New Job: CTO of Dating DNA

I’ve had a few friends ask me about my current employment, and if I ended up switching jobs. So I thought I would answer them here, or at least have somewhere to point them to. The answer is: yes and no.

A quick recap: a few months ago I was given the chance to apply for a position at ARUP Laboratories, which is the medical testing facility for the University of Utah. It is a great company to work for, and listed by Forbes’ as one of best companies to work for. During the interview process, when I made it past the initial rounds and was invited down to interview in person with the developer team, I told my biggest client (Dating DNA) I was interviewing with ARUP. If I got the job, I wouldn’t be able to do the same volume of work they needed from me, and they would have to find someone else.

My primary reason for trying to find a new job was Joanna and I are trying to start our family, and when we have kids I want Joanna to be able to stay at home. With my current work situation, I couldn’t do that reliably. Fortunately, Dating DNA has been having some really good success over the last few months, and was able to come back to me with an offer that would allow me to gain the fiscal security for my family, and do a job that I love. ARUP made their offers, and it was a hard decision because my potential co-workers at ARUP were really great.

But at the end of the day, I officially accepted Dating DNA’s offer, and accepted the position of Chief Technology Officer. What does this mean? We’re a small company, and my title could be “Master Wizard of the PHP Order” and things could more or less be the same. First off, instead of being an odd hybrid between employee and contractor, I am a full employee. When we look to expand to expand our developer resources, it’ll be my responsibility to make sure we bring the right people in the right places. At the end of the day, I’ve basically been doing the job of CTO for quite some time for them, so we might as well make it official.

Some of the biggest reasons I decided to stay with Dating DNA is we have a lot of great growth challenges coming up, and I’m excited to solve them. I get to continue to work with and evangelize PHP and Friends as a great platform to build web technologies on, and I get the flexibility of telecommuting. We’ve also discussed and are starting to implement procedures so I won’t have to be on-call all the time (those who are good friends of mine know I’ve had some seriously inopportune work emergencies). So all in all, I think Dating DNA is getting a great deal, and so am I.

Thank you to all my friends and colleagues who I spoke with and gave me advice. I think moving forward this is a great opportunity. Stay tuned for my blog posts on how we solve scaling 500 million match records, scaling our web service APIs, and how we’re going to refactor a bunch of old, buggy legacy code to something more manageable.

6 thoughts on “New Job: CTO of Dating DNA

  1. Woohoo! We couldn’t be happier that you’re full time at Dating DNA now! Kevin

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  2. Happy to hear things worked out.

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  3. Considering that I’m one of the people that started you out in the world of web design back in high school, I think you should pay me 5% of your salary — call it a finders fee 🙂 Have your people call my people and we’ll negotiate.

    Seriously though, congrats on the job and the desire to start a family, and good luck with all that.

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  4. @Kenny,

    Hrm, maybe one day when I Google buys us and I become a millionaire, I’ll buy you a really awesome car. 😛

    It’s funny how little things, like sitting next to Kenny in Jr. High band class, and learning about how he has a website, can have a big impact on your life. Thanks for showing me the ropes, though I hate the idea of working on the BHS website again. We did everything by hand, like one enormous mess. I do not miss those days… at all. 😛

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  5. I’ll take that as a promise, then 😉 Now I have to get the other web developers I know to commit to the same stuff. Odds are someone will follow through on it. Funny how many people I know have gone into web development, and I no longer actively do much in that field. It’s indeed interesting how things change.

    And yeah, the BHS website (like most websites back then, I would say) was a beast to maintain. If only we could have had the tools that we have now…

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  6. I like this post. Great article! I especially loved this point you made.

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