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The Computer Buzz March 5th, 2009

Nome and Paul Van Middlesworth - owners - The Computer Fact


Who Are We, Anyway?

Nome and I grew up in Wayne County, Indiana. We lived in farming communities ten miles apart but didn't meet until we were in our 20s. I had served a hitch in the Marine Corps and was working my way through college as an Industrial Engineer at Belden Corp, a wire and cable manufacturer in Richmond, Indiana. Nome was a "stripper," a wire stripper that is. She was the subject of my first time study and the only person in the plant skilled enough to run two wire-stripping machines at the same time. My job was to set "piecework" rates for her job. She instantly saw in me a person who could positively influence her standard of living and I quickly recognized her earnings potential. It was a match made in heaven. We were married within a year.

By the time Nome got me through college we had four children. Over the next two decades my management career took us from Indiana to Florida, Minnesota, Canada, Silicon Valley, and finally to Southern California. I ran manufacturing divisions for companies like Westinghouse, NCR, United Telecom and Packard Bell while Nome did a great job raising our four children.

With the children grown, Nome and I began to work together as consultants to manufacturing companies. In 1995 we bought the inventory of a computer manufacturer for whom we were consulting and moved into the old San Marcos Library on San Marcos Blvd. I knew manufacturing and Nome could do just about everything else so we figured to build and sell computers.

Neither of us had retail computer sales experience. As a result we tended to see things from the customer's point of view. We became a "user defined" business and it fit us like a glove.

Today we are the largest independent computer store in North County. We still pretty much let our customers run things. Most of the computers we build today are for commercial and industrial customers but we still build a lot of computers for home users. Our PCs are called "workstations" because they are built to commercial standards. We build them to last.

The COMPUTER FACTORY is not for everyone. Some people like the glass and steel anonymity of the electronics "superstores." Familiarity and friendliness make some folks uncomfortable these days.

In our store you can talk to the person who actually built or fixed your computer or you can hang around and watch the technician check out your computer. If you need information in order to make a decision on upgrading or buying a computer; it is always freely given. There is no pressure to buy at the Computer Factory.

Our philosophy has always been that the better informed you are, the more likely you are to be one of our customers.





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