Simon Prickett, Experienced Developer Relations Leader

Summary

I am a skilled Developer Relations practitioner with over 25 years of technical training, software architecture, team and product management and software development experience.

Currently working as the Principal Developer Advocate for Redis, I enjoy technical storytelling through coding, writing and presenting: both on video and in person. My role also means I am amongst the first developers to use our products - using my application development expertise to help shape and fine-tune the developer experience.

I regularly create software and hardware projects, and write and publish videos about them on my personal website at https://simonprickett.dev. I am particularly interested in APIs and the Internet of Things.

You'll also find my coding projects on GitHub at https://github.com/simonprickett. My work has been featured in the Arduino, Adafruit and Cloudflare blogs.


Contact Details

Reach me by email at [email protected]. References are available on request.


Technical Skills

  • My primary skill is deep technical storytelling and communication. I introduce developers to concepts and ideas in ways that appeal to them through engaging example applications that are well documented and explained in workshops, videos, blogs and conference talks.
  • I am a polyglot, mostly backend, developer that can usually be found developing with Node.js, although I frequently also produce code and content targeted at Python and Java Developers. I have experience working in C/C++ and familiarity with a number of other programming languages and frameworks including Flask and Express.
  • I've worked with a range of databases, most recently/notably Redis but also Firebase, Postgres, MySQL and Oracle.
  • I am familiar with AWS and Google Cloud... particularly the serverless functions and AppEngine products.
  • I am not a front end developer, however, I am comfortable working with HTML, JavaScript, CSS and frameworks such as Bulma.
  • I like to use a Kanban approach to managing my work, and enjoy working with tools from GitHub, Atlassian and Pivotal Labs to plan and communicate work.
  • I have extensive experience with designing and implementing complex systems and contributing to open source projects.

Work Experience

Principal Developer Advocate

Redis | 2021-present | San Diego California USA and Nottingham England (Fully Remote)

Redis is the company that develops the popular open source Redis database and provides a cloud hosting platform for Redis Enterprise. Redis is used by millions of developers as a cache, streaming engine and database.

  • I am responsible for delivering high quality technical content, telling the story of Redis through the medium of video, well-documented example repositories on GitHub, blogging, and speaking at conferences and to meetup groups and customers. Examples of my work:
  • As Principal Developer Advocate I found new and innovative ways to engage the developer community:
  • Delivered regular technical / live coding livestreams covering a range of Redis topics with Node.js, Python and Java. Examples of my work can be found here:
  • Acted as Developer Advocacy Manager for a nine-month period, managing a team of four developer advocates.
  • Acted as interim maintainer and developer advocate for the open source Redis OM Python client, writing code, merging community pull requests and giving talks and demonstrations of the client at meetups and on the Redis Twitch and YouTube channels. Example video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gi6jugJsKS4
  • I lead the operation and development of Redis University - providing eight continuously available online courses and a certification exam to thousands of students with support in Discord, creating new courses and amending existing offerings.
  • Reviewed and edited code, blog posts, presentations and conference talks for other developer advocates on the team.
  • Worked with our Developer Community Manager to secure and deliver collaborations with developer relations teams at other tech companies.
  • Regular code, documentation and example code contributor to multiple Redis projects including the Node Redis client, RediSearch, the Redis OM clients and the official Redis and Redis Enterprise documentation.
  • Represented the developer relations team at meetings with other departments, all-hands calls and sales kick-off events.
  • Manage the relationship between Redis and our online training platform provider.

Senior Curriculum Engineer

Redis | 2019-2021 | San Diego California USA (Fully Remote)

Redis is the company that develops the popular open source Redis database and provides a cloud hosting platform for Redis Enterprise. Redis is used by millions of developers as a cache, streaming engine and database.

  • Worked as the teaching assistant for all eight of the Redis University online courses, helping and mentoring students via online forums and Discord.
  • Created workbooks and materials for in-person Redis training courses delivered by solutions architects.
  • Wrote scripts, source code, created and presented video content for two popular online Redis courses:
  • Contributed scripts, source code and wrote exam questions for the Redis University Redis Streams, Redis for Java Developers and Redis for Python Developers online courses.
  • Contributed code, example code and documentation to popular Redis client projects including Node Redis, Jedis and Redis Py.
  • Hired and mentored junior team members to build up their content creation and technical storytelling skills.
  • Designed and delivered technical workshops for online conferences, acted as teaching assistant for workshops created by others.
  • Designed and implemented a custom multi-origin website solution for Redis University that uses Cloudflare workers to seamlessly blend a third party learning platform portal with a static website.
  • Graded examination submissions from candidates and awarded certification to those who reached the required standard.

Senior Platform Engineer

zesty.io | 2018-2019 | San Diego California USA

zesty.io is a scalable digital experience platform that empowers content creators to create, distribute and optimize web content in the cloud.

  • Created developer relations content: technical blogs, example code, video content, API documentation. Example video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pIlA7T2TQK4.
  • Managed Zesty's use of the Fastly CDN and SSL products.
  • Created a product SDK for Node.js developers.
  • Mentored junior developers.
  • Feature development for the Zesty CMS product backend (skills: Node.js, PHP, Go, MySQL, Redis).
  • Assisted professional services staff with front end JavaScript.

Director of Platform Strategy and Engineering

Conectric Networks | 2017-2018 | San Diego California USA

Conectric Networks makes wireless sensor hardware, advanced networking components, and software for energy management in commercial buildings.

  • Architected and implemented IoT gateway software for Raspberry Pi (Python, Node.js, Firebase, BigQuery, Google AppEngine, MQTT).
  • Designed and implemented product APIs for customer developers to use.
  • Maintained a sensor inventory management native application for Android.
  • Created training materials, videos, blogs and example code for the company's IoT sensor products. Example video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aPfZNUkFKBM.

Solutions Architect

Modus Create | 2013-2017 | Washington DC USA and San Diego California USA (Fully Remote)

Modus Create is a professional services company providing clients with managed teams that create products, processes and platforms.

  • Technical lead for projects using Apache Cordova hybrid native application development (skills - Java/Android, Python, Objective-C, C, Swift, HTML5, Node.js)
  • Full stack architect/developer building rapid prototypes for customers using Node.js, MongoDB, Postgres, Swagger API generation.
  • Technical product management for customer projects, planning using Pivotal Tracker.
  • Assisted with RFP responses and sales meetings with customers.
  • Spoke at meetups and other groups on behalf of the company, usually about Apache Cordova hybrid native application development topics.
  • Helped to organize and find speakers for JavaScript/Node.js meetup groups in Washington DC, New York City and Rhode Island.

Director of Enterprise Mobility

hinttech (now Tahzoo) | 2012-2013 | Washington DC USA (Fully Remote)

hinttech was a consulting company that developed websites and web applications for large organisations, specialising in the use of the SDL Tridion and Sitecore content management systems.

  • Championed mobile technology and content delivery for clients using SDL Tridion and Sitecore content management systems.
  • Worked with client MTV Networks to define and implement their multi-channel mobile strategy, next generation CMS and APIs.
  • Implemented a portal to perform full text search over the transcripts of parliamentary proceedings allowing the Dutch government to pilot the use of the Marklogic XML database.
  • Represented hinttech at trade shows, conferences and technical sales meetings.

Lead Mobile Developer

Gannett | 2010-2011 | Washington DC USA

Gannett owns USA Today and is the largest newspaper publisher in the United States.

  • Responsible for re-implementing 100 local and regional newspaper and TV mobile web sites on a new content management platform (Java, Groovy).
  • Defined mobile application strategy, hired and managed native mobile developers.
  • Introduced continuous integration practices (Jenkins, JIRA).

Technical Consultant / Senior Manager: Training and Consulting

netbiscuits | 2009-2010 & 2011-2012 | Washington DC USA

netbiscuits operated a Software as a Service platform for optimising content for delivery on the mobile web. I worked for the company in two separate employments, once as a Technical Consultant, returning later as the Senior Manager for Training and Consulting.

  • Created the netbiscuits platform training and certification courses.
  • Delivered training in person around the world, trained others within the company to be trainers.
  • Led the implementation of the netbiscuits product for Viacom MTV's mobile web portfolio: MTV, VH1, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon, Spike TV, South Park and other brands.
  • Supported sales teams with technical product demonstrations and sample applications (Java, Python, PHP, JavaScript).
  • Customer Success architect working to ensure major customers (Viacom MTV, Time Inc, ABC Television, Universal Music, Coca-Cola, Sears, Home Shopping Network, Public Storage) were able to use the product successfully to build mobile websites and applications. Provided architecture advice and implementation assistance.
  • Product management - interfaced between customer developers and product teams to be the voice of the customer. Frequent travel to the company's software development sites in Germany to work directly with platform developers.

Application Developer / Architect

Te Mana Ārai o Aotearoa (New Zealand Customs Service) | 2008-9 | Wellington New Zealand

The New Zealand Customs Service protects and promotes New Zealand through world-class border management.

  • Designed and developed applications for management of goods and passengers across the New Zealand border (Java, WebSphere).
  • Built and tested the integration between New Zealand's proprietary passport control systems and Sagem SmartGate biometric border control gates and kiosks. Demonstrated the system to the Prime Minister of New Zealand.
  • Designed XML file format and validation tools to support movement of goods under the New Zealand / China free trade agreement.
  • Introduced automated build and deployment processes to projects that I worked on.

Routing Systems and Handheld Devices Developer

Ocado Group (self-employed contractor) | 2005-8 | Hatfield and Coventry England

The Ocado Group is a technology company that operates the Ocado online grocery delivery service using materials handling, vehicle routing and supply chain solutions that it develops and licenses to partners.

  • Developed custom navigation, barcode scanning and delivery management software for delivery vehicles (C, Visual BASIC, C#, SQL Server CE, Java).
  • Designed and developed driver metric and incentive tracking systems in PHP and Oracle.
  • Responsible for continuous testing and improvement of handheld devices and their software across the business (warehouse picking and packing, vehicle loading, fleet management).
  • Software development for custom vehicle route planning software (Java, Oracle).
  • Training and mentoring junior developers.

Mobile Application Architect / Developer

RWE npower (self-employed contractor) | 2003-5 | Leeds England

npower was a supplier of gas and electricity that also operated a utility meter reading business.

  • Managed an RFP process to acquire rugged handheld devices for utility meter reading.
  • Developed and implemented a device assessment framework.
  • Once a device was selected, I was chosen to be part of the team that architected and developed custom utility meter reading software for it using C, Visual BASIC, Java and Oracle.
  • Worked with the various meter reading depots to ensure successful rollout and technology transition to the new system.

Software Architect

Sirenic | 2000-2003 | Southampton England & Palo Alto California USA

Sirenic was a technology startup pioneering intelligent mobile web and spoken voice interfaces.

  • Developed the company's product training for administrators, developers and end-users and delivered this in person around the world.
  • Contributed to the design, implementation and product management for the company's MobilePA product - an early mobile web portal that had WAP, VoiceXML, native application and web interfaces.
  • Part of the team that presented the company's vision and product to investors, successfully raising funds from the investment arm of Carphone Warehouse.
  • Mentored junior developers in Java, JavaScript, HTML and voice technologies.
  • Wrote native applications for Blackberry, Nokia and Palm Pilot devices.
  • Became an expert in mobile web and spoken voice technologies.

Application Architect

Capital One | 1998-2000 | Nottingham England & Richmond VA USA

Capital One is an American bank specialising in credit card products.

  • As one of the first hires at Capital One UK, I was involved in the creation and insourcing of most technology functions, working closely with counterparts in the USA.
  • Designed and implemented application architecture for UK online card services platform (Java, WebLogic, Oracle, Solaris).
  • Designed and implemented various applications to support the debt collection and balance transfer groups (C, Visual BASIC, SQL Server, Oracle)
  • Process mapping of collections processes and technical liaison with banking partners.

Software Engineer

Hewlett-Packard Labs | 1994-1998 | Wokingham England & Palo Alto California USA

HP Labs is the exploratory and advanced research group for HP Inc.

  • C and C++ coding for HP Enterprise workflow and email systems.
  • Selected to work at HP Labs Palo Alto to productise software and systems research undertaken in the lab.
  • Ported large C++ applications from HP-UX to Solaris, AIX, Windows NT and SCO UNIX ensuring correct behaviour on each operating system.
  • System administrator for a mixed fleet of HP-UX, Solaris, AIX, Windows NT and SCO UNIX servers and workstations.

Education and Professional Certifications

Education:

Professional Certifications and Courses