A passion for programming

With an interest for computers, sophomore Brett Weiland is a self-taught programmer.


Photo courtesy Brett Weiland

Weiland displays some of his computer parts in his workplace on Nov. 26. He has a radio receiver, raspberry pi, Arduino and his computer in Linux mode.

Feature Friday , Anna Levine

As just a sophomore at BVNW, Brett Weiland is completely self-taught when it comes to programming and hosting his own website. He said he has always had this passion for software and programming but draws inspiration from his birth dad.

“As a kid I always thought what he did was so cool,” Weiland said. “That’s what kind of got me into circuitry and programming. It’s kind of evolved from there, where I would make up my own little dreams of what I could do on the computer and cool things that I could make.”

Josh Moser is Weiland’s birth dad, who said he worked at Caterpillar for ten years on Segfaults. A segmentation fault is an error sent to a computer to intentionally crash a certain program in order to avoid the computer from writing additional instructions for its operating system.

It was from this experience at CAT and wanting to foster a technical side in his son that Moser said he promoted a relationship with computers.

“I was always trying to indulge a technical side because I think that’s important,” Moser said. “I wasn’t sure he was gonna get a lot of outlets for it otherwise.”

Using this interest for computers, Weiland started making robots with his birth dad, and has since evolved to him now hosting his own server. But in other parts of his free time, Weiland said he legally hacks into his own computers.

And Moser is not the only one who is impressed with Weiland’s skills too. Weiland’s foster mother, Julie Weiland, said she enjoys watching him grow and learn new things all on his own.

“I told him, ‘Brett, your work ethic is better than any kid I know,’” Julie said. “You are doing all these other things that are completely challenging and you’re learning and growing and developing.’”

Aside from watching her son expand his passion, Julie said Weiland being around to help with technology problems is a great bonus.

“Our whole family is constantly asking him for help, and he is so great at helping,” Julie said. “But I’m sure it’s frustrating as well because we’re asking him to do the simplest of problem-solving.”

And Weiland’s parents are able to help him too, through encouragement, support and frequent trips to Micro Center. Julie said Weiland will sometimes put things into her Amazon cart that she has no idea about what they do, but is always willing to help him with whatever he needs.

But more than anything, Julie said Weiland’s family enjoys watching him experiment and grow.

“His dad and I are just super proud of him,” Julie said. “We just think he’s amazing. What he’s able to do at such a young age and how his passion drives him to do more and more, it’s just fun to watch.”