In early 2012, some friends and I decided to create our own studio. We focused on interactive, branding, and strategy for a small group of clients, including Adobe, WHCC, Northgate Brewing, and Rypen.
Prior to starting MakeMatter, I spent two years as a Senior UI Engineer at Irdeto, a company that focuses on the encryption and delivery of video related media assets. Most of my energy was directed at UX, design, and front-end prototyping for a backend CMS system that's used to distribute and manage video content across a wide range of desktop, mobile and set-top clients.
I spent most of 2010 working as a Senior Creative Tech at this digital agency. My responsibilies included front-end development, native (iOS) app development, and mobile UX.
Prior to space150, I spent 3 years working for this streaming media-focused startup. Primary responsibilities included interface design, UX, front-end development, and integration of a wide variety of streaming media experiences, including work on Major League Baseball's subscription streaming service. Some of this work resulted in my first patent.
In 2003, I was hired as an interactive designer at this legendary ad agency. I spent the following years transitioning to a lead developer role, while working on award-winning interactive and motion projects for BMW, Citi, Amazon.com, Sony, Microsoft, The Bahamas and United Airlines.
In 1986 (age 8), my parents bought me a Commodore 128. When the C128 was released, most of the software and games for that platform only worked on the C64, but the C128 could boot into C64 mode, which is where I spent most of my time. I taught myself BASIC and made text-based RPGs with simple branching choices.
Throughout the following years, I spent as much time as possible in front of computers, eventually acquiring a PC that ran MS-DOS and had a modem, which was my gateway into the BBS community. A second phone line was acquired.
At around the time that Windows 3.1 was released, I joined CompuServe — a pay-per-hour online portal that was accessible nationwide — which exposed me to a whole new world of computing and content creation. I stumbled upon a community of people who were using a raytracing program called POV-Ray to create fantastic (at the time) images. I latched on and started working on my own stuff, which required me to learn some C++ and exposed me to more advanced programming structures and concepts.
After running up a $200 CompuServe bill on my parents' credit card (which I had to pay back via chores), I realized that I needed a way to keep track of the amount of time (and money) I was spending online, so I taught myself Visual Basic and wrote a Windows application called RateClock. It sat in the upper right corner of the user's screen, always on top of all other windows, and counted up a running total based on whatever the hourly rate was set to. I released it as shareware, asking for a $5 donation. Over 50,000 people downloaded it on CompuServe, and 200 people sent $5 checks to a PO box that I had set up. $1000 is a lot of money for a 12 year old - I was floored.
As a teenager, my love for computers spawned a love of electronic music, and I ended up making rave flyers for a number of years. Aesthetically, I had no idea what I was doing, but I learned a lot through failure and developed a deep love and appreciation for graphic design.
Upon graduating from highschool, my love of visual communication led me to pursue a formal education in design and photography at MCAD, but that school's curriculum and facilities didn't match my ever-growing passion for interactive/digital work, so I left after freshman year - determined to break into the industry and learn through real-world projects.
I landed a job running the digital color unit of a local service bureau. Most of this work involved traditional print production processes - creating layouts in Quark, retouching photos, color correction and calibration, and printing. It wasn't satisfying, but it paid the bills.