Early in his boyhood, it was science, and more specifically medicine, that fascinated Andy Walker. Perhaps because doctors were mostly nice and they seem to help his mom with her headaches caused by his raucous younger twin brothers.
He did a journalism degree at Ryerson University in Toronto and started a career as a newspaper reporter. He wasn’t fond of knocking on dead people’s doors, but heck, it was a living.
His first jobs included a stint at the Toronto Sun, a tabloid metro daily. The lowlight of this career move was a page one story about a raccoon stuck up a tree. Later, Walker worked as an editorial assistant for the CBC where he experienced the fall of the Berlin Wall from a TV newsroom and a national anchorman’s famous off-camera profanity. He also later worked as a general assignment reporter at the Vancouver Province, a daily metro newspaper, where he wrote about crime and police. The local cops learn to hate him when he baited witnesses away from a hospital waiting room with a promise of a free ride home in his orange Czech-made Skoda.
After a stint as a film publicist and walk on actor, it was technology that steered him back to journalism. In ’95, he became a key player in putting the Southam newspaper chain on the web and was one of the early architects of Canada.com. Walker went on to train in the then cutting edge “multimedia newsgathering” at MSNBC in Redmond, WA. Remember this was before smartphones, so “multimedia” meant carrying around heavy stuff.
He joined a pioneering team that launched MSN.ca’s news service between 1997 and 1999. It was so pioneering that they shut it down in late 1999. Undeterred, Andy happily left Microsoft and leveraged his career as a journalist by writing about technology for the Edmonton Journal newspaper. His column “Cyberwalker”, a tech advice column was published across Canada. This became Cyberwalker.com, which at its peek attracted more than 3.5 million unique visitors each year including 6 people from Zambia.
During the dotcom boom Andy wrote about technology for some of Canada’s most prestigious news outlets including the National Post and the Toronto Star. His work was syndicated around the world and translated into many languages.
Walker has appeared as a tech expert on zillions of TV and radio broadcasts in Canada and the U.S. In 2002, he moved to Berkeley, California to work with publishing pioneer David Bunnell, founder of PC magazine, to launch Dig_iT magazine. He had fun and learn a lot until they ran out of money. And then it was less fun.
Between 2004 and 2006, he co-produced and co-hosted the internationally syndicated TV show Call for Help with Leo Laporte. On the show, he often showed how technology worked using cheese and marshmallows. He also co-founded the massively popular vidcast LabRats.tv. At the same time also wrote his first book called Absolute Beginner’s Guides to Security, Spam, Spyware and Viruses (Que Publishing).
Walker became quite good at making money was hired by Tucows Inc. as General Manager of Tucows.com. While there he built the video web site butterscotch.com which was really good but expensive to run. Kids on YouTube could make video cheaper and didn’t have any studio overhead.
Today he and his wife (and co-author) Kay run a digital marketing agency called Cyberwalker Digital where they help people weave their web traffic into gold. Walker has built numerous successful properties including TomorrowsGasPriceToday.com was sold to GasBuddy.com in 2014.