February 7, 2024 — 6 min read
Contributor Spotlight: Roman Dmytrenko
This is a new type of post that we are calling a "Contributor Spotlight". It's a way to highlight the work of our contributors and share their stories with the world. We are excited to kick off this series with Roman Dmytrenko, a talented engineer and Flipt contributor.
Roman has been working with the Flipt team over the past several months, and has added some amazing features and functionality in the process. He has a passion for building great products and is always looking for ways to improve our platform. Roman is a great collaborator and is always willing to go the extra mile to help out the team.
Here are just a few of the things that Roman has contributed to Flipt:
- Added the ability to delete multiple API Tokens at once: #2424
- Helped us move all of our UI data to Redux: #2441
- Fixed some issues with Monaco editor and ultimately replaced it with a lighter-weight editor called CodeMirror #2646
- Added support for Azure Blob Storage #2538 and Google Cloud Storage #2589 for our declarative object storage functionality
- Added membership checking for our GitHub OAuth integration #2508
I could go on and on, but I think you get the point. Roman has been a huge asset to the Flipt team and we are incredibly grateful for all of his hard work.
I recently had the chance to sit down with Roman via Discord and ask him a few questions about his background, his life outside of software development, his work with Flipt, and his thoughts on the future.
Here's what he had to say:
Roman, thanks for taking the time to chat with me today. Can you tell us a little bit about your background and hobbies?
I am from Ukraine and I like backpacking in the mountains. I did a lot of trails in Carpathian mountains but it faded away during the Covid era. My new hobby is homemade sourdough bread baking. I see it as some kind of meditation. Dealing with sticky dough requires patience and practice. Your results may vary depending on flour, temperature, and other conditions. But usually I have a tasty toast with my morning espresso.
Could you tell us a bit about how you got into software development and some of the projects you've worked on in the past?
I got into software development decades ago. After university I started working as a Java developer in the banking software industry. The area was very regulated and it had many closed source pieces. I could spend a lot of days trying to reproduce the issue and fix it. During those days I realized that open-source software makes things much easier for developers. You learn from the original code and don't waste time fighting with the decompiler.
Life moved along and I joined a team that focused on developing games for Facebook. I switched many languages and developed in PHP, ActionScript, Java, and Golang. PHP probably was the main language during that time as it was promoted by Facebook. I saw the birth of the apps, their best times and their sunsets. Everything moved fast but I learnt a lot from it including: trunk-based development, experiments and feature flags with simple conditional statements.
As the popularity of Facebook games went down, I joined a startup. While I worked there I used Golang a lot. It's easy to learn and use. I also like that it compiles to a single binary as it's easier to distribute and keep up with compliances. It's a breeze to have a scratch Docker image with a Go binary only.
That's really interesting. It sounds like you've had a lot of diverse experiences in your career. How long have you been contributing to open-source projects, and what drew you to Flipt?
I haven't contributed a lot to open-source. I did a few commits here and there which helped to improve or resolve issues related to the project I worked on.
I explored feature flag solutions in the past project and Flipt was one of them. The team made the decision to move with an in-house solution. The number of feature flags was small and could be managed with environment variables. One day it was suggested to check Flipt on Github again. So I went to see if I could contribute something to the project. I discovered that I could help and I also could learn a lot at the same time.
We're really glad you decided to contribute to Flipt. Your work has been invaluable to the project. May I ask, what keeps you motivated to continue to contribute to open-source projects like Flipt?
I always admire how many things the open-source community does for each developer. It changes the way the software is developed, deployed, monitored and analyzed. And I want to give something back. Even fixing small bugs will give the maintainers more time to focus on the next bigger thing and innovate.
It really is helpful as a maintainer to have contributors like you who are willing to help out anywhere in the stack.
Before we go, may I ask what are you most excited about for the future of Flipt and the open-source community? Any features you'd like to see added to Flipt or help develop?
Flipt has many ways to integrate, configure, and run/deploy the service. But it's still hard to see how each flag is performing inside Flipt. Usually the flag is active for some time for the experiment. It would be nice to have insights into evaluation. It also will be great to know when the flag is not in use or misused: either the experiment is over or some service calls the flag that doesn't exist.
I completely agree. You won't have to wait long for that feature. We're currently working on a new analytics dashboard that will provide insights into how your flags are performing. We'll be releasing this in the next week or so, and we'd love to get your feedback on it.
We're excited to continue to work with you and the rest of the community to make Flipt even better. Thanks for taking the time to chat with me today, Roman. We really appreciate all of your hard work and dedication to the project.
We hope you enjoyed this first edition of our Contributor Spotlight series. We're excited to continue to share the stories of our amazing contributors and the work they are doing to make Flipt even better.
If you're interested in contributing to Flipt, we'd love to have you join us. You can find more information on how to get started on our GitHub.
Also, if you have any questions or feedback, feel free to reach out to us on Discord. We'd love to hear from you!