Archive for the ‘Office News’ Category

TBAN 2.0

TBANUnidev is a new board member of the Technology Business Alliance of Nevada (TBAN). The board is focusing on the creation of a central unit in which the Nevada technology community can come together as one. One of the first major changes TBAN is implementing is the President’s Board. TBAN is bringing together representatives from local and state Government, the Las Vegas Chambers and the Regional Development Authority (RDA). The goal of the President’s Board is to unify the voice of technology, create synergies and communicate the goings on of each organization in efforts to encourage and advance the growth of the technology sector in Southern Nevada. Mike Gardineer, President of TBAN says, “We’re thrilled with the direction and momentum of TBAN. The Board, our generous sponsors, our membership and the community in general are all enthusiastic about solidifying and codifying the way in which technology contributes to the Nevadan economy and culture.”

 

TBAN also intends to get involved with VegasTech and the rest of the startup community. The hopes of TBAN are to facilitate a forum in which startup entities can pose questions and obtain advice and mentoring. TBAN is extending a free one year membership to all new startups that are in their first year of business in efforts to demonstrate their benefits to the startup community. In addition, TBAN will put on events and workshops that will help these young companies cultivate their futures with respect to understanding operational costs, available local resources, procedures associated with applying for trademarks and patents and how to attract investors.

 

TBAN is moving its TechNevada Honors awards to January 2013, intending to start the year off with a bang! The Awards will honor the work of local tech leaders for the past year and pave the way for a productive future. TBAN is working towards the completion of the awards’ nomination paperwork. Please visit our new website at https://www.tban.com for updates.

 

 

Tour de Switch

Switch CampusThe Las Vegas Unidev office is a half a mile from the amazing Switch. Switch is the world’s largest and most powerful data center and technology ecosystem.  A data center is used to store computer systems whether it’s for back-up or communication tools.

Last week Catherine Harris, Unidev’s VP of Mobile and Web Development toured the Switch facility with me.  The Switch facility is no ordinary data center. Since 2006 Switch and Rob Roy have over 125 claims at the patent office. This Includes 42 awarded and 83 additional designs pending release in 2012.  The data center has 2,200,000 square feet of space and 24/7/365 on site security, safety, operations, and critical infrastructure personnel. 

Switch is not only the largest data center, but they have the most powerful technology ecosystem called CORE.  CORE stands for Combined Ordering Retail Ecosystem.   Check out all the companies involved with CORE by clicking on this link http://www.switchnap.com/pages/all-things-switch/connectivity_2.php.   According to their website, no single enterprise in the world has the buying power of the combined groups that exist today in the SuperNAP client ecosystem.  This is also one of the benefits of using Switch for your business.  They have saved business thousands and thousands of dollars by offering this service to their customers.

Las Vegas: Next Silicon Valley?

guys with computers

Community is the root of innovation.  If no one ever said that, they should have.  If no one ever said that, I’m claiming the catch phrase.  Trademark that.

At the risk of offending hundreds of respected technology start-ups in California, I’m going to pose a question.  Is Las Vegas the next Silicon Valley?  In the name of full disclosure I’ve become a bit of an adjunct Las Vegas tech community native.  On a monthly basis, I wake up at 3 am in the morning and board the red eye flight from St. Louis to Las Vegas to network, explore, innovate and oh yeah…help Unidev, the software and mobile development company that employs me, to launch our new west regional office which just opened in January 2012.

So why is Las Vegas the next Silicon Valley?  They possess something very rare in an often insulated technology community.  They have community.  This community is “hip”, sort of underground, “quirkishly fashionable” but most importantly it’s not hard to find.  Just search the hashtag #vegastech or handle @VegasTech on a Thursday night and whether you join the meet up on Fremont Street or not, you’re there at the Las Vegas Jelly. That’s right, the “Jelly” (@VegasJelly).

Jelly organizations exist in several communities across the country but the one-year-old Las Vegas Jelly organization can stuff almost one hundred people into a “library” that’s not a library to learn from “start-ups” that are not start-ups. Las Vegas Jelly attracts professionals from Zappos and Microsoft as easily as they attract entrepreneurs from start-ups like Tracky and TicketCake.com.

The point I want to make is that Las Vegas Jelly supports a strong technology community but they’re also part of a larger community of technology support organizations working to promote wide spread adoption of technology innovation at the local, regional and state level.  A few of those other organizations include the Technology Business Alliance of Nevada (TBAN), Nevada Development Authority (NDA) and the Microsoft supported Linq360 Innovation Center.  Silicon Valley, did you know a booming technology community is boiling over right next door?

And this community will boil over in a good way.  Linq360 is quickly attracting big players in the hospitality industry with exciting new launches like Suitelinq’s in-room application developed for the new Revel Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City.  Yes, that project originated in Las Vegas. Likewise, Tony Hseih is relocating Zappos into the old Las Vegas city hall building and is fostering a Zappos backed technology brokering community in downtown Las Vegas with the potential to rival campuses of Google’s calibur – but probably with more neon signs and arcades.

Unidev discovered the community in Las Vegas last July when staking out new locations for expansion.  We chose Las Vegas – and we don’t think we will be alone.

Behind the Scenes: Opening Unidev West

At Unidev, we love talking about technology, software development and mobile development. We think it is the top banana, the bees knees. But occasionally we need to take a break from the hard hitting “tech talk” to discuss other interesting things we do. Why? Because we want you to know how we get things done around here.

In January 2012, we officially opened the Unidev West office in Las Vegas, Nevada. And we keep pretty busy. We hold TXCHANGE Events, network with professional organizations and develop new initiatives to bring to the Las Vegas area. But if you’ve ever helped to open a new office for a growing company, you know it takes a lot of work. We decided to give you a sneak peek, behind the scenes look at exactly how we accomplish this huge task!

That’s where I come in! Hi! I’m Elizabeth Maritz, Corporate Marketing Communications Manager for Unidev and The Net Impact. I spent this past week driving around Las Vegas meeting people, learning about the culture, getting plugged in to the business community.  I didn’t take any video of my travels because Las Vegas has VERY strict law regarding cell phone usage in cars…but here’s what I did.

I drove almost 55 miles around the city totaling almost 2 hours in travel time. I visited 11 different locations and met over 30 different individuals. All in 4 days!

 

 

A. UNIDEV WEST OFFICES. This is our new location in Las Vegas. We’re getting it all set up right now!

B. TBAN. This is the TECHNOLOGY BUSINESS ALLIANCE of NEVADA. TBAN is one of the longest standing professional organizations in Nevada, they love technology and we love technology. For more information on their events and membership visit www.tban.us/

C. NEVADA DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY. The Nevada Development Authority is a great source for companies looking to expand into Southern Nevada. With a huge number of resources, the NDA has helped Unidev find our place in Las Vegas and get connected. For more information on the NDA visit www.nevadadevelopment.org/

D. NET EFFECT. Net Effect is a fellow IT company that specializes in remote managed IT services, cloud computing companies, information technology consulting services, offsite data backup services and recovery services. For more information on Net Effect visit www.neteffect-it.com/

E. MARGARITAVILLE. You always have to find a little time to party while visiting Las Vegas and there is no better place than Margaritaville. As Unidev continues to become more active in the retail and hospitality industry, our friends at Margaritaville offer great insight and an occasional happy hour venue. Did you know they just opened a Margaritaville Casino at The Flamingo Hotel? Find out more at www.margaritavillelasvegas.com/

F. WALLS360. To get a little creative, we met with the team at Walls360. Also new to Las Vegas, Walls360 is a wall cling and graphics company co-founded by Tavia Campbell, John Doffing and YiYing Lu, the creator of the Twitter Fail Whale. To find out more about what they do visit www.walls360.com/

G. UNLV. University of Nevada Las Vegas is not only known for their killer Rebel basketball team, but also for their community connection. I met with the outgoing Alumni Association President. To learn more about UNLV visit www.unlv.edu/

H. LAS VEGAS CHAMBER OF COMMERCE. As one of the largest chambers in the nation, the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce (LVCC) is an impressive institution that offers so many resources to their members. Learn more about the LVCC at www.lvchamber.com/

I. FBG SOCIAL OFFICE SOLUTIONS. Fellow members of the Las Vegas Innovation Center Linq360, FBG and Unidev spend a lot of time together. FBG offers a robust Social Office Suite solution that helps businesses manage their brand on social media. To find out more, visit www.socialofficesuite.com/

J. THE FERRARO GROUP. A leading Nevada communications firm that provides strategic communications counsel to corporations, coalitions, associations and individuals. In 2011, The Ferraro Group was voted “Firm of the Year” by the Las Vegas Business Press “Best Advertising Agencies and PR Firms” awards. To find out more about The Ferraro Group visit http://www.theferrarogroup.com/

K. LINQ360. Supported by Microsoft, Linq360 is the epicenter of technology innovation and is now home to a select group of like-minded businesses aligned to serve the hospitality and retails industries. To find out more about Linq360 visit www.linq360.com

That was my trip! Hope you enjoyed coming along for the ride.

 

What Makes a Good Developer?

What Makes A Developer from http://alvar.a-blast.org/plat_forms/ Here at Unidev we pride ourselves on the diverse skills and years of experience our development teams bring to their projects. Whether it’s custom software design or mobile application development, our developers have what it takes to provide innovative and elegant solutions to our clients.

But what exactly makes a great developer? Are there certain traits, skills or habits a successful developer needs? Well, we asked the talented members of the Java, .Net, and mobile development teams at Unidev to find out.

Testing

Of course, a great developer tests her code thoroughly to ensure it performs just as the client expects. Christine of the Unidev West development team in Las Vegas submitted the mantra, “testing, testing, testing” to highlight its importance. This element is essential in delivering high-quality code with confidence.

But testing isn’t simply a phase at the end of a project; it’s a mentality integral to the entire development process. We couldn’t say it any better than one of Unidev’s talented developers, Teresa:

“Besides having some test cases before he starts coding, [a great developer] is also thinking of test cases as he goes, so he can try to break his code in the testing phase. Oh yeah, and he tests his stuff- thoroughly.”

Communication

This development skill may not seem as obvious as technical skills or problem solving abilities, but it is extremely important nonetheless. Great code cannot simply exist in a vacuum, it needs to comply with client needs and function properly with code from other developers.

Strong communication skills reduce errors and can catch minor problems and miscommunications before they become major headaches. Kevin from our development team in St. Louis puts it best:

“A good developer must be a good communicator. He must be able to understand a client’s needs and then be able to respond with useful solutions. He must also be able to explain his development strategy to co-workers.”

Teamwork

Another intangible skill a great developer must possess is teamwork. Successful development may rely heavily on individual abilities, but without positive interactions between other team members, things can fall apart quickly. Brian, another member of our development team in St. Louis, shares his thoughts:

“Although development is largely an individual activity, ultimately the efforts of all the individuals on the team are combined to make the final program, product, or website. If a developer cannot handle the teamwork aspect, he/she will likely be limited to projects where his or her efforts will not adversely affect the larger team.”

These are just a few aspects that the Unidev team thought distinguished a “competent developer” from a “great developer”. Do you agree or disagree? Tell us what you think makes a great developer in the comments below!