Editor’s Note: Over the next four weeks, we will be introducing you to IBM’s StrongLoop Developer Evangelist team. While they are usually quite busy attending events, hosting webinars, and putting together content about LoopBack and IBM’s API Connect, we managed to get them to write about themselves and let us know more about them. First up is David Okun, our newest team member.

Oh hi!

It’s been a really interesting road to get here, but I am IBM’s freshest addition to the StrongLoop team as a Developer Evangelist. Additionally, I’ll be that guy on the team who also gets to work with the Swift@IBM team, as my background has mostly focused on iOS.

First, I’d like to tell you a little bit about me.

A Little Bit About Me

My dad came home with an Commodore Amiga when I was very young. He brought it home for himself and didn’t think I’d take to it. I did, though, and he and my mom both knew I’d do something with computers after seeing me interact with it. Fun fact: One of my first memories is playing as Mr. Miyagi from The Karate Kid trying to catch a fly with chopsticks.

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Me, when I figured out that Yeoman could generate JavaScript code automatically.

I always tinkered around on computers more than I ever received formal education. In high school, I was exposed to C++, Java, and Visual Basic (and now you know my age!), and while I completed my Bachelor’s degree in Physics at University of Dallas, I used Python as a tool to complete a class called Computational Physics. After I finished school, I still wasn’t sure what to do, so I worked in sales and recruiting for a while. I grew pretty tired of this, and I decided to start learning how to write iOS apps. I was fortunate enough to get to work on some contracts around the country, and I got to make some really cool stuff too.

I enjoy making mobile technology, and it led me to eventually run the mobile department at IDscan Biometrics in London. I loved working with a team so intent on taking software usually reserved for high-powered servers, and pushing the limits of what can be done on a mobile device. Still, I always had an itch to learn more about how modern server-side software works. Most mobile apps these days need a connection to the cloud, so I decided I would learn how to make a web API. Node.js was an easy choice for what I learned first, and I’m really excited to expand on what I know, and share it with you.

What I’ll Be Doing

I don’t want to just be another talking head telling you what to do. My goal is to give you plenty of use cases and examples on how to use LoopBack to enrich your server side developer experience.

I have always believed that there are three distinct types of learners: visual, audio, and haptic. Haptic learners learn by doing, and I definitely feel as though I fall into that category. When I was learning how to develop applications on my own, I had to do tons of tutorials to actually see the stuff working on my own machine. Going to talks and watching videos were helpful activities for me, but nothing quite beat the experience of following a tutorial line by line and making the example work myself.

Additionally, I’ll be appearing at engagements all over the country showing how you (yes! you!) can use Loopback. You can follow me on Twitter (@dokun24) to get an idea of where I’ll be at a speaking engagement, running a hackathon, or just helping out any way I possibly can. Don’t hesitate to email me at david.okun@ibm.com if you have any other questions or if I can help you.