An Inside Look at NordPass Developer Team
August 12, 2021
Edvinas Tamošiūnas is a Tech Lead here at NordPass. Today he’s joining us for a conversation about what NordPass is like from the developer's perspective and challenges of leading a team in a large-scale project environment. Without further ado. Let’s jump in.
Could you talk about your journey as a developer and how you ended up at NordPass?
It has been quite a journey. I’ve been a developer for 15 years now. The previous company I worked for was acquired by Nord Security. At that time, NordPass was nothing more than an idea that the board members had. However, not long after, we created a team of A-list professionals and started doing research and eventually writing our first lines of code. At the beginning of my journey at NordPass I worked as an engineer and after some time I took the position of the technical lead of backend.
What challenges do you face in product development and general day-to-day tasks?
Right from the start, NordPass proved to be a huge challenge. As we did our research we were constantly looking at our competition and thinking of how we could do better. And I’ve always looked at all of it not only from a backend engineer perspective. The main challenge was to build an app that offers state-of-the-art security but at the same time is user-friendly.
PHP or GO? Which one do you prefer more? Why?
I prefer the right tools for the right work. That’s why we use both languages here at NordPass. PHP has an enormous community, great experts, tools, and frameworks. GO, on the other hand, is known for being quite easy to learn, and its performance.
All of the NordPass developers are PHP developers. Could you specify why is that? Do you think it should change?
PHP as a programming language has been in use for a long time and there are a bunch of great experts in the field. It’s our belief that the team makes the product great, so we focus on hiring the best developers out there. But when we talk about GO it is important to understand that it is a rather young programming language, yet the trends suggest that it will grow fast in the upcoming years, so we might see new faces in our roster soon.
Where and how NordPass uses GO? Do you believe it should be used more?
GO is a part of a client application that takes care of all encryption and secure communication with our cloud. It handles multiple platforms perfectly. It’s fast and quite easy to learn for PHP or other developers. It’s also used in the cloud for some specific tasks and we plan to use it even more wisely in the future.
As a PHP developer, do you think that NordPass is a good product to work with? Why?
I think it’s great because we always try to improve and find the best possible solutions. Also, we can see how the product grows not only from a development perspective.
While being a Tech Lead, could you introduce the NordPass developers team? How does the team form as the product grows?
At the very beginning as we started our work on NordPass the team consisted only of a few developers. We got to know each other’s strengths and weaknesses very well, and I believe we kickstarted the project in a great way. Now, as we look to make everything better, we’re hiring a large number of professionals internationally. As a tech lead you have to devote much more time to your team, so I’m constantly trying to find the right challenges for the team as I strongly believe that moving away from your comfort zone is what makes professionals grow as individuals and as a team.
Imagine that a PHP developer would like to join the NordPass team. What would be the three things that a developer could learn while working with NordPass?
First, it would be security, as this is our top priority. Then it could be a GO language. Last one - wider view of how great products are born.
You participate in various knowledge sharing events. Why do you think it’s important to share your experience and knowledge within your area of expertise?
Just imagine a world where no one shared anything – no YouTube, books, courses, conferences, meetups, etc. People would have much less information, there would be fewer professionals, and nothing would grow at the pace that it does now. The quality of products we use daily would drop dramatically, or we might not even have those products. So I think, sharing is one of the reasons why humanity moves forward.
Do you think there are other interesting sources where a developer could find a lot of useful information to become a better developer? What could you recommend?
Good books never get old. I like putting everything into practice. So, my advice is this: if the theory sounds good, put it to the test as soon as possible, because what works for others might not work for you.
The two books I would highly recommend are:
Clean Code by Robert Martin – a must-read for all developers
The Manager’s Path: A Guide for Tech Leaders Navigating Growth and Change by Camille Fournier – a favorite of mine on management and leadership.