The Happs

New Cogneato people

For a small company like Cogneato, it’s always exciting to bring in new people. New personality, new ideas, new experience, new opportunities. We hadn’t brought on any new people for probably two years, and had even lost a few from our maximum. And most importantly for me, we have only brought in two new developers in my entire tenure, only one of whom remains.

With increasing business and one of our “contenters” (who do client communication, work on content, light development, etc) leaving near the end of the year, we decided to bring on not one but two more people. One of them is a contenter (who has already started) to replace the one leaving, but one is a developer. We just signed her on last week and she will be starting by the beginning of December. She doesn’t have a lot of web experience, at least on paper, but has a masters degree with a focus on programming. It will be nice to have some help and to have another person to discuss development things with. I’m excited.

New web stuff

We’ve been slowly bringing new ideas and techniques into our sites and our CMS, but have been limited by deadlines and our legacy code base. We have had several projects partly outside of our regular development process that have allowed us to experiment more, and sometimes bring ideas back into our regular site development. We have a large new project allowing us to do things unencumbered by our existing code base. It will allow us to rethink most everything we do for developing sites and bring in a lot of new ideas and tools we’ve been thinking of but haven’t been able to bring in. Exciting. I’ve been experimenting with ideas for it in my html boilerplate and symfony boilerplate.

Code Retreat

This past weekend I went to a Code Retreat. My first one. It was fun. It was a practical thing rather than a talk / seminar. We did pair programming to work on the same problem several times, each time with a different partner and constraints. The problem was Conway’s game of life. It was a good programming exercise as well as an exercise in pairing and testing. Pairing can be great for learning. I hope to be able to do some pairing as we train our new developer at Cogneato.