I started in the tech field 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, and most of that was contract work. I moved into technical writing full-time when I joined RethinkDB, an open-source database company.
Unfortunately, RethinkDB folded in 2016. (The product itself lives on in open source, now under the auspices of the Linux Foundation.) In 2017, I joined Realm, a popular mobile database platform, as their first technical writer—a position which lasted all of nine months, again due to business conditions. (Realm is still in business, but let’s say they’re a considerably leaner company.) Now, I’m working at Viv Labs, a division of Samsung working on their voice assistant technology.
In addition to documentation work, I’ve published non-fiction, including a review with About This Particular Macintosh and an article in Marco Arment & Glenn Fleishman’s The Magazine. The earlier incarnation of my tech blog, Coyote Tracks, got a lot of attention for a while; in fact, it led to my job with RethinkDB.
You can contact me for my résumé if you’re really curious, although it’s not an exhaustive history. (It may also not be completely up-to-date, which is part of why it’s not online now.) If you would like the exhaustive history, you will need to buy me a drink, or at least a coffee.
A few bullet points
These are written as if I were looking for work; as of 2019, I am not interested in making a move. I know job hopping is the Silicon Valley Way, but I’m kinda down for stability these days.
“Writing work where a programming background is helpful”: I’m there! “Rock star web developer”: Have you considered Taylor Swift? I’ve heard she’s a big React fan.
I don’t have a computer science degree or formal algorithmic training. I can find (and usually understand) algorithms when I need them, but I’m bad at interviews that focus on them.
I am middle-aged, and will not live, breathe and eat your startup. Been there, done that, have the lack of retirement savings to show for it.
Likewise, I’m not down for long commutes anymore. I’m not going to commute from the Valley into San Francisco more than a couple days a week.
I am extremely unlikely to relocate for a job; if anything, I’d vastly prefer the reverse, e.g., a job that’s okay with me working remotely from anywhere in the US.