1 Santa Fe Computer Works
1209 Parkway Drive

When Steve Ewers, owner of Santa Fe Computer Works, looks up from his tools to help a customer, he ignores the charmingly messy hole-in-the-wall decor all around (for some reason, there’s a stool standing on one of the counters) and sees only someone with a problem that needs fixing. And judging from the loyal customer base and consistent wins in Best Of Santa Fe, Steve Ewers and his associates are very good at fixing problems.

So good and yet the requirements for working here are so simple: You “just have to like to tinker,” Ewers says, although the suspicion lingers that one also has to be damn good at tinkering. This enjoyment of the job “makes ’em enthusiastic,” and so, the crew members he calls “the guys” research new developments and products on their own time. The guys’ tinkering also has great flexibility; where other, larger outfits can’t deconstruct a computer below a certain level, Ewers and his team are willing to dive right down into the motherboard for a fraction of the cost of larger companies.

With results like these, Ewer’s modest statement about winning—“for all I know, we only won by one vote”—seems a little unlikely. (Caroline K Gorman)

2 Dotfoil, 1594 San Mateo Lane, 505-954-9955

3 Data Doctors, 524-B W. Cordova Road, 505-955-9595