MarkUs Blog

MarkUs Developers Blog About Their Project

Introducing our Fall 2010 Team

with 3 comments

We are happy to have 7 team members working on MarkUs us for the fall 2010 term!  Since we are currently spread across the country, this blog post will hopefully serve to allow ourselves to get to know each other before our first opportunity to meet in person.

I’d also like to mention Mike Conley and Severin Gehwolf, two MarkUs alumni who continue to provide an enormous amount of support and advice!

Here we are, in alphabetical order:

Evan Browning
U of T

My name is Evan Browning, and I’m a third year Computer Science student at U of T.  I worked on MarkUs over the summer months, and previously I worked at the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and for the Assistive Technology Resource Centre at U of T (now the Inclusive Design Institute).  Besides programming I love to do film and video stuff, and especially things related to visual effects.  I also love to explore new places, both in the city and in the wilderness 🙂

Horatiu Halmaghi


My name is Horatiu Halmaghi and I am nearing the completion of my Computing Science degree from Simon Fraser University. I currently live in Burnaby, Canada but at different times in my life I’ve also called Montreal, Sibiu (Romania), and Prague (Czech Republic) my home.

I started programming in my first year of university, but in that time I’ve come to enjoy a number of different languages and technologies. I have a great deal of experience working on web projects, having worked on a few applications in Django as well as some more fun work in JavaScript and AJAX. The most fun project I’ve worked on was creating a Live Draft system for a hockey pool application.

Which reminds me: one of my greatest passions is hockey! I love to watch the sport and I play regularly on a roller hockey team in Vancouver. The only two other things I love as much as hockey are photography and traveling the globe.

Victor Ivri

My name’s Victor, I’m in the last year of a Computer Science and Cognitive Science double major here at York U. Been working in the industry as a C++ and C# developer on and off for a while, did a Google Summer of Code in ’08 (greatest experience ever, highly recommended!). Lately my interests have brought me to web development, so here I am :).

Besides that I do all sorts of things – especially if it’s outdoors, and especially if it’s far away from the city.

Misa Sakamoto
U of T

My name is Misa and I’m a 4th year in CS: Software Engineering at  UofT.  This summer term, I worked on a web-based repository browser project for Basie, using Pinax/Django.  I also just finished a 16month  internship at IBM. Aside from programming, I’m also interested in psychology, teaching, and dogs 🙂

Kurtis Schmidt
U of M

My name is Kurtis Schmidt.  I am currently completing an Honours Degree in Computer Science at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg.

I began University working towards a degree in Computer Engineering.  However, after two years I realized I preferred writing software to designing hardware so I changed majors to Computer Science.  Since then I have worked at three different software companies.  At Frantic Films VFX (now Prime Focus VFX) I was a 3D software developer.  My specific work involved mesh manipulation and implicit surface mathematics.  My second position was at Research in Motion in Waterloo, ON.  I worked on the Network and Protocol Analysis team creating automated test suites.  Finally, my last position was at Electronic Arts in Burnaby, BC.  I worked for an internal tools team who created and maintained a procedural animation tool used across EA.

In my spare time I develop OSX/ios software using the Cocoa frameworks. As well, I enjoy film, television, and video games; playing hockey; and swimming.

Vivien Suen
U of T

My name is Vivien Suen, and I’m a fourth year Computer Science student  specializing in Software Engineering here at the University of  Toronto. Previously, I did a bit of research on reversible computing  at the University of Lethbridge, and I helped with research on social  networking as well as develop a Facebook application this past summer  at the University of Toronto.

As for interests, I really enjoy web programming and web design, I  love music and my piano, and playing badminton and baking are two of  my favourite hobbies. One of my life goals is to open a cake shop of  my own one day. Last but not least, I also enjoy my occasional dose of  WoW and SC2.

I’m excited to be working on MarkUs, and I’m looking forward to  working with you this term!

Jiahui Xu

My name is Jiahui(Sherry) Xu, and I’m in the fourth year of my Computing Science degree at SFU. I’m from mainland China. I live in Vancouver, close to Metrotown skytrain. I spent my first two years of this degree in Zhejiang University (China), and joined a Dual Degree Program which transferred me to SFU.

In terms of Web development experiences, I’m most familiar with Django framework and jQuery. I usually work on my Mac but are also good with other OS. I’ve also learnt PHP and CodeIgniter on my own before and have done a project based on that. Ruby on Rails is pretty new to me, but that’s also the reason I chose this project because I would like to learn some new cool tools. Other than the above, I’m good at C and C++ and have done a bunch of projects for my courses.

I like to sit in cafes and program, that’s my ideal spot for programming. I used to love shopping for clothes online in China because they offer them at very low prices. Now I like swimming in order to stay healthy since life as a programmer is stressful and sometimes tiring. Hopefully if I have time I can expolor the swimming pools at Toronto 😀

Written by Evan

September 18th, 2010 at 3:23 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

3 Responses to 'Introducing our Fall 2010 Team'

Subscribe to comments with RSS or TrackBack to 'Introducing our Fall 2010 Team'.

  1. Victor: You have the same phone as me!


    18 Sep 10 at 5:51 pm

  2. It is *so* great to see pictures of you. I’m really looking forward to meeting everyone in person!

    Jiahui, let me know if you would like me to get a guest pass for the pool at the U of T. I’m not sure how it rates compared to other pools, but I like swimming there.

    Hora, you should come here for grad school and join in the Friday afternoon hockey games. 🙂


    18 Sep 10 at 10:43 pm

  3. Hi Karen please get the guest pass for me if you can – it’ll be cool to swim in the swimming pool at University of Toronto, thanks. I went to the Water Cube in Beijing last year where they had the swimming competition for the Olympics, that was a great pool!


    19 Sep 10 at 12:31 am

Leave a Reply