Ben Homnick, Developer in Taipei, Taiwan
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Ben Homnick

Verified Expert  in Engineering

Software Developer

Location
Taipei, Taiwan
Toptal Member Since
September 3, 2013

With over fifteen years of experience building and scaling software products for web and mobile, Ben is a well-versed engineer and manager passionate about solving real-world problems through technology. Ben has previously worked with the University of Michigan, Microsoft, and a variety of venture-backed startups across the US and Asia.

Portfolio

Azure Interactive, LLC
Backbone.js, Less, PostgreSQL, JavaScript, iOS, Flask, Django, PHP, Python
Noodle Education, Inc.
PostgreSQL, Python, Django
Allclasses, Inc.
Amazon Web Services (AWS), JavaScript, Backbone.js, Elasticsearch, Python, Flask

Experience

Availability

Part-time

Preferred Environment

Xcode, BBEdit Text Editor, Git, Linux, MacOS

The most amazing...

...app I've built is a Twitter-based traffic aggregator that provided real-time updates to users all around the world.

Work Experience

Managing Director

2006 - PRESENT
Azure Interactive, LLC
  • Founded a web development, design, and technology consulting company, managing clients in both North America and the Greater China area.
  • Managed staff both in Taiwan and abroad.
  • Provided custom eCommerce, web design, and other development services geared toward small businesses.
Technologies: Backbone.js, Less, PostgreSQL, JavaScript, iOS, Flask, Django, PHP, Python

Senior Software Engineer

2015 - 2016
Noodle Education, Inc.
  • Provided recommendations on architecture decisions and engineering best practices.
  • Redesigned Noodle’s search architecture, improving reliability, performance, and scalability.
  • Independently designed and developed command line tools to seamlessly manage developer interactions between environments.
  • Developed and supported a versioned API, making Noodle’s search features more available both internally and to external partners.
Technologies: PostgreSQL, Python, Django

Senior Software Engineer

2013 - 2015
Allclasses, Inc.
  • Performed integrations with third-party data providers including Facebook and Yelp.
  • Independently built the Allclasses iOS application, available on the App Store.
  • Transitioned Allclasses to Elasticsearch and designed indexing strategies as well as back-end search code.
  • Developed the API powering both the Allclasses website and iOS application.
Technologies: Amazon Web Services (AWS), JavaScript, Backbone.js, Elasticsearch, Python, Flask

Lead Developer

2013 - 2015
Dressed Salads HK
  • Designed and developed an web-based ordering system for all of Dressed's HK locations.
  • Localized site content and layout to Chinese.
  • Developed HTML5-based mobile applications for tablet/smartphone.
  • Integrated payment processing features, handling almost $1M HKD worth of transactions within first six months after launch.
Technologies: PostgreSQL, Backbone.js, Less, Django, Python

Senior Developer

2013 - 2014
Construct Digital
  • Developed core features for the Symplfy UAE car portal.
  • Wrote external vendor integration tools via the SharePoint lists service API.
Technologies: MySQL, Django, Python

Senior Developer

2012 - 2014
Bread Retail Software and Systems
  • Analyzed DB performance issues and made query optimization and indexing recommendations, in many cases increasing performance by a factor of 10.
  • Implemented DB replication for in-store POS and web-based ordering systems.
  • Integrated automatic build and deployment processes.
  • Administered several Linux-based servers, managing separate staging and production environments.
Technologies: PostgreSQL, Django, Python

VP of Engineering

2011 - 2012
Genie Capital, Ltd.
  • Led a team of eight engineers in the development of Python-based, large-scale social networking software.
  • Defined company-wide engineering best practices including source control, unit testing, build processes, project management, and code style.
  • Worked within a Chinese-speaking team.
  • Represented company at trade events both in Taiwan and abroad.
  • Made key architecture and technology platform decisions.
Technologies: Django, Redis, MongoDB, JavaScript, Erlang, Python

Developer

2005 - 2006
University of Michigan
  • Designed, developed, and maintained web-based tools designed to improve accessibility to engineering classroom facilities.
  • Developed web-based software to record lectures and make streaming videos publicly available online.
  • Redesigned the UM technology guide website, a directory of classroom technology facilities published for students and faculty.
  • Troubleshot equipment failures and provided on-site support to university faculty.
Technologies: CSS, HTML, SQL, PHP

Dressed On-the-go

Built an online ordering system for the popular HK salad franchise. Since February 2013, On-the-go has handled over $500,000 HKD worth of transactions and is now being used across all of Dressed's five Hong Kong locations.

Allclasses

Allclasses is the world's largest search engine for local and online classes. Apart from significant back-end and front-end web development work, I was responsible for the entire iOS app development cycle.

Global Leadership Adventures

http://www.experiencegla.com
Designed and built an online application and student registration system, allowing GLA to process thousands of applications and manage trips from one central location.

Expat Workforce

Founded an expat job marketplace that connects professional expats with local employers in need of high-quality, internationally minded talent. Acquired by Recruu, Inc. in 2014.
2004 - 2009

Bachelor of Science in Engineering (Summa Cum Laude) Degree in Computer Science Engineering

University of Michigan - Ann Arbor, Michigan

Libraries/APIs

Backbone.js, jQuery, React, Yelp API, Facebook iOS SDK, Facebook API

Tools

Subversion (SVN), Xcode, Git, Adobe Fireworks, Adobe Photoshop

Frameworks

Flask, Django, Laravel, iOS SDK, CakePHP

Platforms

Android, MacOS, Linux, Twitter, iOS, Amazon Web Services (AWS)

Languages

Python, Sass, Less, HTML5, Objective-C, SQL, JavaScript, PHP, HTML, CSS, Go, Erlang

Paradigms

Functional Programming, Test-driven Development (TDD)

Storage

Elasticsearch, Redis, PostgreSQL, MySQL, MongoDB

Other

Freelancing, POS, BBEdit Text Editor

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