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I started working for Zetec in the latter half of 2007 on their Internet License Distribution System (ILDS). For the most part I was hired to fix some issues with reporting and other minor bugs. Zetec’s customers have used the ILDS website for many years in order to retrieve licenses for Zetec’s software product offerings. The update project lasted for about 2 months. They hired me again in late 2008 through 2009 to revisit ILDS, fixing some newly discovered bugs and to make a major update to their codeword processing system which ended up being a wonderful lesson in cryptography for me. Customers generate codewords on their Zetec desktop software (Zetec License Manager – ZLM) to use on the ILDS site which then gives them a password to use with ZLM that then releases software licenses for the customer to use.

During the 2008-2009 session with Zetec I was also given a new site to update called the CAL Standard website. Students at the University of Washington created the site for Zetec as a class project. Once it is released, customers will use it to create CAL standards which are pieces of hardware that Zetec manufacturers and sends to customers based on their specific needs.

Most of updates and tweaks I was asked to do were rather routine. I optimized several PHP pages and reduced the amount of code needed significantly. I also had an opportunity to revisit my old pal, the Graphics Draw 2.0 library in PHP. I had utilized this years ago at Westlake Electronic Supply in order to create a captcha for their registration form and add watermarks to their product pictures. With the CAL Standard project I was to take the customer created drawings, that are in HTML, from the site and create an image file from them. Then that image had to be laid on top of another image in order to create a final image that was used by Zetec’s machine shop to create the part the customer designed. Creating the functionality to parse HTML and turn it into an image using only PHP and the GD library was quite rewarding especially when considering the software that can accomplish this task is either a few hundred to a thousand dollars and/or only works on one platform.