Cannes Conquerer is Ready for Close Up as Developer

Anthony Sims is a recent a web developer grad out of General Assembly and he’s ready for his close up. When he’s not nerding out on Javascript you can find him writing out his next big vision or polishing off his trophy from his Cannes Film Festival win. Whether you’re a startup working out of your trunk or a colossal corporate entity, Sims is the next creative connoisseur you want on your side.

What program are you graduating from?
I graduated from the Web Development Immersive at General Assembly in March 2016. Before WDI, I was the Sr. Content Strategist at a small agency in Chattanooga.

What startup/tech projects have you worked on?
Most recently, I worked on the brand strategy and fundraising deck for investors who are developing the former Brushy Mountain State Penitentiary into a craft whiskey distillery and tourist destination. I did the same for Oh Boy Sports, a sports social media startup based in Jupiter, Florida. In 2013, I wrote and produced “The Day After Stonewall Died,” a short film that eventually won the Cannes Short Film Festival.

What tech/tools are essential to you?
I can’t live without my Macbook Pro. I use Atom as my text editor; Google Docs for writing stories, strategies and notes; I’m one of the eleven people on the planet who actually like the new Final Cut Pro, but I like Premiere Pro as well; I use After Effects for 2D animation projects; and I’m hoping to dig into Unity and Blender for 3D/VR/AR stuff. As for languages, I’ll flirt with just about anything, but Javascript is where I want to earn my first black belt.

How do you stay informed & on top of emerging trends?
My daily reads are The Verge, Fast Company, Kill Screen and USA Today. I do meetups and hackathons whenever I can. And I share stories, ideas, and news with my GA buddies on Slack.

What are your best technical or creative skills?
First and foremost, I’m a writer. For me, every big vision or cool app starts with clear, simple, bulletproof English. I’m also very sensitive to what I’d call the “cinematic” aspect of user experience, i.e., how users react to the content, timing and sequence of what they see on a screen. I’m a competent graphic designer but prefer to work with truly illuminated designers and help bridge the gap between the creative and business concerns of a project.

What’s next on your list to learn?
I’m all in on core Javascript, so the most important thing for me is to continue to develop a deeper understanding of functional programming, APIs and the full-stack. I’m looking forward to learning React as well as some of the more graphics-heavy libraries like D3 and three.js. After I’ve mastered those (ha!), I’m excited to lean more definitively toward mobile with Swift, React Native, and jQuery Mobile.

Why the interest in startups and the technology field?
We’re living in a world that’s engaged in a 24/7 digital conversation. The rules for communication, media, and human experience are being rewritten in code. Tech startups are the leading edge of this historic revolution, and I want to be a part of it.

Are you interested in working for a startup, mid-sized company, or a corporate giant?
I’m looking to work with talented, optimistic, hard-working people who respect both the necessity of risk as well as the value of discipline. I think those people can be found in every size and flavor of business, from garage hack startup to 800lb corporate gorilla.