Paul Bissex

Selected Portfolio

MassChallenge, Inc. Accelerate Platform


This platform powers the organization's startup accelerator program in the US, Mexico, Switzerland, Israel, and the UK. The platform coordinates thousands of organizations and people throughout the accelerator process (registration, applications, judging, scheduling). It also provides extensive real-time reporting on the process for operations and executive staff.

Technology Stack: Django, Amazon EC2, Amazon RDS, Django Rest Framework

Highlights: Hired as Principal Software Engineer to help scale the platform and the team to support ten global sites.

Lionbridge OnDemand Translation Portal

Provided a translation services portal with both a browser-based interface and a powerful API. API allowed customers to integrate translation services into their corporate content management systems.

Technology Stack: Django, PostgreSQL, Django REST Framework, Amazon Web Services

Highlights: I enhanced performance of management interface for sales and operations staff, and implemented dynamic service rates based on source/target language combinations.

Cox Media Group sites

Core web and mobile publishing platform for all newspaper, radio, and TV properties of a large national media corporation. About 40 million pageviews per day. Integrated with dozens of vendor services for weather, traffic, police mug shots, school closings, SMS and email alerting...

Technology Stack: Django, PostgreSQL, Solr, Jenkins, Akamai

Highlights: I spent several full-time weeks in the CMG Software Innovations Lab (like Google "20% time" or Apple "Blue Sky") developing a versioning feature for the CMS.

A programmer pastebin. Uses "private" (unguessable) URLs for all items. Items are not publicly listed, making spam invisible. Cookie-based sessions allow users to set preferences without logging in, and to delete or change expiry on their recent posts. Offers a REST API for item creation.

Technology Stack: Django, SQLite, nginx, Gunicorn, Fabric, jQuery

Highlights: Major application upgrade performed in May 2014 with no downtime. Legacy REST API is still used by Django's built-in error page for sharing troubleshooting information.

Hallmark Alumni

Social and information hub for alumni. Facilitates alumni connections through searchable and browsable directory. Provide editable member profiles with automatically resized images.

Technology Stack: Django, MySQL, Apache mod_python

Highlights: Replaced a PHP site created by an outside vendor, retaining the legacy database schema and active data.

Hallmark Housing

Tool to help newly admitted students find rental properties in the local area. Collected data via a detailed questionnaire to help students evaluate roommate compatibility. Tracked communications with students. Processed images in various formats submitted by landlords.

Technology Stack: Django, MySQL, Apache mod_python

Highlights: Migrated landlord and property data from existing desktop database. Added group-email system for communicating with selected groups of users.

Hallmark attendance and equipment loan system

Multi-faceted system for operation of a trade school, for use by busy non-technical instructional and administrative staff. Attendance recording and reporting; student ID data; parking permit tracking; equipment lending library. Special barcode reader kiosk mode for large-group attendance.

Technology Stack: Django, MySQL, Apache mod_wsgi.

Highlights: Replaced many FileMaker and MS Access databases and Excel spreadsheets, and lots of paper and tedious manual processes. Released as open source in 2016 when school closed.

A "penny auction" site modeled after Dynamic, continually updated pages. Tools allowed customer support staff to monitor site activity in real time, and let managers adjust operation of the running site.

Technology Stack: Django, nginx, PostgreSQL, RabbitMQ, jQuery

Yiddish Book Center

Website for the largest and fastest-growing Jewish cultural organization in America. Included tools to allow administrative personnel to edit web content easily. Integrated with third-party services for sales of books and event tickets, book content search, and member management.

Technology Stack: PHP, MySQL, Apache

Highlights: After their successful 25th-anniversary campaign raised over $25 million, the Book Center stepped up to using a larger team to produce and manage their web presence. I served as a consultant in this process, evaluating vendor proposals and helping plan content migration.