An image of Hugh Rawlinson's face

Hugh Rawlinson

Developer Advocate, Creative Technologist, Web Specialist

Interests

I'm interested in empowering fellow developers to build reliability, high quality software, at scale.

I have academic experience in signal processing, music information retrieval, and the Web Audio API. I have industrial experience with software development, developer advocacy, and web development.

I'm also interested in Developer Advocacy, particularly if your developer platform enables developers to do good.

Experience

I've been working in tech for over ten years, and have got a lot done. Here are some highlights.

Senior Developer & Developer Advocate at Spotify (2016-2021)

  • At Spotify I worked as a senior developer on an internal developer productivity platform for web developers working on artists.spotify.com.
  • As part of several teams at Spotify, I have led the design and development of several projects as a Technical Owner, a role that exists at Spotify as an additional set of accountabilities for senior engineers. This has required a deep understanding of the business and product domain, the broad knowledge across multiple disciplines required to design long lasting robust systems, the ability to empower my team to execute quickly, and solid communication skills. I've also been involved in many departmental and cross-departmental technical groups as a representative of the web discipline, where I worked on projects to address technical quality, reliability, and productivity at scale.
  • For a large chunk of my time at Spotify, I worked as a developer advocate. I architected a new developer.spotify.com, represented the company at developer events including hackathons and talks, participated in the planning of our developer relations strategy, developed interviews and job descriptions for new developer advocates, and worked directly with commercial partners to ensure smooth integration of our technology into their product.
  • When I first started at Spotify, I spent 9 months working on content ingestion infrastructure and tooling, using Java, Python, Javascript (AngularJS and React), and PHP (Wordpress and vanilla), working on systems involving RSS and SFTP delivery choreographies based on the DDEX standard.

Software Developer at Soundwave (2014-2015)

  • Worked with backend technologies including Java 8, Jersey 2, Mockito, Powermock, and MongoDB to implement the backend that powered Soundwave's consumer facing app.
  • Operated as an internal “special projects” developer, on projects including redesigns of various websites, developing proofs of concept of new features, and a prototype public API for use at Music Hack Day Cannes. I also got to work on HTML5 game development, data science using Tableau, and Amazon RedShift, automated social media engagements, and extensive manual iOS and Android app testing.
  • After completing an internship in the summer of 2014, I was invited to return to Soundwave as a junior developer upon completion of my degree. Soundwave was acquired by Spotify in January of 2016, and we relocated to Stockholm.

Full Stack Javascript Developer at Playlist.com (2013-2014)

  • I worked as a web developer at Playlist.com, involved in building an ad-supported internet radio website based on the Echo Next music radio API. I worked across the stack, using Angular JS 1.0 and Node.JS to serve a UI, and integrate with 3rd party APIs including The Echo Nest and Medianet.

Freelance Web Developer (2011-2016)

  • oilandgasawards.com - Custom Wordpress Theme and Plugins
  • wiredradio.co.uk - Custom theme for Ghost, a Node CMS
  • Mackenzie's Café & Deli (Muscat, Oman) - Bespoke Web-Based Product Management System
  • Indee Softworks - Various custom web applications

Website and IT Administrator for Bluestack Energy (Spring 2011 - 2013)

  • bluestackenergy.ie - Custom Wordpress Theme and Plugins

Publications

I was fortunate enough as an undergraduate to publish an acadmic paper co-authored with two of my colleagues.

Volunteering

Co-founder and President of Hacksmiths, Goldsmiths University of London's Hacking Society (2014 - 2015)

Responsible for organising and arranging sponsorship for activities including:

  • Anvil Hack - a student hackathon held at Goldsmiths in March 2015
  • A series of weekly talks from industry thought leaders and top academics, including representatives from:
    • Twilio
    • Sendgrid
    • Heroku
    • Roli
    • Goldsmiths
    • Fun & Plausible Solutions
    • And many others.

Co-organiser for Music Hack Day London 2014

Responsible for organising and arranging sponsorship for an 80 attendee music themed hackathon in London, December 2014

Open Source

Details of my open source contributions can be found at my GitHub page.

Education

Goldsmiths, University of London

London, United Kingdom (2012 - 2015)

BSc/BMus, Music Computing

Modules include:

  • Advanced Audiovisual Processing
  • Physical Computing
  • Neural Networks
  • Language Design & Implementation
  • Perception & Multimedia Computing
  • Music Computing 1 + 2
  • Live Performance Systems
  • Creative Computing Practice
  • Analytical and Contextual Studies
  • Approaches to Contemporary Music
  • Sonic Art Practice

My bachelors thesis was titled “wat.js - a javascript framework for interactive livecoding” and was awarded a first, the highest classification in the UK undergraduate grading system.

London South Bank University

London, United Kingdom (2011 - 2012)

BA Music & Sonic Media

Studied for a year, before transferring to Goldsmiths.

Courses

I like to keep my skills up, so in addition to reading blogs, newsletters, and books regularly, I've been taking courses.

Awards

Hack Day Prizes

Code Club Hack Day 2012 - Most Likely To Be Used In A School

Squawk - a Twitter-like website that allowed users to control hardware connected to a Raspberry Pi, designed to engage young students with technology

TIGA Game Hack Day 2013 - Best Mobile Game

In collaboration with an artist, I built a space invaders style game that was in part displayed on screen, with an interactive interface on a Novation Launchpad MIDI controller.

London Web Summit Hack Day 2013 - Pusher prize, Joint second place overall

Sonify Everything - a web based music app, that would consume data from a variety of sources, sonify the information as MIDI, and co-ordinate playback across “listener&lrquo; clients. Designed to be used with an audience. Formed the basis of a subsequent university project for my Live Performance Systems className.