bdg welcomes Michael Buckbee!

mike_buckbeeWe’re very pleased to announce that industry veteran, entrepreneur and Rails developer Michael Buckbee joined the bdg team today as CTO and Lead Developer on The Social Collective!

Mike’s career path is surprisingly similar to my own — in multiple ways. Fresh out of college, he joined a health industry startup called Aristar in 1999. They were acquired by SoftMed, which was then acquired by 3M HIS. (Recall that I worked at Plumtree, which was bought by BEA, which was bought by Oracle.) Unlike yours truly, who left Plumtree in 2002, Mike stayed on at 3M. As someone who just doesn’t know what it means to get bored, he also started several side projects. The most successful of these was Fabjectory, which could best be described as a 3D printshop that allows people to take their avatars (or other objects from the virtual world) offline and reincarnate them as real life figurines.

Again, our paths resemble one another, in an almost uncanny way. As I was toiling away on Feedhaus, Mike was building FeedMail, which essentially tried to allow people to read and respond to email from inside a feed reader. Like Feedhaus, the idea never really took off. However, some of Mike’s other projects — like Fabjectory — generated an amazing amount of buzz, including articles in the New York Times and WIRED. Prior to starting Fabjectory, Mike had yet another side project called Second411 which allowed people to search for virtual items both in-world and on the web. Second411 was purchased by ESC in October of 2006.

Never one to settle for just a few side-projects, Mike also worked on FoxyMelody, Watchlister, OneToFive, FeedSpeaker and an open source HTTP queue that runs on Google’s Application Engine. Here at bdg, we’ve long been in the business of throwing lots of spaghetti at the fridge and seeing what sticks, so obviously Mike will fit right in. Visit Mike’s blog and project page for more about his amazing career.

As Lead Developer on The Social Collective, Mike is already busy getting the site prepped for SXSW 2009, which will launch early in Q1.

Please join me and the rest of the bdg team in extending a warm welcome to Mike!

bdg welcomes Rémy Miralles!

remyI’m very pleased to announce our first hire of the year, Rémy Miralles!

Rémy hails from just outside Paris, France, so this marks the first time bdg has hired outside the US. He joins our team as part of the AIPT Trainee program, which granted Rémy a J-1 visa that allows him to work for us as an intern/trainee for 18 months.

During that time, he’ll be applying the web visual/graphic design to our Participate 2008 Social Applications and also porting them to the iTouch/iPhone. Given that no bdg-er is ever content to work on “just one thing,” I’m sure he’ll be involved in lots of other projects as well, including Feedhaus.

Rémy has already proven himself as an outstanding developer. In fact, he recently built a Facebook application that has 15,000+ users even though it’s only been out for a few months now.

Needless to say, all of us at bdg are very excited about working with the newest addition addition to our team.

Please join me in welcoming Rémy Miralles!

bdg welcomes Andrew Bays to the team

It is with great pleasure that I ask you all to join me in welcoming our newest addition to the team, Andrew Bays.

Andrew will be starting this Friday, August 11th (should everything go well with his migration from upstate New York to the DC area). In keeping with the tradition of having our new college hires write EDKs/IDKs, Andrew will be tackling the opensource Ruby IDK as his first project at bdg.

Andrew’s distinguished background includes a Computer Science degree from St. Michael’s College where he graduated magna cum laude. He has taught Computer Science at the graduate level at SUNY Buffalo and at the undergraduate level at St. Mike’s. He’s also a published author and a former Research Assistant to two different professors.

A hardcore gamer, Andrew earned a volunteer position on the Tsunami Virtual World Project where he helps create infrastructure for some of today’s hottest Massively Multiplayer Online Games. Somehow he also found the time to start a business on the side called GamingPleroma, where gamers can buy and sell “virtual items” for real money through reverse auctions. While his business partner came up with the idea, Andrew was 100% responsible for building the LAMP-based site and serving as its webmaster.

Andrew can be reached at [email protected]. Please join me in welcoming Andrew to the bdg team!