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World Class Web Developer With Civic Streak

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Martin Burns

Member info

User since: 26 Apr 1999

Articles written: 143

The charitable project that built TheyWorkForYou, FixMyStreet and the 10 Downing Street e-petitions site is seeking a world-class web developer.

This is a rare opportunity for an outstanding individual to join a small team of paid developers and volunteers that represents the greatest concentration of non-partisan democratic and civic coding talent found anywhere.

Technical skills

  • World-class skills in one or more of PHP, Perl, Python or Ruby
  • Substantial expertise in open source operating systems, databases, and version control
  • Experience of working in a team with other programmers, contributing to project architecture
  • Experience of accessible, standards-based web design
  • Fanatical obsession with usability and making users happy

Personal qualities

  • Laziness, Impatience, Hubris
  • Fascination with understanding how complex systems work, and satisfaction at mastering them quickly
  • Self-starter, with the ability to manage own work and to work both at home, with colleagues, and with clients.
  • ‘Completer-finisher’ personality, with track record of delivering projects to deadline
  • Team player with strong communication skills
  • Personal enthusiasm for mySociety’s goals, preferably manifested through actual web projects - see our FAQ for more details

Benefits and Salary

  • Salary £33k+
  • Opportunity to contribute to high-profile sites delivering real democratic and community benefits to citizens
  • Substantial role working with major partners
  • Opportunities to travel to political and media events in the UK and abroad
  • mySociety is a virtual organisation, so hours and location are highly flexible
  • Minimum 12 month commitment after probationary period

Submissions close 1st March, looking for candidates willing to commence work by 1st April. Please send your application or any questions to including the word msjob in the subject line.

Note: This job posted by MartinB on behalf of and with the agreement of MySociety; he is not a representative of them. More info via the original vacancy page and their FAQ.

Martin Burns has been doing this stuff since Netscape 1.0 days. Starting with the communication ends that online media support, he moved back through design, HTML and server-side code. Then he got into running the whole show. These days he's working for these people as a Project Manager, and still thinks (nearly 6 years on) it's a hell of a lot better than working for a dot-com. In his Copious Free Time™, he helps out running a Cloth Nappies online store.

Amongst his favourite things is ZopeDrupal, which he uses to run his personal site. He's starting to (re)gain a sneaking regard for ECMAscript since the arrival of unobtrusive scripting.

He's been a member of since the very early days, a board member, a president, a writer and even contributed a modest amount of template code for the current site. Above all, he likes to do things because it knowingly chooses to do so, rather than randomly stumbling into them. He's also one of the boys and girls who beervolts in the UK, although the arrival of small children in his life have knocked the frequency for 6.

Most likely to ask: Why would a client pay you to do that?

Least likely to ask: Why isn't that navigation frame in Flash?

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