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xorca_120Gvozden Dokic likes to solve problems and make things work.  Specifically he solves computer problems for businesses and help them strategize to get the most out of their technology.  He optimizes systems and processes employed in using them, sets strategies for backing up, and customizes hardware to best fit with a business.  For the last 12 to 13 years XOrca, Inc. his consulting firm, has hired out to big banks, and small businesses, making problems go away so businesses can concentrate on what they do best.

"They don't see me," Dokic says.  "The businesses are busy with the business, and they are not busy calling me a million times to fix problems."

While he will also just fix problems that arise, Dokic likes to work with business owners to create strategies and processes that will specifically fit their business needs, as well as preventing problems that typically beset business computing networks.  That may be a matter of automating backups, choosing servers or Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices, choosing the right off-the-shelf software, or developing custom software or hardware to fit a business need.  Or it might be coming up with a long term equipment purchasing plan so business owners can plan their technology expenses over several years, based on the real needs of their companies.

"Whatever kind of technology problems in fixing your computers, your network, your routers, your firewalls, modems...  I can fix that," he says.  "I can make it run better.  If you have a small business I can most likely optimize the processes that you have.  Your backups, network traffic.  Some things can be optimized if they are too repetitive most people don't know that and if the computer crashes I can create an image and put back your computer in a matter of hours instead of days."

A native of Zagreb, Croatia, Dokic's first computer was a Timex Sinclair computer, followed by a Commodore 64, and then PCs.  He graduated from the University of Zagreb with a BS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.  After college in 1998 he decided to come to the United States, and his wife Suzana followed a year later.  He worked as a consultant to a court reporting agency at first, then started X Orca in 1999.  He worked for large banking firms, eventually for Morgan Stanley, for whom he consulted five years, and was employed there until 2009. 

At that point the couple decided it was time to change their lifestyle, and they moved to Ithaca with their two children.  They had visited a friend here, and really liked it.  Dokic worked for a year and a half developing a game, and began computer consulting locally, while Suzana established an acupuncture practice.

"Ithaca seemed to us like some kind of European town," he says.  "The American suburbs were scary for Europeans.  It is really scary to live somewhere like that.  But Ithaca had this center.  People were different, the vibe was different.  We thought it was a better match for the kids.  I had one of the best years of my life working on a project that I loved around the house, where I could walk in the woods, split wood, or whatever when I get tired of the IT."

That project was a word card game.  An associate in New York City did the original development.  Dokic polished it, and marketed it to game companies.  He also developed a version that the partners hope will be picked up as a television game show, and they plan a Facebook version.

While he has a handful of long term projects in the works, he is focusing on building his consulting business here in Ithaca.  Since moving here he has worked for a dentist, a chiropractor, and a high-tech plastics company.  He will come on-site to fix a short term problem, or take on longer projects, depending on what the customer needs.

xorca_400Gvozden Dokic

"I like fixing the problem," he says.  "Big or small, I'll take it all."

He notes that solutions that work for one company may not be right for another, so he takes a personalized approach to each job.  He notes that many times businesses contract with technology firms that may even be based somewhere else that are big in pricing, but small in the quality of the support.  Few small businesses can afford to solve that problem with their own in-house IT people.

"As somebody that's local I can offer something that is in between," he says.  "I am even thinking of teaming up with friends that have a help desk.  It is local here in New york.  there is no 'John from India' or 'Jack from the Philippines'.  It's always different.  People are different.  Businesses are different, and it's always a different challenge.  Different businesses have different needs.  It's challenging to optimize their technology and make it work the way they pictured it.  People want to use technology in a different way to do different things."

Meanwhile, Dokic says he is enjoying Ithaca and doing what he does best: solving problems and making things work.

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