Mike Giannakopoulos Joins the Transifex Team

We are excited to welcome Mike to the team. As a part of our design/UX team, he will be focused on making the Transifex user experience the best possible — something users will continue to love using.

To get to know him a little better, I grilled him with a few questions:

What were you doing before you joined Transifex? What was the most important thing you learned in that role?

I worked as a technical director for a local news aggregator (Palo.gr) and helped evolve the initial idea from a website with little page views into one of the top 10 local news sites. This aggregator collects and produces a lot of data from the web, so there was a large amount of raw material to work with. I learned to translate that raw data to something valuable for the visitor/user, both functionally and visually.

You sent in your resume to Transifex, what were the thoughts going through your head?

My first thought was how great it would be to work with a team that already has proven to be intelligent and fast paced. I knew it would be an opportunity to participate in something already big with great potential.

Now that I am part of the team, I still am excited to start exchanging interactivity and design ideas with Transifex users.

What was the moment that you realized you wanted to be a designer / UX developer? And what’s the best part about it?

I liked computers since I was a kid and soon realised that what I liked most was to build stuff. In the beginning, I was into the graphics field. Later on, when I started working on websites, I valued the interactivity aspects of a design.

In a slow and steady pace I came to admire the power that a good design hides. What I like the most is the skill of translating technical specifications/requirements to something useful and beautiful for everybody.

What’s the favorite thing you’ve designed or built, either at Transifex or elsewhere?

My favourite so far is an interactive visualisation of complex data that I created to showcase the potentials of a data manipulation. I enjoyed the whole process from selecting the appropriate data to figuring out and implementing the interactivity on those elements. The result, although quite technical, showcased a variety of possibilities some of which were later used in production. Sorry, I can’t disclose any more info than this.

What’s your development environment like? What are the tools you cannot live without?

I mostly work with two or three different tools. I have Sublime, which is a simple text editor for coding, PhotoShop or Gimp for color selection and mockup designs, and pen and paper for thoughts and ideas. The internet is really helpful; I surf a lot to find new ideas and new ways to implement things. I also use HipChat and Skype to keep up to date with my colleagues. Those are the most used.

If you were a character from a movie or TV show, you would be… ? And why?

Well…there isn’t anyone specific. The model of a character that clicks for me is the classic funny action hero: resourceful even with a small toolset in hands, utilising the surroundings to his benefit, and always with a smile and smart line.

Yippee-Ki-Yay … 😉

When you aren’t desigining / coding, you are… ?

I mostly spent time with my family. Also I try to workout a bit. I enjoy movies, music and good talks with friends.

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