Originally from a small town outside of Saint John, New Brunswick, he enrolled in the University of New Brunswick's computer science program. For his undergraduate honours thesis, Blakney worked on an interaction design paradigm for hand-held devices and became hooked on user interfaces. Working with Dr. Sudhir Mudur, the Chair of the Department of Computer Science and Software Engineering, Blakney used his master's to explore emerging styles in 3D interaction and interface design. He created 3D interaction metaphor of navigational puppetry, and implemented a tangible user interface prototype, The Navi-Teer, which afforded basic navigation within a virtual world. This work now continues as he begins his PhD in Software Engineering.