I'm a developer that loves to work creatively. My strengths lie in working closely with product designers to implement pixel-perfect user experiences. I have experience developing and designing for both web and native platforms, alongside back-end API and database implementation.
MyOnlineSchool approached me with the proposition of building an unparalleled online classroom from scratch. Their existing platform, a custom PHP/WordPress hybrid, was being stretched to its limits and needed a complete rewrite. Having the oppourtunity to build the technology stack from scratch meant that we could use cutting-edge technology to reduce development overhead and integrate design guidelines using component-based development.
The application was rewritten using server-side rendered
Redux for state management and
React Router for client and server-side route matching. Since we were starting the project from scratch, we were able to utilise
ES2015 syntax improvements with the help of
Babel for transpiling and
Webpack for bundling. On the API side, we utilised
Postgres for rock-solid performance and familiarity. Each of these choices turned out to be invaluable, as they allowed us to move at an unprecendented pace and are validated by now being considered the foundation for a modern front-end web application.
Some of my proudest work was in implementing SEO on the client side, as it involved a number of challenges that had yet to be faced in the world of
React Router. My solution was to use an
Express application that utilises
Promises to hydrate the client-side state before sending a response from the web-server, which is now the reccommended procedure for server-side data fetching and rendering.
I've always been fascinated by the designer/developer relationship, and being fortunate enough to lead both front-end development and product design let me reflect on past scenarios and realise how important solid guidelines are. Component-based design and development transforms the entire process and has changed both product design and development for the better.
Whilst only at Photocrowd for a short time, I worked closely with lead developer Marc Tamlyn to strengthen the front-end infrastructure, including introducing
React into the existing
Django-powered website. A large focus was placed on building a developer-friendly front-end environment.
As Photocrowd continues to grow, I stay in touch and help with any mobile app development and
React Native questions that the team has.
As part of a small development team, we built an intricate and comprehensive life organisation tool consisting of calendars, to-dos, lists, notes and file storage, on both the web and iOS. Doing so allowed me to build on a huge number of skills; everything from managing AWS EC2 instances to prototyping feature ideas with the latest front-end technologies. Some of my accomplishments include:
Railsapp into separate clients backed by an API
Node-powered dynamic image server (fronted by a CDN) to handle user uploads
Gulpto reduce our front-end deployment times by ~80%
My main focus as a developer was on the front-end, where I helped build and maintain our Ember-inspired custom JS framework. As one of the earlier development hires, I was able to oversee large projects shipping simultaneously across multiple platforms. I also had the oppourtunity to train new team members and lead in-depth technical discussions, which I enjoyed greatly.
I founded a limited company to develop and release iOS software. Swellmade developed multiple prototypes and brought one app to market. Whilst the app (named ‘Reminders’, far before such functionality was part of the OS) did well and sold hundreds of copies, I didn't have the time and resources needed to compete in the ever-more-risky App Store.
Grove Street Media is a small digital studio in Summertown, Oxford that specialises in digital education software. During my month-long placement, we worked on exploring the possibilities of iOS app development. I designed and developed a novelty proof-of-concept app from the ground up.
I participated in a week-long placement working within the CICS (Customer Information Control System) team, beginning development on an internal team wiki. This placement involved talking to members of the team and identifying key areas with which a collaborative wiki could help, followed by the planning and implementation of the wiki.
The Cherwell School (A Level) — Physics, Computing, Maths and Business Studies
Magdalen College School (GCSE) — 4 A*, 6 A
Harley worked with Photocrowd during 2015, and was a very valued member of the team. He’s bright, focused, personable and up-to-date with his knowledge of many dev technologies. I’d happily have him working again at Photocrowd, and would recommend him to others.Mike Betts, CEO and Co-founder at Photocrowd