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Q&A with Raymond Camden

Developer advocate for IBM | Web standards & client-side development

My name is Raymond Camden and I just started as a developer advocate for the MobileFirst platform for IBM. My areas of focus are client-side development and creating hybrid mobile applications. And kittens. Kittens are important.

How did you get started in development? 

About two hundred years ago, my mother was given an Apple 2e by her employee for her to learn how to use. For some crazy reason, they also gave her a bunch of games. I promptly took the Apple 2e, played the games, and when I eventually went through them all, cracked open the Applesoft BASIC book. I spent two hours trying to figure out why my first program wasn't working when I discovered that I was supposed to hit the ENTER key at the end of each line. (I was using the spacebar to move the cursor to the next line.) My bugs more complex over time. I started working with web sites back in 95, moved to server-side development with Perl CGIs, and then ColdFusion, and spent a good long time pretending the client-side didn't exist. I switched back to doing more client-side work about five years ago and have spent a lot of time writing JavaScript and focusing on the cooler parts of HTML5. (Things like forms - forms are cool, honest.)

What software and hardware do you use for your work?

Favorite hardware is my Macbook Pro. My favorite software is probably Brackets. It is a great (and open source) web development editor that is easy to extend.

What is your ideal work environment?

2 80 inch monitors, good music, and plenty of cats. I want a large cup of coffee next to me and a full day ahead of me exploring, writing code, and helping others.

Your favorite books and resources about front end

I'll start with two from the same person, Dr. Axel Rauschmayer. First is his excellent book, Speaking JavaScript (available for purchase and free online). Second is his blog - He has been covered ES6 very deeply recently and while I don't necessarily understand it all, his site is the best (imo) for the topic. For the third I'll cheat a bit and mention the multiple development related newsletters by Cooper Press.

Who are the developers you admire most?

Christian Heilmann and Terrence Ryan. They are both great developers and great developer evangelists I've tried to learn from.