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About Us


Last updated: 21 January 2020

MPE is a decentralised company that takes full advantage of modern communication methods. When you contact us, you will probably be referred to one of the people mentioned here as a technical contact.

Stephen Pelc

Stephen Pelc

Stephen is an electronics engineer by training, but has been writing software since the days of Algol 60.
+44 (0)23 8063 1441,
Speaks English and French.

Stephen founded MPE in 1981 after a career that included running a community arts centre, printing posters, picking strawberries, writing software for glass cutting machines, designing hardware for active noise reduction and electrostatic stirrers, software for flood warning schemes, and hardware and software for a bank note sorting machine.

Stephen designed the VFX code generator used by MPE’s current Forth systems and managed the European project that produced the first VFX systems.

Barry Culver

Barry Culver

Barry is our UK hardware designer. The PB2468 is one of his designs. According to Barry, electronic design is the art and science of selecting components that fit together to work reliably and well. The joy of electronics is that all the time the range of components is getting wider, with an endless stream of smaller/faster/better parts to choose from!

Apart from electronics, Barry has experience in welding, painting, machining, sheet metal bashing, testing, mechanical design and the other trades of a scientific instrument manufacturer. He’s an excellent Forth application programmer with a fully equipped hardware development lab.

Barry can be relied upon to find a hole in any specification.

Barto Gillespie

Barto Gillespie

Barto is our structural integrity test engineer. He has specialist knowledge of fabrics, domestic furniture, garden excavations and game birds. Barto handles our interactions with all non-humans except cats, with whom he seems to be unable to communicate effectively.

His younger brother Freddie has similar talents and interests.

Partial customer list

On some consultancy jobs clients have asked us to sign non-disclosure agreements covering not only the work but the client name as well. They regard Forth as a competitive advantage for their work. The following is thus just a partial list from our customer base.

Apple, Astell Scientific, AWE, BAE, British Telecom, British Gas, Brown Root Vickers, CDS Advanced Technology bv, CEGB, Cementation, CMON Systems, Construction Computer Software, Department of Transport, Disarmco, Europay International, Farnell, GEC Plessey Avionics, Intersil, ISRO, ITT, JWK International, Lucas CAV, Marconi Space and Defence, Metropolitan Police, NASA, Nuclear Electric, Philips, Rolls Royce, Rushton Diesels, Rutherford Appleton Labs, Saab, Safer Systems, Shell UK Oil, Sun Microsystems, Thorn EMI, Trafalgar House, Yorkshire TV, and many universities and research labs.

On one space shuttle flight, three out of four experiments were programmed in Forth, each team having chosen Forth individually. Forth is approved by NASA for high reliability applications.