Profile: Harold Holmes

The Association of Software Professionals started out in 1987. Our members invented the way that software is sold today, as pioneers in try-before-you-buy marketing.
Here’s another in our series of profiles of our members. All we asked was this: How did you get started?
Harold Holmes, of Lincoln Beach Software, joined the ASP on May 16th, 1992, and is online at

My beginnings…
I didn’t know what I wanted to study when I graduated High School but in my last semester I took a fun class learning how to use/program an Apple computer. I was hooked! We got our own TRS-80 Color Computer with dual disk drives and 64k of memory! I wrote lots of “for fun” stuff for it. A short time later on an IBM I started out writing a construction spreadsheet using LOTUS 123 that would allow builders to enter layout dimensions for a home and it would calculate all the necessary lumber/hardware to build the house. Then I put it into a BASIC program but I couldn’t see “giving away” the source so I picked up a C book and started learning Turbo C. In the process of learning C I abandoned the idea of create an building app and wrote my first official product that I would sell. It was the DOS installer “First Impression.”
The online world back then was Bulletin Boards (BBS). I remember logging in and updating several sites each night. My wife was my document editor and moral supporter.
I attended the first Summer Shareware Seminar (SSS) put on by Public Brand Software, now the Software Industry Conference (SIC) and sitting next to Ed from Contact Plus and seeing his shiny product box and thinking “I thought this conference was for the little guys.” hahaha… That was pretty much the launchpad for Lincoln Beach Software. Had my first sale at SSS, to Carl from Pine Grove Software! Since then I’ve been COB and President of the ASP, and served on the Shareware Industry Awards Foundation.
When Windows became the future I dragged my feet for as long as I could. Then I took the plunge and bought a copy of VB and Delphi 1 and wrote the same program in both to see which platform I liked. Delphi won hands down and since them I have written over 30 different apps. That’s my story and I’m stick’n to it!