Relevance Turns 30 (people)

All that pretending to be Groupon the last time around really helped with recruiting (not to mention revenue, what with all the coupons we sold). As a result of all this gorging on awesome software development, we had to convince some more folks to join our team. Since last we spoke, we've been incredibly lucky to add:

Ben Vandgrift Ben Vandgrift has devoted himself to the cause of 'better living through automation' for the past 15 years. After completing a BS in Software Engineering (Kentucky), he entered the world of enterprise software development. He has since been recovering–despite a growing startup habit–by applying himself to progressively smaller and smaller companies doing bigger and better things. An entrepreneur at heart, Ben also dabbles in art and music as time infrequently allows.

Marc Phillips Marc went to Colorado College where students take one class at a time for three and a half weeks straight followed by the next one, with three and a half days off in between for the whole school year. That means geology classes are month-long camping trips, literature courses require a novel a night, and biology labs often result in the sharing of hopes and dreams with fetal pigs. After waking up one morning in Seattle he got his first job at Microsoft in 1997 by explaining his ride had already left and they might as well give him something to do. After 10 years in mobile devices and forgetting to cash in his stock options before they expired, he spent the next 4 years in emerging markets and technology incubation, moving into online services and managing teams inspired by rapid iteration and agile development practices. His passion for taking risks, making mistakes, and learning from them for the benefit of others was exhibited in its purest form when on a trip to the Costa Rican jungle he led a group through the trees after their jeep broke down, discovered a hidden mud hole by sinking in it up to his waist, then located and diverted a swarm of army ants that was preparing to raid their cabin with his bare feet while trying to clean his pants, all in under 30 minutes. While he now focuses his action-oriented iterative style on more technical projects, he still frequently does his best work without pants.

Michael Fogus Fogus started out as a philosophy major (with a focus on Nietzschian vs. Kantian philosophy), but finished with a B.A. in Computer Science from St. Mary's College and an M.S. in Computer Science from Johns Hopkins University (with a focus on A.I.). As a software developer with experience in RTOS development, distributed simulation, machine vision, code generation, and expert system construction, Fogus has spent significant time with C, C++, CLIPS, Common Lisp, Java, Jess, Python, Scala, and Clojure. Additionally, Fogus has been involved in the Clojure and Scala communities as the Co-author of the book "The Joy of Clojure", author of numerous Clojure libraries, and a one-time external maintainer of the Scala XML language facilities.

Luke Vanderhart From a young age, Luke has been fascinated by the possibilities of computation. Through highschool, he worked for a startup in Colorado, developing a distributed semantic network knowledge management product. He took a break from software development to get a degree in Philosophy and Linguistics from the College of William and Mary, only to discover that both are profoundly relevant to the art of creating software. After college, he worked as a consultant for several large corporate and government clients, doing enterprise-scale data management and search. During this time, he became fascinated with the beauty of functional programming, particularly Clojure, and ended up writing a book on it (Practical Clojure, published by Apress) with the help of Stuart Sierra. He lives in Annapolis, MD with his wife Hannah, who is a poet.

I think for the next round of recruiting we're going to pretend to be Apple. I hear they are doing some interesting things.

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