Our Senior Developer and Blueleaf knowledge fountain Pete Smith has been with us for over 6 years. 'Gossip' finally prised him away from his computer long enough to share with us what he gets up to all day... Over to Pete

I get up when I want except on Wednesdays when I get rudely awakened by the dustmen. I put my trousers on, have a cup of tea and I think about leaving the ‘ouse’. OK, so in reality it goes more like this...

6am-7am  - My little boy Jacob starts to wake, I’m very lucky that he likes his sleep. Then it's all about getting him fed, dressed and helping him making the all-important decision of which “Fuzzy Frog” to take to nursery (he has a few back-ups).  

 

 

7:45am  – Decision made, it’s time to leave the house and drop him off at nursery.

8:20am – I arrive at the office fresh faced and happy.

8:22am - No longer fresh faced and happy. Woody has managed to find a new way of making a grown man cry.

8:30am – I wipe the tears away and move on to checking my inbox for emails. I'm my own worst enemy as I tend to dip in and out of my emails throughout the evening while watching my VHS box sets of Quantum Leap, so there isn't normally many to respond to the following morning.

8:45am – Time to get cracking with my work for the day. Now this is where I won't bore you with the details but it could be working on some of our new projects, supporting existing websites, change requests, the list goes on…

…boring details start

Now to enlighten you with what Blueleaf are doing with our new projects is to make sure that they're all optimised "under the hood". We've got standards to work to now and it's making life for all us developers much more simple and uniform.

  • We use SASS for CSS pre-processing - it's awesome and making CSS development more efficient, especially useful when multiple developers are working on a project. Previously this was a merge conflict nightmare.
  • We've introduced standards with JavaScript too - Frameworks are project specific still but we're making sure that there is good use of prototypes, no naughty global variables, and lovely event binding.
  • HTML5 always and forever.
  • Responsive Frameworks - again project specific (Bootstrap, Foundation, bespoke) but we're getting closer to our chosen one.
  • Version Controlling is all on GIT now (bye bye SVN).
  • Deployment schedules for releasing our code to the world.
  • Unit testing for our back end guys.
  • JIRA for all our issue and time management.
  • CSS Lint for us front end guys.
  • We're making massive progress with tiny steps.

…boring details end

12:30pm – Lunch! I try to get away from my screen but it never seems to happen as I'm a screen addict. Bored Panda, BBC Sports (Oh look the same news story, let's read it again). That's how I roll.

12.30- 5pm (and anytime outside of this) – I support the other developers. One of the parts of being Senior Dev at Blueleaf is about using my knowledge to support the team. This may be helping out Tom with Venda templates on Laura Ashley and Life Style Sports, John with MVC queries on the Next Website  or having a sit down with Simon and thinking about possible ideas for a new module on the Red Bull site.

My time at Blueleaf has made me fully aware that I'm not the best at everything and I know exactly who can / how to solve problems. This is part of why I'm Senior Dev and it's something all developers need to remember when progressing through their career.

Another part of my day involves talking to those other lovely people who work at Blueleaf… designers. Discussing their designs and getting one step ahead so we can start to think of the build early doors and hopefully not hit any brick walls when it comes to the development phases. It’s good that we talk at Blueleaf because I know there’s always that enigma that design like to make things unnecessary hard for us devs. We like a challenge but we do have to say no.

So what else do I do during the day...

  • Change lightbulbs (I’m also the janitor)
  • Help the PMs/Producers with tech input on quotes
  • Support our lovely clients on the phone
  • A few internal meetings here and there
  • Help with scheduling
  • Moan about things which annoy me (you may have noticed I like a moan)
  • And of course have a little dabble with some new coding techniques. I love subtle animations on websites so more than likely i'll be messing around with CSS.

So that's about it, I think? You won't see me in the office after 5.30pm unless it's a special occasion as I'm a strong believer in spending time with my family and Blueleaf supports me with this.

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