Category Archives: Uncategorized

codestarter

WebDevStudios Gives Back!

This holiday season, we (mostly our Project Managers, Cristina and Jaimie) spent a good deal of time deliberating the best way to celebrate the holidays as a distributed team. In a stroke of genius, they came up with the idea to have a ‘competition’ to see which Team at WDS could raise the most money for their respectively chosen charities. We on “Team Scream” consider our jobs to be “dream jobs” so we thought, wouldn’t it be cool to give the gift of code to kids who want to learn? Team Scream is partnering with Codestarter.org, an awesome non-profit that uses your donations to give free computers to children enrolled in programming classes with one of their partner organizations. Please consider donating (and getting more information) here.

It wouldn’t be right this holiday season to not mention the amazing projects the other WebDevStudios teams are representing, so…

The amazing charity the “A-Team” is partnering with is freedomprojectz.org.
Team Maintainn is requesting we help them Maintainn Net Neutrality. (I see what they did there!)

I hope you’ll take a minute to also read and consider donating to their projects (as much as it pains me to recommend you help their team :), I think the end result is more valuable).

The WordPress community is incredibly generous. We have helped Justin Tadlock get a house, Gary Jones get a new computer, we’ve helped pay JJJ’s wages so that he can work on BuddyPress, bbPress, & GlotPress on our behalf for the next 6 months. Heck, we even helped Andrew Norcross get a new coffee maker after his was invaded by some inconsiderate ants. In the WordPress community, we have a lot of things going for us, and in turn, we like to give back wherever we can. I hope you’ll consider giving a few minutes and a few dollars to a few worthy causes that are outside of our WordPress bubble, and help us to ‘pay it forward’!

p.s. Read more about the competition on the WebDevStudios blog.

hiring

Why you should work at WebDevStudios


(the tweet where it all began)

This January marks 3 years for me at WebDevStudios and it’s been the best 3 years of my life. Overstatement? Nope. It’s incredible how having a great career can completely affect your entire life. It’s the difference between waking up everyday with dread and loathing and waking up excited and ready to tackle the day’s tasks.

Thanks to reaching a 3rd year, and the fact that we’re again hiring at WebDevStudios, it just feels right to express my gratitude publicly for WDS.

Considering my previous career was a house painter and I had only bits and pieces of design/development experience to speak of, WDS took a pretty big gamble on me when they hired me. At least from their perspective. From my perspective, I knew I wasn’t going to let them down. The only direction I planned on heading was up (and away from painting!). I just needed someone to give me a chance, and I’m so glad it was WebDevStudios.

I think it’s safe to say now after 3 awesome years that we’re a good fit! I’m officially “the old guy” on the team (been here the longest besides Brian & Brad, the founders, and April, Brad’s wife), and it feels like home. I like to think that I’m providing plenty of value for WDS, but honestly, they have done so much for me (most of us, actually), it’s ridiculous. Brad and Brian (and now Lisa!) have been the best bosses I have ever worked for. I’m not sure how they’re so good at it, but they get it. They know when to push us when we need it, while also protecting us from the occasional crazy clients or overzealous deadline. Because of this, it makes us push to do our best to happily deal with those same crazy clients and overzealous deadlines. They’ve also done their best to flex with us as we grow out of our roles. I was hired as a web graphic designer, but my role has morphed into what I lovingly refer to as a “designeveloper” wherein I do a mix of design, front-end and back-end development. It’s the best of all worlds, and it’s so awesome that they were willing to let me move into a more developer-heavy role as my skills improved. (edit 5/1/14 1/6/16: my role has again changed to ‘developer lead’ ‘Director of Engineering’, whoah)

So, on that note, why don’t you consider coming to work with us? We’re again hiring for positions including a Technical Project ManagerWordPress Front-End Designer, and a Full-Time WordPress Developer. If I haven’t made it clear, WebDevStudios is an awesome place to work. We’re no google, but what we lack in resources, we more than make up for with an incredibly awesome team (and #wdschat)! These guys are a blast to hang out with and our quasi-annual get-togethers are the stuff of legend. :)

WDS head bob
Creepy horse guy #wcsf
Sailing under the bridgeOn THE ROCK #alcatraz
(images from our trip to San Francisco for WordCamp San Francisco, 2013)

If you have any questions about what it takes to work with us, or what types of things we’re looking for in these positions, please hit me or one of our team up. We’ll be happy to point you in the right direction.

Let’s make awesome things together at WebDevStudios in 2014!

P.S. Here’s the announcement blog post written about my hire. :)

Xbox Live/Microsoft fail

Just upgraded to a Xbox Live Gold membership today. I’ve had nothing but a ridiculous amount of trouble.

The latest and seemingly impenetrable issue I’ve run into is:

Sorry, Xbox Live profiles can’t be downloaded right now. Try again later.

800704C

So I wait 20 minutes to chat with Xbox Live support. This is the result:

Since we cannot resolve this, we’ve done everything to resolve this. So I would suggest to wait for a couple hours and try to download your profile again. On our what we can do right now I am making a report on this issue after that I will give a service request number so that when you contact back us again with same issue you can give the service request number to our support just in case you need further assistance regarding this issue.

Stellar customer support, I know (typos/grammar preserved from chat).

This is only the tip of the iceberg. Most of the errors that the Xbox provides provide a generic link to the Xbox support site. One particular error told me to “Visit  www.xbox.com/icmp-help for more help” and if you visit that link, you’ll see the laughably irritating:

We’ve moved some things around.

The page you are looking for may have a new location, or is no longer available. You might want to:

  • Start again from the homepage.
  • Check that you are using the website for your country or region.

Who knows.. maybe by posting my complaints here, some micro$oft employee will see it, be embarrassed, and provide a year of free (but buggy) Xbox Live service. I’ve heard taking things to the internet can help, but I have my doubts with this particular company.

I’ve been thinking a lot about my use of social media and my bookmarks. There are so many articles, videos, quotes, etc that I want a record of that’s in an organized fashion. For a while, I’ve been using this blog as a way to store my favorite internetty things. I have a few IFTTT recipes that automatically post favorite videos from youtube and vimeo, and favorite tweets from twitter.

I think I’m going to take that concept to the next level and save groups of information about a certain topic to categories.. or maybe a tag. I’m not sure yet. This way I can keep track of the things that are influential to me for topics like the Affordable Care Act, or issues around gun control, etc.

Like most of the content on this site, this probably doesn’t interest you, but it’s going to be a great resource and reference for me as I parse issues and want to discuss them with others.

And hey, maybe you’ll find something here that you can bookmark/tweet/share/talk about, etc.