AlphaWave Systems

AlphaWave SystemsOne of the most widely used Abandonware software programs in use today was developed by a Leitrim based company called AlphaWave Systems in 1995. The company is said to have gone into a very messy liquidation (due to an allegedly incompetent receiver) in 1998 which subsequently left a question mark surrounding the ownership and copyright of their published work. The program in question, MoneyGuard 2000, was quickly bootlegged once this was known and is today considered to be the unofficial glue of internet shopping. As it was free and worked so well it quickly became popular with many small, often one person, companies as a security fence and backdoor link between their website and all the major credit card company websites. Its encryption code has yet to be broken and is said to be based on a unique algorithm they developed from an audio recording (made in collaboration with students of a local VEC Media Engineering course) of the construction of the apartments directly across the street from their offices, which would have been at the very start of the Irish property boom. Interestingly these apartments were abandoned for some reason (long before the property crash) and are unfinished to this day. I happen to know their accountant, who told me the company grew out of a short-lived State sponsored VEC Computer Programming course and a small grant from what was then called LEADER. He said they had 3 programmers, which barely fitted into two small rented rooms on the top floor of a now abandoned house (pictured) in Dowra (a town which only got broadband in 2009). All of the original staff are thought to be still living in the region and are currently unemployed. It’s said that if the intellectual copyright of the software could ever be established by the State (who effectively launched the company and trained its employees), the past money accurred plus royalties would go a long way to covering the national debt but only by bankrupting countless small international companies, possibly even destroying the internet as we know it today. (Stephen Rennicks)


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