Meet Software Engineer Peyman Mohtashami (40). He worked as an Electronics Engineer in Iran before switching to IT. He joined The Hyve in January 2020 as a front-end developer for RADAR-base and is keen to learn everything there is to know about building webapps and developing mobile applications.
Can you tell me a bit about your background?
I studied Electronics Engineering at the Khajeh Nasir Toosi University (KNTU) in Tehran, the capital of Iran. I studied there for four years and then continued with a Master's at the same university; also in the field of electronics but specializing in semiconductor devices.
As a child, I was already very interested in electronics, building circuits with pre-built boards. When I was around twelve or thirteen years old, my father and I used to go to the shops, buy some electronics stuff, go back home and then we would start building circuits. Very, very simple circuits. But it was a lot of fun for me at the time and it sparked my interest in the field of electronics.
During the last year of my Master’s, I already started working part-time for a company. After finishing my studies, I got a full-time job there as an Electronics Engineer. I mainly worked on embedded systems, programming digital components and sometimes designing circuits.
After six years, I decided to learn software development mainly on building websites and mobile applications. Mobile applications were a hot topic and a good market at that time and I thought: That’s the choice for me. So I quit my job and started working as a freelancer, building websites and applications for companies in Iran. I’m very happy that I took that step because I enjoy this field more.
So, you’re mainly self-taught when it comes to coding and programming?
Yes, exactly. I learned some programming languages at the university but very basic languages for embedded systems such as C and assembly languages. To develop websites and mobile applications you need more in-depth knowledge.
How did you get to know The Hyve?
About 2,5 years ago, when I was teaching myself the programming language React and searching the web for solutions to debug my applications and learn more about it, I saw an advertisement from The Hyve on Stack Overflow. I went to the company’s website and I immediately liked the impression the fields, products and also the pictures gave me of The Hyve. I started to surf the website to find out more about the company. I also saw that they needed a front-end developer and that the work involved mobile applications. So I decided to apply, got invited for an interview, and eventually started working here in January 2020.
What brought you to the Netherlands?
My wife and I came to The Netherlands three years ago when my wife started her study of Development Economics at the ISI Erasmus University in The Hague. The first months after we arrived, I didn’t have any work. I just went out to see the cities and have fun. When I started a new job, it was here at The Hyve.
What do you do at The Hyve?
I’m mainly working on the front-end part of RADAR-base and its mobile applications. Recently, we have introduced an application for iOS. For the iOS version, I first had to learn how to develop it. That was an awesome and interesting experience for me.
Other projects that I’m involved with include the EHDEN project and the Quisper project, and I helped develop the website for a Covid-19-OHDSI study.
Also, recently I’ve been learning more about UX/UI design (user experience/user interface design). It’s an essential skill for front-end development, I think. Since it is not just about coding, we also need to have an idea about the users’ needs, graphics, and layout. This kind of work is very interesting for me because I like to learn new things and acquire new skills.
What do you like about working at The Hyve?
The first thing that struck me when I started my job was the atmosphere. It’s very friendly and very well organized. During my first day at the office, the office managers told me everything I needed to know. That made it very clear and easy for me to go ahead. Also, the colleagues are very helpful, friendly and they’re very patient to teach you all the things you need to know.
The Covid-19 situation gave us the opportunity to work remotely. I still mainly work from home and go to the office maybe once or twice a month. This is ideal for me because when I’m developing something – coding, programming, testing – I need to be in a quiet and very isolated place so I can concentrate more.
Of course you still interact with your colleagues via email, chat, et cetera.
Yes, we have online meetings almost every day. I’m glad that I started at The Hyve two months before the Covid-19 pandemic hit. It allowed me to get to know the office, meet all my colleagues and get familiar with the situation before we suddenly got the pandemic and everyone started to work remotely.
What do you like to do when you're 'off-duty'?
Honestly, most of my pleasure time goes to surfing websites and trying to find new things for web and mobile applications and IT in general.
But I’m also interested in reading books and watching movies about history, wars and politics. When I start watching this kind of movie, I can’t move till the end.
Besides, I’m a fan of football. I used to play some years ago, but nowadays I just watch it and follow the famous clubs.