Every Monday morning we have full company meetings. It starts with our boss talking about the company as a whole, and then we have to participate in the dreaded “Around the Horn” activity. On a team mostly compiled of humble introverts, you can imagine that speaking in a company-wide gathering about the achievements you made in the previous week is not everyone's favorite portion of the assembly. As the “horn” starts to the left of the boss, you will usually find the most reclusive of the bunch, Aaron, sitting to the boss' immediate right. While we all blather about the same ol' things as we stare at our hands, Aaron is usually the one with the most impressive contributions. Doing most of his work from his home office, most of his work is a mystery. (Since very few have seen aforementioned office, we are all convinced it looks a lot like the Bat Cave or possibly a NASA control room.) When it's Aaron's turn to share, he begins discussing the previous week's accomplishments. Immediately, our eyes glaze over. Please don't misunderstand, it is not out of boredom, but as mere mortals who hold their breath in the presence of a god. We all gaze at Aaron as he discusses things beyond our infantile understanding of codes and digital languages. Honestly, we would be just as impressed with him if he said, “Technology, technology, technology.” In fact, sometimes he does this. Truly, he does. We still stare in awe. Partly in awe of his brains, partly in awe of his ability to pass this off as an answer. What would Monday mornings be without Aaron's awe-inspiring contributions?
You see, friends, Aaron has been the lead developer since the birth of Showit Slideshow. After Todd and David Jay created the idea and initial software, it started to take off. When they realized they could quit their day jobs AND hire friends to help, Aaron was one of the first people Todd thought of. They grew up together, so it seemed like an obvious choice. Not only was Aaron a computer whiz, but he had just touched down on U.S. soil after a whirlwind mission trip that turned to romance! What's that you say? You want to know more? We are glad to oblige!
Aaron, as you might have guessed, can be quite an enigma.
Instead of a car, he usually rides his bike to work. Instead of slacks and a button down, he comes to work in cargo shorts and various Loot Crate inspired t-shirts. Instead of going away to any school he wanted, he stayed close to home to attend Arizona State University. Instead of being prideful with his giant brains, he is kind, and meek, and uses his quietness to his advantage.
When word got around he decided to skip the country and his previous 9 to 5 for a mission trip to Guam, everyone was alarmed at how out of character it seemed. Was he suffering a mental breakdown? Insanity seemed the only reason for this drastic change in the reliability of the consistent patterns of his existence. Despite their instincts, they sent Aaron off expecting him on the first plane back. Not only did he make it to Guam for his mission trip, but also hopped over to visit Australia, and had plans to travel the world and see some amazing sites! Then more insanity hit! This time, it was not his brain, folks. It was his heart.
In Australia he met a lovely lass by the name of Kylie. If Aaron's friends and family at home thought Guam was a quick off-hand decision, we don't even want to know what they thought when just after a few meetings, Aaron and Kylie knew that was it for them. Aaron made last minute changes to his travel plans to really get to know his bride, who he would eventually bring home from the other side of the world. Happily, Aaron put all the naysayers to rest as they saw how the adventure had changed him, and how wonderful Kylie, his new wife, turned out to be.
Friends, we are happy to report, Kylie and Aaron are the perfect match. When she has had a long day with their two boys, Aaron will play Legos with them for hours and will wake to shield them of their wee nightmares. When he doesn't leave his work-cave, she brings lunch in to him. And still to this day, they make time every Friday for a date night. Match made in Australia!
After a rather typical weekend spent with family, Aaron retreats behind the curtain once more to reinvent the Web. The suspense is almost killing us to launch our new software, Showit 5. We know whatever buttons he is pushing in his Batcave, they are the right ones. With his sanity proven time and time again, we are very much hoping the reinvention of the interwebs will not do him in. We respect the heart and soul, brains and creativity, thought and meticulous process Aaron pours in to his work to build this new technology that enhances creativity. We are grateful and sit, once again, in awe.
Q & A with Aaron
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