Red Radiant: Chief Software Architect

Posted by | September 20, 2010 | Web Pro Job Tips


Location: Anywhere


We’re looking for a true expert-level software engineer to work in conjunction with our CTO leading development on a stealth-mode startup. Despite not being at liberty to reveal the nature of the project, don’t be surprised if in your interview you’re given two minutes to draw a maze that takes one minute to solve…
As the Chief Software Architect for this newly-formed (and adequately-funded) venture, you will initially be responsible for managing a team of 3-5 full time software engineers, working primarily in Ruby (although a significantly complex backend component of the project will be coded in C++). If you have any reservations about whether or not you’re qualified for this job, chances are that you’re not. We’re looking for the best of the best for this role (and we know how to weed out “the rest”), as the CSA will be primarily responsible for ensuring the flawless end-to-end delivery of a relatively complex (but ridiculously cool) application.
Note that this is a remote position at first, however our team will ultimately end up working out of Palo Alto, CA, so applicants in Silicon Valley (or willing to relocate there at some point in the future) are a plus. Let us know about your stance on relocation when you apply.
Down to the details. The right applicant will possess the following skills (in the least):
  1. Complete mastery of object-oriented programming concepts (8+ years of professional experience using primarily object oriented languages). Familiarity with design patterns (GoF) is a definite plus.
  2. Solid understanding of machine learning methodologies, including both theory and practical (prior experience with implementation).  This will likely necessitate an academic background in computer science/engineering, but all sufficiently clever applicants will be considered.
  3. Experience using statistical methods to analyze and mine large quantities of data in order to design maximally effective algorithms.
  4. Working knowledge of C++ or another compiled language (expert level mastery is a huge plus).
  5. Extensive experience with Ruby. Metaprogramming knowledge a plus.  Contributions to the Ruby/Rails community are a definite plus.
  6. Thorough knowledge of Rails, including familiarity with its internals and experience writing plugins to extend the framework’s functionality.
  7. Experience with HAML a plus.
  8. Understanding of RESTful application architecture and the Rails routing system.
  9. Thorough understanding of the Software as a Service model, including backend client billing and account management.
  10. Experience deploying high-traffic applications and addressing performance requirements necessitated when scaling to accommodate exponential user base growth. Extensive knowledge of Rails application deployment and Capistrano a big plus.
  11. Expert-level knowledge of client-side web technologies (XHTML, CSS, Javascript, JSON).
  12. Expert-level mastery of SQL (specifically MySQL but Oracle is a plus), including knowledge of database design, optimization, complex queries and server performance tuning.
  13. Knowledge of and prior use of agile development practices including test-driven development, continuous integration, and iterative development.
  14. Proven management and leadership capabilities. Ability to effectively plan and organize a development timeline and meet deliverable quality and time requirements.
  15. Outstanding interpersonal skills (good sense of humor is a plus!).
  16. Exceptional written communication skills.
  17. Extremely reliable and responsible. Able to work additional hours if necessary or be on call in case of emergencies.
  18. Ability to work across multiple disciplines, including user interface/experience, operations and scientific/research.
Sound intense? It sure is. But we’re confident the right candidate is out there, and we’re excited to give them the opportunity to get in on the ground floor of a groundbreaking new project.
Of course appropriate compensation will be provided (determined specifically depending on experience and qualifications, but almost certainly above $100,000/year). We are also open to the possibility of issuing stock options to a candidate who is a good fit and is appropriately enthused about and devoted to the project, with an interest in being involved for an extended period of time.
Ready to be the Undisputed King of Code for what just may be the biggest thing to hit the web since LOLCats? Send us your application and be sure to include the text “CSA” somewhere in the email subject.
NOTE: We’re also looking for several full time software engineers to make up the rest of the team (we have pretty high standards all around though, so these jobs are no joke).  Apply at the same address, but let us know that you’d prefer not to be considered for the CSA position (we will consider all CSA applicants for other software engineering positions where appropriate regardless unless otherwise requested).

To apply: Send a resume and cover letter to The more creative your application, the more attention it’s likely to receive. This is your chance to brag–let us know why you’re the single most awesome engineer we’ve ever come across!

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