Interview with Alex Moldovan

Full Stack Developer | FORTECH

Tell us a few things about yourself. Where did you study, where do you work?

I started with programming while I was in high school and I was always very passionate about coding, solving problems and algorithms. Naturally I went on and studied at the Technical University in Cluj and currently I work as a Full-Stack Developer at Fortech, enjoying all sorts of web-based projects with JavaScript and Ruby. My main interests are in software architecture, product design/management, programming paradigms and patterns and in trying to fit the best technical solution to a given problem. I’m not a fan of using the hammer to solve all the problems.

What is your typical day at work?

Luckily for me, I managed to avoid getting sucked into management (no pun intended) and I can say that 70-80% of my time I code. I’m also involved in projects on all levels, from business analysis to design & architecture and finally to implementation. This is a fun ride, because no day looks like another for me. Being able to contribute and drive projects towards success is what keeps me motivated.

What inspired you to be active in the community?

Last year in December, I wrote this article, criticising the outsourcing driven ecosystem that is being built in Cluj. The article received a lot of feedback and based on that I decided to try and help the community as much as possible to overcome the problems that I stated there. I think that when someone raises some problems, he/she should also come up with solutions. Our society is not lacking wisemen, but it is lacking a bit that category of people with a can-do attitude. So I set up my main goal for 2016 to get involved in the community and be part of the change I want to see in it.

I’m not a fan of using the hammer to solve all the problems.

So I set up my main goal for 2016 to get involved in the community and be part of the change I want to see in it.

Are there any things you wish you knew at the beginning of your career?

Ha, this is a good one. Even if I clearly remember the beginning of my career, which wasn’t such a long time ago, I still have a long list of things I wish I knew back then. Things like finding a mentor, someone to look up to or getting involved in the community sooner with meetups and conferences. There are lots of things I could have done differently.

Could you recommend some books, resources that young IT professionals might find useful?

I think that Clean Code by Robert Martin is definitely a must-read for everyone. But I usually recommend reading all sorts of materials, from books to blogs to IT news magazines. Can’t really name something specific, because everyone should find their own interests among the available materials.

What you do to “recharge your batteries”? What are your hobbies? Do you have time for them?

I’m a huge LEGO fan, so that’s one of the activities I enjoy doing in my free time. I think that a part of me will always be that 10 year old kid that wanted to assemble things all day out of tiny pieces. My other big hobby is running, which I try to practice as often as I can, whether it’s on the streets or in the mountains. I ran several big races over the last years, including street and trail marathons. It’s also a great sport to keep you in shape, so I enjoy running in the morning, before work or in the weekends for longer distances. It really helps me clear my mind and refresh.

If you could go back in time and choose a different profession (outside of IT), what would it be?

I never really imagined myself doing something else, but I would have probably liked to play in a rock band, though I think I’m missing the talent to do that.

What do you think about ITCamp, and what brings you here again?

I remember the first conference I ever attended was ITCamp. Back then I was working a lot with Microsoft technologies but I clearly remember how the conference was oriented towards everyone. It was the first time that I was truly impressed by how a speaker can interact with the audience and really create an experience. I think the scale and magnitude of the event is great, our city really needs more events like this and I’m proud to be on stage this year.

I remember the first conference I ever attended was ITCamp