👋 Hello, World!

3/28/2024 at 2:05:40 PM

Well, here we finally are. Was about time, right?

It has been around 8+ years, since I created the very first draft for this blog, for my previous website, but somehow I always procrastinated to actuall write and publish some blog posts, but not this time! I know the quality will probably not be the best at the beginning, but I am determined to improve over time, so please bear with me!

Now, because this is the first post, I didn’t want to just leave it there with the usual “Hi all, thanks for tuning in, talk soon!” I though I would just give you my full backstory, so you can get to know me a little better. Those who are interested anyway.

Alright, let’s get started!

The Origins

We are writing the year 1997. I was around 5 years old when my sister got her first computer. It was an old Windows 95 machine with a 14” CRT monitor. After getting the grasp of the basics, the most important thing for me, of course, was the fact that you were able to play games on it. Besides playing Minesweeper, Solitare and Pinball, the very first non-Windows game I played was Formula 1 - still very much remember the first time I drove down the La curva del Serraglio in Monza, which was amazing!

The First Steps

Let’s fast-forward a couple of years now - we are now in year 2002, my first computer related activity was still gaming, still playing all kinds of titles and genres (escpecially RTS titles, such as: Age of Empires, Command & Conquer, etc.), but at this point, I slowly started tinkering with computers itself. Initially with just hardware, but soon after with software as well. For the people living through the period will know, that even installing Windows on a machine wasn’t just downloading the ISO onto an USB, clicking Next a couple of times and it was done. It required a bit more manual work, like: partitioning the hard drive, formatting it, installing the OS, installing the drivers, etc. This was the time when I started to get a grasp of how computers work.

Around 2004, I was now finally at the point, where I acually started tipping my toes into programming. As probably a lot of kids in the early 2000s, I started with simple HTML and CSS. My very first public project was a website I did for a local biker club. It was a simple HTML page with a couple of images and some text. Nothing special by todays standards, but back then, it was a big deal for me!

As the weeks, months and years went by, I slowly started exploring more technologies and languages - my first full-stack project, around 2005, was a PHP/MySQL forum, where users were able to login, register and create posts. With time I discovered that a lot of the tools and frameworks already existed, so I started using them instead - things like phpBB, PHP Fusion, PHP Nuke and Joomla! (while writing this, I realize that most of those projects are still alive after so many years, amazing!).

The Pivot

We are now probably around the year 2005 (I know, right? It’s going to be a long post!). Altough I was still working a lot in programming, I also started discovering my second passion at that time - music. Yes, from around 2005 to 2010, I was still into DJing and music production (fun fact: in 2007, at barely 15 years old, I already had my first official event, where I, and my mate at that time - “DanceCore DJs” - were the headliners!). For a while, I was lucky to be able to do both, because in mid 2000s, radio-on-internet (remember Winamp with Shoutcast anyone?) was a big thing, so a couple of us joined forces and created a small online radio station, where I was the “CTO” of the platform, while also being a DJ and a producer. With time, I slowly grown more into the music production side of things, so I started to focus more on that, while still doing some programming on the side.

The Return

Again, we now fast-forward to 2009. At this point I was still mostly interested in music, but you know what started interesting me more? Yes, that’s right, you guessed it! Programming! Even though it was still music related - remember that “DanceCore DJs” mentioned above? Initially our DJ duo was part of a bigger project with a dozen other DJs, but as time got on, it was slowly being abandoned, so we decided to spin it off into our own thing!

I created a new website from scratch, which again had login, registration, user profiles, comments, track wishes and even an actual forum! It was quite a big project and I was really proud of it. I remember that I was working on it for a couple of months, but then, as it usually goes, life happened and we too abandoned the project.

The Professional Beginnings

We are now in 2011. I was still in high school. After a short stint of a couple of shorter student jobs, I settled down with a telecommunications company full-time. The work there included simple websites, custom CMS themes and plugins, custom eCommerce solutions and even developing a CRM system.

After a little more than a year with that company we parted ways. This was in early 2013, but at that point, I already had some clients on the previous student and freelance gigs, so I just continued working with them. My clients at that time were from all around the world - Slovenia, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, UK and the US, with projects including custom WordPress themes and plugins, a lot (several dozen!) of Facebook giveaway/contest apps, custom web apps and even a couple of mobile apps.

This continued for a few years, until the end of 2015, when I decided to take a break from freelancing and join an education technology startup instead.

For the next 8 years, I had the opportunity to work on some amazing projects, with amazing people, and I learned a lot! Joining as the very first developer (after the CTO), watching the projects grow from tens of thousands to millions of users over the next few years was an amazing experience. I have implemented a significant portion of the company’s features of the platforms, introduced work methodoligies, implemented containerization, CI/CD pipelines, lead the frontend and mobile areas of the projects, introducted E2E testing, mentored junior developers, and so much more.

Exactly 8 years and 2 weeks later, my journey has come to an end. Finally it was time for me to move on. Again, thanks everybody for the amazing time and the amazing work we have done together!

The Present

Well, here we finally are. You made it to the last chapter. Congratulations and thank you!

At the time of writing, I am currently working full-time on my own projects (one of which is a productivity platform, which I will write about more soon, so stay tuned!), while also looking for new and interesting opportunities.

Take care and talk soon!