Archive for May, 2009

* Looking for a Talented Engineer

Posted on May 26th, 2009 by ccheever. Filed under Alma Networks.

My new company is looking for an engineer to join us. If you know anyone who might be a good fit, send them my way. We really want to find someone outstanding.

Alma Networks is a startup founded by Adam D’Angelo, who was previously CTO and VP of engineering at Facebook, and Charlie Cheever, who led Facebook Platform and Facebook Connect. We’re working on building a community-generated database of the trusted information that interests people most. Some of the challenges are highly algorithmic, such as coming up with ways to organize and categorize the information effectively so that users can efficiently find what they need; others are very technical, such as working to make a web application that is complex while still being very fast; and many of the challenges are in product design, such as figuring out a way to set up and grow a healthy community and constructing intuitive interfaces for users. Alma Networks is based in Palo Alto, CA and has seed funding.

We are committed to building a cutting-edge technology company that develops software the right way and is a place where engineers love to work. Some of the tools we are using include Python, Pylons, memcached, Thrift, and git. We’re using continuous deployment and EC2, so all code you write will go live to production within minutes no matter what time it is. Both founders are developers. We want to build a fantastically strong engineering team and the first engineer that joins us should set the tone for that.


  • B.S., M.S., or Ph.D. in Computer Science or equivalent.
  • Extraordinary software engineering talent.
  • Substantial experience developing web applications.
  • Knowledge of TCP/IP and network programming.
  • Experience with compilers, distributed systems, and machine learning a plus.
  • Proficiency programming in Python a plus.
  • Familiarity with functional or declarative programming languages (OCaml, Erlang) a plus.
  • The number of years of professional experience you have isn’t important to us.
  • You should be ready to make this startup the primary focus of your life.

In the short run, the most important thing is to release our first product, and so it is critical that you can be immediately make big contributions to our complex web-based application. In addition to working with us in writing the software, the ideal candidate should be proficient outside the technical realm–making good product decisions, designing user interfaces that are both pretty and functional, being an effective marketer and recruiter, and being capable of handling anything else that comes up. You should also be fearless and broad inside the technical realm, happy to tackle CSS and JavaScript as readily as you are to take on optimizing the performance of a backend service in C or Java. You should be ready to jump down into C and write an interpreter for a simple language if necessary, or hook up a cluster of machines to run a distributed machine learning job you wrote. In general, you should be very good at getting things done outside your comfort zone.

You will be required to make good decisions about important things without much oversight. You should be comfortable with autonomy and ownership of large areas of product and infrastructure. It’s a plus if you have worked on projects in your spare time, such as programming games in middle school or high school. An ideal candidate will have the potential to grow into a strong leadership role over time–in either a technical or management capacity (i.e. eventually the equivalent of a Google Fellow or a V.P.)

We think we are working on something that is very important and that lots of people will use every day. If you’re interested, e-mail us at

For someone who is talented but not super experienced, this should be a great opportunity to learn a whole lot very quickly. And for someone who is more experienced, I can say it’s a super fun project to work on that I’m really excited about.

Definitely e-mail me or Facebook message me if you have any questions or just want to hear more.


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