Blog Authors: Valerie Skinner 060000VKGS is part of the IBM developerWorks team, getting to know the real developers who make up the My developerWorks community and exploring the world of social networking. I'm enjoying learning what makes developers tick! I'm very interested in exploring online communities and social media and understanding real world application - how they can help people solve problems and work together.
Interview with Roosevelt Bynum, development manager for IBM developerWorks
vskinner 060000VKGS Tags:  interview developerworks mydw my_developerworks 8 Comments 5,919 Views
It might not surprise you that developerWorks has an active team of developers too! This week I'm turning the spotlight onto Roosevelt Bynum, who manages a team responsible for infrastructure web applications supporting developerWorks.
Tell me about yourself and what you're currently working on...
I'm the west coast development manager for developerWorks. My team is responsible for the infrastructure web applications that support developerWorks and My developerWorks.
What's your favorite aspect of your work?
I really like the ever evolving web technology and how we impact the software developers of the world.
What tips do you have for leading a team of software engineers?
I have a BS and MS in Computer Science 32 years of experience in software development experience. As a former developer myself, I suggest these tips:
1) Software Engineers are creative and use different approaches to solve problems, as a manager I believe developers are more productive if you give them the freedom to use that creativity to solve problems.
2) I believe development processes are necessary and valuable, but should be only used as a tool to enhance quality, while not inhibiting progress.
3) Since we use object technology in our development, the use of established design patterns and code reuse libraries make our software engineers more concise and productive.
4) Utilize the efficiencies of the tools in our software stack, like DB2 and WebSphere .
How do you deal with the challenges of working with a remote team?
Regular communication and building strong relationships are the key to solving the challenges of a remote team. Tools like IBM Lotus Sametime are key in the success of managing remote teams, but sometimes nothing beats a simple phone call.
What's your approach to keeping your skills current?
I'm very curious and I love technology. I read lots of articles, talk to people and sometimes I take classes.
Do you think it's more important to go broad or deep with your IT skills?
There are advantages of both. One needs a certain amount of depth to become a effective developer, while the broad skills give you flexibility to do different things.
What challenges are ahead for you in 2010?
We need to continue to drive growth in the local sites around the world. Additionally, we need to enhance our site security to prevent malicious attacks, SPAM, and denial of service.
What new ground do you think developerWorks should break next?
I think the next phase of developerWorks growth is an interactive community experience which makes our site security most important.
How do you use developerWorks?
I mostly use developerWorks to test and validate our new applications and I read blogs and articles. I plan to start my own blog as well.
Can you share something about yourself that most people don't know about you?
I am #2 of six kids and I have 5 sisters.
- Thanks Roosevelt!