By Steve Kenson
Real Name/Aliases: Steven Ridgemont/Scotty, Dr. Bones
Age/Nationality/Metatype/Gender: 43/UCAS/Caucasian Dwarf/Male
Distinguishing Physical Features: None
Area of Operation: Denver, UCAS
Psychological Traits: Stubborn, creative, control-oriented, individualistic
Steven Ridgemont was born in Texas in 2018. A dwarf from birth, he grew up something of a social outcast among his school-age peers and spent much of his time working with his computer. As a boy, he showed a remarkable capacity for programming, teaching himself programming languages in his spare time and writing his own programs. As a teenager, he designed and wrote the "Factor One" encryption software program, which he gave away on Matrix open source sites. His work drew the attention of Fuchi, and at the age of fifteen he sold the program to Fuchi for a substantial sum of money. Ridgemont used the money to fund his education, as well as starting his own company following his graduation.
In 2038, Ridgemont founded FTL Technologies. Still working closely with Fuchi, he designed and wrote persona code for Fuchi cyberdecks, as well as creating the Warpdrive programming language. The company quickly became known for its high-quality programs and attention to detail. In 2052, Fuchi made an offer to buy FTL. Ridgemont rejected the offer, beginning a series of increasingly hostile relations between FTL and Fuchi that resulted in a forced Fuchi buyout of FTL in 2055. Ridgemont was offered a position with Fuchi America but chose instead to resign.
That same year, Ridgemont moved to the Denver Front Range Free Zone and started over, doing what he did best. The innovative programs that he had based his reputation on quickly attracted investors, and he built a new company, called Warpdrive Systems. They released their first product, the "TransWarp" telecommunications suite, to rave reviews from the industry.
> I hear they've got something big on the back burner, to top even TransWarp.
> And that would be … ?
> Well, picture using a maser, except using the earth's natural magnetic field for the power for the hookups instead of an electric grid. A magnetic interface. It's gonna be big, I'm tellin ya.
> Yeah. And those blinky lights that people used to wear on their shoes were hip, too. Lemme know when you cash your next reality check.
In 2057, Ridgemont was the beneficiary of a large bequest of money from Dunkelzahn's will, giving him the capital he needed to expand his fledgling company. Warpdrive Systems began hiring bright new programmers and designers from the top universities, often luring prospects away from Fuchi.
Steven Ridgemont took a special pleasure in the breakup of Fuchi only a few years afterward. He arranged to buy back many of FTL's old assets cheaply, winning back what he'd lost to Fuchi's buyout. Shortly after the remainder of Fuchi reorganized as Novatech, CEO Richard Villiers personally approached Ridgemont regarding a strategic alliance between the two companies. Mr. Villiers revealed his investment in Warpdrive Systems, and has, at least for now, asked for no special treatment. Ridgemont has accepted, and is becoming a close business associate of ours.
> Or at least, that's what they want to think.
> Ridgemont spends a lot of his time in Shadowland nodes, almost always hanging out in the social areas and virtual bars. Seems like he knows everybody worth knowing, as I've never seen him go more than a couple of minutes of conversation without someone saying hello.
> He's also not a bad fixer, when it comes to that. His services are pretty much solely in the areas of information and Johnson services, both for himself and hooking runners up with other Johnsons. Still, he's worth trying when you're hard up for cash and you've got a decent reputation.
> Wiz, free advertising. You can't ask for a better recommendation than the words of a satisfied customer. :)
Ridgemont's personality profile suggests deeply seated feelings of inferiority, causing him to overachieve in any forum in which he feels his abilities are being challenged. This behavior, combined with his protective feelings toward his company, give us useful leverage should it become necessary. His skills at attracting and directing freelance operatives make him exceptionally useful to us, especially when combined with his formidable programming skills.
> Well. Can't say I wasn't expecting something like this. Cap, I owe you one. You got any ideas on how you'd like to collect, let me know.
Steven Ridgemont Rules
Prime Runners Rating: Superior
Professionalism Rating: Semi-trained
Notes: Because of Steven's contacts and status as the head of his own corporation, all of his cyberware and computer gear is cutting-edge.
Steven Ridgemont is a Matrix socialite of the first water, one of the only of his kind. He's lived on both sides of the shadows, from corporate wonderboy to CEO, from wide-eyed runner wanna-be to experienced decker. As a result, there isn't really anybody worth knowing that he doesn't know. His administrative and organizational skills paired with his knowledge of the shadier side of the street have combined to make him one of the more eclectic fixers out there. If a team is looking for a slightly more Matrix-savvy connection, Ridgemont is a good solution.
Ridgemont is often found in the Nexus, but he spends an inordinate amount of time at Seattle Shadowland as well. He is normally in the social areas and the virtual bars where runners gather. Aside from being an extremely skilled programmer, a corporate CEO and an occassional shadowrunner on the side, Ridgemont is branching into doing some work as a fixer. He specializes in Matrixware and information, but he also does a healthy business in Johnson work too. He not only hires runner teams personally for his own little tasks, he also acts as a go-between for other corporate interests, usually smaller, independantly owned companies who aren't that familiar with shadow operations.
Steven is highly intelligent, funny, charming, and everything that someone with that much money and skill should be (but so rarely is). He has a reputation as being a genuinely good person with a Robin Hood streak a mile wide. Still, he's nothing if not on the ball, and those who underestimate him usually live to regret it. He is known for his fairness, but he will flatly refuse to hire any characters with a prejudice against metahumans.