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Background


About

About

Hey! I’m Aaron Bassett an experienced Lead developer and technology strategist. I’ve been a professional developer for about 15 years now, during which time I’ve been lucky enough to work with some great people and brands including Betfair, ASDA and STV. I’ve worked in startups, agencies, large product teams and everything in between, with a range of different responsibilities from lead developer to CTO. I have a keen interest in improving the development process, implementing better development workflows to improve code quality and advance developer happiness. I’m also a big proponent of automated testing (although I’m too pragmatic to be a TDD purist) and continuous integration / delivery / deployment. It promotes code confidence and allows developers to iterate and innovate quickly. Away from the keyboard I’m an active member of my local tech community. I have aided in the organisation of local user-groups and meet-ups and I’m a mentor at DjangoGirls as well as several local and international hackathons. I also know far too much about Gin and I'm working on my knowledge of Scotch. I'm a member of the Glasgow Art Club and I play Rugby for the GHA Gazelles.

Work Experience

Work Experience

  • Chief Product OfficerMy Skipper LLC

    Aug, 2015 - Present8 months

    Skipper provides Bahamians and tourists with an easy and cost effective way to travel between the outer-islands. It's like über meets AirBnB for the seas. As a founder of Skipper my role is incredibly varied and I'm involved in all aspects of the business, but I try to focus on product conception, development, innovation, strategy and release management. I'm also responsible for development of the Skipper software.

    • Winner of Starter Island 2015

  • Developer / FounderRawtech.io Limited

    Sep, 2014 - Present1 year 7 months

    Development agency and software publisher focusing on best practices and rock solid code. Specialising in Python, Django, Flask, HTML5, Node and Angular development as well as providing guidance on deployment, version control, testing and technology strategy.

    • Helped Glasgow City Council develop one of the largest open data platforms in the UK

  • Senior Technical LeadTwig World Ltd

    Apr, 2012 - Sep, 20142 years 5 months

    Responsible for a range of web and other technical projects, as well as advising on the Company's technical strategy and the business opportunities offered by emerging technologies. Developed several new products in Python/Django and established new development processes and best practices.

    • Migrated from a legacy Joomla application to modern Django with HTML5.

    • Introduced developer best practices including automated deployment, code reviews, pair programming, TDD and regular coding Dojos

    • Delivered a hardware appliance (Twig Box) to allow Twig to be delivered on-site in areas with poor internet connectivity

    • Ensured all applications were multilingual allowing it to be deployed in 12 languages across 50+ countries

  • Founder / Non-Exec DirectorLevel Up (Scotland) Limited

    Apr, 2011 - Present5 years

    One of the founding developers of Level Up, a boutique digital development agency, which uses creative engineering to deliver usable, unique and reliable applications, with a focus on innovation.

  • Developer / CTO, 2Fluid / Matador Group

    Jan, 2006 - Dec, 20104 years 11 months

    Web development agency with a varied client roster including Betfair, Pearl & Dean, Simple Minds, STV and ASDA

    • Conceived and developed Libretto, a digital publishing platform (Scottish Software Awards, Best Digital Media Solution, Runner Up, 2007 & 2008)

    • Migrated all clients from a legacy in-house PHP CMS to Python/Django

    • Migrated all clients to a modern AWS stack. Replaced manual sFTP deployments with automated deployment via Fabric

    • Introduced development best practices including Git and automated testing

Skills

Skills

  • Server side development
    PythonDjangoFlaskRubyRoRNodePostgreSQLRedisMongo
  • DevOps
    VagrantDockerFabricAWSHerokuJenkinsTravisMemcacheVarnishnginx
  • Client side development
    HTML5StylusLESSSassJavascriptjQueryAngularCoffeescriptGulp
Education

Education

  • Coleraine, Grammar School, Coleraine Academical Institution

    Jan, 1994 - Jan, 2001

Awards

Awards

  • Best Primary Digital Content Bett

    Awarded on: Jan 01, 2014

    The judges said: "as an outstanding resource for teaching the new Science curriculum. It brings the subject alive and is a great investment for any primary school."

  • Best Digital Collections & Resource Banks Bett

    Awarded on: Jan 01, 2013

    I lead the technical team which completed a total redevelopment of Twig World's secondary school product ahead of the Bett awards.

  • Winner Starter Island 2015 Starter Island

    Awarded on: Aug 18, 2015

    Twenty developers, designers and entrepreneurs were invited to spend a week on Beacon Won, a 70 foot schooner, as it sailed around the Exumas in the Bahamas. During that week participants were to form teams and develop a product which they would then pitch to a panel of local business experts back in Nassau. Our team of four consistently lead the competition throughout the week before going on to take first place at the judging.

Volunteer Work

Volunteer Work

  • Mentor, DjangoGirls

    Nov, 2014 - Present

    Django Girls is a non-profit organization and a community that empowers and helps women to organize free, one-day programming workshops by providing tools, resources and support.

  • Coach, Open Glasgow

    May, 2014 - May, 2014

    I helped mentor the teams on their final day as they perfected their pitches. I watched each team's pitch and gave advice on style, tone, design, delivery and content.

  • Mentor, Startup Weekend

    May, 2012 - May, 2012

    When Startup Weekend came to Scotland for the first time I was asked to be a mentor. Helping the teams of entrepreneurs as they attempted to develop and launch a startup in just 54 hours.

  • Mentor, Social Innovation Camp Kosovo

    May, 2012 - May, 2012

    In 2012 Kosovo held its first ever Social Innovation camp in association with UNICEF. I was asked by them to Mentor at the camp, providing advice and direction to the teams throughout the weekend. I coached teams on wide range of topics including; Geospatial analysis, IT security, presentation skills, animation and UX/UI, as well as providing guidance on pragmatic programming and prioritisation.

Interests

Interests

  • Currently Learning

    Lua / MoonscriptGoGISReactRubyMotion
  • Currently Reading

    HTML5 & CSS3 For The Real WorldLevel Up Your Web Apps With GoDriven by Difference: How Great Companies Fuel Innovation Through DiversityScrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time
  • Other areas of interest

    Open DataEncryption / PrivacyThe Quantified SelfWearables
References

References

  • Bruce Wilcox - Vice President of Carolina Science Online

    Aaron is amazing! I work with Carolina Biological and Twig, where Aaron is Technical Lead, was able to move as quick as any start-up content development company I have ever seen in my 28 year career in the education technology industry. Further, the content reversioned into many languages to support a worldwide distribution effort, all managed, and architected by Aaron. I'm thoroughly impressed with his ability to envision, and then execute on such an ambitious strategy to become a worldwide synicated content provider in such a short time.

  • Kevin Brolly - Director at Braw Software

    Aaron is a very smart and charismatic manager who is always incredibly calm under pressure. He has an incredible knowledge of the web and is always sure to have multiple good ideas about how to solve any given problem. He is also good at translating elaborate and complicated technical plans into something that non-technical people can comprehend and deliver them in a way that inspires confidence.

  • Michael Feeley - Consultant Journalist for The Drum Network

    Aaron is one of the few web developers I've ever met who seeks to clarify rather than mystify the subject for clients. Talented, trustworthy and a pleasure to deal with.