Professional bio

Right now

I write, edit and manage the documentation for Realm, a popular mobile database platform. Before that, I did the same thing for RethinkDB, an open-source database now under the auspices of the Linux Foundation.

As a web developer, I usually worked with PHP on the server side and jQuery on the front end. While I enjoy keeping up with web technologies, I’m happy to not be doing it professionally anymore. (My terrible secret is that I don’t particularly like JavaScript.)

While this page pitches my strengths, weaknesses, likes and dislikes for employment, I should note that I started at Realm in January 2017, and am not actively looking for new work.

Previous lives

I started when the dotcom era did, at a long-gone telecom company where I became the webmaster for the company’s first intranet site. Back then, “webmaster” meant designer, developer and sysadmin. Since then I’ve worked for a variety of companies, first around Tampa Bay, Florida, and then around Silicon Valley. Most of that work was web development, but I moved into technical writing full-time when I joined RethinkDB. (I’d done some contracting work as a technical writer before, but RethinkDB found me because of my blogging!)

You can read more details on my résumé if you’re really curious, although it’s not an exhaustive history. If you would like the exhaustive history, you will need to buy me a drink, or at least a coffee.

A few bullet points

  • I’m more interested in writing work than programming. I’m a good programmer, but not a great one.
  • I don’t have a computer science degree or formal algorithmic training. I can find algorithms that I need, and I can generally understand them, but I do poorly at interviews that focus on them.
  • While I have no family obligations, I am (gasp) middle-aged and will not live, breathe and eat your startup. If you think that makes me a poor culture fit with your group, you’re probably right.
  • I am open to remote work within ±3 time zones of California, and in fact I’d prefer it for the flexibility. I’m not interested in relocating for an on-site job.
  • I like web standards: valid HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript that doesn’t make JSLint scream (much).
  • True confession: I kinda like PHP. I like Python and Ruby, too, and have lately grown to like Elixir.
  • I know SQL and basic relational database design and normalization. I’ve mostly worked with MySQL/MariaDB, but have experience with PostgreSQL and a little experience with Microsoft SQL Server and Oracle. (And, yes, SQLite.)
  • Agile development is simultaneously great and overrated.