Meet the Turkmen tea-lover who’s squashing Campuswire’s bugs.
Rovshen Gurdov is a cat-lover, lifelong-coder, and the newest addition to Campuswire’s engineering team. We sat down with the petroleum pro to discuss life in NYC and how he works to move Campuswire’s backend forwards.
Hi Rovshen! Where are you from?
Hi, Sanna. I’m from Turkmenistan. It’s located in the middle of Asia, next to Afghanistan and Kazakhstan.
And how old are you?
I just turned 29 years old.
What was your university major?
I went to school in Kazakhstan for petroleum engineering, actually. Geology and petroleum engineering.
What were you doing before Campuswire?
Before Campuswire, I worked as a software developer at a small company called Blueprint NYC.
How long have you lived in New York, and what do you think about the city?
I’ve been here on and off for about nine years, since 2011. I’ve moved back and forth between Pennsylvania and NYC a few times.
Living here, it’s an amazing thing. It’s indescribable. It’s not just a city in the United States — it’s the heart of the world. There’s everything here, you can find anything at any time. I’ve been to a lot of cities, and nowhere comes close to here.
When you’re not here coding Campuswire, what do you do outside of work?
I play pick-up soccer games on the weekends, and hang out with friends. I have a couple of side projects, too.
What was your favorite subject in middle school?
When I was fourteen or fifteen I’d already started to study computer science. I wanted to go into CS at university, but my parents pushed me towards petroleum engineering.
If you were an ice cream flavor what would you be?
I love vanilla ice cream with caramel.
How many cups of coffee do you drink a day?
None– I’m a tea person. I drink black tea in the mornings for the extra caffeine, and then green tea in the afternoon because it’s refreshing.
And how many cups per day?
Between two and five.
Where is your favorite place in the world?
My homeland. The best place in the world is always home.
Is your entire family still back in Turkmenistan? How often do you see your parents?
Yes — I last saw them about six months ago. I go home once every two years or so, but before my last trip I didn’t return for almost 4 years.
What’s the longest you’ve gone without sleep, and why?
Almost two days — probably about 45 hours or so. I was doing a road trip for work and didn’t have a chance to rest, so I just kept driving.
Sounds dangerous. If you were an animal, what would you be?
Tough question…. a cat? They’re very clean animals, and very intuitive. Not like dogs.
What’s your pet peeve?
I honestly don’t really have any pet peeves. Every person is different, and their actions don’t bother me. I have my own life to live.
If you could only watch one movie for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Does Game of Thrones count?
We can count it. What did you think of the last season?
It was really bad. The last episode was the worst that I’ve seen. Otherwise, the show’s content is excellent.
What was your first ever job?
When I was fifteen I began working in IT. I always wanted to be a software engineer.
And when did you start at Campuswire?
October 3rd. Tade [Campuswire’s founder & CEO] found me online and told me about the position, I wasn’t actually looking for a new job. But the product seemed interesting and the company seemed like a good fit.
What are your day-to-day responsibilities at Campuswire?
I do a lot of debugging, and we’re working on features for Campuswire Pro. I’m building APIs for lectures.
What has been the biggest challenge since starting here at Campuswire?
One thing that took me a long time was making changes to our notifications systems, to make it dynamic instead of static. It wasn’t challenging, but it was time-consuming.
Was there every a time when you were a student where you wished you had Campuswire?
I would say… accessing content outside of class. Our professors didn’t share content with us online, so we’d have to take perfect notes in class. We all wished that they would share lecture material with us through the cloud, or something. But this was back in 2011, so technology was a little different.
What are you most excited about for the future of Campuswire?
I love our product, it’s really good. I’m excited to introduce more real-time applications to the tool, and see how professors and college students will benefit from Campuswire going forward. ●
Campuswire is a course communication system built with the specific needs of professors and students in mind. Get to know the rest of our team through our Meet the Campuswire Team series, or by sending us a message on campuswire.com.