I started work as an Apprentice Electrician and then moved into communications as a Telephone Engineer. Later I moved into training and education in an electronics and electrical capacity. Microprocessor Engineering became my main subject in the 1980s but I was already pursuing the component subjects of Artificial Intelligence at the same time. During the 1990s my employment within an industrial sector of education became more focused on Intelligent Systems and by 1995 I was fully employed in a business support post for Knowledge and Intelligent Systems.
The Applied Knowledge Research Institute continued to have strong links with industry but shifted its focus from intelligent systems towards the organisational knowledge resource. When the Institute was 'closed' in 2005, I set up AKRI Ltd, focussing on Applied Knowledge Research and Innovation. Since then, I have worked mainly with large companies such as Airbus and Rolls-Royce and Sellafield, but the methods are just as appropriate for smaller organisations, government bodies, or anyone else that values its knowledge resource.
My main interests are Knowledge, Intelligence and Thinking, in both human and artificial forms and in the study and understanding of related concepts. I also maintain interest in microprocessor control and related electronics areas.
I have studied electrical power, electronics and computer engineering before a Science and Technology degree with the Open University, all on a part time basis. I obtained a PhD in Artificial Intelligence in Small Building Management at Liverpool John Moores University, also part time. In fact, I studied almost constantly after leaving school, from the age of 16 to the age of 40, as a part time student in different establishments.
I have written technical and leisure software, articles for computer and engineering journals and a range of academic papers on the use of Artificial Intelligence and the study of the organisational knowledge resource. I developed a complete ‘intelligent house system’ for research work that is still in operation. I have designed and produced many special courses for industry in areas such as microprocessor engineering and knowledge based systems. I have designed several business based collaborative projects for knowledge and innovation and organised many seminars and workshops. I have also developed an effective method and software tool for the study of knowledge. I have undertaken many Knowledge Resource study and analysis projects in business.
I formed the North West Artificial Intelligence Applications Group whilst working at Blackburn College. This group worked with Industry and had an Industrial Steering Committee, from 1988 to 2000. In 2000, it became the Applied Knowledge Research Institute. During this time, I also headed several research projects aimed at improving innovation in organisations. All of this work had business and industrial participation and backing and it also delivered several software tools and report findings.
I was then the Head of Research and Development at Blackburn College and Director of AKRI.