Next in our series of interviews with tiConf speakers is Joshua Jensen, partner of ROAR as well as a TiDev author of course! He will share Best Practices for those beginning with Titanium and Alloy, on the first day of tiConf US.
Tell us something about yourself
From the moment my dad got our first monochrome Zenith Eazy PC, with 2 disk drives, no hard drive, and whopping 512 kilobytes of memory, I was hooked. Technology had me. I was playing games and creating “programs.” I wrote my first program in BASIC. It was a text based library system for all of my sisters books.
She of course being 4 years younger than me hated it and it was at that moment I had my first taste of client work.
I started out building websites and doing design work. I owe much of my passion for technology and Mac computers to a friend of mine named Sean Sperte. He is now the CTO of an awesome company called TagBoard. But he gave me a chance to take my love for technology and apply it in web developement and design. Without that opportunity, development might have just stayed a hobby for me.
Between 2004 and 2010 I helped start a couple of companies, I then moved on to create my own company called Mobilesalt. Mobilesalt was acquired by ROAR and ROAR was eventually acquired a company out of Tennessee called Ministry Brands. When I created Moblesalt I built it using all web technologies believing that html apps were definitely the answer because of their ease of use and ubiquity.
So how did you went from all-web to Titanium?
In 2010, I was asked to work on a project that required a native app. So being comfortable with web apps, I chose Phonegap. I quickly realized this was not that answer for me and a friend of mine told me about Titanium.
I quickly turned around and build the same app in Titanium v1.7. It was a bit rough to say the least since it was my first Ti app, but it worked so much better than the previous version.
I was a believer
From there in Q1 of 2011 I began building out ROAR’s mobile app platform in Titanium. I have now personally deployed over 600 iOS and Android applications on the Titanium platform and I have not looked back.
Titanium allows our company to build and deploy large applications and meet the needs of our clients on time and with excellence. Instead of needing multiple developers with various disciplines we can have a very focused and efficient team that gets the job done.
What have you done in the community we might know you of?
Working with Matt Congrove on ChariTi has been and continues to be a great experience. I love watching to see what people do with ChariTi and the places people take it. I also built and maintain Alloylove.com.
As a contributor to TiDev, I really enjoy helping people learn Titanium and experience that feeling of accomplishment when they see their hard work being downloaded and used by others.
How do you see the future of Titanium?
It’s powerful and yet a stupidly frustrating language that I love to use and learn. That is why I won’t be leaving Titanium anytime soon because Appcelerator has built a fantastic platform for me to make mobile apps using the language I want to use.
Tell us something about your talk at tiConf. Why should people go to your session?
In my session I will take you through some of the beginning best practices that have helped me maintain thousands of apps and tens of thousands of lines of code. I have made a lot of mistakes and will try to help you avoid as many of those pitfalls as possible.
This session will be specifically geared for the person that is relatively new to Titanium and/or Alloy and will address things like application structure for Classic and Alloy based applications. The plan is to answer questions like, how and when do I use a window vs. a view? What does it mean to open a window with a different context? How do I use commonJS modules effectively? What is a global event listener and why do people tell me not to use them? How do I get help, and why won’t anyone answer my questions in the support forums?
What sessions would you like to attend yourself?
TiConf this year is going to be fantastic. Last year in Baltimore was a ton of fun and the sessions were extremely informative. Personally, I am looking forward to the BLE and iBeacon sessions. I am working on a project for iBeacons so I am incredibly interested in those sessions myself.
And apart from the talks?
Getting a chance to meet new Titanium developers that just started and seasoned Titans is invaluable. Plus if you see Tony Lukasavage at TiConf US (Alloy) or David Bankier at TiConf AU (TiShadow) without a drink in their hand make sure you remedy that. I don’t know about you but Alloy and TiShadow have saved me so much time.
TiConf is only a couple of weeks away and if you are not signed up to go pull out the credit card and do it. You won’t regret it.
– Thanks Josh!