Interview with Tiffany, Part 1: Why Web Design??

By: Mary Barbour

This week, our blog will focus on Tiffany, Command C’s Lead Developer. I got the chance to ask her about her interest in web design, pros and cons of the job, and even got some insider’s info on what to look for in a web design team. Read on for entertainment and enlightenment!

Mary: How did you become interested in web design?

Tiffany:  There was restlessness in The Force at the turn of the century. Though there were still oceans of geocities “websites” to navigate, and I may or may not have had a LiveJournal account, the world was starting to demand more from its Internet experience than dancing hamsters (is that enough memes yet?). Around that time, I signed myself up for a course in Databases, PHP & mySQL. I had one semester left until I would graduate with my B.S. in Computer Science. I was thinking about grad school and throwing myself into the advancement of evolutionary computation, which is vaguely related to the machines becoming self-aware, something I’d be all too happy to bore you with later.

On the first day of classes, my professor (seriously, how cool is this guy?) walked in, showed us how to build a mySQL database, connected to it to retrieve information via internet browser (what?! no compiling?)…and blew. My. Mind.

Once I knew that web development could be, and in fact WAS programming, I was sold. Frontend came later…much later, as my first few totally awesome websites would attest.

My early websites, despite their obvious UI shortcomings, had beautiful, elegant code under the hood; code that automated tasks, eased the “webmaster” burden and SOLVED PROBLEMS. And as my appreciation of user experience grew, designing UI elements that made sense in this context of solving problems, followed right behind. The bridge from server-side scripting to frontend development, as it turns out, was very short.

It took a few years for the profession to grow into its own, and I grew with it. During that time I endured a slew of dismissive “my nephew’s in computers” comments, but I am proud to say that I no longer feel the urge to blurt out that I’m just a software developer/programmer/paleontologist/insert-cool-profession-involving-robots-or-weapons-here when I meet people at parties. I make the Internet, and yeah, it really is as cool as it sounds.

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Stay tuned for Part II tomorrow!  You can learn more about Tiffany, and the rest of the Command C team, here.

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