CTO, Seagull Systems Ltd
Date of birth: 17 May 1970
Impressing clients with sophisticated web applications for over a decade.
Experienced software consultant proficient in advanced programming methodologies.
- Twelve years experience in building web-based software with fluency in the LAMP stack, web APIs and standards, UML, Object Oriented Analysis and Design and Linux administration.
- Five years experience leading software development teams and delivering successful projects on time and budget.
London. 2007 - 2008.
Kindo is a global, localised web application with users in 150+ countries, in 17 languages, with a multi-national team based around the world
I co-founded the social network with 3 colleagues in early 2007. It's a venture capital backed startup that enables families to keep in touch and provides an interface for members to discover new relatives as well as catch up with old ones.
In my role as CTO I recruited a tight knit team of talented developers and managed the design and build of a sophisticated social network application. Anyone who's familiar with the complex relationships expressed in genealogical graphs will know what I'm talking about.
Kindo allows you to build your family tree in minutes, using the intuitive graphical interface you can add relatives and invite them to join your tree by email, or import contacts from any web-based email provider. The activity stream keeps you posted of who's done what in the family, which invitations were sent, and provides updates for birthdays and anniversary and status messages. The photo album makes it easy to share photos with family. The profile tools allow users to build detailed information about themselves and their past, providing a means for family members to get to know each other better. The network is integrated with context sensitive gift suggestions, and family members are alerted when an upcoming birthday or anniversary is approaching.
- Reached a million profiles in less than 10 weeks
- Scaled to 38k new profiles/day
- Sold for 7 figures after less than 1 year live
- Built a highly scalable web2.0 social network application enabling users to discover family history and keep in touch
- Assembled a top team of developers who were impressively productive and took pride in their work
- Received coverage in top tech journals like TechCrunch, Mashable, Rev2, The Guardian and Webware
- Voted one of the most promising UK startups of 2008 by First Tuesday
- Ensured all applications were built on Open Source software and conformed with Open Standards
- Created an internationalisation module that enabled our team to translate the site into 14 languages in 12 weeks, including Arabic, Chinese and Russian. At the time of writing the language count has risen to 17
- Setup a network of linked services that gathered detailed attention data, managed member notifications and handled customer service requests
- Designed an SEO system that built hundreds of thousands of web pages derived from surname databases and cached the results as flat files
- Implemented an agile development environment that included automated unit and functional testing, one-keystroke deployments, and rapid product iterations following the Scrum process and managed in Trac
- Strong technical leadership of the development team and passion for solving business challenges
- Attention to technical subtleties and anticipation of potential problems
- Ability to cross the language barrier between geek detail and business objectives
- Equally at home in client meetings and software requirements discussions
- PHP5 -- the team created modules run on the Seagull platform for managing family trees, media, statistics, invitations, contact importing, GEDCOM import/export, gift suggestions, family news and translation
- MySQL5 -- using all advanced features ie views, procedures and triggers
- Graphviz -- used for building family tree graphs
- ActionScript -- for programming the interactivity in the Flash tree builder interface
Consultant, Seagull Systems.
My team built the Babyfy application - a baby reviews site for parents, in partnership with Technovated.
The site is built on a CMS publishing platform that has enabled a team of 10 editors and members of the public to create thousands of baby product and hospital reviews over the last 2 years.
- Babfy receives thousands of visits daily and performs well on a modest server setup
- The site is run on a CMS we built and features hundreds of content types (reviews, ratings, comments, hospital review, features, etc) and thousands of content items
Consultant, Seagull Systems.
ArtFlock is an online creative community where you can buy and sell original art and craft.
I built this site with Ed Lea, the founder, and established a rapid application development environment based on the Seagull framework that was later used to extend the site's functionality to what is is today.
- Artflock was a recent finalist for the Seedcamp entrepreneur competition
- Artflock is a vibrant and active community that uses the site's rich social toolset to keep up to date with community developments
- The site features many innovative tools that allow creatives to build and share dynamic portfolios
- We recently built a feature that allows members to take an export of their portfolio and host the pages under their own domain
Milton Keynes, UK, (incomplete, Apr 2004)
Montreal, Canada, graduated June 1994
Business and personal references are available on request, alternatively please feel free to contact the companies listed.