Joining Pusher as Head of Developer Relations

In this entry I announce my employment as Head of Developer Relations at Pusher. I also give a little insight into the role and how this affects ViziCities.

I'm happy to announce that I've joined Pusher as Head of Developer Relations, starting immediately (in fact, this is my second day).

Who are Pusher?

I know a lot of you will have heard of Pusher before, but here is the blurb anyway for those who haven't:

Pusher is a hosted service for quickly and easily adding realtime features into web and mobile applications. We're used for all sorts of features such as notifications, game movements, chat, live data feeds and much more. Our aim is to take away the headache of configuring realtime infrastructure so that developers can concentrate on making awesome stuff.

In short, Pusher take the pain out of building applications and websites that want to benefit from real-time data. They handle the infrastructure behind real-time data so you can focus on the important bit, creating your application.

They're a lovely bunch of people and I'm excited to work with them, get to know them, and make awesome things happen with them.

What will you be doing?

In general, I will be in charge of providing oversight and direction for Pusher's developer-facing activities. This includes things such as:

  • Working on the overall plan for developer relations at Pusher
  • Co-ordinating with other departments to improve the developer experience Pusher-wide
  • Making sure the on-boarding process for developers is as smooth as possible
  • Handling developer-facing events
  • Optimising the developer support process where possible
  • And much more…

I'm keen to get started and implement the ideas that I've had as a result of my experiences both at Mozilla and in my day-to-day developer-related activities. I'm confident that developer relations can be improved in so many ways, not just at Pusher but everywhere.

When do you start?

I've already started. I joined on the 7th of November, 2013.

Where will you be based?

At Pusher's offices alongside a lovely canal in Hackney, London. Not far from Shoreditch.

Awesome, but what about ViziCities?

Good question. Pete and I have effectively decided to move ViziCities back to a side project and worry about making it awesome (and releasing it) rather than worrying about making it a business.

In fact, work on ViziCities has progressed significantly in the past fortnight now that the financial strain has been alleviated. On the development side, I'm in the process of moving from distributed, ad-hoc experiments to a more deliberate and structured application architecture. The results of early progress in this area have already shown that I can integrate new functionality much quicker than before. Two examples of this include:

  • Building a loading system that uses promises to notify in code when all functionality has finished loading.
  • Using Web Workers to offload the creation of 3D models to a separate OS process, meaning that you don't lock up the browser UI and the user experience stays relatively smooth. This alone has resulted in a massive improvement to the loading and rendering of many thousands of complex buildings, improved even further by the use of typed arrays and transferable objects.

Plus much more, like finishing a proof-of-concept for visualising London buses in real-time, along the real road network, in 3D.

Expect more ViziCities updates in the future as things progress further.

More soon…

I'll leave things there for now, though I'll write another update once I've settled into Pusher and have a better idea about what's going on.

In the meantime, check Pusher out and get in touch should you have any questions about my joining, Pusher in general, or the services they offer.

Here's to the next chapter!

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