Hey there! 👋
I’m Dan. I’m a human from Ottawa who loves to learn and to teach. At the moment, I make a living building iOS apps.
I currently fancy myself something of an “independent developer” after having worked as part of a few great teams over the first 7-ish years of my career. As always, I’m striving to learn and grow in two very different ways: one, as a software engineer looking to get better at what I know and learn more about what I don’t; two, as a speck on a space rock trying to figure out how my work and my interests fit into my life and the lives of those around me.
I’m endlessly fascinated and inspired by computers — how they work, how we interact with them, and the rate at which they’ve changed — and I’ll never pass up an opportunity to excitedly attempt to explain what it is I actually do to any non-technical person willing to listen.
That said, I care far more about the quality and utility of the things programming allows me to build than I do programming itself, and I’ve always tried to approach my work with this attitude in mind. In other words: writing code is a lot of fun, but I’m also passionate about (and, to be clear, very much not an expert in) some of the other things that go into building great products:
Design: Now more than ever, product design can have a massive impact — positive or negative — on how we fundamentally go about our lives as individuals and as societies. As such, I think design is often still an undervalued and too-narrow discipline in tech, and I’m always trying to learn more about the many facets of product design and bring it to the forefront of everything I do. I also love spending time messing around with, like, corner radii.
Collaboration: I’m really interested in how teams of various sizes communicate, choose and use collaboration tools, and approach remote work. I’ve been in situations where efficient teamwork felt effortless, and others where getting the simplest feature out the door felt like a total grind. It can be deceptively tricky to nail down what the key differences between those two teams are, but I’m always striving to think and learn more about what works and why, and to apply it in new situations.
Leadership: At my last job, I took on more of a true “leadership” role than I had in the past, and I quickly began to understand that effective leadership is a subtle and complicated art that many leaders — especially in tech? — don’t exactly excel at. I’m still trying to figure out whether it was a role that truly suited me; either way, I believe now more than ever that good leadership is absolutely critical to a team’s success and well-being (and that “leadership” doesn’t always mean “management”), and I’m eager to keep learning more about what great leadership really looks like.
I build apps and think a lot about working in tech, but like anyone, I do a whole bunch of other stuff too. I spend lots of time making fancy coffee ☕️, running around outside 🏃♂️, watching F1 races 🏎, playing a bunch of instruments half-well 🎶, watching “Fantastic Mr. Fox” 🦊, playing weird indie games 🎮, trying to figure out what I’m even doing here 🤷♂️, and hanging out with excellent people 😎.
Come say hi on Twitter!