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Dec 20th 2013

AOL NY Hosts "Women in Tech" Initiative

AOL is excited to be one of the first companies to partner with the NY Department of Education for the "Women in Tech" initiative, a new program for female software engineering students. Spearheaded by Rachel Haot, the city's Chief Digital Officer, the program aims to connect female leaders at New York tech companies with middle school and high school girls from the city's 22 pilot computer science schools.

We kicked-off the initiative yesterday, as the AOL NY office hosted a group of 30 from the High School of Telecommunication Arts and Technology in Brooklyn. The field trip included an in-depth tour of the AOL studio and HuffPost Live set, followed by an interactive panel moderated by Susan Lyne, where the girls had an opportunity to hear from several women working across different business sectors of AOL.

We believe that events like the "Women in Tech" program help girls recognize the myriad pathways available in the technology field. Students enjoyed hearing from the panel of strong, trailblazing female tech leaders here at AOL including Huffington Post, while the school reiterated that it's valuable for girls to be able to see themselves in engineering and business roles of the speakers.

Panelists included:

Emily Glatzer- General Manager, Lifestyle Brands

Sammi Leibovitz- Creative Director, AOL.com and Lifestyle

Regina Bienstock- Head of Business Operations, Marketplace by ADTECH

Rebecca Searles- Social Media, HuffPost

Anna Dickson- Photography Director, HuffPost

Alexandra Berke- Engineer, HuffPost


Whiteboarding (topic: tech/coding):

Jennifer Wenner, Sr. Tech Manager, Software Engineering

Piya Ghosh, Software Engineer, Huffington Post Media Group


Studio Tour

Lead by Sylvia Nasiadko- Production Manager, AOL studios/HP Live

Aug 27th 2012

AOLer Andreas Turanski Talks Moviefone and Social Engineering

Since joining the AOL Technology team over two and half years ago, Andreas Turanski has worked on a variety of different projects – both big and small. But one he's particularly passionate about is creating a tightly-knit engineering culture in New York City that reflects the startup/small company background he came from and embodies a similar experience that already exists in AOL's Dulles campus.

"I wanted to help AOL NYC Engineers from my teams and other teams to get to know each other as a social group and as resources," said Andreas. "I floated the idea to engineers and engineering leaders in a bunch of these teams and virtually everyone liked the idea so I made it one of my missions to kick-off a NYC AOL Engineering mixer. I also talked with the head of the Cultural Ambassador Program that I'm involved with about funding the events." How'd he do? We'll come back to that in a minute.

In his "day" job, Andreas is a Senior Tech Director who works on AOL's Entertainment verticals and sites like Moviefone, AOL Music, Winamp, and AOL HD / AOL ON. Collaborating with the General Managers, Product Managers, and designers of the sites, Andreas and his four engineering teams work to build the best experiences for our users that will make an impact. This includes rebuilding the backend of sites to deliver a more flexible structure to pull in the best, least expensive data providers, a recent win accomplished with the new backend for the AOL Music site and Winamp.

When working on a project, Andreas' main priorities are to create reusable systems with a great and consistent user experience. "We're always trying to make a systems that can be reused by other teams in ways that we don't even envision while making sure we get them delivered quickly. This is often done by having an API (application programming interface) that defines how to access the service that our other groups can use. This makes code more maintainable, so if one thing changes in the background, the front end doesn't have to change. For instance, we're going to re-use the backend that we just built for AOL Music and Winamp as the backend for Moviefone after some enhancements."

An avid cyclist and vegan, Andreas spends much of his time outside of AOL doing non-profit work around causes that promote civil rights and animal protection. Raised in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City, Andreas continues to be surprised by the new things he discovers exploring his ever-changing hometown, but it's his son who brings him the most inspiration. "I am continually proud of my son, as I watch and help him grow and develop as an amazing person."

At one point in his AOL career, Andreas ran the AOL Social, Community, & Identity engineering team where they built the current commenting platform and AOL Share. Using his knowledge of the needs from the site side helped inform what was built on the platform side. Andreas continues to dabble in community engagement with his team as they test different programs on their sites like enhancing how we let Moviefone users make events to see specific movies to share with their social circles.

And the mixers? What started out as a gathering of 15 engineers and tech staff has now multiplied into a large community where sharing knowledge while socializing thrives, but Andreas does not plan to stop there. "We'll need to continue working on this and make it a steady part of the NYC AOL Engineering social fabric. Next is to get more teams involved, after which I promised I'd do a shot at the mixer!"

(AOLers, including Chief Technology Officer Curtis Brown (far right), attend a mixer.)

May 8th 2012

Heroes Wanted: Join AOL's Mobile Team

Hi, my name is Sabrina, and I'm a recruiter on the AOL Talent Acquisition team. I'm excited to be the first to contribute to a new series for the AOL Blog that we're calling "Heroes Wanted." The series aims to bring you some of the most exciting employment opportunities within the many teams at AOL. This first post goes in search of heroes to join our Mobile development team, who build some of the most fun and well-regarded mobile products in the business!

In a world where millions of people use our products every month*, we rely on the power and pluck of the mobile software engineers to save the day. You were put on this earth to make a difference and we want to harness, develop and foster your skills and talent to help you achieve that goal. We are focused on the future. We have a solid plan in place to become the largest online content provider in the world and we're making strides every day. But what I truly think differentiates us from other companies are our people. We collaborate and work as a team creating a real sense of community.

We're searching for developers that are passionate about mobile technology. We have a dynamic team full of creative, ingenious AOLers that work hard and play hard. They've already made amazing products like my personal favorites Moviefone for iPad, Engadget Distro and AOL Play. To win the war on bad applications, we are on a mission to find the few, the proud, the super-talented. Our goal is to build intuitive and engaging mobile applications that even your parents can use. This means solving complex, unique and large-scale problems, working with a passionate team and creating compelling apps for the Android and iOS platforms. You'll battle dark forces daily and continually improve processes and tools to make the web a better place for all civilians.

Think you have what it takes? Can you answer Yes to all of the following questions?
  • I have built high quality web applications that were published in the Android Market/Google Play and/or the Apple AppStore. I'll tell you all about them.
  • When I build applications, I always consider how to create a great end-user experience because if I don't look out for those little guys, who will?
  • I have a passion for mobile device technologies and a desire to increase my cadre of technology powers.
  • I enjoy working within a league of other code heroes. Building apps is a team sport and I excel at communications – especially with team members and product or business owners.
  • Also? I have a B.S. in Computer Science or a related field. My coding superpowers extend to Java and Android development and/or Objective-C/C++/C, Cocoa Touch and iOS development. Plus, I have hands-on experience developing software using object-oriented programming and killer design skills. Duh, obviously. I am a code superhero after all.

Interested in joining us? Visit our careers page to find out more, and visit our Heroes Wanted category on the AOL Blog for more great jobs!

*Internal mobile data

Mar 28th 2012

MAKERS.com Adds Activist, Engineer to Gallery


The latest trailblazing women to join the MAKERS.com video gallery: activist, writer and feminist Amy Richards, who co-founded an organization that empowers young women, and civil engineer Robyn Beavers, who focuses on environmental sustainability.

Amy Richards co-founded The Third Wave Foundation, a national philanthropic organization focused on supporting young women, ages 15 to 30, through grant making, leadership development and advocacy. She's best known as author of Manifesta: Young Women, Feminism and the Future.

Robyn Beavers is a civil engineer focusing on issues of environmental sustainability. She's the founding member of Google's Green Business & Operations strategy, served as an AARA Fellow for the Department of Energy, and aided in the creation of WindMade, an international NGO providing companies with the means to "label" their commitment to renewable energy.

Learn more about Amy by watching this video featured on MAKERS.com:

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