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My current activity as a Technologist spans

CTO on Demand
 
Chief Technology Officer by subscription for StartUp and ScaleUp businesses who cannot justify a full time CTO.

elthi - better health by better personal health & medical record management
elthi – better health by better personal health & medical record management
A HealthTech Startup — elthi pty ltd — which is working on personal health & medical record management with the emphasis on personally collected data managed as a multi-dimentional Timeline.

webclx
 
Web marketing & software development done RIGHT.

Maker 3121
 
Exploration of IoT technology for Home Automation and personally collected health data. This includes 3D printing using Open Source software and hardware.

CTO On Demand

CTO on Demand

With many years experience as a software developer & system manager Nigel Ball has launched a totally new service for StartUps, ScaleUps and LifeStyle Businesses — CTO On Demand

Managing a startup is hard. It requires a level of dedication and application to detail which is not for everyone. What’s more, the Founder of a startup is likely to have expertise in the market their startup is addressing, but not in the technology areas most likely essential to success. In fact, the appointment of a CTO (Chief Technology Officer) is unlikely to be high on the priority list.

It is against this background that the CTO On Demand service was created. As a founder of a Health Tech Startup himself, Nigel is acutely aware of the technology areas and resources essential for success. Additionally, he has hands on experience in seeking, implementing and running the services needed for the development and success of a startup in today’s world.

The unique service covers answers to your tech related questions

  • how should I create a website?
  • what email list should I use?
  • how can I manage communication with my contractors, co-founders employees & suppliers?
  • what is the best accounting software for my startup?
  • should I pay for a Merchant Account with an Aussie bank or are there better, cheaper ways to collect monies from customers?
  • what is the cheapest way of accessing legal advice & legal templates?
  • how can I run a survey of potential customers quickly and cheaply making sure that I retain access to the people responding?

It is unlikely that any startup could exist today without using one or more on-line SAAS — Software as a Service — accounts. The CTO On Demand Service can set up SAAS services including

  • Slack – or other collaboration tools
  • Mailchimp – or other email list managers
  • WaveApp – or other on-line accounting applications
  • Trello – or other ToDo applications
  • and many more

Once set up the SAAS services can require ongoing administration, for example adding new users, and this takes none of your Founder’s valuable time or efforts as it is all taken care of.

Answers to curly issues that arise on the technical front such as

  • how to share calendars between team members
  • how to make sure all of the startup’s IP in the form of files, documents, emails and more are safe, secure and backed-up

On a higher level, the virtual CTO will advise on the selection of Open Source or Proprietary solutions to any business requirement. For example, instead of using Google Drive or Dropbox for your IP storage, ownCloud is an Open Source alternative which avoids the problem of overseas corporations effectively controlling your product or service’s value.

What’s Included

  • Provides membership of a private Slack channel where you can pose any questions — in private or collectively to the group — on anything technical affecting your business
  • up to 4 hours of video or face-to-face sessions to discuss progress, issues or plans each month
  • access to a private members website with reviews and How-To videos of services or techniques helpful to Founders
  • Full training (face-to-face or video conference) on any technologies adopted by your startup

The Financials

The CTO On Demand Service is open to a limited number of subscribers. Participation costs $450 per month. Discounts are available for quarterly or half yearly payments. Contact Nigel for more details or to discuss any Technology issues your StartUp or ScaleUp is facing.

The Nitty Gritty

Over the years I have designed, written and developed software systems in the financial sphere including: Actuarial Pension & Superannuation Projection & Valuation System; Broker Nominee Administration; International Custodian Back Office; Life Insurance Policy Administration; and Asset Management.

In most cases I have acted in the roles of Business Analyst, System Architect, DBA & Project Lead. I select the tools, language and framework selection.

I have programmed in, inter alia, C, PHP, Ruby, RoR, JS, Objective C, Swift and Perl.

Being opinionated, I believe that there is a “right” way to design & program – this entails abstracting the fundamental attributes of the data & processes to develop algorithms which cater for the system needs in the simplest, most elegant manner. In my experience this often entails taking an approach which differs from that supported by conventional wisdom. Too many systems are written to cater for the ideal scenarios but struggle with “real life events”. A well designed system will capture the actual events and make management of the outcomes logical & painless for the user.

On a practical level, I have substantial experience with many open source software environments including Linux (desktop & server), WordPress, Ruby on Rails as well as setting up and managing many lesser known Open Source systems such as Wekan, OwnCloud, Rocket, Ghost and others on various cloud services – AWS, Digital Ocean and RedHat OpenShift.

Feel free to call me — 0433 090 887 — (and leave a message if I don’t pick up) or email me.

Oversharing

Nigel Ball

Born in Christchurch, I still travel on my New Zealand passport and stubbornly consider myself to be a Kiwi even after living in Australia for most of my life. My only real compromise to those years is that when I refer to “us” I mean we Australians. But, when in Auckland (I visit as often as possible) “us” still means we Kiwis.

Up until the 90’s (remember those times?) I practiced as an Actuary, managing actuarial businesses and consulting to corporate clients in Australia, the UK and the USA.

However, my passion has always been computers and computer software. I’ve owned, serviced, programmed and trashed virtually every personal computer and operating system known to man. After a long association with Linux on desktops and laptops, I commenced a passionate love affair with a MacBook Pro and iPhone. That affair has extended to anything Apple! I still argue that this passion is based on cold logic and reject the Apple fanboy epithet occasionally thrown my way.

Today, I retain my involvement with programming and database development through my HealthTech Startup elthi as well as enjoying tinkering with IoT as a hobby.

My current business activities are as Webclx targeting Internet Marketing & publishing and consulting on my own account and on behalf of select clients.

Extra Curricular Activities

Gilera Nexus 500cc

When I’m not actually earning a crust, I enjoy the freedom and isolation of riding my Gilera Nexus 500cc sports scooter, digital photography and generally mucking about with technology including 3D Printing.

 

I cannot resist watching (from the secure comfort of a TV screen) the All Blacks playing rugby and being inspired by their sheer courage, strength and skill. This is in spite of the fact that I really do not understand the universal passions associated with team sports.

Finally, I follow Formula 1, WRC, Dakar, Super bikes and MotoGP – perhaps the common thread being the combination of technology, speed, skill and bravery.

Family Tree

Our family tree, covering the Ball, Reith and Doyle branches has been online for several years. But it now has a new home and is once again being maintained by my brother Vincent.

New Family Tree