Who Are We

EQWARE   |ē·kyo͞o'·wâr|
noun   (no plural)
An association of professional engineers specializing in hardware and embedded software design, implementation, and testing.
EQWARE is our company's first contact for all embedded engineering.
[from Modern English: Embedded Quality]

Company History

The principals of EQware worked together for years before EQware was created. This history included integrated circuit design and test, extensive embedded firmware, sophisticated wireless protocols, and real-time systems development at a local NW company. Their experience was, and is, wide and deep. As the century came to an end so did this NW company and the principals moved on to work on various new technologies.

After a few years of contracting for others, Dennis decided to work for himself in January of 2003, as EQware Engineering. Over the next year, he worked as a consultant while continuing to learn the details of running a small business. On January 1st of 2004, Dennis incorporated EQware Engineering, Inc. During 2005, long time associates, Van and Jim, joined the company. As owners, officers, and employees, the Three Amigos became the principals of EQware. In 2006, EQware hired a part-time office manager to make sure the bills were paid and payroll timely while the rest of EQware worked as engineers and project managers.

From the beginning, EQware has developed strong relationships with many outstanding independent contractors. Almost every project included some of these associates, allowing EQware to tackle more work and handle larger projects. Over the years, EQware has added to its internal staff with caution and selectivity. These include one long-time associate turned employee, and more recently a few college graduates, each from the top of their class. These young engineers combined with more senior engineers have created an outstanding corporate dynamic, integrating mature, experienced engineers with fresh, latest technologies engineers.

We Care

Meet the team

EQware is made up of a tight team of engineers and a strong collaboration with some of the best contractors in the trade. All EQware engineers are able to work together as a unit as well as on their own. In working with EQware, you will quickly realize the talent, experience, and excitement each one of these engineers possess.

Click on a card to see that person's bio.

Dennis O'Brien

Dennis O'Brien has many years of electronic engineering experience, both hardware and software. He graduated magna cum laude from University of Portland with a BS in Electrical Engineering and summa cum laude from Midwestern State University with a MS in Computer Engineering.

Dennis' electronic career includes numerous embedded development programs requiring the special skills unique to small, low power, and wireless devices. Dennis has also been responsible for high-reliability modulation equipment and wireless test tools; he has even managed back-office systems development in support of new wireless technologies. Over the years, he has ventured into portable, low-power devices, multimedia technologies and many other wireless systems.

As a technical project leader, Dennis has long been the go-to guy when things "just had to be done". He has worked as project manager, program director, and vice-president of engineering. He knows what it takes to develop solutions from requirements to manufacturing.

Dennis is a native Oregonian. He spent 10 years in the Air Force as a jet pilot, retiring as a Captain to pursue his love of electronics and software. He is the father of three and husband to his wife Bonnie. He enjoys all sorts of music and plays classical on piano.

Jim Collar

Jim Collar has over thirty years of professional experience in software engineering, often near the hardware/software interface. His career is highlighted by 13+ years developing firmware for pager wristwatches and modulation equipment used in the Seiko MessageWatch system. These years gave Jim a solid knowledge of development of a wireless protocol and associated receiver algorithms, in this case implemented by highly optimized assembly code. Mask-programmed watch software demanded extremely high Q/A, and Jim participated in many aspects of these efforts. Since 2000, he has contracted in various technologies including server management, Bluetooth Low Energy, Linux device drivers, 2.4GHz sensors, production test tools, firmware updates, and so-on. Jim enjoys the challenges of developing real-time systems using innovative techniques to overcome constraints and increase performance.

Jim also has proven management and technical leadership skills. Larger projects are handled through coordinated efforts of EQware engineers that benefit from leadership skills of folks like Jim. Customer interfaces are also benefited through his good scheduling and status reporting skills. Analyzing requirements, writing specifications, and carrying out various degrees of quality assurance programs are all within Jim’s abilities.

Jim has always lived in the Western US with his most influential years spent growing up in Idaho. He gained his B.S. in Computer Science from the College of Engineering at the University of Idaho in 1985. Before that time, Jim learned about common sense working on cars, working in restaurants, and doing construction work in Boise, ID. Jim is a family man, a guitar player and an avid fly fisherman.

Van Wanless

Van Wanless has been a software engineer for over twenty years, specializing in embedded software for most of that time. He graduated magna cum laude from Old Dominion University in 1984 with a BS in Computer Science, and has since taught programming at the community college level.

Van is a computer-language junkie, and has written programs in C, C++, Pascal, Basic, Lisp, Ada, Java, HTML, PHP, Javascript, AWK, a collection of scripting languages, PERL, threaded-interpretive languages (like Forth) and a long list of assembly languages, in addition to languages of his own design. He has worked under enough operating systems (some now obsolete) that it makes his head spin to think of them all.

Van is a former US Navy Data Systems Technician, and has also worked as a janitor, a night-watchman, a teletype operator, a field-service technician, a business graphics programmer and a CAD applications programmer. His hobbies include digital art, photography, cooking, and Dungeons and Dragons. He is a native of the Pacific Northwest.

Mark Wattier

Mark Wattier has been working on computers since he got access to a teletype in 8th grade in 1976, dreaming of an Altair or IMSAI of his own. He got an internship at Tektronix while in high school and finally was able to work on hardware and software together.

A long career has taken him from field repair work, to manufacturing, to installing servers and networks around the world, through backend software engineering, and back to the hardware - software interface.

Mark is a native of the Portland area and enjoys roaming the woods, studying the geology and botany of the area, and sharing these experiences with his daughter.

Kai Jorgensen

Kai found his passion for coding at age 8 when he got his first "HTML for Kids" book. Since then, he's done everything from porting a Linux kernel to managing IT for a film festival. He enjoys both the embedded world and higher-level software design, always looking for better solutions to a problem.

A graduate of Computer Science at the University of Portland, Kai is also passionate about playing musical instruments and has been known to go on random bike adventures around Portland.

Stephen Robinson

Stephen Robinson has been programming since age 10 on hardware ranging from TRS-80s to Intel Xeon Phi clusters. He has a broad skillset and various interests acrued from scores of hobby projects and work experiences, and is as comfortable coding a C# website backend as he is an OS in assembly. But his favorite has always been embedded work.

A Portland native, he graduated Maxima Cum Laude from the University of Portland in Computer Science. He stayed in the area, and can often be spotted biking down the Springwater Corridor, hiking around Forest Park, or having a stout at a local brewpub.

Scott Rowland

Scott Rowland wrote his first programs in high school for his TI-84 calculator to make some simple calculations even easier. He attended University of Portland where he picked up many software development skills. Scott graduated Magna Cum Laude with a BS in Computer Science.

Scott hails from the Spokane, Washington area. He enjoys spending time with his family, watching the Mariners and Blazers, and taking short hikes around the area.

Our Locations

EQware has two lab locations in the Portland, Oregon area. We love meeting our clients face to face, and will happily travel to your offices to meet with you, or invite you to whichever lab is closest to you. If you want to meet with us, please let us know.

Portland based, International presence — Just because we are located in Portland, Oregon, don't think that we are limited to Oregon clients. Much of our business lies outside the Pacific Northwest. We have handled contracts from Europe and the Pacific Rim, not to mention customers from across the US. Wherever your company may be located, when you have an embedded hardware or software project, look to EQware.

EQware Oregon City Lab
EQware Southwest Lab