is the owner and president of
599CD Computer Training and
Amicron Computing, a small technology firm based in
Cape Coral, Florida dedicated to
helping people get the most from their computers.
A self-taught computer expert, Richard founded Amicron in 1994 to provide custom-built computer systems and related services to the Western New York area. In addition to building computers himself, Richard also offered his customers networking solutions, custom software development, and personalized training solutions to meet their individual business needs. Richard's personal specialty is building database solutions using Microsoft Access.
Richard opened his first dedicated Computer Training Center in 1996 in Amherst, NY. Centered around small group instruction, Richard taught classes in Microsoft Windows, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Web Design, QuickBooks, Photoshop, WordPerfect, and more. What really set Richard's training center apart, however, was the availability of advanced developer-level instruction in Microsoft Access, Excel, and Visual Basic. Plus, Richard developed all of his own training materials from his years of computer experience.
As the computer industry changed following Y2K, so did Richard's business. As computers themselves became more "commercialized," and big companies - as they always do - put the squeeze on the smaller ones, Richard decided to stop providing hardware and PC service and focused more on training and consulting. It was during this time that he opened a new, larger training facility in Amherst NY. In addition to the small group training he had offered previously, Richard started holding large seminars and workshops for groups of 20 to 30 students.
Taking the seminars yet one step further, Richard began offering his seminars live, online over the Internet in the fall of 2002. They were immediately successful, and Richard was no longer limited geographically to the people he could reach. Thousands of students from around the world signed up for Richard's online seminars. Copies of Richard's Web Seminars are available on his web site, and he occasionally still holds Live sessions for his customers.
After teaching live seminars for over a year, Richard Rost developed his highly-refined video tutorials under the very popular 599CD name. Richard wanted to offer his tutorials at a price low enough so everyone could afford them. After much debate and research, he decided on a price of $5.99 for his beginner, one-hour lessons. Since the lessons were initially only available on CD-ROM, the name 599CD just made sense, plus it was a nice, short, available .com domain name. Today, Richard has many different levels of courses available (beginner through advanced) in several different topics. His courses are still available on CD, although the vast majority of his students watch lessons in his Online Theater, or download the videos from his web site.
Richard still offers personal and group training sessions, in addition to consulting and software development services (mostly Microsoft Access database design). If you are in need of expert help, contact Richard Rost for assistance. Richard also has a very popular online "TechHelp" page where you can ask him your questions through his Web site, and he replies to you via email. Richard enjoys assisting people from around the globe with their computer questions.
In 2010, Richard authored The Complete Idiot's Guide to Microsoft Excel 2010 published by Alpha Books (a division of Penguin Books). This is his first professionally "published" book.
In October of 2013, Richard moved his family and company to Cape Coral, Florida.
In April of 2014, Richard was selected for the Microsoft MVP Award (Most Valuable Professional). It's such an honor to be part of this elite group of experts. There are only about 4000 people in the world with this designation, and he is ecstatic about joining them!
On the personal side, Richard Rost lives in Cape Coral, Florida with his wife (Michele), daughter (Lauryn), and son (Richard III). Richard and Michele will be celebrating their 24th Anniversary on August 19th, 2014.
Having grown up in the "Southtowns" of Western New York, Richard attended the Hamburg and Frontier school systems, and graduated from Lake Shore High School. Richard enrolled in the State University of New York at Buffalo for Computer Science, but dropped out to start his first business before obtaining a degree.
A few years back, Richard went from 340 pounds down to 185 pounds by eating healthy foods and getting plenty of exercise. You can read all about his personal weight-loss journey at RicksWeightLoss.com.
Richard's other hobbies include playing games with his kids. His favorite board game is Axis & Allies, a World War II strategy game. He also loves to play a friendly game of poker. Richard enjoys some computer games - but after working with computers all day long, he likes to get away from them as much as possible. Richard is also an amateur backyard astronomer, and loves to take the kids out with the telescope on clear nights.
Richard enjoys playing softball and baseball year-round (yes, even back in Buffalo he used to play indoor softball in the winter). Richard has yet to find a team to play with in Cape Coral, so if you know of a team that can use a first basemen (and a company sponsor) let him know. LOL. Richard enjoys cycling, kayaking, frisbee, and just about anything else to stay active!
Richard mostly enjoys the science fiction and fantasy genres when it comes to books, television, and movies. His favorite books are the DragonLance (Chronicles and Legends) series, in addition to The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy. His favorite TV series right now is Game of Thrones. He also enjoys Dr. Who, Castle, and the prematurely cancelled Firefly. Richard is also a huge Star Trek fan (Next Gen is #1, of course).
Richard is also a musician. He began playing the piano at the age of eight. Richard played a variety of instruments throughout school, including the clarinet, tuba, baritone, and various percussion instruments. Richard played keyboard for a few years in the early 1990s with the rock band Silver XTreme (yes, he rocked a keytar). Richard's personal favorite group is Rush. Lately, Richard listens mostly to instrumental movie scores.