Sonar Team Spotlight: Mark
It’s been a busy week on Sonar’s blog! But guess what? We’ve got one another Sonar Spotlight for you, this time featuring Mark Ha, one of our awesome engineering interns. Mark was born in Canada, raised in Massachusetts, and is one year away from graduating from Princeton University.
You’ll be a college senior in the Fall - exciting! What do you study?
I’m a Computer Science major and have also taken a lot of East Asian Studies classes. I’m learning Chinese and Korean.
As a Computer Science major, what kinds of projects have you worked on?
This past year, I did two Junior Papers (JPs) - research projects or papers that Princeton students have to complete during their junior year on a topic in their major. For my first JP, I made a two-player Tetris game for Android, where you are shown your opponent’s game alongside your own. My second JP was a mini-library that helps other new Android developers establish a peer-to-peer connection between two phones more easily - in other words, a shortcut to hook two phones up over wireless.
That’s pretty cool. What do you work on here at Sonar?
Since Sonar is primarily an iPhone app, I’m working on the getting the Android beta up to speed. In terms of the work I do, it’s all client side, so that’s everything that goes on on your phone when you download our app. Client side takes all of the information from our server, processes it, and then displays it to the user in a pretty and hopefully meaningful way. It also takes the user’s interactions and decides what to do with them - if you swipe your finger across the screen, where should I take you? If you go to the Places page in Sonar, what should I display to you and how? Pretty much anything the user does, I have to take into account and act accordingly.
Now our Android users know who to thank :) So what do you like to do for fun?
As for hobbies, I mostly just play videogames in my free time - PC, console, whatever’s convenient and whatever I’m feeling at the time. I’m a big fan of Blizzard games, in particular Starcraft.
Have you ever been to a Starcraft tournament?
I used to compete for Princeton’s team in the Collegiate Starleague, a college Starcraft league for the US and Canada that I also helped run for 3 years. Last year, there were over 300 schools in the league, and there will probably be 400 or 500 this year. The Princeton team has done pretty decently in the past, especially considering there are only 15-20 regular members on the team, and only about half of them are serious about competing. Other than that, I’ve also been to a bunch of Starcraft tournaments to spectate. I played in a League of Legends college team as well for a bit, but just play for fun now.
Tomorrow is the Opening Ceremony for the 2012 Olympics. Which events are you looking forward to the most?
I’m a big tennis fan, so I’m probably most excited for that. Other than that, I’m looking forward to basketball, gymnastics, and swimming.
Sweet - who are you rooting for in tennis?
Federer’s the man.
Thanks for chatting with us, Mark!