Since 1994 I’ve launched hundreds of websites as either a programmer, designer, or company founder. I usually work in small teams and excel in a fast paced, ‘by the seat of your pants’ environments and I really like breaking the rules.
Grumpy Old Geeks Podcast: Founder & Co-Host
March 2013 – Present
Along with my co-host Brian Schulmeister we dissect the world of technology from a long term perspective. Collectively we have 40 years experience in the business. With only 3 episodes we broke the ‘New & Noteworthy’ category in iTunes for both Technology and Tech News podcasts.
Snapcious – Chief Technical Advisor
December 2011 – October 2014
Architected the API infrastructure for the iOS photo game Snapcious. The system was built for unlimited white label clients as well as an in-house version of the game. I built the server architecture on Amazon AWS for scalability and future growth.
Enigma Labs – Founder
April 2011 – Present
My consulting and original project business.
BLT Communications, LLC. – Solutions Architect
March 2012 – January 2013
While at BLT I:
- Streamlined the server operations saving the company over $10k a month.
- Built a unified SCM and automated deployment workflow.
- Worked on multiple projects as a lead or assistant programmer for clients such as Disney, Sony, Lionsgate, HGTV, National Geographic Channel, Universal Orlando and many more.
- Built systems around automated deploys of Facebook apps across multiple-stage and multiple server clusters.
- Trained junior programmers on new and old techniques.
- Contributed to pitch meetings and dealt directly with the clients.
- Built several internal facing tools for the staff increasing productivity across the department.
- Managed and maintained 30+ RHEL and CentOS Linux servers with daily security audits and patches.
Metricly – CTO
July 2009 – February 2011
At Metricly I was responsible for architecting the backend as well as designing and implementing the API system that allows Metricly to connect to external data sources and process their data into graphs on Metricly. I also implemented the payment processing system using Braintree Payment systems API and various backend systems.
65 Media – Chief Technologist
October 2008 – April 2009
Oversaw the development for several websites in the film and television arena. Dealt with outsourced programmers in Russia and South Korea.
8020 Publishing – CTO and Engineer
June 2006 – July 2008
I was the only technical staff member at 8020 for the first 6 months of operations in 2006. In that time I set up all internal server operations including mail, database, web and storage servers in addition to writing the entire backend system for JPG Magazine (jpgmag.com) from scratch. JPG Magazine is one of the first websites to completely rely on cloud storage from Amazon’s S3 service and at the time it was the only website to have wholly integrated website user and magazine subscription management. When we acquired more staff in January of 2007 I transitioned into the CTO position. I trained, managed and worked closely with the new programming team and handled system and server operations. When I departed in July 2008 I was maintaining 15 CentOS/RHE Linux servers for 3 main websites including 2 magazines as well as maintaining the core PHP system for JPGmag.com which had grown to 10 Million page views a month.
Technorati – Senior Engineer
November 2004 – February 2006
At Technorati my main responsibilities focused around a total re-write of the PHP layer that powered the front facing website, technorati.com. I took an outdated system and upgraded it to object oriented code where applicable, wrote unified libraries for XML services that glued the Lucene backend and PHP front-end together as well as general day to day logic. I was the liaison between the creative director and the technical staff during our year long re-build and re-branding and part of the product design team that drove the direction of the features of our main product offering. I also wrote new features from the ground up such as the blog claiming system and others.
Metroblogging / Bode Media – CEO & Co-Founder
November 2003 – December 2011
With over 50 active sites, Metroblogging (Metblogs) is the largest and fastest growing network of city-specific blogs on the Web. From San Francisco to Bangkok, from Karachi to Toronto, Metblogs are a hyper-local look at what’s going on in the city. Our hand-picked core of regional bloggers give each site a new perspective on daily life; less calendar listings, more friendly advice. With Metblogs, you can read about life and times in your neighborhood, your favorite places to visit, places where you’ve never been, or get a feel for them all with the “best of” blog on the hub at http://metblogs.com/
Lockergnome – General Manager/Technologist/Author
June 2003 – May 2004
Responsibilities included but were not limited to, creating an Article Management System for web and email newsletters that included author tracking and integration with the WhatCounts.com publishing system. Moving entire company website infrastructure to L.A.M.P. and created a suite of tools to facilitate easier day-to-day operations. I also worked extensively with the Sales Manager to create an advertising tracking system that let multiple sales people coordinate more effectively. As part of the ad management system wrote a link click-thru system to track entire suite of company’s outbound links in the over 1,000,000 newsletters we sent every week. In addition to my other duties I also helmed the OS X and Web Developers newsletters from time to time as needed.
Blogrolling.com – Founder
April 2002 – February 2004
Faction Creative – Chief Technologist
February 2000 – February 2003
I was responsible for a team of programmers, system administrators and artists who developed some of the most highly trafficked websites in the entertainment promotion business. Our clients include Paramount Motion Pictures, MGM, Universal Interactive, USA Films and Fox Studios. My main responsibilities are to develop and implement new technologies that facilitate the marketing goals of our clients. I have created features ranging from simple web-rings to entire production management back-ends. In addition, I functioned as a liaison between artists and technical staff. The web development division was sold to Creative Domain in November of 2002 where we continued uninterrupted in new offices.
WebQuest Inc. – Developer/Designer
November 1998 – September 1999
My main responsibilities included overseeing artists and content producers and helping them integrate their work into multiple template driven websites. I designed and developed a backend content management system to help facilitate the production process. I also designed the template system used for automated content updates spanning multiple websites on mirrored, load balanced SGI webservers.
Paramount Motion Pictures – Head Website Programmer
November 1996 – June 1998
My responsibility was to develop means of using the Internet to promote Paramount’s motion picture properties. I worked with a staff of five artists and one multimedia programmer to develop websites that appealed to the target audiences of the films we were promoting. Most of the websites were highly dynamic user experiences that immersed users into the world of the films we were promoting. We developed some of the very first fully interactive websites on the Internet, dating back to “Star Trek: First Contact” in 1996, for which we used a PERL backend to create chat rooms in a virtual ship. The entire ship changed configuration based upon the time of the day to allow surfers to participate in combat training and other games.
Boxtop Interactive – Programmer / Project Manager
August 1996 – November 1996
Programmer on websites for clients such as GUESS? Clothing, Stone Temple Pilots, A&M Records, Barbie Collectibles as well as Star Trek: First Contact.
Rocktropolis – Head Programmer
November 1995 – August 1996
My responsibility was to implement all of the technical features for Rocktropolis 2.0 and administrate the internal network and web servers. I worked closely with the Art Director and Artists to develop site flow and navigation. In addition, I developed original games and content. Other duties included programming and graphics for clients including the San Francisco 49’ers, The Artist Formerly Known As Prince, Paramount Pictures, RealAudio, Hypno Magazine, JVC America and Detour Magazine.
DigitalFacades – Head Website Programmer
December 1994 – November 1995
I was the first lead website programmer for Digital Facades when they launched their internet division in 1994. I relocated to California to head up the first website for Epson America and the Starbright Foundation. I rebuilt the publishing system for Buzz Magazine that was eventually folded into Time/Warner’s flagship website, Pathfinder. I also wrote one of the first online auction engines for Numismatists Online that would allow real-time coin auctions on the net.
Spew – Founder / Editor / Programmer
July 1994 – April 1998
Spew was one of the first web “zines” and broke new ground in web publishing. My main responsibilities were the concept development and execution of web-based games, writing, photographing and designing. Other duties included identifying talented writers and assigning stories or projects. Spew was nominated for a Webby Award from the Web magazine in 1997 and won numerous ‘Site of the Day’ awards.
Facebook Cookbook: Building Applications to Grow Your Facebook Empire – O’Reilly Media November 3, 2008
Contributed the “Starting Out in PHP” article in Chapter 5.
Honors and Awards
Winner of 2 SXSW Weblog Awards for Best Blogging Tool 2 years in a row.
Webby Award Finalist
“Jason is an incredibly tenacious PHP/LAMP developer who’s always willing to burn the midnight oil to get the job done. He has an uncanny ability to identify critical problems (whether with our servers, our databases, or our general IT systems) and develop elegant solutions that quickly and simply address the issue at hand. If you have the opportunity to work with Jason, relish it. You won’t be disappointed.”
“When I began with the Metroblogging network, the site was in its second generation. While our Metroblog in DC was rebuilding between 2008 and 2009, Jason oversaw a massive redesign of the site, incorporating the hub, an excellent social network that tied the local Metroblogging communities together. Working with Jason through all this was greatly valuable to me – he is a talented and driven individual who spends his time trying to change and improve the ways we all think about and use the internet. He is gifted with an ability to speak technological vernacular and represents the comfortable intersection of engineering wizard and user-friendliness. I sincerely look forward to working with Jason in the future.”