Hi, I'm John Carpenter ( No, not that one or that one ) a developer and tech enthusiast. I have been active in developing applications for the last 15 years in a variety of capacities from lowly developer to executive and advisory roles. Over my career, I have been lucky enough to work with some of the best engineers, designers and managers in the world and create some great experiences leveraging technology
A little about me;
I HELPED CO-FOUND TWO STARTUPS;
KnowledgeWhere ( acquired in 2008 by Liberty Media )
KnowledgeWhere started as a location-based privacy platform. In building out a demonstration of the platform capabilities, we created a multiplayer game to highlight how location can be used without compromising the privacy of the user. The game was well received and won a number of awards so we quickly launched a development company to produce mobile games. Blister Entertainment produced about 4 games and won numerous awards including Most Innovate Game at GDC 2008 for Blister Swordfish.
Later 2008 it was acquired by Liberty Media based on the strength of the platform. The games were ancillary as it was still pre-iPhone days and there was no market for mobile games.
Following the success of KnowledgeWhere, I helped launch another venture called Mob4Hire. The startup addressed the problem we had with regards to testing mobile devices. Developers want to test their applications on multiple devices in multiple locations but often lacked the resources and time to do this. We created a crowdsourced platform that would pay testers from all over the world to execute test plans for the developers. This brought the cost of testing down significantly and allowed developers to rapidly launch in new markets. The site continues today with over 50,000 testers in 197 countries and hundreds of customers around the world.
I WORK WITHIN THE LOCAL STARTUP AND MOBILE COMMUNITY;
I helped establish the local branch of MobileMonday Calgary and continue to speak at local events on a regular basis. The Calgary community is very active and growing quite quickly. I believe it is important to be active in your local community to help foster and grow the skills needed. Professionally it provides an excellent support network to be able to engage experts in an informal manner.
I WORK ON LARGE-SCALE ANDROID PROJECTS
I have been fortunate enough to work on some very large and successful Android projects. Until Dec 2014 when it was decommissioned,Trapster was one of the largest community of drivers in the world. Having over 20MM downloads the Android application was one of the first build out onto the Google Play Store. It was acquired by NAVTEQ and later NOKIA to supplement their mapping programs. Trapster was the first to integrate NOKIA maps onto the Android platform and pushed the envelope of the devices for a number of years. Due to budgetary and organizational changes Trapster was shutdown.
I also helped build out the Poynt.com local search application on the Android platform. It was very popular on the Blackberry platform and porting it over allowed the number of users to grow very quickly. Since this was built on very early version (compatible to 1.5+) we had to be very careful about resource usage. We managed to built out a view lifecycle library (similar to fragments today) that effectively allowed us to customize the application to run differently on multiple devices. It sped up the development and allow us to deploy to many devices very quickly.
At NOKIA, I worked within the HERE Maps team deploying the next-generation mapping tools for consumer and automotive technologies.HERE Maps is highly acclaimed and generated over a 1MM downloads in its first week. I was part of the team extending the mapping platform onto automotive platforms and different experiences.
I AM PASSIONATE ABOUT ANDROID
Android is a fascinating language with many exciting prospects. The community behind it shows a real dedication far and beyond what can be accomplished on their mobile devices. Android will provide the framework for the next generation connected devices so I am passionate about creating things with the platform. WemoWay is an application I created to simplify some interactions with WeMo devices. While the community is still small they are very passionate about home automation. Me, I just wanted a better way to start my coffee machine before I wake up in the morning.
Lately, I decided to simplify our grocery shopping at home by creating another app, Market. The app gave me a great opportunity to explore different aspects of modern Android development and it included RxJava, Dagger and a variety of new methods of mobile development. I also built out the entire backend on Google Cloud and even built a prediction engine using spark/hadoop. Keeping up to date on the new tools and techniques is very important as the pace of change in Android is blisteringly fast.
LEADERSHIP AND MENTORING ARE KEY TO ANY SUCCESSFUL VENTURE
As much as technology expands, grows and makes things easier the key to any successful company is with its people. Having a strong culture doesn't mean bean-bag chairs and expensive coffee (although it doesn't hurt) but fostering an environment where people contribute to projects that have real direction and meaning. Having two CTO roles and senior architect roles I have had the opportunity to build out a number of high-performance teams and have seen what motivated and directed teams can accomplish. I would like to think that any senior role requires not only the technical skill but the ability to mentor and lead new developers and team members to become better at what they do.
Thanks for taking the time to read this. Feel free to contact me at anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org or any of the links below. I would be happy to discuss anything with you.