Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.

Arthur C. Clarke

My two daughters are going to grow up in a world where the sum of all human knowledge is available in the palm of their hand. They can instantly communicate across the globe within the span of a few milliseconds. This magic box in the palm of their hand is orders of magnitude faster than the Commodore 64 I had as a child, and more orders of magnitude faster than the house-sized computer their grandfather programmed with punch cards.

And we're just getting started.

In the past 18 years, I've seen the Internet change from dialup PPP and UUCP connections to an all-encompassing part of the human condition, from server-side Javascript called Netscape Livewire to server-side Javascript called Node.js (history, even in tech, repeats itself). "Being online" used to be an action that you took during the day, for an hour or two. Today, it's exactly the opposite — you "disconnect" for a short period of time. The next 20 years hold such an incredible, unpredictable amount of progress, and I can't wait to see them.

I wrote my first HTML in 1994, after browsing the MIT Media Lab.

I'm also the one to blame for music embedded in pages; ask me why.
Manager, Web Services
Skechers USA, Inc.
September 2006 - Present
  • Manage online operations for $1.5B global public company with over 300 stores in the US.
  • Lead a strong, multitalented team of developers and designers, with responsibility for team hiring, vendor selection, and purchasing recommendations.
  • Architect the overall web infrastructure from top to bottom, including integration with internal systems, retail operations, customer relationship management, e-mail.
  • Represent IT in C-level meetings about web initiatives and direction.
  • Work closely with other departments, including marketing, customer service, allocations, and other IT divisions to ensure the best customer experience.
  • Research and implement future trends both for the web in general and e-commerce.

Currently, my team designs, develops, and maintains the domestic and international e-commerce sites (US, UK, and Germany), a B2B e-commerce site, company intranet and extranets, and other miscellaneous promotional sites. We are primarily a Scala shop, having "upgraded" from Java in 2011. Additionally, we are now designing for mobile first, with Skechers web traffic going from 7% mobile to over 32% mobile within the past two years.

I'm very proud of the team that I've assembled; we are extremely nimble, and very efficient at coming up with solutions for other departments — our clients. We have a unified build process with great automated test coverage, and a one-button deployment from environment to environment to help catch the relatively small amount of bugs that leak out. We consistently score extremely high in customer satisfaction and site usability, and the third-party usability firm we engage is consistently impressed with our design and overall application speed.

Founder
Heluna Antispam
January 2005 - Present
  • Founder and lead technical resource for a cloud-based antispam filtering company.
  • Architect, design, and develop the website and application from the ground up, including completely customized MTA, e-mail filtering software, delivery agent, and reporting tools.
  • Support existing clients, market to prospective new clients, and oversee P&L for the business.

The new version of Heluna launched to existing clients in November of 2012, with the general rollout in January 2013. It is a self-service, extremely low maintenance web application that provides small to medium businesses with spam filtering without the need to purchase specific hardware or be in the business of filtering spam e-mails. The application is written in Scala with heavy Akka usage, and the website uses the Play! framework, all tied back to a CouchDB NoSQL database. It is deployed on AWS.

The knowledge I've gained from running Heluna has been immeasurable, and the architecture, design, marketing, and development experience it has given me is second to none. It's exciting to get feedback from clients saying that they wouldn't know what they'd do without Heluna, and their questions and input have given me a great amount of visibility into running in a startup environment.

Head of Web Services
Vivendi Universal Games
October 2002 - September 2006
  • Team lead for a web services department for $1B (in 2006) global public company with hundreds of titles and 4 major divisions.
  • Created architecture, development process, and strategy for all consumer-facing websites and internal corporate applications.
  • Responsible for vendor selection, purchasing recommendations, and management of select outsourced web development.
  • Worked closely with online marketing, IT, brand development, and third-party game development houses to create unique and high-quality web marketing and applications.
  • There were two separate phases of my tenure at VUG — before World of Warcraft (BWoW), and after World of Warcraft (AWoW). Our team at Vivendi was extremely knowledgeable and capable of working on tight deadlines to support game launches. Before WoW, our role was primarily creating static marketing sites for various titles, working in Flash or Javascript to create fun, engaging sites for customers.

    After WoW was launched, my team worked on extremely-high-trafficked custom content management softare, and we were able to help develop and give early feedback on the CMS product that was Day CQ4 and ultimately became Adobe CQ5.

Product Manager (Independent Contractor)
Warner Music Group
February 2001 - September 2002
  • Product manager for custom-developed enterprise web content management system for $1B (in 2001) global public company, parent of Atlantic Records, Elektra Records, and Warner Brothers Records, subsidiary of Time-Warner Inc.
  • Led technical direction and architecture with internal Warner resources and third-party contractors.
  • Created and owned business and technical requirements with key stakeholders, including subsidiary major labels and international distributors.
  • Ran code reviews, usability studies, and overall application QA process.

The ROSS project at Warner Music Group was a multimillion dollar content management system designed to cater to the entire WMG family of labels and artists. At a time before social networking, the WMG CMS was designed to connect fans to their favorite artists faster and provide the tools for nontechnical resources to promote WMG music.

The CMS was primarily designed around XML and XSLT, and the developers and designers did a fantastic job creating different websites based off the same datafeeds from the main system. I'm very happy with how the project turned out, given the extremely varied needs from the different labels under the WMG umbrella.

Lead Developer
USWeb / marchFIRST
May 1998 - February 2001
  • Lead developer at a $1B (in 2001) public Internet consulting company.
  • Project lead for multiple business-defining development projects centered around media and entertainment.
  • Specialized in next-generation (in 2001) web technologies and architectures, streaming media, and rapid site development and deployment.
  • Helped define overall technical strategy for Santa Monica office.
  • Aided in client acquisition and technical presentations.
  • Led the broadband laboratory for the western region.

At USWeb, then USWeb/CKS, then marchFIRST, the Santa Monica office helped to create some of the most cutting-edge technology then available on the web for our clients. Additionally, we led a team at the American Film Institute Digital Content lab, which explored the developing of multiple-screen entertainment.

Our broadband laboratory helped with the SMIL standard and worked alongside both technology and media companies to further growth of multimedia content at a time when high-speed Internet access was still in its infancy. We did a terrific job of encoding data down to acceptable stream rates while still keeping audio and visual quality high, and then integrated those into client websites for — back then — a revolutionary view of the web.

Lead Developer
EmeraldNet
September 1995 - May 1998
  • Lead front-end and back-end development at a then-new type of business; the Internet consulting / web development agency.
  • Developed the online strategy for multiple entertainment and media clients.
  • Aided in new business acquisition and demos.
  • Pioneered website development alongside crucial partners, such as Netscape, to help push the web from its hypertext beginnings to a truly multimedia environment.
  • Promoted core design and web programming concepts that are the fundamentals of website architecture and creation even today.

Looking back at the work we did at EmeraldNet, I'm reminded of just how much uncharted territory we forged through in the early days of the web. From the beginnings of Javascript, to the beginnings of Flash, and the infancy of server-side development (from CGI to Netscape Livewire to PHP to JSP), what we did at EmeraldNet consistently made headlines both online and off.

I'm lucky to have worked alongside Netscape so early on; at EmeraldNet, we helped create the very first site using frames, and we helped with the Javascript spec to control browser plugins, including helping develop the Netscape LiveAudio plugin, used in the Navigator 3.0 roadshow. It's exciting to be reminded just how much our work at EmeraldNet wound up influencing the web in general.

Here's some technology that I've used to get projects done.

Items in bold are what I use and enjoy currently.

Strategy

  • Encouraging a fun, efficient environment
  • Agile-like deployment and iteration
  • n-tier architecture
  • Service-oriented architecture
  • Discoverable services
  • MVC architecture
  • REST emphasis
  • PCI compliance

Language

  • Scala with Akka
  • Java/J2EE with EJB, Spring, Struts, JSP
  • Node.js
  • PHP
  • Cold Fusion
  • Livewire
  • Perl

Front-end

  • HTML
  • LESS and CSS
  • Javascript and Coffeescript
  • JQuery, Backbone and Underscore
  • Hogan and Bootstrap
  • JSON
  • mootools
  • XML and XSLT

Database

  • NoSQL: CouchDB
  • Graph: Neo4j
  • Informix
  • MySQL
  • Oracle
  • PostgreSQL
  • Microsoft SQL Server

Middleware

  • Redis
  • Memcached
  • EHCache
  • OSCache
  • Endeca
  • Solr

Transport

  • Play! Framework
  • JBoss with RESTeasy
  • Tomcat or Resin
  • F5 BigIP
  • Prolexic or Cloudfront
  • Nginx or Apache
  • Postfix or Sendmail

E-Commerce

  • Element, Paymentech, or 5/3
  • Stripe or Braintree
  • BlueHornet
  • Coremetrics or Google Analytics
  • InstantService

Development Environment

  • IntelliJ or Eclipse
  • TextMate or BBEdit
  • Photoshop or Pixelmator
  • Aqua Data Studio
  • Hudson or CruiseControl
  • Git or Subversion

Operating System

  • OS X
  • iOS
  • Linux: CentOS or Redhat
  • Solaris
  • FreeBSD
  • Windows

Want to get in contact with me? Here's the best way.

E-mail:

Phone: 310-430-5961