Manual Foreign Currency Trading?


I know very little about FOREX and currency trading but I want to start trading soon.

Recently I talked to the father of a friend of mine. He was a software engineer and maybe he was just making everything up but I was intrigued. What he did was from the late 80s until 1991.

He said before there were computerized Forex platforms and the EU what he did was create a program that could trade instantly based on both real-time data and the location of the markets from accounts around the world such as the US, UK Canada, Australia, Italy, etc. He said if possible he wants to start up this again doing it again the old school way with accounts around the world.

He never traded with modern digital tools like MetaTrader or anything similar. He said observing as an old school currency trader the problem he sees are standardized platforms just look at everything from one location which misses a lot of opportunities.

The example he gave was US/CAN. It is 3:18:23 Eastern time. You are in New York. The exchange rate will give you one spread in New York. Then if you were in Toronto at 3:18:23 Eastern the spread between the 2 currencies will be slightly different than it is in New York. Using this concept could take advantage of currencies all over the world. His software would take advantage of wherever the location where the spread was largest and profit from it. I'm not certain but what he did may be called Triangular Arbitrage.

A lot has changed since 1991. For some reason, he has his heart set doing it the old school way. I have no idea why he stopped back then.

My question is can what my friend's father did 30 years ago be accomplished today using manual accounts to trade foreign currency?