About Shindig and Andrew Burke

Hi - I'm Andrew Burke and I work through my company Shindig Digital Constructions. I make software, teach, speak, and do other related things.

The best way to see what I do is to look at my projects, such as Remembary or read my blog where I discuss the various projects I've done. A good place to start would be this blog post about how I rewrote the ClearFit application or these posts about my work on the This Is Nowhere project

I have been developing custom business software since 1995. I have worked as an independent software developer for numerous clients in Canada, from large government departments to non-profits and startups. I was part of the Groupware Practice at Origin Technology in Business in Columbus Ohio between 1997 and 1999, and provided applications and support for a number of large corporate clients across North America. In the past, I have built applications with Lotus Notes/Domino, Visual Basic, Java, and PHP - but almost all of my work is now done with Ruby on Rails, JavaScript, or in iOS.

I have worked on development teams, but often work solo and have handled all aspects of development, from the database schema and system architecture through development and project management to graphic design and layout, deployment, documentation, and training.

In late 2007, I founded Shindig Digital Constructions Inc. to sell web-based business applications. Shindig's first product was the Store Ordering System, an easy-to-use web application for managing retail signage programs. The SOS was used to manage programs for The Beer Store, HMV, H&M, Blockbuster Video, ICI Paints/Colour Your World and others.

From 2008 to 2012, I worked extensively with Toronto-based startup ClearFit, rewriting their application from scratch and providing ongoing development services under high-intensity startup timeframes. I was the primary developer as the company went from barely operational to fully V.C. funded.

In 2010, Shindig released Remembary: The Connected Diary, which has received strong reviews from major sites like AppAdvice, and has been featured in the App Store several times.

In 2015, I started speaking at technology conferences across North America. In September 2018 I gave the closing keynote at the Kitchener Waterloo Software Quality Association's annual conference. Look at my speaking page for more details.

Selected Experience

  • Built the entire software suite from ticketing and registration, content management, audience tracking and performance management in Ruby on Rails, as well as mobile apps in React Native for the Zuppa Theatre production "This Is Nowhere". Probably the best overview is my talk here but I have written extensively about this project in my blog.
  • Founder and lead instructor of CodeSchool: Halifax, a spin-off of Lighthouse Labs. Teaches "Intro to Web Development" courses and was the lead mentor in Lighthouse's 8-week coding bootcamp in 2016.
  • Co-Founder / CTO of BeanCounter, software-as-a-service for managing vending and coffee machine operations.
  • Remembary: The Connected Diary: Planned, designed, programmed, and promoted my first iOS app, a personal journal thato helps you remember what you did by integrating social media and your device's photo library and events calendar. Remembary has had strong reviews and has been featured in the App Store in Canada, the USA, and Worldwide.
  • Starshipsstarthere.ca: what started as a novelty spoof site turned into a crowdsourced social media hit, with several hundred pictures from contributors worldwide, TV news coverage, and over 170,000 pageviews.
  • Careerious/ClearFit: Rebuilt their existing .NET/C# application in Ruby on Rails, ending up with one fifth the code and with some parts running up to 50 times faster. More details can be found in the notes for a presentation about this project.
  • Signs of Change: In a decade-long business relationship, Andrew has built and maintained the business software that runs all operations for this signage management company. The application was originally built in Lotus Notes, later updated to a Ruby on Rails system.
  • Get Signage Inc.: Built a custom system to help manage the ordering, printing, and shipping of price tickets for The Beer Store. More details available in this blog post.
  • World Impact Inc.: Built a custom system for managing the signage manufacturing process, including pricing scenarios, purchase orders, and invoicing.
  • Origin Technology in Business / ATOS Origin: Worked in the Groupware Practice in the Columbus, Ohio office of this global IT consulting firm from 1997 to 1999. Worked on numerous projects for clients such as:
    • Bank One Corporation
    • Guardian Life Insurance Company
    • ICI Chemicals
  • Industry Canada: Built and managed a Notes-based Knowledge-Management system for tracking internal and external communications between 1995 and 1997.

Selected Technical Skills

  • Ruby on Rails development since 2005.
  • iOS / Objective-C development since 2010.
  • HTML/CSS/JavaScript since 1995.
  • React Native since 2018.
  • OS X, Windows, Linux / Unix Shells.
  • XCode for iOS development.
  • EMACS / Visual Studio Code for other development.
  • Pixelmator, Procreate, and Adobe Photoshop for graphic design.