me

Robert Beghian

Toronto, Canada

Brilliant. Hilarious. Modest.

I write code to make computers do things. I've built devices, phone apps, websites and desktop applications.

I'm currently working on contract, revolutionizing reading.

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Devices

I spend a lot of my time building eReaders.
In 2010 I started working on Kobo's first E-Ink device.
Since then, I've helped create 9 eReaders which got faster and prettier while winning industry awards.

E-Ink readers are devices designed to mimic the experience of reading on a regular piece of paper. They can store most book libraries, have high resolution, low-glare screens, and the batteries can last for months.

Android Apps

Sometimes I make phone apps for Android.
I started playing around with Android in spring 2008 and have been releasing apps periodically since then.

Applications 36 Downloads 2.42 million Avg Rating 4.1

The first app I built was a prototype for a pitch to Y Combinator.
Later that year, I created the proof of concept for the original Kobo phone app for Android.
I eventually started working on it full time and released it to the public early 2009.
Since handing that off, I've only been building apps for fun.

apps

Websites

jsp, javascript

My first job was at IBM. There, I got to see what it's like to work on a massive web app.
I was happy to be given the chance to rewrite the reporting framework for the Tivoli Provisioning Manager from scratch.

Next, at Marsh Canada, I decided to learn about client-side UI development. So I built and extended javascript pages and components.
I was surprised to learn that javascript is actually a pretty awesome language.
Thanks Douglas Crockford!

  • Javascript & YUI
  • Java
  • JSP
  • WebSphere
  • DB2
.net, c#

At Kobo, one of my assignments was to improve the performance of the kobobooks.com website, so it could handle huge spikes in traffic. We transitioned to a service oriented architecture and explored key-value stores, while also doing various refactoring work to improve reliability.

  • .NET
  • IIS
  • Membase (now Couchbase)
  • MS SQL
python, django

I continue to build websites on the side. One recent example is "idealist". It's an image-heavy brainstorming tool used to pitch cool ideas for us to work on.

  • Django
  • Python
  • Apache
  • Postgresql

Desktop Apps

At Kobo, we figured out pretty early on that we needed books. So my first task was building the original content processing system. We took files from publishers in various formats then parsed and converted them into something our clients could consume.

  • .NET
  • Windows
  • MS SQL

While making eReaders, we realized we'd need a desktop application. So we built one.
You can now use it to browse the store, buy and read books. It also updates and syncs our devices when they're plugged in to USB.

  • C++
  • Qt
  • Windows/Linux/OS X
  • SQLite