Meet Margaret, Queen of Problem-Solving and Expert Developer

Margaret started working for Kuvio Creative, LLC in June of 2016 as a Solutions Developer and has been problem-solving for Kuvio ever since!

What is your favorite part of your role?
I love how everything I do is directly related to problem solving and that every day I am learning more. Being a part of such a wonderful team makes my role so much better. I’m also finding it very rewarding that I get to work on projects people will use in their everyday lives. I feel that I can make an impact by helping create or improve websites.

What is one of the coolest things you've worked on so far at Kuvio?
It's really hard to choose! Although it was the most difficult thing I have worked on so far, helping with the data visualizations for Conseris was an awesome way to literally be able to visualize the efforts of the work I put in. With so many ways to gather data now, data analysis is vital to understand the significance of the data. I had never worked with D3, a JavaScript library that helps display data visualizations, but I learned enough to be able to take raw data and display different graphs based on the selected data. As someone who doesn’t know much about data analysis, I love seeing the graphed results that help explain what the data means. It’s even more interesting when I finally understood how the program was able to take in the data and display the specific graphs and that’s what really helped Conseris come to life for me.

What are you most looking forward to in the coming months?
I always enjoy starting new projects and love being able to work on a variety of different projects. There is never a dull moment!

How did you get into the field of development?
Working at Kuvio is actually my first job as a developer, and prior to that I helped with the operations of a coding bootcamp. What's funny is that I went to a very engineering focused university, but I was an Anthropology major. It was a fascinating subject to me, but I knew I did not want to pursue Anthropology as a career.

As my graduation neared, I became increasingly more worried about what I would do with my life. Thankfully, I had started volunteering during my senior year with the coding bootcamp after I heard about it from a friend. I was very interested in their mission to help women and minority populations start careers in tech and immediately said yes when I was offered a job after graduation.

Although I had never even considered that I could have a career as a developer with no prior knowledge of programming, I decided to take the class that the company I worked for offered. It was then that I discovered my love for programming! I feel very lucky that I ended up with a job I love, that only a year and a half ago I could never have imagined myself doing.

What do you like to do for fun?
When I’m not researching with Conseris at work, I like to research new places to travel. I love to hike and travel. The most interesting trip I’ve taken was for a course in college where I got to spend two weeks in The Netherlands learning about public health and policy. Although Amsterdam was a wonderful city to explore as a tourist, I learned so much talking to residents about their experiences living in Amsterdam as it compared to the United States. I look forward to returning one day when it is warmer and the tulips are in bloom!

What I love most about traveling is getting exposed to different cultures and people and learning about how similar or different people’s lives are around the world. I am now enjoying planning a trip to Italy in September.

6) What does a day in the life of a Solutions developer look like? How do you go about solving problems? Do you ever just find it so challenging?

As a solutions developer, I have worked on large projects that already have a significant amount of code written, as well as started new projects from scratch. Each presents different challenges, but what I find so interesting is the variety of projects that I get to work on. Each task I have is a problem to be solved and implemented.

Regardless of what project I’m working on, the task is often something new that I haven’t had to do before, which means I can solve it any number of ways. When a problem is difficult to solve, it’s like trying to speak a language I’m not yet fluent in. I know what I want the code to do, but not the exact combination that will make it work. I love working through these problems because it means I am never bored. Solving one thing may break something else or change the way I thought I would solve the original problem.

It can be challenging to always see the big picture of a project when there are individual problems to be solved. Sometimes the easy way to fix one thing is at the expense of another part of the code, or it will lead to more work down the road. As a relatively new developer, I am trying to be more proactive now when solving a difficult problem, rather than start something and realize too late that my solution won’t work. There is definitely a lot of trial and error! I find it is too easy to fall down the rabbit hole of following a problem that leads to ten other things that I want to fix, so it is also important to stay focused.