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Colin Alexander

Backend Software Engineer
Pronouns he/him
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About me

Throughout my life and work, I have always gravitated towards the harder and more complex tasks. I was raised doing yard work on Saturdays, and was always taught that most things can be fixed with a little know-how and elbow grease. I took many of these lessons to heart and have engaged myself in every problem I encounter, resulting in a broad base of knowledge and experience, as well as a seasoned work-ethic.

Combined with over 3 years of delivering a quality, consistent product in a competitive service industry, I’ve shaped myself to be customer-focused, and a growing technically fluency in the Software Engineering field.

Preferred locations

  • Phoenix, AZ
  • Denver, CO
  • Austin, TX
Open to other locations and/or remote work

Previous industries

  • Automotive
  • Consumer Services
  • Food & Beverages
  • Restaurants
  • Retail

Skills

  • Git
  • GitHub
  • GraphQL
  • Heroku
  • HTML5
  • MongoDB
  • Node.js
  • Npm
  • PostgreSQL
  • Rails
  • RSpec
  • Ruby
  • Sequelize
  • SQL
  • Travis

Currently learning

  • Docker
  • Python

Projects

Production Portfolio Site (FullStack)

Production Portfolio Site (FullStack)

Contribution time 60 hours
Collaborators

Tools Used

  • Adobe Illustrator
  • CSS3
  • HTML5
  • Rails
  • React
  • RSpec
  • Ruby
  • Ubuntu
  • Webpack

Running on Rails with React configured with Webpack in the front-end. Setup and deployed on empty Ubuntu servers, no easy-installs or pre-configurations.

Designed to flex all my current skills in backend development and current front-end progress. The main logo is one of my original designs while self-teaching graphic design many years ago. This website is designed to showcase ALL of my skills.
My areas of focus:

  • Creating a versatile, usable architecture for future additions.
  • Implementing SVG logo animation w/ CSS
  • Developing an effective UI/UX with React using State/Hooks
  • Image uploads, required use of ActiveStorage w/ Google Cloud Storage

Challenges Encountered/Overcome:

  • ActiveStorage limitations on Heroku servers, was unable to store images locally
  • Installing NGINX/Passenger on Ubuntu servers (DigitalOcean), understanding their purpose
  • Making it look good to everyone and not just me!
Launch the App Code Repository
Screenshot detail for project Production Portfolio Site (FullStack)
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FindMyMarket Web (FullStack)

FindMyMarket Web (FullStack)

Contribution time 50 hours
Collaborators

Tools Used

  • CSS3
  • Express
  • HTML5
  • MongoDB
  • Node.js
  • React

Based on the original FindMyMarket concept from my Mod4 DemoComp team. The original was an iOS based rendition, so I decide to explore the task of creating a full stack application since the concept was already constructed.

The ultimate goal of this web app to provide a one-stop shop for anyone looking for Farmers Markets in their area. Additionally, registered users can favorite a market to be saved for later reference. A zoom-to feature allows the registered user to quickly locate any favorites, while clicking on any market on the map provides a list categories that are available for purchase. All data is sourced from the USDA API and cleaned for quicker, more reliable results.

My areas of focus:

  • Developing a usable and quick interface for finding markets, regardless of being a user or guest.
  • Take advantage of the recreated USDA API made by my Mod4 Final Team.
  • Implement Google Maps and Custom Markers

Challenges Encountered/Overcome:

  • Deploying a client and server in a single deployment using a combined start script. In hindsight I would separate the two for reliability!
  • Basic testing was implemented for the API endpoints, this was primarily a frontend exploration so it is lacking in backend testing.
  • Map optimization, limiting API requests and loading custom markers efficiently was a challenge. Using BigO and OOP concepts I was able to effectively load custom markers within a second on Heroku servers!

Deployed on Heroku, takes a minute to wake up! :)

Launch the App Code Repository
Screenshot detail for project FindMyMarket Web (FullStack)
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USDA National Farmers Markets (API)

USDA National Farmers Markets (API)

Contribution time 25 hours
Collaborators Profile picture for Zach Holcomb

Tools Used

  • GraphQL
  • PostgreSQL
  • Rails
  • RSpec
  • Ruby

This GraphQL API was created to replace the current USDA National Farmers Market Directory API.With a single query to this API, farmers markets can be retrieved and filtered by location, products offered, and date.
Areas of focus:

  • Data Import from CSV Data Read/Model Import
  • Geocode Logic Efficiency
  • Implementing GraphQL for large, complex queries.
  • Data dense, prioritized loading/response efficiency Challenges Encountered:
  • Challenge
Code Repository
Screenshot detail for project USDA National Farmers Markets (API)
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SweaterWeather (API)

SweaterWeather (API)

Contribution time 20 hours
Collaborators

Tools Used

  • Git
  • GitHub
  • Rails
  • RSpec
  • Ruby

Sweater Weather is a Rails based API service, aggregating other public API information. It provides information to an conceptual front end team across many endpoints. It allows a user insight into weather, travel and geographical data providing useful results for road-trip planning.

Areas of Focus:

  • Thorough TDD and extensive edge-cases

Challenges Encountered:

  • Organizing "business logic" for different requests to follow DRY methodology
Code Repository
Screenshot detail for project SweaterWeather (API)
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