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Developer Spotlight: Aaron Vail

In this latest installment of the Cosmic JS Developer Spotlight Series, we sat down with Aaron Vail, a Google Analytics Implementation Analyst and Software Developer at Main Event Entertainment's corporate headquarters in Plano, Texas. Check him out on Twitter and LinkedIn, and enjoy the Q/A.

Cosmic JS: How long have you been building software?
Aaron Vail: I was first introduced to web development when I was 13. I received a book titled Web Design for Teens that tought the basics of HTML and CSS and how they interact with each other. I really haven't stopped learning since. As my skills grew and and my abilities got sharper I began developing websites for my friends and family. This turned into several freelance projects throughout highschool. Professionally I've been building web experiences for 5 years.

What is your preferred development stack?
I love exploring new development stacks and expanding my knowledge but my main "go to" recently has been Vue and Nuxt. Though I still consider myself a novice after working with it for about 3 months, for a lot of small projects I prefer JAMstack which is a mix of JavaScript, Markup, and an API for delivering content and functionality. This is why platforms like Cosmic JS are very appealing to me.

What past projects are you most proud of and why?
I don't really have any specific project I'm most proud of. Mostly due to the fact that past projects are usually limited to what I knew at the time. For example when I see a screenshot of some of the first websites I built I cringe. A lot of the professional projects I've worked on are for internal organizations so I do not have the liberty of speaking about them.

Talk a little bit more about your process for building apps. Are they for external or internal audiences?
At the moment most of my work with Cosmic JS has been for personal projects as I learn the platform and the different methods of implementation. However, from my experience in web development it's very apparent that Cosmic JS has real potential to help speed up project workflows and content management tenfold. I especially like the performance of hosting images because of the imgix implementation with Cosmic JS. I can actually see companies being built off of this API to more broadly serve the B2B side of things as well as the average consumer.

What are some technologies you are excited about that you are using today, or want to learn more about?
I'm really excited about VueJS and the direction it's going, the community behind it is awesome and seeing the different things people are building with the framework. It's a lot of fun to work with and explore the different use cases that are possible. 

In my time using Cosmic JS it's been really interesting seeing how well it interacts and works with different front-end frameworks such as Vue. I love working with language agnostic APIs because it makes sense if later during the evolution of applications they occasionally change frameworks, and if that does happen the APIs can still work meaning less technical debt in the long run.

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