Hi there and welcome to our Employee Stories Series!
In this blog post, we're sharing some personal anecdotes with you to offer you a better understanding of our company's culture, beliefs, and goals. With this approach, you should be able to better comprehend the various roles inside our business, as well as their tasks, responsibilities, and motivations.
So, meet Martin, one of our Txture Senior Backend Developers and have a look at our open positions on our Career Page.
I've been a part of the Txture team from the very beginning, even before the company was officially founded. Txture started out as a research project which then turned into a University spin-off. I was part of the initial research team while I was doing my PhD at the University of Innsbruck. My research topic (model repositories and data versioning) happened to coincide with the technologies needed to build Txture, so it was a very natural fit.
After I finished my PhD, I switched to Txture as a full-time employee.
When I was six years old, I got my hands on a GameBoy. Ever since that day, it was crystal clear to me that I wanted to program games. That led to a high interest in programming as a whole. My curiosity eventually brought me to University where I learned that there were many other interesting applications of the same software engineering skillset. I still develop games as a hobby, but my career turned out to be tied to database and backend development. The tools are mostly the same - but their application is radically different.
Moving to the cloud is like replacing PowerPoint with Google Slides, or from a DVD to YouTube. You're not bound to a given device anymore. You can consume a service anywhere and at any time. You trade control over details for ease of management.
I usually start my day by working through emails and notifications, then there's the daily standup with the team at 10:00am. The rest of the day is really different every time. I spend a lot of time working on new features, fixing bugs as well as profiling the software to find performance bottlenecks. Team communication is also very important - planning meetings, discussions, presentations and (of course) a joint coffee break.
Some of our users have a very large number of assets in their Txture repositories and they noticed that some filters are a lot faster than others. That's because predefined properties (such as the Asset Name) had an index on them in the database, whereas there was no support for indices on user-defined properties.
Adding the possibility to have indices on custom properties in combination with the versioning capabilities present in Txture was a major challenge, because (unlike the Asset Name which always exists) a custom property only exists for a certain period of time - it can be created and deleted as required, and even the property type can change over time. I'm very happy to see this feature finally released in Txture 27.
The best part about software engineering is when you're able to find a solution that not only works but is also general enough to work for use cases you've never even anticipated - but it's still getting the job done.
Code can become a terrible mess really quickly, but keeping complexity in check and writing Code that is clean, future-proof, and elegant is what I'm striving for every day.
I definitely qualify as a gamer. I play all sorts of video games in a wide variety of genres, across several platforms. I also develop games as a hobby and as another way to apply my software engineering skills in a totally different fashion and learn some 3D art along the way. I also spend a lot of time on classic pen-and-paper games (such as Dungeons & Dragons) and trading card games.
Oh, and did I mention sci-fi and fantasy movies?
With a planned release in February next year, Elden Ring will finally be available on all major gaming platforms. It's the love child of Hidetaka Miyazaki (creator of the brilliant Dark Souls series) and George Martin (author of A Song of Ice and Fire, a.k.a. Game of Thrones) set in a dark and epic medieval fantasy world. The development studio, From Software, has a great track record and it looks like an extremely promising game.
Be curious, keep up-to-date, and try to absorb as much knowledge as you can. For example, Txture made the switch to Kotlin in the backend about two years ago, and we haven't looked back ever since. At the same time, don't jump on every hype train out there - and the best way to avoid that is to know about the alternatives.
Watch presentations (YouTube is a great resource for all experience levels), get in touch with people, get informed, learn from their mistakes and experiences, and keep in mind not only what is currently going on but also where the tech journey is going.
And do yourself a favor and read “The Pragmatic Programmer” and “Clean Code”.