Monday, March 2, 2015

Since VigLink...

I haven't posted a job update since I was at VigLink. Since that time I worked for a few months on "MealBox", I spent most of a year at iSoccer and 3 years at TalentBin.

MealBox - 2011:
I left VigLink to try working full time on a side project I stared with a friend. Shimi and I set out to lower the barrier to cooking healthy and delicious meals at home with mostly fresh local vegetables. We never came up with a good name so we just called it MealBox. The idea was the same as Plated or Blue Apron, but before we had heard of them. We made some fun prototypes and got good feedback from friends, but we got stuck on delivery. To really improve on the experience of getting the ingredients from the store we wanted to be able to deliver the box to your work during the day or at your home while you're away. We never figured that part out. Neither did the other companies, you have to be home to get your delivery, but Blue Apron and Plated are doing a good job and I am glad somebody else built this so we didn't have to :)

iSoccer - 2011-2012
The iSoccer assessment is the first standardized test for sport. With 10 colored skill levels, resembling belts in karate, for each of the 16 skills, it is a unique attempt to offer players constant feedback on their improvement. Young athletes stay more motivated and engaged when they can tangibly see how their training is helping them improve. Players test themselves regularly, or are tested by coaches, and can see their level rise. I developed confidence, discipline, and important friendships through soccer and I remain a believer that athletics are a powerful way to teach kids not to fear failure. It was a great pleasure to commit energy to that project, but during a difficult moment for the company financially it made sense to move on.

TalentBin - 2012-2015
TalentBin looks at the activities candidates do across the social web and combines it all together into a one-stop search shop for talent pros to find candidates and reach out. Before TalentBin I had taken some time to reflect on my career step. I was craving a craft to which I could commit and develop like I had with soccer. I had worked with several inspiring software engineers and decided to pursue programming skills. I spent a few weeks diving into Computer Science courses online when I reconnected with a colleague from VigLink who had since become the software architect at TalentBin. I told him about my plans to go back to school for a masters in CS, but he suggested the "just in time" rather than the "just in case" approach to learning, ie join TalentBin and learn on the job. The first year was mostly a whirlwind of learning my way around the codebase and contributing as fast as I could during the day, then diving into CS courses online at night. In three years we have built a useful tool for passive candidate recruiting and been acquired by one of the largest players in the hiring space. I have enjoyed software engineering even more than I expected and continue to find it to be a dynamic and creative community of people. My ambition to learn is even bigger than it was when I started and I am excited to keep building!

Which bring us up to now.

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