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Portrait: ZaReason founder Cathy Malmrose

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Rather than choose her current career, it almost seems as if Cathy Malmrose's career chose her. Malmrose is CEO of ZaReason, an OEM that manufactures and sells desktop and notebook systems with Ubuntu, where she deals with everything from talking with the US Department of Commerce concerning export issues to inspecting the hardware for quality assurance purposes.

Malmrose says she wasn't always a FOSS enthusiast. "As a kid, I was discouraged from anything technical or scientific even though that was where my interests were strongest." However, in college, she took out her first loan to buy a computer. Things changed more when she became a wife. "I married a computer guru who had deep knowledge of both hardware and software. He grew up working alongside his dad as a techie at Idaho State University and had been programming games in his free time since he was young. He made sure we always had the best hardware. Despite his support, it took years worth of cumulative intervention for me to self-identify as a Linuxchick."

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Also: ZaReason’s Ubuntu Keyboard

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