The Jelastic Spotlight: Szymon Biały and Fiszkoteka
This week’s Jelastic Spotlight comes to you from Poland! We are talking with Szymon Biały. The app he is currently working is for the language learner on the go. It has both an online interface as well as a mobile app for those that wish to work on their language skills with their smart phone while on the move.
Remember. If you know of someone that is doing cool stuff and is using Jelastic, let us know! We would love to chat with them and showcase their work here on the blog. If you know of someone that is doing cool stuff but has not tried Jelastic out, tell them about us!
So where are you based, Szymon?
I’m currently living in Warsaw, the capital of Poland.
Is that where you great up?
Actually, I grew up in a small village near Pulawy – eastern part of the country.
What’s your background?
Well, I’ve got an MSc in Electrical and Computer Engineering at Warsaw University of Technology, where I majored in Telecommunication Systems and Networks. I’ve worked for both small and large companies as developer, leading teams and consulting for Java and Flex projects.
Tell us a little about your family.
I started programming because of my dad. I remember growing up looking at his Fortran books and technical literature. I created my first program when I was 8. It was BASIC on Atari 64, which was quite popular back then. I remember when I was 12 that I decided to be a professional developer after being enamoured with the Amos Pro on Amiga. Good times.
So, I know that you have some pretty exciting news. Can you tell us about it?
Yeah! I just got married this last Saturday. And I want to send Weronika my love. :-)
That’s fantastic! Congratulations!
Before your current project, what were you doing?
I was a front-end framework architect in a social insurance workflow project for the Polish government and a consultant for major Danish bank. There were of course a lot of side-projects of my own (mostly abandoned or postponed).
How would you say Java affected your life?
Java is very closely related to my professional career: my first real job was as a junior Java developer. Nowadays Java is still my language of choice when it comes to creating production ready applications.
Tell us a little about your latest project?
I’m working with the http://fiszkoteka.pl crew. It is a site that helps with learning foreign languages using virtual flashcards. One of the main benefits is its mobility since it allows users to use the app on smart phones.
So far, how do you like Jelastic? Is there anything in particular that stands out to you?
I really enjoy that I can bring an application to life from my dev machine to the world in just few clicks. It’s amazing how simple it has become with Jelastic.
What are your plans for your application?
We’re close to our beta release, so it needs a lot of polishing and adding some missing features.
So, how did you get into the startup scene?
It really started from my personal needs. When I find some product or service that I would like to use missing something, I try to make it happen. Great products are developed when you really believe in them.
What do you like most about your work?
The best thing is the act of creation. Doing and creating something real from a just a simple idea is awesome.
Do you have a favorite hobby or pastime?
Sports: squash and ultimate frisbee, playing piano, listening to the music (my old vinyls collection) and playing with my cat – Frania.
Frania is cute!
Last questions: do you have a philosophy by which you live, something that you rely on when making decisions or use to guide you in tough times?
Yup. There’s a couple of them but I think Volenti non fit injuria is what we all should follow.
Thanks for your time, Szymon.