Tell me about yourself and how you got into development.
I went to college for Interaction Design and Computer Science, so I got pretty lucky with those choices. I really started getting involved in the industry while I was 3 years in to college by attending a lot of meet ups and learning from the local community, and eventually started my own meetup groups (Sass meetups) in various cities I’ve lived in. That was huge in getting me to where I am now. Through community, I got to meet really smart passionate people who shared their experiences. I started speaking locally, and then that eventually grew to international conferences and working on a larger scale.
Tell me more about the Open Design Foundation.
This was a group of people hoping to insure designers to contribute to open source and work in an open-style of work.
Tell me about your brush lettering
I love brush lettering and calligraphy :) This started about 2 years ago from a class I took at a small art museum in Austin and I’ve kept at it so with practice it’s improved. I started doing lettering for “code calligraphy” and also do brush lettering for my bullet journal. Its a really relaxing, enjoyable experience for me.
Tell me more about toolsday. Where did the idea come from? How did it get started?
Toolsday is the podcast I cohost with Chris Dhanaraj. It started as a way to just record our conversations when we worked together at IBM Design, and its going on over 2 years now! We wanted to make it what we enjoyed in podcasts: keeping it short (about 25 minutes) and focused on content and takeaways.
How long have you been at DigitalOcean? How did you end up there?
It’s been a little over a year and a half. I met the former design team manager, Joel, through the student hackathon scene, and he recruited me to work there. At the time I was looking for a job with a product I used and loved, and DigitalOcean qualified :) It’s a great place to work.
What is your favorite thing to do/work on (tech related)
I love experimenting with some of the newer CSS properties (like grid and variables mixed with animation). My favorite thing, however, is recreating image effects with filters and blend modes.
What are your favorite new CSS/HTML addition
Definitely grid. It’s amazing! It just works the way you expect it to and allows for a lot more control over layout, both horizontal and vertical.
What “tools of the trade” do you use (Atom editor, sass, haml, etc.)
Visual Studio Code, (and sometimes Atom too), Sass, Vue, and I’ve recently started playing with Preact/React.
Anything else fun or exciting that you’re working on?
The new podcast series for Toolsday that I’m doing is called CUBS (Chris and Una Build Stuff), so its been an excuse for us to use technologies we otherwise wouldn’t have the chance to use, and make small little projects.
What do you like most/least about what you do?
I love working with people and pairing on projects. I guess the frustration when you can’t figure out a bug is the least enjoyable part (though, immediately after that comes the best gratification)!
What technology do you currently find exciting?
Web technology is permeating everything! From hardware and electronics to VR to audio etc. So all web tech is really exciting right now. Soon, we’ll be writing CSS for our refrigerations (if we aren’t already)
What advice would give to other developers, or general wisdom you would impart to anyone?
Just do it. I know this is totally copying Nike, but it’s true. Don’t plan too much, especially at the beginning of your career. If you’re curious, just build the thing and let yourself learn by doing. And then share what you’ve learned.