Armed with a keyboard, Daniel keeps the evil forces of software malfunction at bay, one obscure error message at a time.

A day in the life: Daniel McAteer

Jul 11th, 2016

Coding, problem-solving…lightsabers? The sky(walker’s) the limit for our digital wizard, Daniel.

Name: Daniel McAteer

Job title: Web Developer

Sum up your role in three words:

Making stuff work

How did you get into web development?

I originally started programming by writing macro scripts (teaching the computer how to mimic human behaviour) and a little bit of game modification in my early teens. I took a liking to programming in general so I enrolled into a Web Development degree at University.

What’s the best thing about it?

You don’t have any real limits as to what you can do in a digital environment. Some ideas might not be viable, or might seem overwhelming, but none are really impossible. Not to mention there are usually many, many different ways to implement functionality, so your problem solving skills are tested on a daily basis.

And the worst?

Not all of it is based on coding, some of the time you’ll get an error despite the code being perfectly valid. These are usually the errors which you don’t expect and have little to no direction on resolving so have to salvage whatever information you can from trial and error, which can be quite tedious.

What’s your career highlight so far?

Might want to look away if you’re lactose-intolerant…working at Front Page! 😀 Cheesy jokes aside it’s been incredible thus far and I’ve learned and progressed a ton since starting out here.

What would you be doing if you weren’t developing?

Most likely would have studied physics, so the fact that you can’t time travel, teleport, or wield a lightsaber is entirely on me and I apologise.

What’s your morning routine?

Wake up, ignore the fact breakfast is the most important meal of the day, get washed, dressed, walk to the bus stop, get the bus, then get the train, then walk for 20mins and arrive at work.

First thing you do when you get to the office?

Boot up my PC, stick my phone on to charge and check my email (exciting I know).

What’s a typical day like?

I have a prioritised to-do list, but new stuff can come in unexpectedly, so I usually have “breakpoints” in my tasks, where I’m happy with the current state of the application I’m working on (which is usually when it’s not flashing bright red error text at me) and then I can quickly assess what I’ll jump on to next. I hate leaving things in a broken or unfinished state, so I always try and iron out any glaring issues before heading home for the day or starting a new task.

And, most importantly, what’s for lunch?

Usually tuna pasta. Although I went through a long phase of mac’n’chips practically every day but switched after going on a health kick.

Home time! What’s on the agenda?

If I get my way, playing video games or watching a TV series. If I’m particularly invested or enthusiastic about a project I’m working on I’ll often tinker away at it from home when I can find the time.

And finally, what time are lights out?

Lights out normally falls around half 1, but I don’t normally get to sleep until after 2, then get up at 7 for work.

Find out more about Daniel and the rest of the Front Page team.

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