Two Minute Intro
Hello! I am Jigar Mehta, aka Gaius “Jigarius” Caesar. Life is short and so is my intro! Here’s a 2 minute intro for those in a hurry.
- I’ve been doing full-stack web development with PHP since 2010.
- I’ve been doing full-stack Drupal since 2013 – I’m an Acquia certified Drupal 8 Grand Master.
- I work with PHP, Ruby, SQL, JS, HTML and CSS.
- I’ve built a few CMSs and e-commerce platforms from scratch – it was fun!
- I’m a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA).
- I’m based in Montréal, QC – in the process of becoming a Canadian.
- I speak English, Spanish, French, Hindi and a few other languages.
- I’ve built at least 99 websites – I've stopped keeping count.
- I’ve worked with SSO, search engines (Solr), e-commerce platforms, booking systems among other things.
- I have working knowledge of SEO and a11y.
- I like contributing to open-source projects and write blog articles.
Sometimes, short introductions are not enough, isn't it? Read on to learn more about my adventures.
Here are the top 4 skills that I currently use on a daily basis.
Here’s a list of places where I’ve worked – More details can be found on my LinkedIn profile.
The e-commerce giant Shopify is revolutionizing the industry by letting businesses of all sizes have an online presence! My role here is to contribute to their mission in the form of good quality performant code so that our merchants and their customers can have the best commerce experience.
Evolving Web is one of my favorite employers! The atmosphere at the office is quite friendly and I get to produce good quality output. Here are some of the interesting things that I do at Evolving Web:
- Plan, build and maintain medium to large scale Drupal websites with features like multi-language support, accessibility, SEO, Solr-powered search and more.
- Analyze project-related problems, propose solutions and implement them.
- Determining project scope with team-members and planning the project timeline.
- Participating in client-meetings and communicating with them – usually in French.
- Train client staff and Drupal enthusiasts interested in our training services.
- Represent the company at technical conferences like Drupal Camps, Decoupled Days, etc.
- Perform technical interviews and technical tests.
- Collaborate with and manage remote employees working from other countries.
In 2016 I desperately wanted to move to Bogotá, CO for some personal reasons. Luckily, Imaginamos was looking for a Drupal developer for a medium-sized mobile app project. I passed their test and I flew all the way to Bogotá to be a part of one of the biggest web agencies in Colombia! Here’s a summary of my responsibilities at Imaginamos:
- Maintenance of existing Drupal 7 projects.
- Build Drupal-powered web services for a mobile application for a big client named Bavaria – one of the biggest corporates in Colombia.
- Coordinating with a mobile app development team based in India.
- Ensuring multi-language output – English and Spanish.
However, in six months, the main Drupal project came to an end. But in those 6 months I gained some very good memories and experience. Also, communicating with the team gave a boost to my Spanish vocabulary and accent.
Ah those Greenpill days! Towards the end of 2013, I decided to start my own web dev shop which I ran for 3 years. During these years, I gained practical knowledge about running a business as I participated in all sorts of activities from finding clients to post-sales services. It was an amazing experience!
Here’s what I used to do at Greenpill:
- Find potential clients and generate new business.
- Plan and execute projects from start to finish.
- Coordinate with team members – design team and other developers.
- Build and maintain PHP projects – mainly powered by Drupal, but occasionally powered by other frameworks.
Having decided to move to Colombia, I had to drop my idea of getting an office and employees. But it was a wonderful experience running Greenpill and I’d definitely like to do it again someday.
Xgenmedia Pvt. Ltd.
When my friend found out that I was learning web development, him and his business partner decided to give me a chance to work at their company Xgenmedia. This was my first job in IT and the opportunity to the fullest to improve my programming skills.
Here are some of the things I used to do at Xgenmedia:
- Evaluate potential projects and coordinate with the project manager to prepare proposals and other documentation for potential projects.
- Coordinate with my team to make sure we were moving in the right direction and prepare deliverables as per the project timeline.
- Build back end heavy web applications in Code Igniter and a proprietary PHP framework called fPHP.
My experience at Xgenmedia gave me a chance to work with and improve my understandings of core PHP. I worked with them for 3 years and it was a very fun experience.
Before I was in IT
After graduating from the University of Calcutta, I had a hard time figuring out what I was going to do in life. I wanted to work in branding and advertising, however, things didn’t go in that direction. I even thought of working in audio/video production, but it was hard to get a job in that line.
Here are some jobs I did before I started working as a developer:
Sales Officer at Lauret
Selling bath tubs and bath accessories to interior decorators, retailers and wholesalers. Handling visitors at the showroom and coordinating with the head office in New Delhi regarding day-to-day activities.
Junior Graphics Designer at Vinod Daing Designs
Designing branding materials for small-scale enterprises, e.g. logos, visiting cards, letter heads, etc.
Senior Graphics Designer at Personalized Funda
Designing and printing personalized gifts like mugs, plates, tiles and more. Communicating with visitors at the store and handling the sales process.
Yes, I am a language enthusiast! Mostly because I watched a bunch of Japanese cartoons as a child, e.g. Ninkū, Flame of Recca and Dragon Ball. I was always curious about languages, but I only started learning one in 2009, inspired by the Canción del Mariachi from the movie Desperado. One of lifetime goals is to speak all of UN's official languages. However, I sincerely wish that all humanity speaks a common language by the end of 2200.
Having taken a look at the education system of a few countries, I must say that the Indian education system is quite strict – at least the schools that I went to were. That said, here are some institutes where I studied.
University of Calcutta
I was at the respected Scottish Church College for 3 years studying business administration, specializing in Marketing as a part of the first few batches of BBA graduates out of the University of Calcutta. During these years I learnt several cool things that not only helped me improve my understanding of how businesses work, but also things that helped me evolve into a better, more knowledgeable human being.