What do boardgames, brewing beer and The Badseeds have in common? They all help our Senior Software Engineer Stu unwind when he’s not developing the technology that powers Stockspot.
In this edition of ‘Meet the team’, we also discover some of the strange things you see when you commute 3 hours a day by train.
Tell us a bit about yourself
I have always had a passion for computers, data and science from a very young age which derived from me always wanting to know how things work. There may have been several instances of me disassembling and reassembling my parents’ TV and computers without their knowledge.
This has fuelled my work choices in software engineering and associated fields and study choices in Computer Science and Forensic Chemistry; making my interests my career.
Why did you join Stockspot and what excites you most about it?
The answer to both of these questions is the same – the opportunity to develop a revolutionary product allowing people to invest in a smart and calculated manner.
What do you usually get up to when you’re not at Stockspot?
Computers! When not at Stockspot I still like to write software, contribute to open source software, participate in industry groups like SyDjango and have an interest in computer security.
When not on my computer I love to spend time with my wife and son with whatever activities excite us that week such as bush walking, beaches, museums, galleries, movies or board games.
I also help run a monthly board game meetup on the Central Coast which helps raise money for charity, drink too much coffee and when I can squeeze the time in do some home brewing.
What’s your favourite tech gadget you currently own, and what gadget would you most like to buy?
As I have a long commute and play GPS based games which drain my mobile phones battery in impossibly short times, the humble external battery pack is my favourite tech gadget. It’s not as glamorous as other products but when your mobile phone is about to drain the last of the power it saves the day.
I would like to buy a 3D printer. I think the applications for this technology are very interesting. It’s quite amazing what people are doing with it.
As a craft beer connoisseur, are there anything about beer making that can be applied to investing?
Patience. Most first time brewers want to get to try their beer as soon as they can and then find out it is not as good as they anticipated. What they did not consider is that to make an excellent brew takes time. Creating the wort, fermentation and bottle conditioning all take time and care to get right.
The same thoughts can be applied in investing – don’t rush into an investment and then rush out. Take your time researching the best investment strategy for you, determine how much you want to commit to it and the time frame in which you anticipate a return.
We’ve heard through the grapevine that your musical tastes are eclectic. Who would be performing at your ultimate rock concert?
How long can I make the concert go for?
It is hard to pinpoint exactly which line up it would be as it is very dependent upon the song selection and as I like music from all genres of music (except for country). All I can reliably say is there would definitely be songs by: Dvorák, Orbital, The Prodigy, Type-O Negative, Twenty One Pilots, Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, Coltrane, Nick Cave and The Badseeds, Massive Attack, and Nine Inch Nails.
Favourite holiday destinations and why?
It sounds strange but I like to holiday at home. I know a lot of people who go off far and wide on holidays but have never seen their local area. Usually I will stay home and go adventuring in my local area for my holidays.
That being said it would not be hard to get me to go somewhere else if they have a good brewery or distillery.
Given that you commute over 3 hours each day, your top tip for passing the time and the most interesting moment you’ve encountered during your commute?
Plan to do something on the train. Usually I am on the laptop on the train learning about a new topic, writing code, reading, or taking care of emails. I try to make it as little wasted time as possible. Another good option is taking a nap.
I have seen many weird things on the commute including a dance off, rap battles and sing alongs but the most interesting moment would have to be a person casually doing some oil painting on the train.
Stockspot feature you’re most proud of so far?
Stockspot Themes is probably the feature that stands out the most for me. Having the ability to modify your portfolio in a calculated manner to exposure you to parts of the market that are of interest allows another level of freedom.
Finally, who is your favourite robot and why?
Marvin from Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy stands out. A depressive bored robot with a brain the size of a planet who constantly saves the day although can experience no joy.
Well, I wish you’d just tell me rather than try to engage my enthusiasm,” said Marvin, “because I haven’t got one.”
You’ll be glad to know we don’t make our robots with “Genuine People Personalities” around here!
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