Cosmic: How long have you been building software?
Brandy: I have been building software since 2015. I started attending Full Sail University for web development in 2014 and got my first paying job a year into the program. I knew that no matter what, the experience I could get actually building products would be far more useful than education alone.
What is your preferred development stack?
What past projects are you most proud of and why?
My favorite project that I built was for the Powerpuff Girls, powerpuffyourself.com. It is a web application written in Vue.js and Node.js. This was a fast project, meaning we only had 8 weeks to build, with a hard deadline. I had never heard of Vue.js (this was in 2016). I started by reading their docs several times to become familiar with syntax. The other big hurdle was the project needed a strong understanding of AWS, more specifically Lambda.
During those 2 months I spent every waking moment writing code and learning AWS. On the last night at around 3am, I had created my last pull request, and the other programmer on the project approved it and I was ready to do a push to staging and have QA have a go at it before pushing to production in a few hours. I left the office and got home, showered, and had to catch a flight to NYC to be the technical lead at the Powderpuff Girls pop up shop, where our app would be the main attraction.
The next four days were the most intense for fixing bugs, adding features, removing features, all while explaining everything in terms the Cartoon Network team could understand. It was one of the best experiences of my life and really taught me the importance of communication and to always do your work with a smile on, no matter the level of exhaustion.
Talk a little bit more about your process for building apps.
The main thing to think about when it comes to scoping a project is, what is the business need behind it? You really need to understand the process in which the application is for, so you know how to solve for it. If someone comes to you with a problem they are facing and they want software to fix it.
We as developers need to be asking the right questions so that the software we build actually fixes the issue. A lot of times it isn’t the initial problem we are solving for. That gets uncovered by asking questions and better understanding their processes and pain points.
What are some technologies you are excited about right now?
I have been fascinated with AI and machine learning for sometime. I would love to create smart software that learns the behavior of its users to create a better experience for them.