Up close and personal with Colin van Eenige: DPDK’s Lead Front end Architect
It’s a very exciting time at DPDK digital agency. We’re expanding our team and looking for talented people who are as passionate as we are about delivering exceptional digital experiences. To celebrate the occasion, we thought it would be fun to highlight some of our already stellar employees. Today, we're starting with our tech team - meet Colin, our Lead Front end Architect.
Colin began his career at DPDK. He is responsible for bringing our creative vision to life on a diverse mix of projects. He has more than five years of experience as a web developer, and loves working at the intersection of art and logic to solve technical challenges. Read on to find out more about his journey!
First of all, have you always wanted to be a developer?
At first, no. When I left high school, I wanted to learn more about computers, but was looking for some creativity too. In the end, I chose to major in ‘Media technology’, which focused on solving problems with concepts and code.
Basically, I started off wanting to do something with computers, and it grew from there.
You’ve been with DPDK for over 5 years. What led you to DPDK?
My programming teacher was the former Head of Technology at DPDK. He actually taught me my first coding lesson.
He always showed a lot of examples of DPDK’s work during his classes, and pretty much everything I saw was something I could not do, at least back then. So when he offered me an internship, I didn't think twice. DPDK was constantly winning awards and was about to expand internationally, which also checked all the boxes that I was looking for. So I said yea, let’s do this!
5 years is quite some time! We’re curious, what part of your job do you like best?
Experimenting with new technologies and effective problem solving for clients. I like having interesting technical challenges to solve, and there’s a wide variety of work here at DPDK.
I’ve changed roles a lot, and that really kept me around as well. Right now, I’m leading the architecture team. But I worked as a back end developer, then as a front end developer, and later as a creative developer for awards, too. We’re actually looking to fill those same roles right now!
If you had to define your job in one word, what would it be?
And that’s because the work changes so much from project to project, as do your clients, tools, goals, and achievements.
For example, sometimes clients want an award-winning web app. Other times, they want a customer-based or a corporate website. Those projects are very different from one another. The clients and the tools you use will always change based on the project, and you have to remember that every client has particular goals. Some of them want to increase their revenue, others want exposure, the rest just want to sell their product.
In the end, it's all about delivering exceptional digital products, but it requires new ways to get there every time.
What’s exciting you about the digital industry right now?
I’d say the open source community.
Basically, there are a lot of web developers like me that publish their work online for free, so that other developers can benefit from it. For example, you have teams at Google or Microsoft that are focused on web development, and they only make things that, in the end, help the whole web move forward. That’s really cool.
On the flip side, what do you find to be one of the most challenging aspects of working in tech?
The whole web development community just goes so fast, keeping up can be a challenge. Every project needs to be started right.
If a project takes a while, there’s probably going to be some new tech that comes out before the project is over. You can’t switch the whole project around anymore at that point. Often the concept you start with will be the concept you finish with. Sometimes a project takes six months, and then it’s like yea, okay, we delivered this, it’s amazing! But we’re two months behind on the new stuff, so let’s get going again!
Where do you turn for inspiration?
Open source work, WebGL based projects, and award-winning experiences. But also next-gen games, as they really move hardware forward. A lot of inspiration comes from looking at what other developers make.
I’m heavily involved in the web development community through various platforms like Twitter, GitHub, and Slack. There I have open discussions with other developers about what we think should happen next in the industry. We dedicate time to keep an eye out for new technologies to source and introduce here at DPDK. You have to stay in that loop all the time or you risk lagging behind.
What do you enjoy most when you’re not working?
I used to travel, but I guess these days that'll have to wait. Right now, it's online games, movies, and side-projects.
Last but not least, what project or accomplishment are you most proud of?
For projects, I’d say all the award-winning stuff I worked on when I was starting out, like Nike, Peugeot, 7up, and Apotheek.nl. I think we won, like, twentyish awards in just a few months? That was a really special period for me.
As an accomplishment, I’m most proud of going from an intern to architecture lead and being in charge of new projects. We’re always looking for new talent to join our tech team. I’d say, what are you waiting for?