Patryk L. Janiszewski served a tour in Kuwait and Iraq with the U.S. Army during Operation Enduring Freedom. As a student at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Patryk earned his first bachelor's degree in Human Resources in 2011 and is currently seeking a second bachelor's degree in Business Information Systems and a minor in Information Technology.
Patryk is the President of the Association for Information Systems (AIS) Student Chapter and is the owner of Hard Code Software Solutions, Inc., a start-up company that he recently formed after receiving a BizSpark Grant from Microsoft.
Patryk began developing applications for the Windows Store and Windows Phone after being introduced to C Sharp programming while enrolled in an Object Oriented Programming course in 2012. Since then, he has had multiple Spotlight applications in both the Windows and Windows Phone Stores. The Spotlight categories include Top Paid, New Releases, and Best Rated. In addition, Patryk currently holds the number 15 spot in Nokia's DVLUP developer leaderboard, and has had 5 store apps certified by Softopedia.
To listen to the interview, click on this MP3 file link
Interview Time Index (MM:SS) and Topic
You have one degree, why did you decide to earn a second degree?
"....Education is very important to me and also to my family....The story behind the second degree is that I always wanted to be more computer literate...."
I've looked at your background and you've had some great successes. Can you profile some of your top successes?
"....I consider earning my first Bachelor's degree one of my major successes....Another is serving my country being part of the US Army....Also what I have been able to achieve with Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8...."
Provide your five special technical tips for developing using C Sharp?
"....I still consider myself a beginner. Although I've made major improvements it is important to understand that I'm not quite there yet, so I'm going to keep this very simple....Always use comments in your code....While you are still learning, make small changes and then test, rather than trying to build half the application (like I've done so many times) and then testing....Make sure to handle all exceptions....Follow naming conventions when naming your variables (this is something very simple, but very important)....Use the Control + Z shortcut and don't be afraid to experiment...."
What are the challenges in having a start-up company?
"....Limited funding and having to fend for yourself. Your business and business name haven't been established yet....You may be lost and don't know exactly what you're doing because you're new and having to worry if you are going to make it or not...."
From your perspective, what are the best online resources to use as a developer?
"....There are all kinds of SDK (Software Development Kits) which you can find online and are very valuable for developers for adding specific features to their apps. Just to name a few: Nokia Imaging SDK, this can be used to build an application for editing images....Aviary SDK, another photo editor SDK and has some awesome filters and effects and has stickers and even texts....Bing Translator SDK....Other resources include:learnvisualstudio.net run by Bob Tabor, the website is full of resources for programmers....Channel 9 where you can find video series on any programming language, you can download the source code for every project and every video series....Skype, great for developers to communicate with each other and discuss projects.....Teamviewer which you can use to remote into your computers, developers can use this to work on projects together....MSDN, they've got code samples, their Developer Centers, Forums and a bunch of other resources)....codeproject.com, where you can find examples of different codes for different things that you would be trying to implement into an application....stackoverflow.com, if you have any questions for other developers this is a good place for you to visit....There is C-SharpCorner, which is another great website...."
What 5 special technical tips can you provide when developing apps?
"....Always test your application thoroughly before releasing it....Start with a template and make small changes (this is one that really works for me)....Always assume you will be making changes to the application or updating it so write the code in a way that will make this process easier for you later on....Leave comments in your code. As a developer this is one of the most important things you can do for yourself and others who may possibly working behind you....Don't try to target a specific device. Consider the fact that there are a variety of devices that run on different screen resolutions so you basically want to keep everything generic...."
What are the major challenges when developing apps?
"....The idea, because without an idea you pretty much have nothing....Getting your apps to stand out and having to compete with other developers that have more experience than you....Once you have an idea chances are that somebody is already using it so you have to get your app to compete with theirs or somehow make your application better....Developing the app itself is a challenge...."
What special developer techniques are you using in your latest app?
"....In my latest apps I believe I used the Nokia Imaging SDK, which is a photo editor app that offers around 30 filters...."
How did you achieve your Spotlights Top Paid, New Releases, Best Rated, number 15 spot in Nokia's DVLUP developer leaderboard, and 5 store apps certified by Softopedia?
"....The Spotlight (from my understanding) is where downloads and ratings make all the difference in the world when it comes to your apps ranking in the categories and holding that position. I have a simple strategy that seems to work when it comes to making the Spotlight categories...."
What are the major benefits in being part of BizSpark?
"....BizSpark is a grant that is offered by Microsoft and you get 24 hour technical support and it's absolutely free. Free access to any Microsoft software that you can imagine....You also get access to great training and resources such as Microsoft Virtual Academy....."
What are your recommended Microsoft technologies and why?
"....Number one would have to Office 365. You can sync any of the documents that you're using with the Cloud SkyDrive, so you can sync them essentially with all your devices....Skype, you can use it on your phone or PC. I use it to talk to family members and to communicate with partners if we're working on a project together....I would definitely say Windows 8.1. I just recently upgraded to 8.1, they fixed a bunch of bugs and the whole setup is a lot better and a lot more convenient...."
Do you feel computing should be a recognized profession on par with accounting, medicine and law with demonstrated professional development, adherence to a code of ethics, personal, public accountability, quality assurance and recognized credentials? [See www.ipthree.org and the Global Industry Council, http://www.ipthree.org/about-ip3/global-advisory-council]
"....I do feel that it should. From my point of view as companies expand or grow their ability to handle their workload is contingent on computers and applications...."
From your extensive speaking, travels, and work, please share three stories (amusing, surprising, unexpected, amazing).
"....When I first started Dr. Bailey's programming class I actually failed my first programming test. I got a zero and she always says that I earned that all by myself....Now I have several apps in the marketplace....My message to everybody else is if I can do it anybody can do it, because I was completely computer illiterate and had to pretty much start from scratch. So if I can learn it I think anybody can as long as you're determined and you keep working at it you can get it done...."
Can you give us some of these apps so we can search for them?
"....You would type in pljaniszewski if you were searching in the store...."
If you were conducting this interview, what 3 questions would you ask and then what would be your answers?
"....What other programming languages do you work with?....What other programming languages would you like to learn?....Do you enjoy what you are doing?...."
Pat, with your demanding schedule, we are indeed fortunate to have you come in to do this interview. Thank you for sharing your deep experiences with our audience.
Q: What value does the ACM bring to computing and students and why should people join the ACM?
A: "The ACM is the largest educational and computing society in the world. The organization is responsible for furthering the advancement of computing as both a science and as a profession. One major way that the ACM brings value to computing and students is by providing services to professionals in industry in the form of academic research. The ACM provides members and the computing profession with many valuable resources including leading-edge publications, conferences, and even career resources.
The ACM represents the computer science profession in industry and at the same time connects professionals with the academic research that occurs at universities, which is extremely valuable as the research ultimately affects industry. Members can enjoy benefits such as ACM's (Discounts and Special Offers Program) which will allow them to receive discounts and special offers on different goods and services that they need, want and use. Examples of this include: books and journals, careers and conferences, magazines, software/hardware, insurance, financial products, travel and general consumer products. I highly urge everyone in the Computer Science field to join the ACM."