After working at a cryptocurrency startup and spending a year working in the theater, Zach returns to his MojoTech roots. Continue reading to learn more about his forays in software development and beyond.
What experiences and/or education led you to your new job at MojoTech?
I got into development making WordPress sites, learned programming at a bootcamp called Hack Reactor, then spent a few glorious years at MojoTech. I took a brief detour at a (failed) cryptocurrency startup, spent a year doing theater in the area, and like the prodigal son am returning home to my Mojo family.
Before your life at MojoTech, what was the most interesting project on which you ever worked?
While not the most difficult project, I once helped build an app that showed people where and how to get cheaper prices for their prescriptions. The knowledge that in some small way I have made people’s lives easier and more manageable made that project one of the most satisfying to contribute my time to.
What do you enjoy most about Software Engineering? And, what do you enjoy least?
Building software is like working through a very in depth puzzle, and that’s the greatest and worst thing about it. On the one hand, there is a deep satisfaction in finding an elegant solution. On the other hand, the drive to optimize and analyze can sometimes take you out of appreciating life as it happens.
What personal characteristics do you feel are necessary to be a successful software engineer?
The willingness to admit you might be wrong, and the curiosity to keep looking for a better solution.
What do you get out of Software Engineering that you couldn’t get from any other type of work?
The joy of watching your first hastily constructed attempt at an app work like your own little Rube Goldberg machine.
Describe a time when you confronted a problem that really tested your engineering know-how.
One of the last companies I was working with was building a cryptocurrency wallet with React Native. The random number generators in the JS runtime were unreliable, however, so I needed to make sure the calls from 3rd party libraries to the JS number generators were redirected to access the native iOS / Android methods. It felt like the tech equivalent of Indiana Jones.
Now that you’re at MojoTech, what excites you most?
I’m glad to be back at a place where I know there will always be something new to learn with good people at your back.
You’ve been banished to a deserted island with—gasp—no Internet, but lots of power outlets. What one piece of technology would you bring?
To be honest, I’d probably starve to death before I could decide on one thing to bring. A stove probably? Or a freezer, or a kindle with Wikipedia and Ray Bradbury stored on it. Maybe a tamagotchi.
If you weren’t a Software Engineer, what occupation would you choose?
Somehow it seems Daniel Radcliffe’s job is doing any weird project he’s interested in that day. Whatever that’s called, I’m in.
What is your idea of happiness?
Cookies, straight out of the oven, probably hot enough to burn your mouth but it’s just before midnight and it’s already taken so long to make them.
What are some of your other interests, outside of software engineering?
I try to fill my time with some combination of acting, board games, and hosting holiday-themed parties as far away from the actual holiday as possible.
I’ve always wanted to know kung fu, so probably the red pill.