduating from the Signal School at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey, I was stationed with the Military Intelligence School at Fort Holabird, Maryland, which four months later was moved to Fort Huachuca, Arizona. This move gave me very good experience in that we had to take down the entire TV station and had it moved to Fort Huachuca where two of us rebuilt it.

      After an honorable discharge from the Army when my time was in I was recalled to my old job at the aluminum plant where I eventually followed my father's footsteps (after he passed away) into the electrical/electronics department. I continued to work there until May of 1999 when I retired at the age of 50.

      I met a wonderful lady several years ago and we have married and made our home in West Virginia. My parents passed away in the early 1980's and I have five siblings scattered around the eastern United States.

      I have been interested in codes since I was very young. I remember constructing codes in my spare time in elementary school. I have always been interested in math and sciences and loved playing games of all kinds while I was growing up. From that has grown a great interest in puzzles of all types of which I have a fairly large collection. I also enjoy difficult crossword puzzles and cryptograms. I used to only get one cryptogram a week in the Sunday newspaper but it was so easy I decided to stop using a pencil and just worked them mentally. After a couple years of that they stopped including them even in the Sunday paper. For a couple years I didn't get to do any cryptograms. Then an e-mail Scrabble opponent introduced me to the Cryptographer site in September 1999 where I now compete and go by the username cryptodood. I really enjoy the competition there. I recently found this site on the same web ring and started solving these cryptograms too.