As an expert with more than 20 years of experience helping firms use digital technologies to solve difficult business problems, Ms. Whitehorn has consistently demonstrated the need for digital technology initiatives to be driven by demonstrable business needs. Although a strong proponent of the use of information technologies, her support for their use stops short of unreasoned technical evangelism and is instead focused on helping firms get the most for their IT dollar.
Tempered by her understanding that the likelihood of success in such efforts is significantly increased when business leaders understand and support them, she blends deep technical skills, a reasoned understanding of the appropriate use of digital technologies, and outstanding creativity to provide her clients with innovative solutions designed to maximize the potential of their investments.
To work as a senior member of a high-performance team concentrating on leading-edge software architecture, design, and implementation
Guide system design in the direction of highly usable applications for both end-users and developers
Create and manage extremely high-performance teams (highest quality at highest speed)
Work in an environment with opportunities for innovation (both for new and legacy systems)
Summary of Qualifications
Highly creative but understands how to apply innovation appropriately in a business environment
20+ years of experience in all aspects of software design and development. 25+ years of programming experience. 15+ years of technical leadership and management experience.
Excellent speaking, writing, and presentation skills.
Technical leader who understands how to effectively manage development projects in both standalone and PMO-oriented environments
Record of building focused and effective teams
Extraordinarily rapid learner with the ability to teach
Communications with non-technical users
Emphasis on systems interacting with other systems
Judicious use of commercial or in-house frameworks
Deep understanding of how to resolve apparent conflicts between business and IT duties and responsibilities
Advocate for the end-user community
Application of forensic architecture techniques helps prevent problems
Understanding of the security requirements of complex interacting systems
Conversant with both modern and legacy technologies at all levels
Current and extensive platform knowledge of Microsoft Windows platforms, FreeBSD/Unix/Linux, TCP/IP networking
Current and extensive knowledge of languages including: C/C++/C#, Visual Basic (all versions),
Focus on measurably usable systems
Early inventor of what are now known as Extreme Programming techniques provides insights into how and how not to use these tools
Innovative approaches to leveraging inexperienced staff
Cross-functional training to reduce impact of departures
Willing and eager to participate at all levels of projects
available on request
For the sake of brevity, only the most interesting and relevant project experience is listed below.
Provided performance analysis and improvement services for a system used to send/receive real-time data from field vehicles. Responsible for designing performance diagnostic tests, implementing, monitoring, and interpreting them. Worked with developers to identify specific performance chokepoints, especially with the stored procedures, and provide specific recommendations to improve response times.
Provided architecture and UI design services for a charity site (http://www.huterra.com) based on using gaming to drive donations. Responsible for user experience design, community-ware integration (hosting services for charities) with main site, QA test design and application, and general architecture and business process design.
Software designer and developer for embedded systems aimed at the laser-tag and military/law-enforcement training market. Operating in a resource-sparse environment as the sole designer and developer, she inherited a wide variety of barely-functioning legacy applications and within a year had rewritten the flagship product from scratch, forced changes to the embedded products that increased their reliability and utility measurably, stabilized the existing legacy products, and brought the SDLC model up to date with modern bug-reporting, source control, and build/test procedures. This work used a variety of products, including but not limited to: C#, SQL Server 2008 R2, WPF/XAML, Microsoft Entity Framework, Texas Instruments C++ for MSP430, VB.NET, SQL Compact.
reporting to CTO providing applied research into next-generation industrial
SCADA (Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition) systems. This work involved technical and strategic
analysis, software design and development (C#, Java), extensive internal
Position was eliminated due to restructuring in preparation for the company being purchased.
The World’s Cheapest SCADA Device – using Parallax BasicStamp technology and off-the-shelf sensor technology (magnetic, IR, thermo, etc.) to create a device capable of providing data to, and being controlled by our corporate SCADA product suite. The device cost about $100 and was capable of supporting multiple, simultaneous sensors.
Ubiquitous imaging, high-volume and performance sensor-data storage using off-the-shelf webcams. This project involved redesigning our BLOB-storage service to support tiered storage services with petabytes of data
IPv6 product readiness evaluation – a two-part project with both technical and strategic analysis section
Reviewed IPv6 adoption and availability at both the general and industry (SCADA) levels to provide baseline information for our product management group to evaluate the costs and benefits arising from moving to IPv6
Created a fork of the product’s C++ IPv4-specific networking services code base to support IPv4 and IPv6. This was a challenge, given that the existing code was tightly bound to specific structure lengths in IPv4 data structures.
Ongoing, internal blog-based reporting of industry near- and medium-term developments in sensor technology, SCADA-related security issues, and potential regulatory problems.
Programming Arts, LLC is the official name of my consulting practice. Incorporated in 1994, I have worked exclusively for Programming Arts between 2003 and 2007.
Dashboard family of products - A line financial planning and modeling tool for universities of any size. Current in its second version, the Dashboard combines an Excel workbook with a .NET-based user interface. The model, a very complex 400 (yes, four hundred) page workbook is the actual model and data store, while the UI provides dashboard-style interaction.
I designed the products along with my client at Huron and was solely responsible for all development activities.
Implemented in C# and VB.Net
Usability Engineering Lifecycle
Software development environment virtualization
Called in by ML to oversee the re-design and implementation of Dell Service’s botched document management and SEC standards compliance system.
Completed and redesigned an existing system comprised of
.NET and .NET
Restored confidence in the project in the overseas (
Designed an integrated set of applications used in managing the chain's stores. The applications provided for inventory control, scheduling and forecasting. The chain's CEO estimated that the sales value of the product in attracting new franchisees exceeded $100 million and was a direct contributor to the firm's historically successful IPO.
This work was nominated for a 1994 Smithsonian Institution/ComputerWorld Technical Excellence Award.
Designed a system that combined a multi-threaded, SGML-based hypertext browser with a document/applet server that used a TCP/IP-based communications protocol. This system was intended for use by Internet-capable bulletin board operators and their customers and pre-dated the Web and HTML-based browsers by several years.
Designed and prototyped a personal productivity and information organizing package based on their 6W (Who, What, Where, When, Why and How) methodology of process design.
Senior Director (Partner-level non-equity position) with DiamondCluster
Designer of DiamondCluster's security services model. Unlike traditional security practices designed around tools, this model is built on understanding the role of information technology security in the context of business requirements. It is a unique approach that simultaneously leveraged DCI's expertise in technology, business value management, and project/program management. By attacking the heart of the problem, i.e. "How much should be spent to protect a given asset?” this approach avoids the target fixation normally associated with "security" planning.
Designed a system for a European automotive insurer for tracking vehicle use. Provided multiple options for hardware and software using both GPS and local RF technology. The system was designed to minimize cost, allow for backwards compatibility with existing automobiles, and to take advantage of specific local geographic and terrain features. The maximum cost of the system, both vehicular and infrastructure, was less than half its closest competitor in the most expensive model. In the optimum technical and business configuration, the system would show a profit due to income from governmental bodies as a result of traffic data sales.
For the leading provider of children's educational materials and serial publications, she was the principal technical architect for a web-based content creation, distribution, management, and presentation system. Designed to be used by content authors, students, teachers, and parents, this system provided the means to create and deliver educational content for the K-12 market. The client components of the system were cross-platform and capable of running on any common existing computer, to allow for the most widespread deployment possible. The system allowed for the incorporation of non-locally developed materials to be purchased on an auctioned basis, thus allowing talented instructors to profit from their creativity.
Developed initial architecture for retirement planning portal. Spent significant amount of time analyzing current state IT for reusable components and systems. Key technical role in selling the concept and project.
Designed new technical and business approaches to exploiting a high-speed satellite data link for moving automobile (or other) traffic. (Note: this is not OnStar, but an as-yet undeployed new technology.) Was able to show that existing product and service propositions (from 19 competing firms) offered no compelling experience to the potential customer and were impractical and expensive to boot. As a side effect, her design eliminates the "last mile problem" for high-speed, high-bandwidth home Internet use.
Designed and managed the implementation of a prototypical proximity tracking system using inexpensive, off-the-shelf active RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology. The project was undertaken for an industry seminar and successfully demonstrated both the strengths and weaknesses of current RFID mechanisms.
For a major quick-service delivery restaurant chain, she designed an implemented a paper-free standards reference system. This system was used by the firm's developers as a source of standards and examples for use in building intra- and Internet-based systems
Technology evaluation and commercialization planning for a major aerospace manufacturer. Rapid evaluation of both the technical and business merits of technologies such as (but not limited to) network routing algorithms, high-speed networking switching, electro-optical image processing technologies, security monitoring software, object-like and object-oriented databases. Our client contact, an ex-consultant himself, praised the work in writing to DiamondCluster management as being the best he had ever seen.
Designed, wrote and taught the firm's Technology for Non-technologists class.
Founder of the Applied Research Group, Principal-level consultant for IT development projects
Spent a significant amount of time over the course of several years analyzing and rescuing, where possible, failing projects. Often, these projects had significant problems with not only technology but management and leadership as well. Their work resulted in provable savings of tens of millions of dollars, retention of essential personnel and the avoidance of costly and embarrassing publicity.
Senior product architect in the M-Lynx (CSC's object-oriented application framework for high-volume transactional systems) group. She was responsible for the design of the user interface and meta-data components of the M-Lynx product (the Microsoft technology-oriented implementation of Lynx), for defining future product features, and creating related proof-of-concept research prototypes. As one of the original members of the M-Lynx team, she was instrumental in the creation of development tools, standards and practices and remains involved in the day-to-day guidance of the development team.
Developed Design Stance Modeling, a procedural tool used in the analysis and design of software. Design stances are abstractions like "security", "high availability", and "functionality" that are often used without a full understanding of the issues involved in selecting one over another. DSM provides a way for various stakeholders to communicate and come to a common understanding about the trade-offs involved in the priority ordering of development tasks.
Working with a major, multi-line
For a leading
For a financial services firm, Ms. Whitehorn has provided ongoing work in the areas of project failure analysis and recovery. Too, she has provided extensive guidance on the design and development of the client's broker support system. Her work has resulted in significant savings and increased standardization of both technology and practices.
For a leading
Business Process Design group
Software design and development
Responsible for the design, development and support of packaged software used by BPD consultants
Packages included one of the first palette-oriented “smart drawing” packages. This product predated Visio’s commercial release by several months.
Created one of the earliest shrink-wrapped electronic survey creation tools
Used C++ and Borland Paradox as our primary tools
Software developer for an object-oriented database manufacturer
Responsible for the redesign, porting and implementation of their product using the IBM OS/2 platform. This product was selected by IBM for its internal use in a number of products and was used by customers worldwide. Instrumental in advocating and conducting the porting of this product to the then brand-new Microsoft Windows NT platform.
Responsible for the creation of demonstration software that included the first (that I know of) multimedia-based real estate listing application
Worked with IBM on the creation of the Ultimedia distributed multimedia OODB product
Primary software development language was C++
Systems programming, application development and developer coaching for a large academic IT outsourcer
Harvard Graduate School of Business - Lead system programmer for the VAX/VMS environment
Responsible for supporting application developers through training, coaching, and design/implementation consulting
Software development tools include C, various 4GL products (Progress, Easel)
Responsible for the design and implementation of the school’s Internet connection and electronic mail systems and gateways
Designed and lead the implementation of their transition from an IBM mainframe environment to a DEC VAX cluster environment integrated with networked PCs. An independent performance-auditing firm that examined the system cited its design and performance as being among the best it had ever seen.
Designed and led the implementation of the network security system. This system was never penetrated despite seeing a three order of magnitude increase in traffic over its lifetime.
Largest free public electronic bulletin board system (140+ nodes)
Network designer and scripting expert
Responsible for the first interconnection of a bbs and the Internet
Design and implementation of the network infrastructure using Novell Netware
Note: this is not the commercial educational firm of the same name
CASE (Computer Aided Software Engineering) software manufacturer
VAX/VMS system administration and system programming
PC networking (3COM, DEC PCSA, Netware)
Created the MIS department and infrastructure. Her design allowed the company to grow from 25 employees to over 200 employees in under two years without increasing its MIS staff beyond 2.5 FTEs.
Government contractor building ruggedized communications equipment for the US Marines
VAX/VMS, RT-11, RSTS/E Systems administration and system programming
Software development, package implementation, and performance consulting firm
VAX/VMS packaged software development (e.g. Salvage yard distributed inventory management system)
Compiler development of the company’s flagship product: Intouch – 4GL superset of ANSI Basic + text-mode IDE
Coded in Intouch and Bliss-32
Performance and VAX/VMS application development consulting for various clients
VAX/VMS systems administration and system programming
Academic application development. E.g., class scheduling
TOPS-10 v6 & v7 operations
MRP software development in Cobol 74
References and Quotes
More references and direct contact information are available on request
Despite claims to contrary, the effective
application of information technology remains a key path to strategic success.
To do that requires two skills, both in short supply; sound instincts about the
state of the possible with technology and the ability to lead technical experts
in bringing the possible about. Lynne has both those skills in abundant
-- Jim Mcgee, author of Managing Information Strategically
Lynne is a highly skilled technical architect
with deep knowledge of technology and technology strategy. Lynne has the
capability to work at the highest strategic levels, interpreting business
implications of technical strategy and architecture decisions, yet is not
afraid of rolling up her sleeves and understanding the details of any given
technology. This rare ability to work across many levels and communicate
effectively with both business and technology executives is extraordinarily
valuable in helping clients think clearly about critical technology issues and
make better decisions.
-- Tim Andrews, (ex)CTO of CSC Consulting
Lynne is one of the most creative technology
thinkers I have ever met. She also excels in execution. This dynamic
combination makes her a truly superior technologist.
-- Ed Simmons, Director Corporate Systems Merrill Lynch
Lynne Whitehorn is an extremely skilled and
articulate Technical Architect with deep experience in the areas of Application
and Software Architecture. Recently, she has led the Advanced Technology group
of the Center for Technology Innovation. Lynne is one of the best thinkers
within the Technical Architecture competency and is often sought for key client
meetings for her experience, quick wit and engaging style.
-- Pete Pesce, DiamondCluster Chief People Officer
Some of these articles are available online, but since their URLs change regularly, please contact me for information regarding their current locations.
§ You’re the Doctor – how the Web fundamentally changes the physician-patient relationship – Context, 2002
§ The Fun Hybrid Fix – Telephony, May 2002
§ Hackers, hot rods, and the information drag strip – IEEE Spectrum, October 2001
§ How to Succeed in Software Development – BrassRing Campus, 2001