Matt Brictson, Open Source Developer in San Francisco, CA, United States
Matt Brictson

Open Source Developer in San Francisco, CA, United States

Member since July 20, 2015
Matt has worked as a consultant for many clients over the past 10+ years. In that time, he has designed UIs, managed scope and deliverables for large IT projects, mentored small teams with agile practices, advised bootstrapped startups, and built a number of successful Ruby on Rails applications.
Matt is now available for hire




San Francisco, CA, United States



Preferred Environment

Trello, Git, Ubuntu, MacOS

The most amazing...

...thing I've coded was the encrypted storage back-end for a multi-tenant app, with good documentation and a comprehensive and fast-running test suite.


  • Ruby on Rails Freelancer

    2014 - PRESENT
    Matt Brictson Consulting
    • Worked as an independent freelancer, specializing in building SaaS and business applications using Ruby on Rails.
    • Developed and continued to support Monkey Box, a highly-secure password inventory.
    • Designed and implemented a customer registration and billing portal for a established company that wanted to expand their business from B2B to B2C.
    • Built new features for a number of different web apps, all on very aggressive timelines.
    • Provided clients with the skills of a senior Rails programmer, an efficient project management process, and an appreciation for good UX.
    Technologies: Web API, Stripe, DevOps, Ruby on Rails (RoR), Ruby
  • Co-Founder

    2004 - 2014
    55 Minutes Inc.
    • Co-founded a boutique consultancy that worked for many clients for over 10 years to build ambitious web projects of various shapes and sizes.
    • Developed a patent inventory web app for a large Silicon Valley technology company with responsibilities that included making several optimizations using caches, background processing, and custom SQL to achieve sub-second response times when generating complex ad-hoc reports.
    • Led a development team that designed and built a digital asset inventory web app for a large media company.
    • Built the Robot Cloud Dashboard (formerly Device Scout), which is a web-based visual inventory of Macs and iOS devices.
    • Designed user interfaces and managed scope and deliverables for large IT projects, mentored small teams with agile design and development practices, advised startups launching SaaS products, and built many successful Ruby on Rails applications.
    Technologies: CSS, HTML, Agile Project Management, UI Design, Java, Ruby on Rails (RoR), Ruby
  • Technical Specialist

    2001 - 2004
    WebWare Corp
    • Led the development of a fresh web UI to revitalize a legacy product, using a SOAP API to connect the two. Used Java and an MVC web framework (Struts) to build the product using an XP (Extreme Programming) process.
    • Built a bulk image delivery and workflow tool in Python that connected WebWare's digital asset management product to external FTP sites, allowing an advertising agency to deliver large high resolution source files to its client, a major U.S. auto manufacturer.
    • Traveled to customer data centers to install and troubleshoot enterprise software on Solaris systems using Oracle databases.
    Technologies: Linux, Oracle, Java, Python


  • Airbrussh (Development)

    Having used Capistrano almost daily for most of my Rails career, I was keenly aware that its console output left a lot to be desired, which made troubleshooting harder and made Capistrano intimidating to new users. This led me to create "Airbrussh", a gem that plugs into Capistrano to overhaul the "visual design" of its log system. I also wrote an article about how my approach borrowed concepts from UI and UX disciplines (linked in the project README).

  • Rails-Template (Development)

    I maintain a rails-template project on GitHub where I’ve compiled many of the Rails techniques I’ve learned. I use this to generate Rails apps for new client projects and to build prototypes of new features for existing apps. The template creates a highly optimized development environment that also contains best practices for security, testing, deployment, code quality, and continuous integration.

  • Capistrano-MB (Development)

    Most of my Rails projects over the years are deployed to servers running Ubuntu, where I have been responsible for provisioning and configuring the various system services. This includes setting up firewalls, NGINX, SSL/TLS, PostgreSQL, logrotate, and may other pieces necessary for hosting a modern Rails stack. The Capistrano-MB project is my comprehensive set of Capistrano recipes that automate this entire process. This allows me to deploy a Rails app to a brand new Ubuntu VPS in a matter of minutes.


  • Languages

    Ruby, Java, Python, Sass, SQL, CSS, HTML, JavaScript
  • Frameworks

    minitest, Ruby on Rails (RoR), Capybara, Bootstrap 3
  • Libraries/APIs

    Pundit, Sidekiq, Paperclip, Devise, Stripe, Web API, Rollbar, jQuery, Highcharts, PayPal API
  • Tools

    Sublime Text 3, rbenv, Capistrano, Bitbucket, Jenkins, GitHub, Trello, VCR, Papertrail, Pry, Bundler, RSpec, Git, CKEditor, SimpleCov, JBuilder, Slack, Nginx
  • Paradigms

    Continuous Integration (CI), Agile Software Development, Functional Programming, Continuous Delivery (CD), REST, Object-oriented Programming (OOP), DevOps, UI Design, Agile Project Management
  • Platforms

    MacOS, DigitalOcean, Linode, Linux, Ubuntu, Oracle, Mandrill, Heroku
  • Other

    Software Development, Documentation, SaaS, Writing & Editing, Open Source, i18n, API Design, ActiveAdmin, Wireframing, Faraday
  • Storage

    AWS S3, PostgreSQL, JSON, Redis
  • Industry Expertise

    Security, Project Management


  • Bachelor's degree in Computer Science
    1996 - 2000
    University of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign

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