This site showcases the (mostly) digital work of Andrew DiFiore from both Virtual Arts Studios and answerYES Interactive as well as random thoughts and experimental projects too volatile to be contained anywhere else.

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    How It All Began (Abridged Version)

    My name is Andrew DiFiore and I do remember my prenatal dreams… but since this is the abridged version I’ll skip ahead twenty some odd years.

    I began my career in “new media” as a programmer for Prodigy Services Company back in the late 1980s while completing my B.S. in Computer Science at Pace University. For the sake of the very young I shall digress for a moment. Before Prodigy was a rock band it was the first public GUI-based client-server distribution network created by the joint capital of IBM, CBS, and Sears. In a time when PCs had just reached the mainstream and a few early adopters connected to crude text-based bulletin board systems via 300 baud modems, this was truly an audacious endeavor. And, of course, it attracted some of the brightest minds from the fields of computer science, design, and marketing (though I have some doubts about the marketing guys). It was indeed an exciting place to be, working on the bleeding edge of technology, paving the way for what would become known as the Web.

    During my eight-year tenure at Prodigy I helped pioneer many of the Internet technologies still in use today, from a client-side browser (we called it a Reception System) to email and ecommerce. I developed many online applications, including the first File Transfer program for which I received the Vice-President’s Award.

    In 1997 I left Prodigy to head up Thomson Newspapers’ new Internet division Thomson Interactive Media (TIM), chartered to develop an online classifieds system and migrate all of Thomson’s 70+ print properties to the Web within three years. We did it in just one. In fact, we were so successful that TIM immediately expanded into the commercial marketplace, offering Internet revenue solutions (beyond classifieds) to such high-profile clients as Newsday, Atlantic Journal Constitution, and The Houston Chronicle.

    In 1999 I received my degree in Interactive Multimedia and Computer Graphics from Pratt Institute Manhattan. I had dabbled in HTML while still at Prodigy and over the following several years performed freelance web design under the moniker Virtual Arts Studios.

    After leaving TIM in 1999 I packed up my Subaru and traveled across country for three months to satisfy a life-long wanderlust. When I returned to New York I started Virtual Arts Studios full throttle, garnering such clients as Deloitte & Touche, Gartner, Brunschwig & Fils, Martine’s Chocolates, Garfield & Marks, and Movado.

    By 2003 Virtual Arts Studios had become a collaborative network of independent designers, developers, copywriters, photographers, musicians, and many other talented professionals. It continues to grow today.

    In 2004 Virtual Arts Studios joined forces with Peter Johnson Consulting to form answerYES Interactive, a new progressive web development, design, and marketing firm.