A position designing, building, documenting, operating, and maintaining software systems in close collaboration with my team and stakeholders.
Senior Director of Technology at Modern Energy
- Helped bootstrap a new Retail Energy Provider (REP) in Texas’ ERCOT market
- Automated wholesale energy trades for a few different markets via APX MarketSuite
- Helped bootstrap a new HVAC optimization startup by integrating with InfiSense and MelRok
- Technologies, techniques, and tools employed:
- Apache Airflow
- Apache Kafka
- AWS (ACM, ECS, IAM, Fargate, Lambda, MWAA, R53, RDS, S3, Secrets Manager)
- Confluent Cloud
- GitHub Actions
- JSON Schema
Principal Software Engineer at Funding Circle
- Drove an initiative to level up the documentation and knowledge sharing culture/practices of a ~250-person software product development group
- Took point on designing and implementing a useful information architecture for the corporate wiki
- Conceived, developed, released, and maintained the FC4 Framework, an open-source framework for authoring, publishing, and maintaining software architecture diagrams (includes a CLI tool written with Clojure)
- Worked on improving organizational effectiveness; e.g. communication channels, practices, etc.
- Technologies, techniques, and tools employed:
Principal Software Architect at Park Assist
- Facilitating the company’s transition from execution phase to growth phase
- Increasing collaboration and cohesion of the engineering team
- Establishing roadmaps for all systems
- Designing, building, and operating:
- streaming data pipelines conveying data from sites around the world to a central data center
- stream data topologies using Kafka, Kafka Streams, Kafka Connect, JRuby, and Clojure to effect high-throughput and low-latency data-centric applications
- Driving adoption of:
- infrastructure-as-code, configuration management, and immutable infrastructure with Terraform, Ansible, CircleCI, AWS, and Kubernetes
- consistent conventions around testing, documentation, code review, and continuous integration
- Operating services with Terraform, Ansible, AWS, and Kubernetes, Datadog, Slack
- Defining and executing new approaches to:
- engineering support
- team structure
- Create a culture of caring about sustainability, documentation, and maintainability
- Introducing and championing new:
- Mentoring those new to software engineering
- Refactored a critical and complex system into a loosely-coupled stream-based system using Kinesis and Go (slides)
- Designed and implemented sophisticated integration with Twilio for SMS-based signup
- Designed and implemented a large-scale data processing tool to process billions of records very quickly
- Designed and implemented an event-driven system to automate Stripe subscription management
2013–2014: SFX Entertainment
- SFX acquired Arc90 in 2013 to be its internal app design and development group
- I initially adopted the title CTO, then recruited someone amazing to replace me and shifted to Chief Sofware Architect
- I helped design and build an ambitious new-from-the-ground-up streaming music platform and integrate it with existing products
- I helped shape the organization by helping craft its structure, practices, culture, goals, communication, and approach
- I recruited key personnel
- Arc90 was a Web application design & development consultancy; it was acquired by SFX Entertainment in 2013
- Wore many hats: developer, architect, team leader, partner, director
- Worked with teams to design, build, and maintain sophisticated software platforms, including:
- A Web/SOA insurance platform covering all key aspects of policy origination and management
- A Web-based search engine and reference platform for engineers
- An API at the heart of a new-from-the-ground-up news distribution platform for Reuters
- Conducted technical audits of clients’ acquisition targets
- Helped manage the business as a partner
- Managed client relationships
- Invested much time and effort in recruiting and retaining exceptional team members
- Started practice of regular company-wide code review
- Refactored, enhanced, and maintained a sophisticated application for producing custom financial documents for on-demand printing
- Team lead position for large high-traffic auction site
- Responsibilities included designing, implementing, and maintaining features; and reengineering site technology and architecture
- Created new internal tools and development procedures
- Maintained and enhanced a large-scale online employee benefits enrollment system for diverse clients with diverse needs
1998–2000: Words In Progress
- Developed requirements and specifications for high traffic websites directly with clients; crafted application architecture and database design
1998: Ideal Computer Strategies
- Worked with teams of designers, coders, and project managers to concurrently develop and deploy client websites with basic dynamic features
1997–1998: PCC Internet Design
- Founded and managed a small web design shop in Pikesville, MD providing full-service web design and development to small companies in the Baltimore area
I believe that:
- diversity and inclusion are crucial and create rich, healthy, sustainable, productive organizations.
- DRY and the Rule of Three apply to docs just as much as code.
- people can only do great work if they are healthy, growing, supported, and respected.
- all great processes have one thing in common: they are regularly reviewed and refined.
- the most important aspect of any technology is its potential to solve problems.
- technology is a phenomenally powerful tool that we humans have at our disposal to solve problems — if we so choose.
- we do some of our best thinking in collaboration with others.
- institutional/communal memory is critical to building sustainable organizations.
- Problem analysis
- Software design, architecture, construction, deployment, operation, and maintenance
- Deep expertise in the World Wide Web and HTTP
- Web API design & development
- Product design
- Data architecture & data engineering
- Docs as Code
- Information architecture
- Optimizing developer productivity via automation and documentation
- Team/organizational leadership
- Assessing and improving organizational effectiveness
- Organizational architecture
See also Additional Skills & Technologies below.
Additional Skills & Technologies
Most of my work is proprietary and private; this selection of things I’ve managed to release publicly doesn’t represent my full skillset.
- Published Resourceful, a Clojure library that provides a more concise and more RESTful alternative to declaring routes.
- My last major project for Arc90 was to build a new platform for reuters.com:
- I created a diagram of the overall architecture of the “Reuters Next” platform
- I was asked to review a draft of the API spec; I provided these notes
- I developed a document to capture the culture and process of my team, so we could ramp new members up quickly and effectively
- I determined that the API codebase I had inherited needed to be refactored, and wrote this summary to explain why
- When I left the project I shared my parting thoughts with the team
- I sometimes perform technical audits of existing applications or platforms. Here’s one example; I can provide more extensive examples upon request.
I’d be happy provide more examples of my work, such as architecture diagrams and presentations, business analysis, code, etc. Please get in touch!
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